Archive | NCAA Tournament

Join the TechHoops Bracket Challenge

Sure, our team isn’t in the Big Dance this year. In fact, it’s been seven years since the Hokies last appeared in the NCAA tournament. But that doesn’t mean we stop being college basketball fans, right? So, let’s get to work filling out those brackets, shall we?

First, click here to download a customized TechHoops.com-themed printable bracket, complete with lower-cased team names.

Second, go to http://y.ahoo.it/eB1KIZ7o and join our private group (password is babcock).

Posted in NCAA Tournament0 Comments

Join the TechHoops NCAA Tournament Bracket Challenge

The first ever printable NCAA tournament bracket from TechHoops.com

Click on the image above to join our Yahoo! bracket challenge. If, for some reason, ricky “program bomb” stokes managed to screw up the link, the group ID is 161687, and the password is: programbomb.

Who’s got liberty going all the way? Personally, I’m going with Gene Swindle and the james madison dukes.

Posted in 2012-13 Season, NCAA Tournament0 Comments

The official TechHoops.com printable NCAA tournament bracket

The first ever printable NCAA tournament bracket from TechHoops.com

Introducing the first ever printable NCAA tournament bracket from TechHoops.com.

Click on the image above to view and download the PDF, or click here.

Posted in 2012-13 Season, NCAA Tournament0 Comments

Six Former/Almost Hokies Playing in the NCAA Tournament

Update: JT Thompson’s charlotte team is playing in the NIT (though he’s out for the season with another knee injury) and Allan Chaney will be playing in the CollegeInsider.com Tournament for high point. That means Manny Atkins (georgia state) is the only one of nine former Hokies/commits who’s team isn’t playing in the postseason.

While Virginia Tech missed the NCAA Tournament for the sixth consecutive season (and 16 of 17), six guys who formerly played, or almost played, for the Hokies did make the Big Dance.

The table below shows the nine current Division I players who either: a) played for the Hokies at some point (this includes seven of the nine and I included Allan Chaney, who sat out two years at VT waiting to be cleared to play but never actually played in a game for VT), b) signed with Tech and were later released (Montrezl Harrell), or c) verbally committed to VT but never signed (Momo Jones).

I’ll repeat — of these nine guys, an amazing SIX will be playing (or redshirting as is the case with Doo Doo Finney-Smith) in the NCAA Tournament. And we aren’t just talking about basketball powers like louisville and florida, we are also talking about iona (2nd straight trip), jmu, valpo, and la salle (getting an at large bid, no less!).

While we are happy for some of these guys, in many cases it is a bitter pill to swallow and think “what might have been” had they stayed or even arrived at Tech. For example, Momo Jones averaged 23 ppg this year for iona, third in the nation behind our Erick Green and McDermott of creighton (he averaged just 6.6 ppg his freshman year at arizona — so he had a similar rise in scoring to Mr. Green). And Montrezl Harrell was the MVP of the Big East Championship Game in their win over syracuse Saturday night — as a freshman! Sure would have liked to see his big body in orange and maroon.

PLAYER CONNECTION SCHOOL NCAA T? YEAR STATS
Atkins, Manny Played 2 years at VT georgia state No Jr 14.2 ppg
Boggs, Ben Played 1.5 years at VT valparaiso YES (14 seed), won Horizon Sr 5.3 ppg
Chaney, Allan Never cleared to play high point No Sr/Jr 14.4 ppg
Finney-Smith, D. Played 1 year at VT florida YES (3 seed), at large RED Redshirted
Garland, Tyrone Played 1.5 years at VT la salle YES (13 seed), at large Jr 12.9 ppg
Harrell, Montrezl Signed; then released louisville YES (1 seed), won Big East Fr 5.7 ppg
Jones, Lamont Verballed, never signed iona YES (15 seed), won MAAC Sr 23 ppg (3rd)
Swindle, Gene Played in 1 VT game jmu YES (16 seed), won CAA Sr 4 pts in 18 G
Thompson, JT Played 3 years at VT charlotte No Sr 4.1 ppg; injured

It is another disappointing season for the Hokies, and the days of being on the bubble are a distant memory now. Tech is closer to 10 years ago than their Humpty Dumpty days of a few years ago.

In other news, uva’s and maryland’s bubbles burst. uva’s finish to their season (home win over duke, struggle the rest of the way, not making the Big Dance) was a carbon copy of Tech’s situation two years ago. It was good to see at least uva was punished the same way VT was.

The ACC ended up with just four teams in the Big Dance — [Correction: 5 Atlantic 10 and Mountain West teams made the NCAAs! More than the ACC! How the mighty have fallen].

