Sunday, February 11, 2007

Tech Basketball - VT vs. Hated Virginia

The Hokies defeated the visiting Virginia Cavaliers in an enormous contest in terms of importance to both the ACC Standings and VT's season. It wasn't even a close game and I imagine that many of you out there, my Calm and Beloved Reader are ready to climb right back on the wagon that you fell off of after VT's losses to NC State and Boston College. Before you jump completely back on, blindfold at the ready, allow me to offer a few cautionary details.

Yes this was a huge win. The Hokies needed it badly and regardless of how they did it, they are in good shape in the ACC. 7-3 is vastly better than 6-4 right now. But if the Hokies can't get improved play from their frontcourt of Lewis Witcher, Coleman Collins, Cheick Diakite and Robert Krabbendam, this season will not have the success that we are all hoping for.

Now against the Hoos, the incredibly bad refereeing led to VT's leading scorer, Zabian Dowdell seeing very limited action. He only had 5 points. And I can't begin to give enough credit to Jamon Gordon, Deron Washington and AD Vasallo for stepping their games up to another level to pick up the slack. But in the ACC tournament and if the Hokies are so lucky, the NCAA tournament, the frontcourt must absolutely play better.

This is an enormous weakness for Virginia Tech and Coach Seth Greenberg and he has to get it addressed. The team isn't going to shoot 57% every night that the frontcourt decides not to show up for a game. They aren't going to shoot 90% from the free throw line every night. Their opponents aren't going to shoot 20% from the 3 point line every night. This was a set of circumstances that came together and give the team credit for playing hard on defense and doing those things I mentioned above. But this is the stretch run now. And players like Collins, Witcher, Diakite and Krabbendam had better get their heads screwed on straight and start playing like everyone else. This is a team game and the Hokies need a good performance from their TEAM not just their backcourt.


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