Coming off of a two-point loss at No. 18 Duke on Saturday, Clemson coach Brad Brownell hopes his team can bounce back from its ACC slump against a Wake Forest team he described as “very dangerous.”
“Danny (Manning) has them playing good. They really score it. I think they’re averaging around 81 points in the league, so we really have to be ready defensively for a team that is very dangerous,” Brownell said Monday.
After defeating NC State by 30 points on Saturday, Wake Forest (15-10, 6-7 ACC) will travel to Clemson (13-11, 3-9 ACC) with confidence. The Demon Deacons’ blowout win can be credited to a dominant performance by sophomore forward John Collins, who recorded his eighth consecutive 20-point game with 23 points on 9-of-13 shooting. Brownell said Collins, who is averaging 18.1 points a game, presents several problems for the Clemson defense.
“Number one is he runs the floor, so he gets down there and usually gets one or two baskets a game where he just beats you down. Number two: He’s big. He’s long. His arms are long. He sits down in post. (Manning) does a good job of teaching those guys how to get angles, so when he gets in that deep post position with that size and length and positioning, he can score over either shoulder.”
As for Clemson’s sophomores, guard Shelton Mitchell and forward Elijah Thomas are coming off career-high performances against Duke, scoring 23 and 15 points respectively.
“Those are two young players, sophomores, that we feel like are talented guys offensively. There have been times when they’ve played like that and there have been other times where they haven’t. I feel like that’s certainly something we can build on.”
Clemson and Wake Forest will tip off at 7 p.m. Tuesday at Little John Coliseum.
Listen to Brad Brownell’s preview of Wake Forest: