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Wake Forest's front line may present some challenges

Wake Forest has five players at least 6-foot-9, including a pair of 7-footers.

No. 4 Purdue has two, and one is injured.

That could put some pressure on 6-10 junior center JaJuan Johnson and 6-8 freshman Patrick Bade, Purdue's only true post players. Robbie Hummel is 6-8, 220 pounds, but he typically doesn't defend back-to-the-basket post players.

So it'll be interesting to see how coach Matt Painter opts to defend Wake tonight when the Boilermakers play the Demon Deacons in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge.

Wake Forest (4-1) has been starting 6-9 freshman Al-Farouq Aminu (18.8 ppg, 11.2 rpg), 6-11 sophomore Tony Woods (5.2, 3.8) and 7-foot senior Chas McFarland (6.8, 7.2).

If Johnson takes McFarland, that leaves Hummel for Woods? Then who gets Aminu?

Purdue's three-guard line features E'Twaun Moore and Keaton Grant, both 6-4, and 6-3 Chris Kramer. Grant usually takes the opposing team's point guard, and Kramer matches up with the top perimeter player.

That would seem to leave Moore for Aminu, whom Painter called perhaps the best frontline player Purdue will play this season. Moore does have long arms and athleticism, but if Aminu plays in the post some, Moore doesn't typically guard those kinds of players. Plus, Aminu is coming off a 20-rebound game against William & Mary.

Of course, Purdue causes some of its own matchup problems with its balanced offense. But I'm most interested to see how the Boilermakers counter Wake's size and if it can stay competitive on the boards. Wake has outrebounded its opponents by 10 this season, and that's been a weakness for the Boilermakers.

  • Before tonight's game, the Big Ten Tournament championship banner will unveiled at Mackey Arena. Junior E'Twaun Moore also will be recognized for notching his 1,000 career point, which he did while playing in the Paradise Jam last week.

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