With the NCAA now allowing schools to begin practices 42 days before their first game (30 practices within that timeframe), Friday marked the beginning of the 2015-16 season for many programs across the country. One of those programs is Virginia, which is looking to finish atop the ACC regular season standings for a third consecutive season.
However with the tournament winner serving as the ACC’s official champion (last season it was Notre Dame), Tony Bennett’s team is in a position where they’re looking for a second ACC title in the last three seasons. That may be a little confusing to some, but that’s been the rule since the ACC Tournament began.
And the Cavaliers have the players needed to accomplish that goal, even with the departures of first-round draft pick Justin Anderson and ACC Defensive Player of the Year Darion Atkins. Three starters, led by first-team All-ACC guard Malcolm Brogdon return to lead the way for a group expected to contend both in the ACC and nationally.
Virginia got things going bright and early Friday, beginning practice at 6:30 a.m. Above are some clips from the Cavaliers’ first practice of the season, courtesy of Virginia Athletics.