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  TSLMail #369- February 20, 2009    
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 Tech Sports News

Tough Stretch Coming Up for the Hokies
by Chris Coleman,

According to Seth Greenberg, ACC basketball is all about who you play, when you play and where you play. If that's the case, then the Hokies have both a tremendous challenge and a tremendous opportunity ahead of them.

Of all the contenders remaining for an NCAA tournament bid, Virginia Tech easily has the toughest schedule, if you average up the RPI.

Toughest Remaining Schedule
Team Opp. Ave. RPI

Virginia Tech




Florida State




Wake Forest


NC State






Boston College




Virginia Tech (16-9, 6-5)

Current Projection: NIT

The Hokies need to win 2-3 more game to give themselves a realistic shot heading into the NCAA tournament. Unfortunately, they play FSU twice, they go on the road to Clemson, and they host UNC and Duke. There are opportunities for wins in there, because Tech can beat any of those teams. However, there is also the opportunity to lose each of those games.

Duke (21-5, 7-4)

Current Projection: NCAA

Duke isn't playing good basketball right now. Their defense has dropped off quite a bit. In their narrow win over a below average St. John's team on Thursday night, the Blue Devils once again allowed their opponent to shoot better than 50% from the floor. Duke was dominant defensively early in the year, but they have taken several steps back. They will make the NCAA tournament, but their losing streak is costing them seeding. They also might be Virginia Tech's best chance at a win from here on out.

The Blue Devils have road games at Maryland, VT and UNC, and they host Wake and Florida State. With such a tough schedule coming up, and considering how poorly they've been playing recently, it's tough to see Duke going better than 10-6 in conference. Still, that will be enough to get them in.

Florida State (20-6, 7-4)

Current Projection: NCAA

Florida State is one win away from finishing at .500 in the ACC. They do have a tough closing stretch, but they are good enough to notch a couple of more wins and lock up a bid for the NCAA tournament. After so many years of being a game or two away from making the Big Dance, this looks like the year that FSU takes that next step, despite being picked very low in the standings by most preseason publications.

The 'Noles play Virginia Tech twice, and they also play Boston College, Clemson and Duke.

Maryland (16-9, 5-6)

Current Projection: NIT

Maryland plays UNC and Duke in their next two games, and they must also face Wake Forest. A 3-2 stretch would give them a chance, but despite looking good in their recent win against Virginia Tech, the Terps probably aren't talented enough to pull off that kind of a run.

Wake Forest (20-4, 7-4)

Current Projection: NCAA

Wake Forest still plays Clemson and Duke. Those are potential wins against Top 10 RPI teams. That could greatly help Wake's seeding in the NCAA tournament. They also have games against NC State, Virginia and Maryland. The Demon Deacons are talented enough, and the schedule is favorable enough, that they should have no trouble securing a invitation to the Big Dance.

NC State (14-10, 4-7)

Current Projection: NIT

NC State is included simply because if they win their last five games, they have a great show to get to the NCAA tournament. However, that's going to be a tall task. They play three teams in the Top 51 of the RPI: Wake Forest, Boston College and Miami. Games against Maryland and Virginia certainly can't be locked in as wins either. The chance is very remote for the Wolfpack, but it is there.

Clemson (21-4, 7-4)

Current Projection: NCAA

Clemson has games against Georgia Tech and Virginia, which they should win. They won't let the Hoos beat them twice. They also host Virginia Tech, and have a chance for Top 20 RPI wins against Wake Forest and Florida State. The Tigers could be the second best team in the ACC, and they have a good chance to pick up a #2 seed for the ACC tournament.

UNC (24-2, 10-2)

Current Projection: NCAA

UNC has four games remaining, and just one game against a current Top 50 team. That's Duke, in Chapel Hill, in the last game of the regular season. Beside the Blue Devils, UNC gets Maryland, Georgia Tech and Virginia Tech. The Tar Heels should coast to the #1 seed in the ACC Tournament.

Boston College (19-8, 7-5)

Current Projection: NCAA

Boston College has key wins over UNC and Duke this season. They still have a chance to pick up quality wins against Miami and Florida State, and they also play NC State and Georgia Tech. Two more wins should put BC in the field of 65, and they should be able to reach that goal over their last four games.

Miami (15-10, 4-8)

Current Projection: NIT

Miami needs to win their last four games to finish at .500 in the ACC. Luckily they have the easiest schedule remaining, with games against Boston College, Virginia, Georgia Tech and NC State. They are also due to have some good luck. The 'Canes have lost a number of close games this year, including three ACC overtime games. 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
Basketball Game Preview: Virginia Tech vs. Florida State
February 20, 2009
Virginia Tech begins their brutal season-ending five-game stretch on Saturday afternoon with a home game against the Florida State Seminoles. The 'Noles are a lot better than anyone gave them credit for coming into the year. They are in a four-way tie for second place in the ACC with a 7-4 conference record, 20 overall wins, and an RPI of 18 (according to At this point, they appear to be a lock for the NCAA tournament.

