The Commonwealth of Virginia's Ultimate Blog

Friday, November 11, 2005

Hokies Hoops Tips Off

For any Hokie fans still glum from the Miami defeat last weekend, last night's season opening basketball game against Radford offered some salve for the wounds of defeat. The Hokies soundly thumped the Highlanders 80-50 in Cassell Coliseum last night to kick off what Virginia Tech hopes will be another successful season.

Last year, Virginia Tech shocked everyone by going 8-8 in the ACC, finishing in 4th place in the league and earning a trip to the NIT, their first postseason appearance since 1996. This year, Virginia Tech hopes to build on that success and possibly earn a trip to the Big Dance. Many people think that the ACC is weaker this year after the numerous graduations and defections this offseason. While Duke is still the top dog, all of the other teams have lost key components, like NC State's Julius Hodge, Wake Forest's Chris Paul, Georgia Tech's guard trio of Bynum, Elder, and Jack, and of course UNC losing its top seven (7!) scorers from last season. If Virginia Tech can avoid early-season stumbles to inferior teams, like last year's loss to VMI, they should be able to rack up enough wins to get NCAA consideration.

Virginia Tech's first real test will come on Monday, November 28 when they face Ohio State in the ACC/Big 10 Challenge on ESPN2. If they beat, or at least compete with, a good Buckeye team, the season will look very promising. If they get embarrassed, it could be bad news once they enter ACC play.

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