Posted in Home, NCAA Tournament8 Comments

TechHoops.com’s 2011 Bracketmania Challenge

Yes, the Hokies didn’t get in … again. But the tournament still goes on and brackets must be completed. Are you all in? If so, join the TechHoops.com Pick’em Group at Yahoo! Sports by clicking here.

We may or may not give out a prize, but we will definitely give a shout out to the winner! So, hoop heads, bring it on, man up and pick some upsets and let’s do this!

Posted in NCAA Tournament4 Comments

The VT Rules For That other tournament | Whose Corn Flakes Did We Pee In?

Every year I take a look at how absurd it is that VT didn’t make that other tournament, and ended up in the Virginia Tech Invitational (the NIT).  Clearly there seems to be one rule for the rest of the ACC, and another set for the Hokies.  Tech gets more snubs than Smith & Wesson.

In this article I’m going to break down data on Virginia Tech compared to comparable ACC teams that have made that other tournament over the last seven years (since VT entered the league).  I’ll use regular season records, and regular season plus the ACC Tournament combined wins, to analyze the data.

REGULAR SEASON ACC DATA: (Breakdown of the last seven ACC seasons)

  • 10-6: Virginia Tech is the only team to finish 10-6 in the ACC and not make the ncaa tournament (2010) at least as far back as when the tournament expanded to 64 teams in 1985.  7 other teams have gone 10-6 in the last seven years, and all 7 made it.
  • 9-7: Amazingly, only 5 of the 9 ACC teams that have finished 9-7 in the regular season the last seven years have made the big dance.  Well, amazing until you realize Tech posted 2 of those 4 teams that didn’t make it (’08 and ’11).  The other two are florida state, who went 9-7 in 2006 and finished fifth, and boston college who went 9-7 this year and tied for fourth.
  • 8-8: 4 of the 7 teams that have finished .500 (8-8) in the league over the last seven years made the tournament.  That’s better than 50% of teams finishing just .500, and better than the odds when you go 9-7!  The Hokies, of course, didn’t make the dance when they finished .500 in 2005, and haven’t made it 3 out of 4 times when they finished OVER .500.
  • 4th Place or better: 84% of the teams that finished fourth place or higher, including tied for fourth, in the ACC regular season standings have made the ncaa tournament (27 of 32 times).  Virginia Tech fielded 4 of the 5 teams that didn’t make the tournament while finishing in fourth, or tied for fourth. bc this year is the only other team to ‘accomplish’ that feat (their mistake was being tied with VT).
  • Worse than 4th Place: In the 4 seasons where Tech finished in 4th place and didn’t make the ncaa’s, 6 different teams that finished below the Hokies in the ACC standings made the tournament.
  • Under .500: 3 teams that finished under .500 (7-9) in the league made the big dance over the last 7 years.  Granted, georgia tech won 3 ACC Tournament games last year, and maryland and nc state won two when they did it.  But it goes to show the lack of consistency and how the rules seem to work against the Hokies from year to year.

SUMMARY:

  • 86% (30/35) of the ACC teams that finished over .500 in the regular season over the last seven years made the ncaa’s.  VT represents 3 of the 5 that didn’t.
  • Remove VT and 94% of the teams (29/31) that finished over .500 made the dance.
  • 81% (34/42) of the teams that finished .500 or better made the dance.  Tech represents half of those 8 that didn’t.
  • Again, remove VT and it is 89% (33/37) that made it of teams finishing .500 or better.

ACC REGULAR SEASON RECORDS AND ncaa tournament APPEARANCES (Last 7 Seasons):

SCHOOL WINS LOSSES PCT% ncaa tourney
duke 83 29 74.1% 7
north carolina 83 29 74.1% 6
maryland 60 52 53.6% 3
florida state 58 54 51.8% 3
boston college 49 47 51.0% 4
VT HOKIES 57 55 50.9% 1
clemson 56 56 50.0% 4
wake forest 49 63 43.8% 3
miami 43 69 38.4% 1
uva 43 69 38.4% 1
nc state 42 70 37.5% 2
georgia tech 41 71 36.6% 3

^^^Just take a look at that.^^^  The ACC has 38 tournament bids in the last 7 years, and Virginia Tech has just 1 of those bids.

  • VT has the 6th best winning percentage, just 1 bid.
  • 4 of the 6 teams with worse winning percentages have more bids than VT.  3 of those 4 teams have 3 or more bids to VT’s just 1.
  • georgia tech, at just 41-71 in league play and has just 7 road wins in 6 years, has 3 bids.  And they had the second worst coach in the league that whole time!
  • I bet nc state fans sure miss Herb Sendek right now!  He got them to the tourney almost every year, Lowe is/was 0/5.

REGULAR SEASON + ACC TOURNAMENT ANOMALIES (2005-11):

Let’s look at how teams did in terms of making the ncaa tournament when getting to ‘X’ combined wins between the ACC regular season and the ACC Tournament since Tech joined the ACC (e.g. VT had 11 combined wins this year and 10 last year).