Southeast Raleigh QB Scores Tech Offer
February 20, 2009
Virginia Tech has extended a scholarship offer to Southeast Raleigh (Raleigh, N.C.) junior quarterback Gabriel Henderson. The 6-1, 190-pound signal caller received the news yesterday evening, when he spoke with Tech quarterbacks coach Mike O'Cain, who is also serving as Henderson's primary recruiter.

Green Run's 2010 Class
February 20, 2009
Green Run (Virginia Beach, VA) head coach Shawn Wilson boasts three potential Division 1A recruits in his 2010 class, including a speedy running back, a fast defensive end/linebacker and a free safety/wide receiver type. Coach Wilson took some time to discuss those top rising seniors who helped the Stallions to a 10-2 record in 2008.

2009 Class: Reflections and Analysis
February 19, 2009
Signing Day 2009 has come and gone and Virginia Tech finished up with 21 recruits, 14 of which are designated to play on the defensive side of the ball. The class is a highly rated one, one that is ranked in the top 25 nationally by and

NCAA Hopes Flickering, Hokies Look to Regroup
February 18, 2009
There it is again, one of those pesky two-game losing streaks, the kind that come along all the time in the ACC. The problem is, in order to go to the NCAA tournament, this wasn't a two-game losing streak the Hokies could afford. After dropping consecutive games to a subpar Maryland team and a UVa team that is #11 in the conference and one-time loser of eight straight games, the NCAA tournament is now unlikely for the Hokies.

Hoos Beat Cold-Shooting Hokies 75-61
February 18, 2009
Virginia used a 17-2 run that spanned both halves to beat Virginia Tech 75-61 in Charlottesville on Wednesday night. Playing without starting forward Jeff Allen, their leading rebounder and third-leading scorer, the Hokies couldn't get much done offensively as they lost their second straight game. Tech dropped to 16-9 overall and 6-5 in the ACC.

TSL Audio: The Jerry Miller Show, 2/17/09
February 18, 2009
Yesterday, Chris Coleman and Jerry Miller talked Hokie hoops, specifically the suspension of Jeff Allen. Was that consistent, or does a double standard exist in Hokie sports between football and basketball? Jerry took a call from a listener first, and then Jerry and Chris talked it over (MP3 format, approx. 3.7 MB, approx. 13 minutes long).
The Jerry Miller Show appears on The Sports Addict Radio Network every afternoon from 1:00-3:00 pm in Blacksburg (1430 AM), Charlottesville (840 AM), and Bluefield (1050 AM), and from 2:00-4:00 in Martinsville (1160 AM).

Woodberry Forest LB/DE Holds Five Offers
February 18, 2009
6-3, 195-pound linebacker/defensive end Aramide Olaniyan, who Woodberry Forest (VA) head coach Clint Alexander calls "the most explosive player I've ever coached," currently leads a talented Woodberry 2010 class with five Division 1A scholarship offers, including four ACC schools and one Pac-10 program. Do not be surprised if more programs enter the mix before spring.

Basketball Game Preview: Virginia Tech at UVA
February 18, 2009
Virginia Tech is back in action on Wednesday night for a big ACC game against in-state rival Virginia. The Hokies defeated the Hoos 78-75 in the first meeting between these teams in Blacksburg, and they'll be looking to sweep UVA for the second consecutive season. Virginia has no hopes for postseason play, but they can put a big dent in Tech's NCAA tournament chances with an upset.

An Early Look at Virginia's 2010 Class
February 17, 2009
The state of Virginia's 2009 class was talented and deep with over sixty prospects accepting Division 1A football scholarships. It'll probably be tough for the 2010 class to duplicate that amount of Division 1A recruits, but there is no question there is talent in the class. There certainly are big-time talents at skill positions, but, early on, the offensive and defensive lines appear to be the deepest.

A Closer Look at the 2009 Football Schedule
February 17, 2009
Virginia Tech has a tough and exciting football schedule coming up in 2009. Today we'll take a very short look at each game, and rank them in order. No predictions's too early. However, the Hokies have a chance to have another very successful season on the gridiron.

Hokie Hotline Notes for 2/16/09
February 17, 2009
Monday night, Seth Greenberg discussed the Maryland loss and Jeff Allen's suspension. He also talked about what a grind the ACC basketball season is and what the Hokies must do to beat Virginia Wednesday night and continue to win games beyond that.

Jeff Allen Suspended
February 16, 2009
Virginia Tech has suspended sophomore forward Jeff Allen for Wednesday night's game at Virginia. Allen was caught on camera giving an obscene gesture to the Maryland student section after fouling out during Tech's 83-73 loss at Maryland on Saturday.
Also: former Hokie basketball player Allen Calloway passes away

Around the ACC: February 16, 2009
February 16, 2009
One team is beginning to establish themselves as the best team in the ACC, while another contender for that title lost two big games this past week. After another week of basketball, there is still a jumbled mess in the middle of the ACC standings.

Davis Takes in First In-State Junior Day
February 16, 2009
6-5, 255-pound Deep Run (Glen Allen, VA) standout Conner Davis had visited the University of Virginia on numerous occasions, but he was especially looking forward to this past Saturday's junior day to get a closer look at the Cavaliers football program. He didn't come away disappointed with the experience, in which Virginia played host to a small number of junior prospects.
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