Posted on 23 February 2010.
This game worries me… a lot. Many Hokie fans I’ve spoken with just assume Tech is going to beat bc and nc state, then hope we win one of the games against maryland and georgia tech. But that logic is flawed for a couple of reasons:
- It is very tough to win on the road in the ACC, with the home teams taking about 70% of the games.
- The eagles had VT beat in the meeting in Blacksburg, back when VT was just 1-1 in conference. The Hokies were the beneficiaries of a very controversial jump-ball call with 21 seconds to go (Jeff Allen was touching the basketball and clearly standing out of bounds and the bc player was clearly trying to call a timeout even before that).
So don’t just chalk this one up as a ‘W’ and start preparing for the trash that is maryland. This game is a ’50/50′ game as one of the Hard Times patrons put it the other night.
That said, if the Hokies can build off that hunger of losing to duke and play with passion and intensity like they have since the game in miami, you have to like the Hokies’ chances. Actually, I’d like to see VT come out and just shave the eagles bald, just like they did at nc state two weeks ago (not sure what that meant but it sounded good).
And there are some good omens going into the game Wednesday:
- VT is 8-1 in ACC games not on Sunday and 5-0 on weekdays. Their only ‘weekday’ loss all season was the game against temple, which was after Friday happy hours had started so I’d call that a weekend game.
- Tech has won 5 of the last 6 against the eagles.
- The Hokies are the better team (thanks, Captain Obvious).
THE FIRST MEETING – VT 63, bc 62
Recap | Game Film | Photo Gallery | Boxscore | The Opposing View
(I rewatched the game) The game in Blacksburg back in mid-January was a classic 2009-10 Hokie slugfest – low scoring and at times, low excitement. Tech jumped out to a 14-point lead largely due to its ability to create live ball turnovers into fast break points. By my count, VT had 10 fast break points out of their first 21 points and three of them were on breakaway dunks. This allowed Tech to build up a 38-24 lead thanks to a 15-3 run late in the first half. Then Delaney picked up his second foul and had to sit the remaining 3 minutes. bc shaved the lead down to 9 at the half.
The second half wasn’t any better offensively once Delaney was back in. The Hokies scored just 4 points between the 3:30 mark of the first half and the 10:30 mark of the second half. Just 4 points in 13 minutes of play! By then the lead was gone and it was nip-and-tuck the rest of the way. Neither team led by more than 4 in the final 10 minutes. Tech, down 3 with 30 seconds to go, got 2 free throws from Delaney and then the questionable jump-ball call on the baseline. After draining clock, Victor Davila fumbled the ball away inside (stop me if you’ve seen that before) but Zo Hudson was right there on the right side of the basket to grab the ball and lay it in.
The clock showed 9.2 seconds after the Hudson make but the refs determined the clock had stopped during the possession. bc was given 5 seconds to try and win the game. Reggie Jackson dribbled up the court but ran into his own man and Delaney and the ball rolled away to Jeff Allen as the clock ran out.
The game was also very physical with 40 fouls called, 24 on bc. Coach Greenberg called them the most physical team in the league, which I find hard to believe after the VT/clemson game.
VT really had no offense except for fast break points. Like I said above, half their points early on were off bc turnovers leading to easy buckets. At the half, bc had over 10 turnovers to just 3 for VT. The Hokies were not knocking down open looks. They shot just 39% for the game (32% in the second half). Davila and Allen missed a couple of really easy shots near the rim (actually, the whole team did). Tech had way too many misses close in, and were just 2/14 on three-pointers after Delaney hit his first 2 from deep.
In this game Tech needs to be aggressive again and get out in transition. That is when this offense is at its best. Hopefully Allen and Davila will do a better job finishing near the rim (if Allen can stay on the floor). VT didn’t do a great job getting to the line in the last meeting so really attacking the tin will be key (JT Thompson, Hudson, and Delaney).
In the second half VT started taking bad shots and turning the ball over. All in all, they had a 4 minute scoring drought in the second half, and 13 minutes with just 4 points in the second. Not good.