  • 11 Wins: Of the 6 teams to finish with 11 combined wins, Virginia Tech is the only team not to make the big dance.
  • 10 Wins: 10 teams have finished with 10 combined wins and 7 made the ncaa’s.  Virginia Tech represents 2 of those that didn’t (2008 and 2010).  bc this year was the other.
  • 9 Wins: 6 of 8 teams that have ended with 9 combined wins made the ncaa tournament.  Just maryland and florida state, both in 2006.  VT has never finished with exactly 9 combined wins.
  • 8 Wins: Only 2 teams have made the ncaa tournament with just 8 combined wins.  Both were in 2007 and of course duke was one of those teams, with georgia tech the other.  VT, of course, did not make it the 2 times they finished with 8 combined wins.

SAD SUMMARY:

  • Virginia Tech is the only team in the last 7 years (probably longer) in the ACC to get 11 combined ACC regular season and tournament wins, and not go dancing.
  • VT is the only team to win 10 regular season games in the last 7 years and not go to the ncaa’s.
  • 12 of 16 teams to get 10 or 11 combined ACC wins went dancing.  VT marks 3 of the 4 that didn’t (11 of 12, or 92%, of teams not named Virginia Tech made it with 10 or 11 combined wins).
  • 29 teams have received ACC Tournament First Round byes in the last 7 years.  Virginia Tech is the ONLY team to get a bye and not make the ncaa tournament… and it has happened to VT THREE TIMES (2005, 2008, and 2010).

SO WHAT DO WE DO TO CORRECT THIS?

  1. Keep playing challenging out of conference schedules: The Hokies need to keep playing schedules similar to what they did this year out of conference.  The tough thing is next year they will be young.  But, better to schedule tough and take some lumps early.  Avoid playing teams like East Popcorn State and have a horrible RPI due to a rough SOS.
  2. Play more ‘good, not great’ programs: Yes, k-state, unlv, okie state, and purdue are solid out of conference games.  But VT went just 1-3 in those games and the win was against the worst of the four.  Yes, penn state ended up being a top 50 RPI team and a ncaa team, but that was a surprise (just like how bad miss state was also a surprise and you cannot blame VT for that).  The rest of the OOC schedule was poo-poo.  The Hokies need to play more teams that are consistently around the top 100, even if it means some more road/neutral site games… road/neutral wins count more anyway.
  3. Win some of those tough OOC games: The Hokies blew grand opportunities this year.  They had purdue, a top 15 RPI team, dead to rights but choked at the end of regulation.  And they were in the k-state and unlv games before they got away.
  4. Get lucky on your ACC schedule: VT has had a very poor ACC schedule the last few years in terms of strength.  VT played unc, duke, fsu, and clemson just once in the regular season this year, and duke and fsu just once last year.  As luck would have it, unc was horrible last year when Tech played them twice.  And the biggest stroke of bad luck — by beating fsu a second time this year, VT knocked them out of the RPI top 50 and cost themselves not one but two top 50 wins.  Hard to believe the team that finished all alone in 3rd place in the ACC at 11-5 (fsu) wasn’t a top 50 team.  Not much the Hokies can do about that, but it should get better over time, and the league should get better — or at least closer to where it used to be.
  5. Figure out who we’ve cheesed off and either: a) buy them back into our good graces, or b) eliminate them!
  6. Shut up and handle your business: I do think the ‘certifiably insane’ and general conduct does take a toll.  No one likes to be told who you should take, especially from an up-start program.  Do your business on the court.  Win 10 regular season games, or 10-11 combined with the tournament, and the odds show you should get in… well, unless you are VT.  Maybe we should change our name?  Niemo U has a nice ring to it.

Here’s hoping I don’t have to update this article next year.

Posted in 2010-11 Season, NCAA Tournament24 Comments

Hokies left out of the NCAA Tournament … again

Well, folks, it’s not like you can say you are surprised. We have wins over duke (No. 1 seed), two wins over fsu (which made the tournament), and a win over penn state (which also in the big dance), and we got left out. We won 11 conference games in the ACC including regular season and the ACC tournament. The Hokies made it to the semifinals of the ACC tourney, beating the No. 3 seed, fsu. And yet, Seth Greenberg and his 21-11, 11-8, Hokies got the big old snub once again from the NCAA tournament selection committee.

What more can we say? The NIT selection show is at 9 p.m., tonight. We would assume the Hokies would be a No. 1 or 2 seed and will host 2-3 games, assuming they win. Excuse us if we’re not all giggly about those prospects.

