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   Welcome to TSLMail #320- Friday, March 7, 2008    
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   Tech Sports News

Hokies More Than Just Competitive in ACC Hoops
by Chris Coleman,

If it seems to you that Virginia Tech has been one of the better basketball teams on average since they joined the ACC, you are correct. The Hokies are one of just four ACC teams with 30 conference wins since the league expanded for the 2004-05 season.

ACC Men's Basketball
Records Since Expansion
Team Record Pct.
UNC 50-13 .794
Duke 46-17 .730
Boston College 25-22 .532
Maryland 33-30 .524
Virginia Tech 31-32 .492
Clemson 28-35 .444
Wake Forest 27-36 .429
Florida State 26-37 .413
Georgia Tech 26-37 .413
Miami 26-37 .413
NC State 26-37 .413
Virginia 26-37 .413

That table proves a couple of things. First, of all, North Carolina and Duke are clearly the most dominant teams in the ACC. They've combined for just 30 losses over the last four seasons. Every other individual team has at least 30 losses over that span, with the exception of Boston College, who has only been in the league for three seasons.

However, Virginia Tech is proving to be one of the best teams in the league not named Duke or North Carolina. The Hokies are one game below .500, but that still gives them a better record than Clemson, Wake Forest, Florida State, Georgia Tech, Miami, NC State and Virginia. The final five teams are tied for the worst record in the ACC since expansion.

Depending on Sunday's game at Clemson, the Hokies will either be right at .500 after four years in the league, or just two games below .500. That includes a painful 4-12 season in 2005-06, which saw Tech lose a high number of games in the final minutes. If the Hokies can secure a bye in the ACC tournament this year, it will be the third time in four years they have achieved that feat.

That winning percentage might be going up over the next few years as well. Tech plays six freshmen this year, and with six freshmen they have already guaranteed themselves a winning record in the ACC this season. They have a chance to have even better records in the future, but of course, there are no guarantees in ACC basketball, and the unbalanced schedules mean strength of schedule can change significantly from year to year.

Boston College has a very good winning percentage in their three years, but it's on the way down. They went 11-5 in their first year, and 10-6 last year, but after losing three seniors from last season's team, they are down to 4-11 this year. They'll recover, but they aren't going to get back up to their Jared Dudley level overnight.

Wake Forest is also being propped up by a 13-3 record in 2004-05. Since then, they've won just three games, four games, and this year six games in conference play. They look to be improving, as they are very young and talented, and they have some very talented recruits coming in next year.

Maryland ranks very high on the list, but you'd think a team with a recent national championship would be a little bit better. Maybe not on the level of UNC or Duke, but it's not unreasonable to expect a few more wins. The Terps have natural recruiting advantages such as a recent national championship, an urban setting in a big-time recruiting area, and a modern new arena. It's not inaccurate to call Maryland underachievers since expansion.

Virginia Tech has defeated every other ACC team at least twice, with the exception of NC State. Here is a look at Tech's record against each ACC school.

Virginia Tech vs. ACC Teams
Team Record
Boston College 3-3
Clemson 2-3
Duke 2-4
Florida State 2-3
Georgia Tech 4-2
Maryland 4-2
Miami 4-2
North Carolina 2-3
NC State 1-6
Virginia 4-5
Wake Forest 4-2

The Hokies have had winning records against Georgia Tech, Maryland, Miami and Wake Forest since joining the ACC. The Hokies are .500 against Boston College, and they've actually won three in a row against the Eagles. VT has defeated UNC twice, and is very nearly 3-2 against the Tar Heels. They are 2-4 against Duke, though they probably earned a 3-3 record in those six seasons.

As you can see, the one team that is holding Virginia Tech back from having a winning overall ACC record is NC State. The Wolfpack have defeated the Hokies six straight times after Tech knocked them off on January 19, 2005 for their second ACC win in school history.

Next week in TSLMail we'll combine football and basketball finishes in the ACC since expansion. We'll find out who has been the top overall program in the two revenue sports. Pass - Your Ultimate Ticket to Hokie Sports!

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For more info on TechSideline Pass, and to subscribe, click here. Updates From the Past Week

ACC's Strength May Be Its -- and the Hokies' -- Undoing

March 7, 2008
The ACC is the most tradition-rich, competitive basketball conference in the country. It is to college basketball what the SEC is to college football. All the teams are good, and anyone is capable of knocking off anyone on any given night. However, will that type of parity come back to bite the ACC in the postseason?

Gaithersburg's Stanley a Top Target
March 7, 2008
Thirty-seven tackles-for-loss and 16 1/2 sacks in one season certainly draws attention, so it isn't a surprise that 6-2, 245-pound junior defensive lineman Sean Stanley has tallied 10 official Division 1A scholarship offers. The Gaithersburg (MD) star posted those numbers this past season as a junior, and as a result should see many more scholarships come his way in the coming months.

