clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

All-Time Wake Forest Basketball Tournament: Final Four

New, 1 comment

The Final Four of the All-Time Wake Tournament is here. Who will keep their hopes of being crowned "greatest Wake Forest team ever" alive?

Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

The Elite Eight provided four exciting games, with the sole one seed to be knocked off (the 1994-95 Demon Deacons) falling to the 1976-77 squad led by Rod Griffin and Skip Brown. The two Final Four matchups present matchups from two different generations. In the first game, the 1961-62 Demon Deacons square off against the 1976-77 team, while the second game features the Tim Duncan-led 1995-96 team against Chris Paul and the 2004-05 team.

Let's take a look at the matchups and what we can expect to see from the two games.

Final Four Matchup Number 1

1. 1961-62 Demon Deacons v. 2. 1976-77 Demon Deacons

At a Glance:

1. 1961-62 Demon Deacons (22-9)

Starters:

Bob Woollard

Dave Wiedeman

Billy Packer

Frank Christie

Len Chappell

Key Contributors:

Bill Hull

Tommy McCoy

AP Rank Entering NCAA Tournament: Unranked

NCAA Tournament: Final Four

BSD All-Time Tournament Results:

Beat 1980-81 Demon Deacons 75-60 (First Round)

Beat 1996-97 Demon Deacons 64-60 (Elite Eight)

2. 1976-77 Demon Deacons (22-8)

Starters:

Larry Harrison

Skip Brown

Rod Griffin

Jerry Schellenberg

Frank Johnson

Key Contributors:

Leroy McDonald

AP Rank Entering NCAA Tournament: 9

NCAA Tournament: Elite Eight

BSD All-Time Tournament Results:

Beat 1983-84 Demon Deacons 62-59 (First Round)

Beat 1994-95 Demon Deacons 76-75 (Elite Eight)

Fresh off back-to-back close games, the 1977 squad looks to continue their improbable run to the Final Four and keep their hopes alive for a championship against a 1962 team who has consistently grinded out solid performances. The top heavy 1977 team will rely heavily upon their interior presence to hopefully contain Len Chappell as best they can. While the 1962 team will likely look to slow the pace a bit to help keep the athleticism of Skip Brown and Rod Griffin in check, the 1977 team would like to get out and run to out-tempo the opposition.

The backcourt matchup between Brown and Billy Packer will be one to watch as two Wake Forest legends put it all on the line to earn their team a spot in the finals. Will the two-headed monster of Packer and Chappell be enough to tame the more even-keel and athletic 1977 team or will the 1977 team just be too much for the slower 1962 team to handle? Let us know below!

Final Four Matchup 2

1. 1995-96 Demon Deacons v. 1. 2004-05 Demon Deacons

At a Glance:

1. 1995-96 Demon Deacons (26-6)

Starters:

Tony Rutland

Jerry Braswell

Rusty LaRue

Ricardo Peral

Tim Duncan

Key Contributors:

Sean Allen

Steven Goolsby

AP Rank Entering NCAA Tournament: 9

NCAA Tournament: Elite Eight

BSD All-Time Tournament Results:

Beat 1952-53 Demon Deacons 90-48 (First Round)

Beat 1992-93 Demon Deacons 79-73 (Elite Eight)

1. 2004-05 Demon Deacons (27-6)

Starters:

Chris Paul

Justin Gray

Vytas Danelius

Jamaal Levy

Eric Williams

Key Contributors:

Taron Downey

Trent Strickland

AP Rank Entering NCAA Tournament: 5

NCAA Tournament: Second Round

BSD All-Time Tournament Results:

Beat 2003-04 Demon Deacons 84-76 (First Round)

Beat 2008-09 Demon Deacons 87-81 (Elite Eight)

The second Final Four matchup of the day pits two Wake Forest legends against each other as Tim Duncan and Chris Paul square off for a spot in the finals. The 1996 team has taken care of business so far in the tournament, romping the 1953 champions 90-48 before dispatching of Rodney Rogers and company in the Elite Eight 79-73. Duncan has been remarkable so far in the tourney, putting up 25 points and 12 boards in the last matchup in what was a physical matchup against Rogers inside.

The 2004-05 team has experienced a couple of closer matchups, knocking off two teams from their own decade to get to the Final Four (by eight and six points). Justin Gray, Chris Paul, and Eric Wililams combined for 62 of the teams 87 points in their win over the 2008-09 squad and they will look to get out and run again against the 1995-96 team. In order for the 2005 team to stay in this one, they will need to find an answer inside against Duncan as the 1996 squad will almost certainly look to pound the rock inside and try to get Williams in foul trouble.

Similarly, the 1996 team may have a little bit of trouble keeping Chris Paul in check and that task will fall to Jerry Braswell and Tony Rutland in the backcourt. Paul should be able to facilitate the offense nicely and will be able to penetrate relatively well against the 1996 team. Who will win this matchup of more recent teams to square off against either the 62 or 77 squad in the championship? Vote below and let us know why you voted the way you did in the comments.

These games both promise to be great ones and the only thing we know for sure is that two Wake Forest teams will duke it out in the finals for the title of best Demon Deacon basketball squad ever.