Posted in 2010-11 Season, ACC Tournament, NCAA Tournament, NIT39 Comments

Looking at VT’s Undoing: Their Out of Conference Schedule

While Virginia Tech’s weak ACC schedule (playing the bottom five teams twice and the top six teams just once) didn’t help and the loss to last place miami in the ACC Tournament hurt, it was their out of conference schedule that did them in.  Tech played 14 out of conference games and their out of conference strength of schedule was rated 339th in the nation out of 347 teams.  Yes, it was that bad.  Tech played 16 games out of 31 against teams rated 101 or higher in the RPI, 9 games against teams ranked 200 or higher, and 3 games against teams in the 300s.  Basically, in hindsight, the Hokies had almost no chance at making the NCAA Tournament with this schedule unless they had an incredible ACC season (I thought they did with 10 wins) and a bit of a run in the ACC Tournament.

While some of that is Tech’s fault (scheduling teams like north carolina central, maryland-baltimore county, and charleston southern), some of it wasn’t.  Historically good teams like iowa were terrible this year, though VT didn’t even schedule them, that was part of the ACC/Big(11)Ten Challenge.  iowa finished with a RPI of 210.  penn state, who won the NIT last year, ended up with a RPI of 194.  georgia actually moved up in the world, finishing just outside the top 100 at 107 after a couple of really bad seasons.

Tech did have two nice games scheduled, neutral site games against temple (who finished with a RPI of 9) and seton hall (61 – but also didn’t make the NCAAs).  The Hokies won the seton hall game, but ultimately they needed a win over the much more highly rated owls, who won the A-10 for the third year in a row.

I won’t sit here and bash VT’s schedule.  I haven’t questioned it all year in terms of making the NCAAs.  I knew it was weak, but I figured by rolling through it at 13-1, Tech just needed to have a good ACC season.  Tech had a great ACC season, finishing 10-6.

While I won’t question VT’s schedule, the one thing that stands out to me is – where are the Virginia teams? The Hokies played just two in-state teams out of conference – longwood and vmi.  Those two teams also happen to be the two lowest rated RPI teams in the state, at 285 and 309 respectively.  Meanwhile, richmond had a RPI of 22 and old dominion at 27.  Both made the Big Dance.  william & mary had a RPI of 58 (and beat two ACC teams on the road this year that made the dance – wake and maryland) and vcu, Tech’s old Metro Conference rival, had a RPI of 66.  george mason had a semi-decent RPI at 157.  But that’s four teams in the state that had RPI’s in the top 70.

Obviously you cannot know that a year or two in advance when you set up these schedules, but you do know odu is always one of the better teams in the state, vcu is usually solid, mason made the Final Four four years ago, and richmond has been solid since joining the A-10.  The Hokies should be playing one or two of these teams every year.  And don’t you think Hokie fans would love having a game in NOVA (mason) or Richmond (richmond or vcu) or Hampton Roads area (w&m and odu) every other year or so?  Tech fans would have a chance to see the team close to home and have a chance at a quality road win, a plus in the selection process.

I’m sure we will see a beefed up schedule for the Hokies next year, with a name team or two and solid second tier teams.  And VT should get a much better draw in the ACC/Big(11)Ten Challenge based on their higher fourth place finish this year and likely high preseason rating in the ACC next year.  Also, Tech will be playing in the 76 Classic in Anaheim, CA in late November (VT didn’t play in a tournament during the season this year).  That tourney features two NCAA Tourney teams in oklahoma state and unlv, as well as stanford, depaul, tulsa, cal state northridge, andpenn state (whom VT is supposed to play in Blacksburg next year anyway).  But I’d also like to see more Virginia teams on the schedule.  It is good for the state and looks like it will be good for the Hokies on Selection Sunday a year from now.

Posted in 2009-10 Season, Home, NCAA Tournament8 Comments

Hokies’ Bubble Bursts for Third Year in a Row

At least now we know the NCAA Selection Committee is certifiably insane. The third time was not the charm for Virginia Tech, as they did not receive an invitation to the Big Dance for the third consecutive year. Once again they will be relegated to the Junior Prom, the National Invitational Tournament (NIT). The Hokies became the first ACC team to win 10 conference games and not make the tournament, a dubious distinction.

For the second time in three years the Hokies were one of the first teams out, a bitter pill to swallow. Bubble teams that made it included florida, minnesota, utep, and utah state. Tech had the fifth highest RPI of teams that didn’t make it but CBS’s Seth Davis guessed that the Hokies were the first team out. He later asked the head of the committee, Dan Guerrero, about bubble teams and mentioned VT specifically and the first thing Dan mentioned was out of conference strength of schedule.

The ACC got six teams in with duke (1 seed), maryland (4), clemson (7), wake (9), fsu(9), and georgia tech (10). Notice something? Two of those teams (clemson and wake) lost in the ACC Tournament First Round, not even the quarterfinals. VT beat both of them and finished ahead of them. maryland and fsu also lost in the quarterfinals in their first tourney game.

