Update: Glen Rice, Jr., gt’s leading scorer, rebounder, steals, 3-pointers, 2nd in assists, and 2nd in blocks, has been suspended and will not play Saturday against VT.
Spread: fsu by 9.5 (Vegas is finally starting to adjust)
ACC SCHEDULING: How bad has the ACC screwed VT this year in scheduling?
- Tech didn’t get a single weekend home game in January, playing on the road all 4 weekends.
- The Hokies have to play two sets of Short Turnaround games this year for the first time since joining the league (2 games within 48 hours of each other).
The good news about the latter of those two is Tech is now 7-1 all time in ACC Short Turnaround tail end games. In other words, after playing a game on Day 1, the Hokies have won 88% of the games played on Day 3, less than 48 hours later. The last win came two weeks ago when VT took down clemson at home after losing to duke. VT has won 4 in a row in this situation. Add to the fact they are playing the worst team in the ACC, and you have to like our odds!… on Saturday, that is.
f-l-o-r-i-d-a s-t-a-t-e florida state florida state florida state… WOOOO: I’m not gonna lie to you — I’m not going to spend a lot of time on the florida state preview. I debated about putting VT at 3-8 up above and calling it a day (but then I’d be resorting to Cope’s tactics… did you know he pre-writes our recaps as if we’d already lost?).
Here’s how the first game went down:
- Recap – fsu 63 at VT 59
- fsu opened ACC play with a 20 point loss at clemson, but including their win at VT, they’ve won 8/9 (their lone loss was at bc… go figure… they beat unc by 33 and won at duke, but couldn’t beat bc).
- Bernard James, the 27-year-old real American hero, was a man in this game. He scored 18 points, snagged 15 rebounds, and blocked 3 shots. He dominated the paint in the 2nd half to help fsu prevent blowing a double digit lead.
BUT THIS IS A BIG GAME FOR THE HOKIES! Tech has won at every other ACC school since joining the league. Actually, to take that a step further, VT has won at every other school in basketball AND football, but hasn’t won at fsu in either (although they’ve only played there once in pigskin). Hokie hoops is 0-5 in Tallahassee since entering the league.
Here’s how long it took VT to win at the other ACC sites:
- 1st try: 4 (georgia tech, miami, wake forest, unc)
- 2nd try: 1 (clemson)
- 3rd try: 3 (duke, maryland, bc)
- 4th try: 2 (uva, nc state)
- 6th times the charm at fsu!
So let’s fast forward to Saturday…
ramblin’ wreck: Update: The question is, will VT have any healthy players on Saturday? There are injury concerns about Davila, Barksdale, Eddie, and Raines, and with less than 48 hours between games, who knows who will be ready. That leaves VT with just 5 healthy scholarship guys.
You have a better chance of playing pick up sticks with your butt checks than seeing georgia tech win an ACC road game. Over the past 7 seasons, gt is 8-46 (15%) away from the ATL in league play. I could accentuate that stat in a couple of ways: the jackets have won just 2 of their last 19 ACC road games… or I could say they’ve won 2 of their last 7! Both statements are true since they lost 13 in a row on the road before winning at wake to end last season (Update: georgia tech lost 59-50 at 2-9 wake… well, now 3-9 wake… The loss means georgia tech is in dead last in the ACC all by themselves). They are 1-5 on the road this year, with the lone win at 7-3 nc state (go figure, it’s been that kind of a year).
Tech has owned tech since joining the ACC. VT is 8-3 in ACC games, their best mark against any program (they are also 8-3 against wake).
Between VT’s success in Short Turnaround games, gt’s road record, and VT’s history with gt, I’m going to go ahead and pencil in a ‘W’ for the Hokies (notice I said pencil and did NOT mention wearing skirts or uva gear).
Talk about a contrast in styles — florida state, as usual, has a great front court with James the enforcer inside and 6’11″ Gibson also a talented shot blocker and athlete. georgia tech, meanwhile, has zero post talent. They have just 3 low post players on their roster. Freshman Julian Royal was supposed to help as a stud recruit, but he’s been a bust so far averaging just 4.6 ppg and 2.3 rebounds in 16 minutes per contest (though he does shoot 45% from the field).
