CHARLOTTESVILLEThe Virginia men’s basketball team opens practice for its 2008-09 season on Friday (Oct. 17). The Cavaliers have 11 lettermen, including three starters, returning from last year’s 17-16 team that reached the semifinals of the inaugural College Basketball Invitational Tournament.
UVa head coach Dave Leitao said Thursday that he felt the preparation for a three-game exhibition trip to Canada at the end of August helped his team.
“It does provide you with a little bit of a head start in a couple of ways,” Leitao said. “You have some things in already that you don’t have to do on the first day and it allows our preseason to be more about advancement and teaching our guys.
“The other thing, as I’ve mentioned before, is that we’ve got so many questions to get answered with this particular team and the trip started that process of addressing certain areas, certain styles of play and even evaluating certain people to see if they’re ready to take on a new role. Those things helped, but this time of year is the most critical when you have to prove yourself no matter what you did positively or negatively in August.”
Leitao feels this team is together and he likes that fact.
“One of the things this group has is they’re together,” Leitao said. “They hang out with one another and they get along with one another. We discovered that and nurtured that during the two-week period in August. That’s very healthy and a really good starting point for a group.
“From a specific basketball standpoint, we were experimenting with some different things and how to play and adjustments we can make particularly on the offensive end. I don’t think we got all the answers for me to say that this is who and what we’re going to be and what we’re going to do, but it gives me a better starting point.”
Virginia’s returning starters include senior guard/forward Mamadi Diane (11.8 ppg., 4.4 rpg.), sophomore guard Jeff Jones (4.8 ppg.) and sophomore forward Mike Scott (5.7 ppg., 5.3 rpg.).
The Cavaliers have an exhibition game scheduled with Shepherd University (W.Va.) on Nov. 9 (2:00 p.m.) at John Paul Jones Arena and Virginia hosts VMI in the opening game of the regular season on Nov. 16 (4:00 p.m.).
Cavalier Football Notebook -- Miami WeekFootball11/16/17Two regular-season games remain for Virginia (6-4 overall, 3-3 ACC), which plays No. 2 Miami (9-0, 6-0) at noon Saturday at Hard Rock Stadium.Torres Makes Most of Learning OpportunityWomen's Soccer11/15/17Freshman Taryn Torres has scored a team-high eight goals for Virginia, which meets Pepperdine in the NCAA tourney's second round Friday night in Los Angeles.Billiard's Return Energizes CavaliersWomen's Volleyball11/14/17Virginia has won three of its past six matches with freshman Sarah Billiard in the lineup. Billiard missed 10 matches while recovering from a knee injury.
Director of News Content
A 1985 graduate of UVA, White worked at the Richmond Times-Dispatch until July 2009. He was honored six times as the state's Sportswriter of the Year.
Virginia Entertains Monmouth on Sunday
M. Basketball | 11/18/2017
Virginia (3-0) hosts Monmouth (2-1) in men’s basketball non-conference action on Sunday (No...
Guy's 29 lead Virginia past VCU, 76-67
M. Basketball | 11/17/2017
Kyle Guy scored 29 points and hit two 3-pointers in the final three minutes Friday, leading...
Virginia Plays at VCU Friday
M. Basketball | 11/16/2017
Virginia meets VCU for the first time since posting a 74-57 win over the Rams during the 2014-15 ...
Jeff White: Redshirt Freshmen Impress in Emphatic Win
M. Basketball | 11/14/2017
Jay Huff and De'Andre Hunter combined for 29 points Monday night in Virginia's 93-49 victory over...
Huff Shines in Debut as Virginia Rolls Austin Peay, 93-49
M. Basketball | 11/13/2017
Four players scored in double-figures for Virginia as the Cavaliers defeated Austin Peay 93-49 on...
Virginia Hosts Austin Peay on Monday Night
M. Basketball | 11/12/2017
Virginia (1-0) hosts Austin Peay (0-1) in men’s basketball non-conference action on Monday ...
Jeff White: 'Hoos Grind Out Win in Opener
M. Basketball | 11/10/2017
For the second straight year, UVA opened the season with a win over UNC Greensboro. This one was ...
Guy's 16 leads Virginia past UNCG in opener, 60-48
M. Basketball | 11/10/2017
Sophomore Kyle Guy scored 16 points to lead Virginia men's basketball to a 60-48 win over UNCG to...
- Online Stores