We shall see how the Hokies respond in the NIT. Two years ago that young Hokie team was on a mission to show the committee was wrong and played well, blowing out two teams before losing to ole miss in the quarterfinals. Last year Tech seemed less interested and almost lost in the first round to duquesne before winning in two overtimes. In the second round they got absolutely blasted by baylor, a team that moved all the way up to a 3-seed this year in the Big Dance. With the bulk of this Hokie team represented by juniors, I’m not sure how hard they will play in the NIT. This has to be a huge disappointment, and they may have a “been there, done that” attitude. We shall see what the crowds will be like, too. Tech has gotten great turnouts from the students the last few years who have had the Cassell rocking, taking advantage of the general admission seating.

It is hard to believe a team that won 10 ACC regular season conference games, and 23 games overall, did not make the tournament. But VT’s extremely weak out of conference schedule apparently did them in. As did the loss to the last place miami hurricanes in the ACC Tournament quarterfinals. Tech’s weak in conference schedule (they played the bottom five ACC teams twice and the top six just once) also didn’t help. Still, this is tough to take and I’m sure the team is as sick as I am right now.

Posted in 2009-10 Season, NCAA Tournament12 Comments

Guest Columnist | The NCAA Selection Committee: Disrespect for the ACC and Virginia Tech

By Kartik Krishnaiyer

Our good buddy, Kartik Krishnaiyer from miami’s canesrising.com, was nice enough to write an article about his thoughts on the NCAA Tournament Selection Committee and Virginia Tech’s snub. He also participated in an Opposing View column back in February. TechHoops.com would like to thank him for taking the time to do this and offer his kind thoughts. And to show our gratitude, in an unprecedented move, we have left other schools’ names capitalized.

Hokie fans, I feel your pain. Everyone in ACC Country feels your pain. Talking to many around the country in the last 24 hours, those who understand the culture around ACC Basketball agree with me. Those who don’t understand ACC Basketball have little use for my arguments. But here is how I see what I consider a completely unjustified and unconscionable decision by the committee to take essentially mediocre teams like Villanova, Kansas State and Oregon over a battle tested winning ACC team like Virginia Tech.

  • The committee needs to watch more basketball

Had any member of the selection committee watched Virginia Tech’s heartbreaking loss at Littlejohn Coliseum to Clemson last Sunday, they no doubt would have decided that the Hokies are not only a tournament team but probably a top eight seed somewhere. The odd call by an official to call a foul with three seconds remaining and put Clemson on the line for two free throws when the Hokies were up one and had shown the grit to make what appeared to be a game winning shot just seconds earlier was inexcusable. Following this heartbreak, Virginia Tech beat Miami, already considered an NCAA lock and team that secured a #7 seed in the tournament. Finally, the Hokies got unlucky not to at least get to overtime against the committee’s favorite team, #1 overall seed North Carolina. How can a team that beat one tournament team and took two other top seeds to the brink in a one week period and who had a winning record in a league which the RPI rated as the toughest in the nation by a wide margin be left out for a team like, say Kansas State or Oregon?

  • Road games in the ACC are not equal to road games in other leagues

Much like the SEC in football, the ACC in basketball features home arenas where the passion is greater night in and night out than in any other league in America. The committee’s failure to understand that Virginia Tech’s road games are more hostile than Villanova’s show they have a fundamental misunderstanding of college basketball. Going 9-7 in the ACC is not like going 8-8 in the SEC or Big 12. It’s a whole lot tougher.

As a Miami fan, I recall we had a team that went 15-2 over a two season period on the road in the Big East. (December 1998 thru March 2000) In this period, Miami had exceptional talent, but not overwhelming talent by any stretch of the imagination. But it was fairly easy for a talented team to go into a large, half empty arena in a city center and steal a road game than to a loud partisan arena jam packed with students near the floor. The SEC in basketball resembles the ACC in football. Students come to games and cheer for their team but the passion the ACC has for basketball is lacking in SEC arenas while the passion the SEC has for football is generally lacking in ACC stadiums.

  • The NCAA should understand traditional in-state rivalries

Early in his tenure as Miami Head Coach, Leonard Hamilton made the decision to discontinue Miami’s series with Florida, Florida State, and South Florida. Why? Coach Hamilton was of the belief that you don’t schedule games against in-state opponents that could lead to defeats that kill your program’s profile both locally and nationally. As Miami improved, Hamilton gradually got aggressive about placing Kentucky, North Carolina, and Indiana on UM’s schedule, but the in-state teams never returned until Perry Clark was the coach. Virginia Tech had three losses held against them by the committee: two were to in-state rivals Richmond and Old Dominion (both on the road): for this the Hokies should have been congratulated for playing these teams, not punished for losing. Miami was for years unwilling to play these games. More and more schools now follow Hamilton’s example. The committee must realize that losing to an in-state rival from a smaller league is not like losing to a team from a smaller league from another region.

