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Playbook: Wake Forest vs Virginia

A really quick look at a positive thing on defense

NCAA Basketball: Virginia at Wake Forest Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

It’s been a few game since I’ve done a playbook article, so let’s go ahead and fix that. One of the reason I skipped the past couple of games is it kind of felt like I would just be repeating the same stuff over and over that I’ve already talked about this year (i.e bad shot selection, turnovers, not rebounding, no defense). The Deacs are on a losing streak right now, but I wanted to look at something positive I saw against the Cavs, and on the defensive side of the ball no less (*gasp*).

I’m sure you’re all very aware that the Deacs have struggled on defense for the last few years. Way too often our pick and roll defense ends up with someone having a wide open dunk or a 3 pointer, kind of like this:

However, against UVA we had this one solid possession featuring Donovan Mitchell and Olivier Sarr.

Mitchell here ends up on Ty Jerome after switching on a down screen by De’Andre Hunter. He does a great job of staying with, and pressuring Jerome on the perimeter before flawlessly switching with Olivier Sarr after the Mamadi Diakite screen. Sarr then does an equally good job moving his feet and staying in front of Jerome when he drives. We could talk about whether or not it’s beneficial for Crawford to leave his man to double the ball, but on this play it doesn’t matter, as Mitchell does a great job defending the paint and blocks the Hunter shot attempt.

Hopefully the Deacs can repeat this success switching on screens in future games.