The Week Ahead for UVA Basketball
By Josh Burton
After a fun first week that saw the Virginia Cavaliers Men's Basketball Team pick up both a home opening win and an exciting victory over a power conference opponent on a neutral court, the team will be back in the friendly confines of John Paul Jones Arena to play 2 games before traveling to Fort Myers for this year's multi-team event. Virginia will play North Carolina A&T Tuesday night (7 pm on ESPN+, also available as an ACC Network Extra game), then a quick turnaround Thursday as the Hoos take on Texas Southern (7 pm on the ACC Network). Let's take a quick look at both opponents.
North Carolina A&T
The North Carolina A&T Aggies of the Colonial Athletic Association are led by first year head coach Monte Ross. Ross posts a career 132-184 record as a head coach, having previously been the head coach of Delaware for 10 seasons from 2006-2016. Last season, the Aggies went 13-19 (8-10 in conference) with a December win over Texas Southern, the Hoos Thursday night opponent. This season the Aggies have started 0-2, and are the 356th rated team per KenPom.
The Aggies are led by 6’2” sophomore guard Landon Glasper, who comes into the contest averaging 19 points per game. Glasper erupted for 32 points in their second game of the young season against UNC Greensboro. 6”4” junior guard Kyle Duke has been the best outside shooter for the Aggies so far, connecting on 50% of his tries so far this season. To go along with this duo the Aggies play a small lineup, with their tallest player being 6’9” freshman Nikolaos Chitikoudis.
The Texas Southern Tigers of the Southwestern Athletic Conference are led by 5th year head coach Johnny Jones. Jones boasts a 385-307 overall head coaching record, with previous stops at Memphis (interim coach 1999-2000), North Texas (2001-2012) and LSU (2012-2017). At Texas Southern he has compiled a 90-73 record, including 3 straight NCAA tournament appearances and multiple wins over ranked opponents in his tenure. The Tigers have an overall KenPom rating of 220, highlighted by their 153rd rated defense.
As a team that likes to play quick, the Tigers are led by 6’1” guard Jonathan Cisse and 6' 0” guard Jaylen Wysinger, both of whom scored double figures in their only game this season, a 92-55 loss at New Mexico on Monday. 10 players played double digit minutes in the opener, including 6’8”sophomore forward Shaqir O’Neal, the son of NBA Legend Shaquille O’Neal.
On the Horizon
These 2 matchups come at a perfect time to give the Hoos a chance to fine tune before taking on Wisconsin in the first game of the Fort Myers Tip-Off tournament on November 20th.. With a day break between matchups, these games are not only good scheduling practice for Fort Myers, but also for the format of the NCAA tournament. This week should feature matchups that the Wahoos can handle while allowing them to work on the inefficiencies seen in the Florida matchup, before packing up for a fun Holiday week tournament event. Join all the fun this season on Locker Room Access!
(Featured Image Credit: Getty)