  • The NCAA needs to realize that some teams without returning stars need time to gel

Jeff Allen, Deron Washington, and A.D. Vassalo are now all household names in ACC country. But they weren’t in November when the Hokies lost to Penn State in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge. As the season went on, as was always the case with Seth Greenberg’s teams at South Florida and now at Virginia Tech, the Hokies played better and better. The team game really began to work and as is always the case with Greenberg’s teams the Hokies played great defense. So at season’s end Virginia Tech wasn’t just one of the 65 best teams in the nation, it was probably one of the 30 best. But Arizona’s early season victories with several returning stars were emphasized in picking a team with a losing conference record for the dance, but Virginia Tech’s early struggles with a group of young players was held against them, even though the Hokies finished with a winning record in the nation’s toughest conference. Go figure.

In summary, I feel Virginia Tech’s exclusion from this tournament is one of the gravest at-large oversights by the committee in recent years. For me it is probably the biggest oversight since Vanderbilt was dropped from the bracket in 2000 right before the selection show because Arkansas had surprisingly won the SEC Tournament and the committee needed to make room for them so lazily they dropped a team from the same league. I have no doubt that Seth Greenberg, one of the finest people in the game, will bring Virginia Tech back to the NCAAs next year, but the Hokies ought to be preparing now for a NCAA game, not a NIT one.

Posted in Home, NCAA Tournament, The Opposing View1 Comment

NCAA Tournament | Why Virginia Tech Got Left Out

With the news that Tech will not be making a return trip to the Big Dance, we are all disappointed right now. Let’s take a look at who got in over VT and why.

  • #12 seed villanova (20-12, 9-9 Big East) – nova is the last at-large in the tournament. In fact, they are the only at-large with a #12 seed or lower. The Hokies and the cats have almost identical resumes. nova had one more win, 9 wins in conference play, a big conference tourney win (syracuse), and neighboring RPIs (low 50s). Also, they got screwed by officials in losses to nc state and georgetown, so they have a similar gripe as VT does in their close losses. The difference is nova went 4-7 against RPI Top 50, and this is what gave them the nod over Tech.
  • #11 baylor (20-10, 9-7 Big 12) – The Big 12 was #2 in conference RPI. baylor beat three NCAA teams: notre dame, texas a&m, and kansas state. Their RPI was also about 10 spots higher than the Hokies. The bears did lose to a poor colorado team in the Big 12 Tourney, but their body of work was apparently enough. I think you could flip a coin on them or VT.
  • #11 kentucky (18-12, 12-4 SEC) – Left for dead back in December, the cats came rolling back with a 12-4 SEC record. But their loss to georgia in the SEC quarterfinals put them back on the bubble and their RPI was close to VT’s. However, they were 4-6 against RPI Top 50 and 8 of their 12 losses were to tourney teams. They also beat #2 seed tennessee. 12 wins in the SEC has to get you in, plain and simple.

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Posted in 2007-08 Season, Home, NCAA Tournament6 Comments

Will Tech’s Bubble Burst?

Time will tell, but Coach Greenberg believes that anyone who “does not think that Virginia Tech is not one of the Top 65 teams is certifiably insane”. I agree with him, but unfortunately that doesn’t mean that the Hokies will get in. Here is a look at Tech’s resume: the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly, along with some other factors that could impact their selection status.

The Good

  • 4th place finish in the ACC, with a winning conference record at 9-7. Only twice in the history of the ACC has a team with a winning record not made the Big Dance: uva in 2000, and fsu in 2006. Both those squads were 9-7, but lost their opening round game in the ACC Tournament. 21 of 23 teams that have gone 9-7 or 8-6 have made the tournament. Therefore, there is a 91% chance that the Hokies will make the dance based on this stat alone.
  • A win in the ACC Tournament against miami, who was ranked in the top 30 of the RPI.
  • maryland’s bubble burst on Thursday. Tech is the only bubble team from the ACC. There is no other competition.
  • Tech is 5-2 in their last 7 games, with their only 2 losses coming at the buzzer against the two teams playing for the ACC Championship. The Hokies are playing their best basketball of the season at the right time and could be a tough test for any opponent in the first round of the Big Dance.
  • Even though a loss is a loss, the Hokies’ performance against #1 unc in the ACC semis was viewed very positively by the so-called experts. Dickie V changed his tone after the game. He was calling Tech out of the tourney before the game, and in after it.
  • The ACC is the highest RPI-rated conference.
  • I doubt this really matters, but I bet Coach Greenberg will be on every sports talk radio and TV show imaginable on Selection Sunday, lobbying for the Hokies. As we all know, he is a media darling and not afraid to speak his mind. Either way, the Hokies will get a lot of good press.

