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UVa at BC: Cavaliers - Eagles Game Thread

What: Virginia Cavaliers (10-7, 1-2 ACC) vs. Boston College Eagles (13-5, 3-1 ACC)

Time: 7:00 pm.
Date: Wednesday January 19, 2011
Place: Silvio O. Conte Forum
Radio: Virginia Sports Radio Network

Spread: Vegas: Virginia +8.5; Pomeroy: Virginia +9
Last Meeting: March 11, 2010 Virginia 68, BC 62
Last Time Out: Boston College 71, Miami 72
Series: Virginia 7-4

Guard the three. Guard the three. Guard the three.

Those are our three keys to tonight's game. Boston College ranks ninth in the country with 9.3 treys per game, and has shot 40% or better from long distance in 11 games. The Eagles are a team that lives and dies by the three ball, so if Virginia can force them to take some bad shots and throw that part of their game off, the Cavaliers will be primed for an upset.

Yes, I said upset. Yes, I know this team lost to both Harvard and Yale this season.

Somehow, they are 3-1 in the conference, with wins over Maryland, Georgia Tech and NC State, and a mere one-point loss to Miami on Saturday.

Boston College's Probable Starters

Danny Rubin Fr. 6.5 ppg 2.4 rpg 0.8 apg
Joe Trapani Sr. 13.7 ppg 6.6 rpg 1.8 apg
Josh Southern Sr.
7.9 ppg
4.2 rpg 1.4 apg
Reggie Jackson Jr.
19.6 ppg 4.5 rpg 4.7 apg
Biko Paris Sr. 10.8 ppg 1.8 rpg 3.6 apg

What do you do with a guy who averages almost 20 points a game? You test out his left ankle. BC's Reggie Jackson twisted his ankle at the end of the Miami game on Saturday, and while it's not supposed to affect his game much, if at all, tonight, it's worth Virginia looking into early on tonight. The Hoos also need to find a way to stop the current ACC Player of the Week. In the past two games, he's put up 51 points, 10 rebounds, 10 assists and 4 blocked shots.

Virginia has led at the half in each of its ACC games so far this season. The Hoos have to figure out a way to play a full 40 minutes, something I have no doubt that head coach Tony Bennett has drilled into them all week long.

By the way, assuming anyone shows up to the game tonight (BC has a particularly weak home court advantage), the crowd should be going crazy if/when Jackson reaches the 1,000-point career scoring mark. He's currently at 989.

Good news for the Hoos' sluggish offense is that BC has a sloppy defense at best.

My prediction: Virginia 74, BC 68. The Hoos want this win badly. I don't think BC has the consistency to deny this one. I also just took another shot of the Orange Kool-Aid.