Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Big 10/ACC Challenge?

Capital Times (Madison, WI) writer Rob Schultz argues here that Wisconsin hasn't been getting the respect they deserve in the Big 10/ACC Challenge . (Incidentally, until this year it was called the ACC/Big 10 Challenge... does a changed name equal a changed result?) "The Badgers would like ESPN to schedule them to play a marquee Challenge game against North Carolina or Duke at the inhospitable Kohl Center."

Apparently that lack of respect got the Badgers down, as Justin Gray poured in 37 points to lead #22/23 Wake to a 91-88 victory. Game articles here and here.

Maybe Wisconsin will get their marquee matchup in 2006, but until then, here are some possible interesting matchups for the Deacs in the '06 Challenge:

-Ohio State: Wake and OSU were the final possible suitors for Greg Oden, Mike Conley, and Daequan Cook, the players responsible for giving OSU one of the top-rated recruiting classes in the nation next year.

-Illinois: #1-ranked Wake was soundly defeated at then-#5 Illinois in the Challenge in '04. With almost all the players from that game having departed by '06, Wake-Illinois would be a chance for one young team to get a solid resume win.

-Michigan State: Wake C Kyle Visser and MSU PG Drew Nietzel both hail from Grand Rapids, MI. A game in East Lansing or at a neutral site in Michigan would be a nice homecoming for Wake's only scholarship senior in '06.

Monday, November 07, 2005

Two Exhibition Victories

Wake played two exhibition games last week, picking up victories over DII schools Winston-Salem State and Mars Hill.

The Deacs came out with the same starting lineup in both games:
PG Justin Gray
SG Michael Drum
SF Trent Strickland
PF Eric Williams
C Kyle Visser

Average stats for the starters in the two exhibition games:
Gray - 16.5 ppg, 5.5 apg
Drum - 8.0 ppg, 2.5 apg
Strickland - 9.0 ppg, 5.0 rpg
Williams - 20.5 ppg, 8.5 rpg
Visser - 12.5 ppg, 5.0 rpg

Other notables: Chris Ellis (6.0 ppg), Cameron Stanley (7.5 ppg), Harvey Hale (8.0 ppg), Shamaine Dukes (1.5 ppg), David Weaver (1.0 ppg)

Wake Forest opens the regular season at home against Mississippi Valley State in the first round of the 2k Sports Coaches vs. Cancer Tournament.