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Posted in 2007-08 Season, Home, NCAA Tournament7 Comments

Recap | #4 so. illinois 63 #5 Hokies 48

The wonderful careers of Jamon Gordon, Zabian Dowdell, and Coleman Collins ended today with a 63-48 loss to southern illinois. The Hokies could not overcome the country’s third best scoring defense and 12 three-pointers by the salukis.

The difference maker today was the three point shooting. southern illinois was 12 of 21, and the Hokies were just 2 of 12. A.D. Vassallo could never get on track, as he was 0 for 6 from the field (all behind the arc). He had a fair amount of open looks too, but the string music was not playing tonight. Zabian Dowdell was shut down for the second game in a row. He was only 3 of 9 from the field, and finished with 7 points. The output behind the arc was eerily similar to the 69-56 loss to uva on March 1. The hoos made 10 threes to Tech’s two, and A.D. was only 1 of 8 that night. Jamon Gordon and Deron Washington made the only three-balls today for the Hokies.

The swing point of the game was the last 5 minutes of the first half. After Gordon nailed a three to put the Hokies up 18-15, he was taken out for a quick rest before the TV timeout. The Hokies then went on a scoring drought for 3 and a half minutes, and guess who broke it? Jamon. The salukis, specifically Jamaal Tatum, went on a 13-2 run. Tatum had 3 three pointers during that stretch. The Hokies could not claw their way back into it after that.

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Posted in 2006-07 Season, Game Recaps, Games, NCAA Tournament4 Comments

In Game Commentary | v. #4 so. illinois

I’ll be updating the site during every TV timeout during today’s game between Tech and the salukis.

Second Half
2:52 so ill 58 VT 44 | Well, they just switched to nevada-memphis. Looks like this in game commentary could be over. Go Hokies!

3:28 so ill 56 VT 43 | Ok, now that last saluki possession was a killer. You got to credit the salukis though. Hell of a defensive team and when they hit their threes, it is very tough to compete.

6:18 so ill 50 VT 38 | That last saluki possession was a killer.

7:50 so ill 47 VT 34 | Collins fouls out. He really got hosed on a couple calls today, which is a shame because he would have been a difference maker. I think this game would be less than 5 points if he were not in foul trouble.

8:02 so ill 47 VT 34 | Can we pull another one out of our a**? 6 of 13 from the line tonight, only 2 threes, but the real stinger is the bank-in free throw and bank-in three pointer by Tatum this half. Reminds me of the second nc state game.

11:29 so ill 41 VT 30 | Ugh … where is our 3 ball? If we lose, what does this say about the ACC this year? Only carolina would be going to the Sweet 16.

15:49 so ill 33 VT 23 | We are in trouble. Collins’ 4th foul killed us. Dowdell, Gordon, and Deron is all we have on the offensive side. Time to throw the laptop into the TV.

Here we go! Go Hokies!

Halftime – so ill 28 VT 20
Well, we are down by 8 again at the half. The salukis closed with a 13-2 run led by the MVC player of the year.

Stats
FG Pct. – so ill 40% (10/25), VT 39% (9/23)
3 pt. FG Pct. – so ill 45% (5/11), VT 25% (2/8)
FT Pct. – so ill 42% (3/7), VT 0% (0/3)
Rebounds – VT 16, so ill 14
Off. Rebounds – so ill 4, VT 2
Turnovers – so ill 4, VT 6
Steals – VT 3, so ill 2
Leading Scorers – so ill Tatum 11, VT Gordon 9
Leading Rebounders – so ill Falker 4, VT Gordon 6
Foul Trouble – so ill Green 2, VT Collins 2

We’ve got to have A.D. make some shots in the second half, or provide more opportunities for Deron, Dowdell, or Coleman. If A.D. can’t get on track, then look for a lineup of Munson, Dowdell, Gordon, Washington, and Collins (with Diakite instead of Witcher off the bench). I don’t think Sailes will see much time in the second half since we are in dire need of some offense. We can pull this one out.

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Posted in 2006-07 Season, Games, In Game Commentary, NCAA Tournament1 Comment

Preview | #5 VT (22-11) vs. #4 so. illinois (28-6) | Sun., 3/18 | 2:40 PM | Columbus, OH

[Note: TechHoops.com will be having In Game Commentary during today’s game. Join us and share your comments.]

Update: Matt Shaw, so ill’s third leading scorer, has a sprained left ankle and may be unable to play on Sunday.  Boyle will start in his place.

