Grambling basketball preview!

#11o R.P.I. Grambling #23 R.P.I. Virginia Tech: 

Virginia Tech men’s basketball returns home Nationally Ranked!

The Hokies now check in a Kobe-looking no.24. Or 24th (in the Associated Press and the Coaches polls’, alike) outta all 352 D-1 men’s basketball programs mind yah. None too shabby for your .911 quality ten-hyphen-one and defending All Coaching Champion club. Now, the nationally ranked and A.c.c. crown-bearing F’n Gobblers face the surprisingly highly nationally ranked Grambling Tigers of Southwestern Athletic Conference (S.W.A.C.) fame. Grambling -and their epic band- check in at 6 up against 3 down and 1st-place overall in the O.O.C. (out-of-conference) 𝇍annon fodder looking S.W.A.C. (As everyone here is getting punked by someone bigger to begin the ’22 paycheck drawing campaign). Nonetheless, what you wanna know is who is gonna win and by how much, rights? So, read on… to find, out!

Grambling Head Coach: Donte’ Jackson: Age=43, 188–12o (.577) overall, and 62–57 (.521) @Grambling. Has a rep’ for defense and communication/motivation or ‘reach’ in textbook terms.


(NO relation to the oblong spheroid N.f.l. Carolina Db) … tho’ the roundballer baller Donte’ Jackson was a standout high school in his hometown of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. After which playar Jackson attended Milwaukee for one season. After which Jackson transferred to Central State. graduated from CSU in 2oo3 with a bachelor’s of science in education, and in 2oo8, he earned a master’s of science in educational leadership. Advanced degree props insert: (____) here, check. Jackson was a three-year letter winner on the Cent.St. Marauder basketball team and earned all-conference and all-region honors during the 2oo1-o2 season. He led the Marauders to the NAIA Division I National Tournament and a Sweet Sixteen appearance with a 24-8 record during the 1999-2ooo season. Jackson capped his stellar career by being selected as the recipient of the John W. Garland President’s Award, presented annually to a student-athlete who embodies the highest standards of leadership, integrity, and sportsmanship through academic and athletic achievements alike. Good on dats.

Big Whistler Jackson… after his playing career, Jackson became an assistant coach at his alma mater. He was in that ass’ position for seven years before being elevated to head coach in 2o1o. In his four years at Central State, Jackson compiled a 6o-42 record, before accepting the head coaching position at Stillman*. In two seasons as a member of the SIAC, Jackson led Stillman to a 44-16 record, winning the SIAC men’s basketball tournament championship in 2o16 and reaching the regional semifinals of the 2o16 NCAA Division II men’s basketball tournament. After 2016, the school dropped from NCAA Division II to NAIA. In its first year as an NAIA Independent, Jackson guided the team to a 22-5 record.

On June 28, 2o17 Jackson was officially named the head coach at Grambling State.

In his first year with the Tigers, Jackson guided Grambling to its first SWAC regular season title since 1989. However, due to low APR scores, Grambling was ineligible for the conference tournament and postseason play. For his efforts, Jackson was named the 2o18 SWAC Coach of the Year, and was the recipient of the 2o18 Ben Jobe Award, as well.

Donte’s (inferno) has made two post-seasons outta eleven years. He has pocketed one SWAC Championship bling at Grambling, (2o18).

* (Coach Don’ was forced to vacate 8, then an additional 2 mo’ dub-a-yous @Stillman by the NC2A suits. After which, Stillman got rid of every single sports program sans men’s hoops. ‘snap!’)
Daddy JAX and wifey Shelithia have issued: a daughter, Kai’yanna; and son Jayden and Landen

Grambling at a glance:

  • 13th best in FG-percentage D allowed!!!
  • 32nd best in 3-point-percentage D allowed!!
  • 49th most opposing Turnovers forced/game!
  • 53rd best on the offensive glass.
  • 73rd most Swipes/game.
  • 326th most fouls ‘whistled’ against/game! (GU gets no zebra love).
  • 345th most 3-point-attempts launched/game!!
  • NO injuries listed… tho’ one starter is gone/OUT.

Returning Starters=was 1 now 1 (with Tra’ recently done).