Glen Rice, Jr. is the only offensive player you have to worry about, but he scored just 13 points in the 2 games against VT last year so the Hokies know something about defending him. Rice has scored 19+ on 7 occasions this year, including 28 against duke, so he can light it up. But if he’s off, the jackets have no prayer.
Even though Paul Hewitt is gone, now at george mason, this gt team looks a lot like the past teams — they don’t play patient defense (a lot of steals but dead last in FG% Defense) and they turn the ball over a lot (-3.0 turnover margin per game). Maybe… maybe… VT can get some fast break points off turnovers.
Hmm… I’m really tempted to guarantee a win on Saturday. Let’s see how I feel that morning and whether or not I feel like potentially wearing a skirt.
TANGENT: How low has VT fallen? I was watching uva lose at clemson on Tuesday and they posted uva’s NCAA resume. They listed VT as a ‘bad loss’. Uh, we’re a Top 100 RPI team. That’s a bad loss?!
*Note: Greenberg has announced that for the 2nd game in a row Tech’s starters will be determined by who practices the hardest the day before the game. Last game that was Rankin, Green, Hudson, Barksdale, and Davila, so the starters are TBD.
|G/F||41 Rice Jr.*||6-5||Jr||13.1|
*Rice has been suspended, expect Morris to start in his place and Royal to play more minutes.
Note: these stats are for ACC games ONLY. georgia tech’s stats do not include their 59-50 loss at wake on Wednesday.
|VT||florida state||ga tech|
|PPG||59.9 (8)||69.7 (4)||59.3 (9)|
|PPG vs||65.2 (5)||62.2 (2)||68.0 (9)|
|FT%||76% (1)||73% (4)||68% (10)|
|FG%||39% (11)||46% (1)||40% (10)|
|3-Pt%||33% (5)||39% (1)||33% (7)|
|Made 3s PG||5.6 (6)||6.5 (3)||5.3 (9)|
|FG% D||43% (7)||41% (3)||45% (12)|
|Off Reb %||32% (7)||33% (4)||32% (6)|
|Def Reb %||63% (12)||70% (4)||72% (3)|
|Turnover Margin||+1.3 (4)||+1.1 (6)||-3.0 (10)|
|Steals||5.2 (10)||8.5 (1)||6.1 (6)|
|Blocks||3.0 (9t)||4.7 (3)||3.8 (6)|
How sad is it that VT is 8th in the ACC in scoring offense while averaging less than 60 points per ACC game?
BORING FACTS ABOUT florida state (“Strength, skill, character”):
|Enrollment||31k undergrad, 8.5k post-grad|
|NCAA Tournament Appearances||13 (1972 Final Four and runner-up), made NCAAs 3 years in a row|
|ACC Titles||5 (Last in ’97)|
|Famous Students/Alums||Burt Reynolds, Christine Lahti, Mac Brown, 2 Heismans (Chris Weinke/Charlie Ward), Jim Morrison, Richard Simmons, Lee Corso, Fred Biletnikoff|
|History||Was florida state college for women until 1947, when it became coed and allowed men|
BORING FACTS ABOUT gt:
- Established: 1885
- Type: Public
- Mascot: Buzz
- The term ‘ramblin’ wreck’ comes from the makeshift motor vehicles gt engineers were using for projects in South American jungles in the late 19th century.
- Students: 13,750 undergrad (NERDS!) and 7,000 postgrad (NERDS!)
- Notable Alums/Students: President Jimmy Carter, Jeff Foxworthy, several astronauts, Chris Bosh, Matt Price, Dennis Scott, Stephon Marbury, John Salley, Mark Teixeira, Nomar Garciaparra, Kenny Anderson, and Stewark Cink. John Heisman coached gt.
- ACC Basketball Titles: 3 (last in 1993)
- ACC Football Titles: 3 (one less than the real Tech who has been in the league 25 fewer years) — last – ’09
- I hate the stat where they say ‘The winner of the VT/gt football game has won the Coastal Division every year… uh, that’s true, but we’ve won 5 of those 7 games, capturing 5 of 7 Coastal titles… so it isn’t comparing apples to apples. That’s like the winner of the VT/uva game has won the Commonwealth Cup over the last 8 years.