Winston - Salem,NC - Wake Forest might have gotten Jeff Teague's turnover problems under control.
That could spell trouble for the team's upcoming opponents as the 11th-ranked Demon Deacons host Wright State on Sunday.
Oddsmakers from Online Sportsbook Sportsbook.com have made the Wake Forest –22.5 point spread favorites for Thurday’s game against the Saint Joseph’s. Current College Basketball Public Betting Information shows that 57% of more than 217 bets for this game have been placed on Wake Forest –22.5.
Wake Forest (8-0) is already one of the nation's top-scoring teams at 85.5 points per game, and one of the best defensive squads, limiting opponents to 34.5 percent shooting from the field. The Demon Deacons are also among the country's leaders with 45.0 rebounds per contest.
However, they had also averaged 18.4 turnovers in their first seven games, committing a season-worst 24 against Indiana on Dec. 3, and 21 against Baylor on Nov. 30.
Teague has been the team's leading scorer for much of this season, but since taking over as the starting point guard, he had also averaged 4.0 turnovers before last week's game against visiting Bucknell, committing six apiece against Baylor and Indiana.
In the 81-52 victory over Bucknell on Dec. 6, Teague turned the ball over just twice as part of a season-low 11 for Wake Forest, which is off to its best start since going 11-0 with current New Orleans Hornets point guard Chris Paul in 2003-04.
"I looked at some of my turnovers, and I was jumping in the air, trying to make passes, trying to get the alley-oop dunks," Teague said. "Tonight, I did pretty good taking care of the ball."
The sophomore guard still finished with a team-leading 26 points, going 9-for-14 from the field and 4-for-6 from 3-point range. He improved his scoring average to 20.6 points and has made 52.0 percent of his shots from the field, including 57.1 percent of his 3-point attempts.
Last season, Teague, a natural point guard, played mostly shooting guard with Ishmael Smith running the point. When Smith missed the first two games recovering from a fractured foot, the sophomore took over.
Teague and the Demon Deacons, however, need to continue fine-tuning. After this game, they play three of their next five on the road before beginning ACC play against No. 1 North Carolina on Jan. 11. Their marquee road contest is Jan. 3 at BYU, which has the nation's longest current home winning streak at 52 games entering this weekend.
After dropping their first six games, the Raiders come into Sunday's game having won two in a row, including a 62-55 victory Friday at Arkansas-Little Rock.
The team's leading scorer, junior guard Vaughn Duggins (11.8 points), has missed the last four games after having surgery Dec. 3 for a broken right ring finger.
Junior college transfer Cory Cooperwood has averaged 10.9 points, and the junior forward also leads the team with 5.8 rebounds per game. Cooperwood scored a career-high 19 in Friday's win, going 7-for-11 from the field.
Sunday's game will be the first meeting between the two schools.
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Posted: 12/14/08 12:45 PM ET