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Scouting Virginia vs. Wake Forest

Virginia (14-6, 5-2 ACC) vs. Wake Forest (15-5, 5-3)

What to watch: Wake Forest and Virginia both play the pack-line defense made famous by Dick Bennett, father of Virginia Coach Tony Bennett. By using the pack-line themselves, the Demon Deacons were prepared when the Cavaliers visited Winston-Salem on Jan. 23. Virginia has the No. 1 scoring defense in the ACC by limiting opponents to 60.9 points per game, although Wake Forest has the best three-point shooting defense -- which is one way Bennett judges the pack-line defense -- by limiting opponents to 26.9 percent from the field. In that respect, it will be strength vs. strength. The Cavaliers lead the conference by connecting on 39.5 percent of their three-pointers.

Player to watch: Wake Forest guard Ish Smith impressed Bennett so much during the last meeting that Bennett compared Smith to Muggsy Bogues, the former Wake Forest star who started ahead of Bennett with the Charlotte Hornets. The Cavaliers need to figure out a way to keep Smith out of the lane. Freshman Jontel Evans will guard Smith, but Evans struggles scoring, which has limited his playing time. Smith is 28 points shy of 1,000 points.

Key matchup: Pay attention to the battle between Virginia forward Mike Scott and Wake Forest forward Al-Farouq Aminu. Scott becomes excited when he plays against the ACC's best power forward and had impressive games against Virginia Tech's Jeff Allen, North Carolina's Ed Davis and North Carolina State's Tracy Smith. Aminu is averaging 16.3 points and 11.2 rebounds per game, so Scott must come prepared on both ends of the floor. He struggled with fouls when the Cavaliers last played the Demon Deacons.

By Zach Berman  |  February 5, 2010; 4:30 PM ET
 
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