When Tech gets out in transition, they MUST take better shots. All season they have settled for jumpshots on the break when they have numbers. It almost never goes in. And when they do drive and dish, they often pass too late where it is an achievement just to get to pull the ball back out. The Hokies have 1) go at the goal on the run, and 2) either pass it about 10-12 feet from the hoop (not 5 or less), or go up strong and draw a foul.
bc shot 53% in the first half yet trailed by 9. The reason was all those turnovers the Hokies were forcing. bc was actually getting a lot of good looks from 15-18 feet. The eagles run a flex offense with 3 or 4 men on the baseline and the Hokies were getting lost in all the screening and movement and not flashing out to pick up open eagles as they went out to the perimeter. Tech must do a better job of either getting through screens or helping out if you see your man is stuck down in the quagmire on the baseline. bc was getting nothing in the paint.
The second half wasn’t any better as the eagles shot 57% then. For the game they hit 55% of their shots. But they ended up with 20 turnovers and that is what ultimately did them in. Plus, they grabbed just 4 offensive rebounds as Tech did a great job on the glass when they missed.
The scary thing is they shot 55% and Joe Trapani, their best shooter, was just 2/5 from the field (his lowest number of shot attempts all season). He only had 6 points for the game. Tech did a great job not giving him good looks.
The Hokies used a tiny bit of zone in the first meeting and I think that could work since bc is not a good three-point shooting team. They are 10th in the league in 3-point FG% and 9th in makes.
- F – Joe Trapani – Their best pure shooter and scorer. Despite being 6’8″, he is not very good with his back to the basket. Good perimeter shooter (32% on threes) and this year has done a good job of pump faking and then driving. Likes to face up, not play with his back to the basket.
- PG – Reggie Jackson – He’s the only guy that can break you down with his handle for the eagles. He is a good finisher around the hoop, very athletic. He is second on the team in scoring and assists, and is third in rebounds despite being a point guard. Not a good 3-point shooter but shoots about 3.5 per game (30% makes). Used to come off the bench but now starts again and plays 30 minutes.
- F – Corey Raji – Another guy that does his damage closer in. Hasn’t made a three all year. Is just 6’6″ but can get offensive rebounds. Guard him from 15-feet in and get a body on him on shots.
- G/F – Rakim Sanders – Despite his size (6’5″ and 230) at the 2-guard spot, he isn’t a good rebounder. Another average 3-point shooter (30%). Decent mid-range shooter and he is decent off the drive, just not as good as Jackson as his ballhandling isn’t that great. Shoots under 40% from the floor and will take bad shots.
- C – Josh Southern – Just a goon to eat up space inside, not a scorer. Hasn’t reached 20 minutes in any of the last 8 games.
Bench – Tyler Roche is the X-factor in this game. He scores just over 7 ppg but has surpassed 30 twice this year, including 31 against wake. He loves to shoot from the outside. I said they stink at 3s, and other than him, they do. He hits 44% of his 70 threes, but even that breaks down to just 1.3 makes per game. But if he’s hot, look out. Hope he misses his first shot or two, then he may just disappear (Tyler had just 1 shot and 0 points the game after he went for 31 against wake).
Biko Paris, who was starting at the point, will spell Jackson and other at guard. He is a very good assist man. Expect him to dish if he gets into the paint on the drive.
Dallas Elmore had a decent game off the bench in the first meeting but doesn’t play a lot normally – most of his time was due to others’ foul troubles.
Check out the Opposing View article with Brian from BC Interruption (linked above) for more on bc. That was from before the first meeting.
||23 Delaney 6’3″
||0 Jackson 6’3″
||5 Hudson 6’5″
||15 Sanders 6’5″
||1 Bell 6’6″
||11 Raji 6’6″
||0 Allen 6’7″
||12 Trapani 6’8″
||14 Davila 6’8″
||52 Southern 6’10”
BORING FACTS ABOUT boston college:
- Established in 1863
- Type: Private – Jesuit
- Undergrad: 9k
- Postgrad: 4.5k
- Location: Chestnut Hill (just west of downtown Boston)
- Mascot: Baldwin the eagle (get it? Bald eagle… win games… Baldwin)
- bc participates in the Beanpot Tournament – a hocket tourney of bc, bu, northeastern, and harvard at the Boston Bruins (and Celtics) arena.
- Their football stadium seats just 44.5k (and they still don’t sell it out for big games and basketball arena seats 8.6k
- Ed McMahon (Yes!)
- Chris O’Donnell
- Leonard Nimoy (no relation)
- Amy Poehler
- Elisabeth Hasselbeck
- Tip O’Neill
- John Kerry
- Mike Lupica
- John McLaughlin
- Bob Ryan
- Lesley Visser
- Jared Dudley
- Bruce Pearl
- and of course, Doug Flutie – Flutie Hail Mary against miami