Western Branch Speedster Updates Recruitment
March 7, 2008
Western Branch (Chesapeake, VA) cornerback/wide receiver recruit Javanti Sparrow has seen his recruitment pick up within the past month. The 6-1, 190-pound junior claims to have four official scholarship offers in the fold along with two verbal offers.

Top Ten Plays of the 2007 Football Season
March 6, 2008
The 2007 football season was a great one for Virginia Tech, producing 11 wins and an ACC championship. We sat down at TSL to come up with the top ten plays of the season, and we had a number of deserving nominees that didn't make the cut. The ones that did make it are certainly worth a second look ... and a third look ... and a fourth look.

Phoebus Star QB Talks Recruiting
March 6, 2008
With ten Division 1A scholarship offers, 6-2, 200-pound junior quarterback Tajh Boyd has become one of the most highly recruited players in the state of Virginia. The Phoebus (Hampton, VA) standout, who has visited several schools to this point in his recruiting process, has his sights set on narrowing his list of schools to five by July.

TSL Audio: Chris Coleman, ESPN Radio
March 6, 2008
Wednesday evening, TSL's Chris Coleman joined new ESPN Radio host George Hunsicker to talk Hokie sports. George and Chris talked about Tech's big basketball win over Wake Forest and tried to look into their crystal ball and talk about ACC tournament matchups and possibilities (WMA format, compatible with Windows Media Player and MP3 players, 2.7 MB, 11:32).

David Wang Impressing This Offseason
March 5, 2008
First, there was winning the state championship title as a member of the Stone Bridge Bulldogs (Ashburn, VA) varsity football squad. Then, there was being name first-team all-state offensive lineman by the Virginia High School Coaches Association. And recently, David Wang came away as one of the top performers at the Nike Combine in Pittsburgh.

Checking in on Oscar Smith's Junior Class
March 5, 2008
Oscar Smith's (Chesapeake, VA) standout junior class is highlighted by four potential Division 1A prospects. So far, head coach Rich Morgan says that two of the four prospects currently boast Division 1A scholarship offers. Leading the way is 6-0, 215-pound linebacker Jerod Askew, who tallied 126 tackles including 25 tackles for loss and 13 sacks last season.

Hokies Stomp Wake, Help NCAA Tournament Chances
March 4, 2008
In a game that was expected to be tight, Deron Washington led Virginia Tech to an 80-58 blowout victory over Wake Forest on his Senior Night, strengthening the Hokies' chances for an NCAA tournament berth. Tech improved to 18-11 overall and 9-6 in the ACC with the win. Wake Forest dropped to 16-12 overall and 6-9 in conference play. Their NCAA tournament hopes are virtually gone.

Hokie Hotline Notes for 3/3/08
March 4, 2008
Presented by Pete Dye River Course of Virginia Tech: Monday night, head men's basketball coach Seth Greenberg talked about preparations for tonight's Wake Forest game, and he discussed the status of the team as they await the game, including J.T. Thompson's ankle and a new injury to Cheick Diakite.

Is VT in the Race for Jeffery?
March 4, 2008
Safe to say, Columbia High School's Damario Jeffery has had an interesting recruitment so far. The 6-3, 211-pound South Carolina standout committed to Clemson last month, but reneged just a day or two later. He has listed several favorites in the past months, including Clemson, South Carolina and Virginia Tech. For now, though, the talented safety prospect is hoping to wait quite a while before making a final decision.

Basketball Game Preview: Virginia Tech vs. Wake Forest
March 4, 2008
Tonight's battle between Virginia Tech and Wake Forest will feature two of the youngest and most surprising basketball teams in the country. The Hokies are battling for an NCAA tournament berth, while Wake still has an extreme outside shot at making the Big Dance, if they can win both remaining regular season games and get a win in the ACC tournament. We should see maximum effort from both teams, which means great ACC basketball is in store.

Around the ACC: March 3rd, 2008
March 3, 2008
What do Sean Singletary and Tyrese Rice have in common? They both scored over 40 points on Saturday and walked off the court with a loss. Their games, as well as two eye-catching performances by Clemson, highlight this week's Around the ACC.

Women's Track and Field Wins ACC Indoor Championship
March 3, 2008
The Virginia Tech women's track and field team dominated their opponents last week, and repeated as ACC Indoor Champions. The Hokies were ranked #11 in the nation heading into the event. They scored a total of 138 points, which was a whopping 49.5 ahead of second place UNC and Florida State.
Also: Football Strength and Conditioning info.

Hunter Getting Looks to Play QB
March 3, 2008
Quintin Hunter's first season as Orange Fighting Hornets starting quarterback has impressed some college coaches enough to recruit the athletic prospect to play quarterback. A second-team all-region selection as a signal caller, Hunter's outstanding junior year included a 514-yard performance (361 yards passing, 153 yards rushing) in a loss to Monticello.
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