The Hokies can capture the Illinois State Championship and a trip to the Sweet 16 on Sunday when they take on the salukis (it’s a dog) of southern illinois (that’s ‘so ill’ for short). After defeating illinois 54-52 on Friday night, the Hokies are primed to make their first trip to the Sweet 16 since 1967 (VT made the Elite Eight that year). These two teams met in Lake Buena Vista, FL (Disney World) back on November 26th in the 5th-place game of the Old Spice Classic. The salukis won that game 69-64. This game will be played in Columbus, OH at the Nationwide Arena.

The salukis have been to the NCAA Tournament six years in a row. They made the Sweet Sixteen in 2002 with former Hokie Rolan Roberts on the team. So this team is very experienced on this stage, but with the Hokies having a NCAA Tournament game under their belts, this shouldn’t be a factor.

The salukis are similar to illinois in that they are a defensive minded team and play at a slow pace. They have a suffocating defense that led the Missouri Valley Conference (MVC) in Scoring Defense by holding teams to just 56.3 points per game. That’s also third best in the nation. Teams shot over 41% against them, which isn’t in the top 50 in the NCAA. That tells you that southern illinois doesn’t give up a lot of shots and possessions are at a premium. Like the illini, the salukis will not hit the offensive boards with their guards and instead drop back on defense, making it difficult to get out and run on them.

Again, as I said about the illinois game, Tech will have to find ways to get easy baskets. They weren’t able to do this until they implemented the full court press. I wouldn’t be shocked to see VT use the three-quarters court trapping press some in this game to try and force the tempo and to get Tech’s transition game going. The Hokies will struggle to find open looks in the half court set against this defense. Points off steals, outlet passes off rebounds, and hitting threes are a must for the Hokies to get points. Also, Tech needs to do a better job of hitting shots from 10 feet in, something they were awful at in the illinois game. Even when VT had open looks, they were missing until the final eight minutes.

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Posted in Featured Columns, Game Previews, Games, Home, NCAA Tournament5 Comments

Brick of the Game | Similar Name Game

Hold opponents to 56.3 points
per game
Graveyard of opponents in
front window
ADVANTAGE: SOUVLAKI
In honor of Maxim’s “Found Porn”…
Roster includes
Bone and Coopwood
Menu includes
Hummus and Gyros
ADVANTAGE: SALUKIS
Name originated in the
Middle East
Name originated in Greece
ADVANTAGE: SOUVLAKI
John Belushi created his “COLLEGE” sweatshirt while he attended southern illinois Jay “8 Ball” Adams has worn his Belushi knock-off “COLLEGE”
t-shirt while stumbling into Souvlaki at 1 AM
ADVANTAGE: SALUKIS
Game tempo will put you to sleep Best sleeper bar on
College Avenue
ADVANTAGE: SOUVLAKI

Posted in Brick of the Game, NCAA Tournament1 Comment

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2014-2015 Schedule/Results

November

11/14 - Hokies 71, md. eastern shore 46
11/19 - Hokies 73, liberty 63
11/22 - appalachian state 65, Hokies 63
**********
Cancun Classic
11/25 - n. iowa 73, Hokies 54
11/26 - Hokies 78, miami ohio 63
**********
11/30 - morgan state | 3pm, ESPN3

December

12/03 - @ penn state | 7:15pm, ESPNU
12/07 - vs. radford | 3pm, ESPN3
12/14 - vs. alabama a&m | 3pm, ESPN3
12/20 - vs. the citadel | 1pm, ESPN3
12/22 - vs. vmi | 7pm, ESPN3
12/27 - vs. presbyterian | 7pm, ESPN3
12/30 - @ west virginia | 2pm, ESPNU

January

01/03 - vs. syracuse | Noon, RSN
01/06 - @ fsu | 7pm, RSN
01/13 - @ louisville | 7pm, RSN
01/18 - @ unc | 6:30pm, ESPNU
01/22 - vs. notre dame | 7pm, RSN
01/25 - vs. uva | 1pm, ACCN
01/27 - vs. pittsburgh | 7pm, ESPNU
01/31 - @ wake forest | 2pm, RSN

February

02/03 - @ syracuse | 9pm, ESPNU
02/07 - vs. fsu | 3pm, ACCN
02/09 - vs. georgia tech | 9pm, ESPNU
02/14 - @ clemson | Noon, RSN
02/18 - @ miami | 7pm, RSN
02/21 - @ nc state | 6pm, ESPN2
02/25 - vs. duke | 9pm, ESPN2
02/28 - @ uva | 4pm, ACCN

March

03/02 - vs. boston college | 9pm, ESPNU
03/07 - vs. miami | Noon, RSN
**********
ACC Tournament
03/10 - 1st rd.
03/11 - 2nd rd.
03/12 - quarterfinals
03/13 - semifinals
03/14 - championship

Photos on flickr