100% Cotten: Free Basketball

Jan. 14, 2006

The Deacons have been quite a benevolent team so far this season, having played in three of the four overtime games to date in the ACC. And even though Wake Forest lost a heartbreaker at Clemson, the Deacs have already done this season what they could not last season - win a game that went beyond regulation. Wake was winless in three games in 2004-2005 including the final, two overtime thriller with West Virginia in the NCAA Tournament. The Deacs already own overtime wins this season against George Mason and Texas Tech.

For those of you who might be wondering, the Deacs' first-ever game that had to go extra time to determine a winner came with Coach Irving Carlyle at the helm in 1919. Wake Forest followed a nailbiting 29-26 win over Woodberry Forest (there's something funny here but I just can't find it) with a 33-29 overtime defeat at Virginia.

The first modern era overtime game for Wake Forest came in 1951 when Coach Murray Greason led the Deacons to a home win over Clemson. The Deacons and Tigers played yet another overtime game the very next season at Clemson with the Tigers prevailing.

Seeing 20-20

Senior Eric Williams had one of the best nights ever by a Wake Forest big man recently at Clemson. Williams pulled down a career-best 20 rebounds, the most ever in the Skip Prosser era, and became just the seventh Demon Deacon player ever to record 20 rebounds and at least 20 points in the same game. Former Deacon greats Dickie Hemric and Len Chappell did it more than once in their careers, and now Big "E" has placed his name on that short list. He's the first Deacon to record a 20-20 game since Tim Duncan scored 21 points and snatched 23 boards in late February of 1997 at Virginia.

It's been well-documented that Eric's mother, Debra, once pulled down 31 rebounds in a game. Keep working Eric - just maybe you'll get there.

Poll Vaulting

At this writing Wake Forest is receiving votes but is not ranked in the Associated Press Top 25 poll for the first time in 60 weeks. Earlier this season, when Wake reached 54 straight weeks in the countdown, Skip Prosser's Deacons broke the school record. Wake Forest's run was from December 23, 2002, until January 2, 2006. The Deacs have company from some other top notch programs. Both Kentucky and Arizona have also dropped out of the polls after lengthy stays in the Top 25.

Here's hoping the Demon Deacons' absence is short-lived.

Signee Me Up

What has become an annual event, the Wake Forest Football Recruiting Luncheon, is fast-approaching. If you have not attended in the past let me encourage you to do so next month. This year's event is set for Thursday, February 2, at Bridger Fieldhouse. The cost is $10 per person, and reservations can be made by calling the Wake Forest Sports Marketing Office at (336) 758-5011.

What makes this event unique is that video clips of each signee are shown, and the assistant coach who recruited the player is on hand to tell about each new Deacon. Some entertaining tales have been known to pop up about just how the Wake staff was able to out-recruit other schools. It's a great way to get a jump on knowing Who's Who in the football recruiting class of 2006.

Hope to see you there!

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