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Deacon Dump 2/28: Wake At The NFL Combine, L.D. Shines In Dunk Contest, Demon Deacons Set To Take On Duke

Chock full of link goodness today. We have a midseason report on the Atlanta Hawks (and Jeff Teague), some golf and baseball news, a nice story about L.D. WIlliams' win at the D-League Dunk Contest, some bits and notes from the NFL Combine on Kyle Wilber and Chris Givens and basketball previews.


Atlanta Hawks First Half Review: A Look Back At A Roller Coaster Ride Of A First Half - Peachtree Hoops
Jeff Teague was regarded as the X-Factor for the team coming into the season. What are your thoughts on his play from the first half? JW: As you would expect from a point guard getting his first really serious rotation minutes, Teague has been up and down on the court. However, his advanced numbers are up across the board, save for -- ironically -- his usage rate. Teague has sometimes blended into the background too much, but he has shown his importance to the team that when he does, the team is noticeably affected by it. He is creeping up on Josh Smith as the main, as he goes, the Hawks go player on the team. KW: Overall I have been satisfied with Teague's performance. He has struggled of late and many relate that to the return of Kirk Hinrich. I am not necessarily in that camp but Teague probably could stand to see a bump up in minutes over the second half of the season. To warrant that he is going to have to do a much better job of getting over the top of screens and become much more assertive on the offensive end of the floor. If I am disappointed in anything it has been his indecisiveness of late even with Joe Johnson out of the lineup.

NBA Development League: Williams, Woodfox Highlight Dream Factory Presented by Haier
L.D. Williams’ winning dunk, a thunderous windmill slam that left him hanging from the rim by his right elbow, and Booker Woodfox’s repeat victory in the Three-Point Contest highlighted Saturday’s NBA Development League Dream Factory presented by Haier at Jam Session Center Court at the Orange County Convention Center.

2012 NFL Combine: Two Days In the Books
Chris Givens, an underclassman from Wake Forest, ran 4.41 as did T. J. Graham from North Carolina State.

Quick hits: Pass rushers, part II - New England Patriots Blog - ESPN Boston
3. Wake Forest's Kyle Wilber. Didn't look like he had the bulk the Patriots might prefer, and probably fits better in the Cowboys/Chargers type of 3-4 defense, but analysts say the 6-foot-3, 250-pound Wilber has the smarts and intangibles that wouldbe welcomed on any team. Wilber played backwards more than forwards in Wake Forest's 3-4 scheme. "With our team, the way we did it, it was more 75 percent of the time I was dropping back in coverage," he explained. "So hopefully I can show them that during my junior tape it shows me a lot at defensive end, my explosiveness off the edge, how I used my hands, how physical I was with tackles, even with my small size. Wilber said he points his game toward Clay Matthews, because "he has a tremendous motor, he’s relentless, he’s physical, he’s fast and he’s a smart football player."

Official Patriots Football Weekly Blog | Paul’s Calls: You can’t measure toughness
Wilber may not be the most gifted player working out at Lucas Oil Stadium over the weekend, but few if any will match his courage.

Deacs' RB depth a concern as spring nears - ACC Blog - ESPN
"We’ll see if Josh Harris has matured," Grobe said. "That’s going to be real important for us, that going into his junior year he can become a for-real guy. That would be a heck of a bonus for us."

UTC Finishes 4th At Seahawk Intercollegiate Golf Tournament - 02/27/2012 -
East Carolina was the team winner with an even-par 864. The Pirates shot 286 (-2) to end up nine shots ahead of second-place Wake Forest (873). South Carolina was third at 875, four shots ahead of the Mocs at 879.

FSU's Ramsey, Wake Forest's Cooney Claim ACC Baseball Weekly Honors - Sports News Story - WCTI New Bern
Cooney shut out Cincinnati on three hits in seven innings of a 7-0 Demon Deacon win on Saturday. The Collegeville, Pa., left-hander recorded 10 strikeouts, giving him 21 in two starts this season. The combined shutout vs. the Bearcats was the first for Wake Forest since a 4-0 win over Maryland in the 2011 regular-season finale. Cooney lowered his ERA for the season to 1.42.

Rejuvenated Wake Forest ready for stretch run
"We were rejuvenated so to speak," said coach Jeff Bzdelik, who pointed out that the players responded well to a lightened on-court workload in practices. The Demon Deacons will need everything lining up for the home finale Feb. 28 against Duke. But a victory has certainly perked up the spirits for a team that has experienced numerous disappointments this season. "The week off definitely helped with resting our legs and our bodies and getting mentally and physically refreshed," forward Travis McKie said.

Duke's Hairston will miss Tuesday's game at Wake | ACC Insider
Coach Mike Krzyzewski stopped short of saying that Hairston was suffering from a concussion, the result of an elbow to the head early in Saturday’s overtime win against Virginia Tech. But he did say the 6-foot-7 sophomore would be held out for precautionary reasons.

NCAA College Basketball Preview - Duke Blue Devils at Wake Forest Demon Deacons - Feb 28, 2012 -
"Everybody's acting like our season's done - we're far from done," freshman Chase Fischer said. "We're going to finish out strong."

Duke-Wake Preview, Feb. 28 Wake Forest
What’s at Stake? For Duke, a win means pulling a half-game ahead of North Carolina for first place in the ACC, but this is mostly a chance to build momentum for its impending rematch with the Tar Heels on Saturday. Wake has won two of its last three games, but hasn’t beaten any ACC teams with a winning conference record. In their first meeting, Duke won handily, 91-73, at home. The Blue Devils are riding a six-game win streak, but coming off an overtime scare against Virginia Tech. Another easy win over Wake would be a confidence booster. It would also give Mike Krzyzewski’s squad a perfect 8-0 road record in ACC. Wake has a chance to pull off a huge upset and build some momentum for next season – athletic director Ron Wellman recently said second-year coach Jeff Bzdelik will return for a third year.