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Thoughts In Brief About Wake Forest’s Season So Far After Deacs Fall To Virginia Tech 64-60

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I’m not dead, and neither is this blog!

NCAA Basketball: Wake Forest at Georgia Tech Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

So, I haven’t been particularly active, as is obvious. I’m sorry for that; without getting into too much detail, it’s difficult for me to feel much of anything other than vague unease about sports these days. I know it’s a temporary thing. Just to let all the readers know, certain things about the world we live in are especially spooky for me. To put it in context people may be able to grasp without getting too deep in at risk of bothering or alienating anyone, I have it on good authority I might be in line for a vaccine dose soon, at least in theory/demographic, if not actual practice, not to mention my parents of course, with whom I live and who help to take care of me, especially at the moment. I think everybody can understand why that might mess with my head a bit, especially thinking about sports. The good news is, for EVERYONE, we’re seeing something of a light at the end of the tunnel, and goodness knows, whatever other differences of opinion we may have, that’s a good thing.

But enough of that. Let’s talk about sports. It’s also a little hard for me to muster particularly strong feelings about sports even as an “analyst” or “journalist” (both titles I hesitate to give myself, but they’re the best options I can think of right now) because, I mean...we have a first year head coach, we have a ton of roster turnover, some season ending medical issues, all kinds of inconsistencies with games, practices, etc. etc. How can ANYONE get any sort of consistency under circumstances like that? They can’t. So pretty much any result is going to be greeted with something of a shrug from me at this current juncture.

That said, it’s not as if there’s nothing to say. Coach Forbes has, in his first season at the helm, after literally only three games and including a month “off” but not in a positive way, faced ranked teams 4 games in a row and 4 of the last 5. Not only that, the teams have been in the games even late into the second half, only finally losing steam at the very end. If I had to put money on it, I’d say that these losses will eventually become wins in due time with experience and continuity. Shoot, our bench point guard was literally a high schooler something like two months ago. If that doesn’t deserve a little bit of leeway for a first season head coach, I don’t know what does. Maybe the most important aspect of this year’s team that’s been missing for a long time is, I feel an identity. I feel what Coach Forbes is trying to create. We have a coach who takes responsibility and is clearly engaged in his job and has a history of winning everywhere he’s been. We’re in a weird world right now, but at the end of the day, I do have faith in Coach Forbes and the group he’s surrounded himself with, players and coaches alike. They play flawed, admittedly, but the defensive intensity and general grit on both ends of the floor they showcase even in spurts is unlike anything we’ve seen in a very very long time.

When Wake Forest holds an opposing team to 4-18 from deep and that includes one player going 3-5, that’s pretty remarkable. And that’s what happened in this game, in a four point loss. This all also completely ignores the fact that home court advantage is all but irrelevant this season. Nothing is normal, and yet I’m still seeing efforts that are generally in line with what I’d hope to see from a program for which I ultimately have faith in the future.

I don’t really know what else to say for the time being. It wasn’t a terrible game, it wasn’t a great game. It was just kind of there, but there are glimpses of hope, just like for the world at large. I apologize to our loyal readers (and my bosses for that matter) for falling off the saddle a bit, and I can give everyone my word that I’m going to do my best to get back in the saddle as the world starts to settle from the era of barely controlled, mostly inescapable chaos we’ve been living in lately.

Join in on the conversation. Do y’all agree with my assessment? Am I way off base? As always, thanks for reading. Stay safe, stay sane, stay healthy, everyone. On to the next. Go Deacs.

—SF