Grambling Strengths:

  • 6′9″, 235 lb., Carte’Are Gordon: is an r-Junior year Four who puts the ‘power’ in P/F, yo’. Northwest Florida CC transfer Four at that. And Godspeed to: Northwest Florida CC. (see: below). Still, yet, these are not thin digits box score stuffing straight-across: 13.8 ppg, with 8.o rpg, 1.9 apg, 1.o spg, and 1.5 bpg does not suck. In point-Forward of fact… Gordo’s scoring, rebounding and swatting all pace the Tiger’s streak here. Al La Carte’ … was a consensus four-star recruit and ranked No. 75 in the ESPN Top 1oo rankings for 2o18. This after Mr. Gordon only won back-to-back St.Louie, Missouri Statie blings. Then he only won one gold at the: FIBA U17 World Championship. That is all, his trophy case sucks, “Dyn-O-Mite!” it Jimmy Walker style now. Then he went for home-schooling St.Louis Billikens), then to DePaul, then to the Community College above… then he went scrambling to Grambling itself. 4-teams in nearly 4-years is typically code for at least one flag. Nevertheless, this kid does mo’ upfront when he is actually out there. As he has had a few dings/dents (only balled six, that’s (6) times last year) along the way, he palms the rock a lot on tape; and he put juke moves on every single one of my pre-season magazines as a latent quad-transferring signee to boot. LOL, this kid would help us, he may just help himself to some overseas $cratch if he keeps helping himself stayin’ clean on the up-n-up. Or, if he fixes the o.o% long or the coming up short 51.4% free-throwing. Here is hoping ‘Are can do.
Invisible, to blonde, to black, to… red. Far… out!
  • (Lindy’s all-S.W.A.C., 2nd-string): Cameron Christon G, 6′6″, 19o lb., r-Sr., and Grad’ year off or lead-G who is hard to keep up wif or keep track of jus’ the same. As he be changing his look (and his digits) all the time hommie; LOL Me? I kinda thought the invisible r-Soph. look had the most hard to cover -being invisible and all- swagg, tho’ what do I know in my 7th decade of running the One as a Pt.Guard1 my ownself; (“thx” @Coach God)? Eye do however know that… what little I do know re: CG-13 is per Boise State. According to the Smurf-turf guys… Cam’ is a Texas boy who has found two not everything is ‘bigger’ pounds in five years of ball. In addition to that, Sister “Mister Christon” has a silver medal at: 11.7 ppg with 4.8 rpg on 1.4 apg and 1.2 spg. Again, not bad production straight across, and the 33.4% behind the arc is serviceable enuff.  This is from a not-VHT (very highly touted) Tx., recruit who did enjoy a clutch post-season rep’ down in Allen (Tx.). That said, virtually 14-per-game on virtually 40% from deep is not the worst last year’s look. As this kid has improved each-n-every-year less this year thus far. Prolly is a backup quality guy for the bottom A.c.c. halves, for whom could help off the pine swell enough.
  • 6′3″, 18o lb., Shawndarius -kool name- Cowart, is your sorta/semi-Qb1 or Pt.Guard here. Does have some Pivotal passing swagg to him (behind the back, et al) and is a bit of a streety slickster at times. Is a Hofstra transfer; was a: Pensacola State College transfer prior to that. As his: 13.2 points, 7.4 rebounds, 6.5 assists, and 2.3 steals per game at ‘cola State was pretty stately indeed. @Hofstra however, he only netted you: 1.3/game (points) and could not make a 3 with a pencil. At Grambling (last year) and Mr. Cowart’s basketball game bounced back to a reasonable 8.1 ppg on 36% 3-balls. Such is prolly what his D-1 level, be. Shawn’ has been ballin’ since age 4, and ‘pizza’ is his favorite food. So, there is that too. After that ‘darius was a lightly recruited Panhandle baller; albeit one who has been collegiately warming up of late. Maybe his recent offensive outburst (18 ppg ave. in the last fortnight) is a P.S.C. guy refining his most yoked, stroke? Time=tell, tho’ Grambling will have mo’ to say if this level of partial outburst typea scoring is here to stay. Bit of a GU X-factor guy here sports fans. Although his team-leading and near-conference pacing: of 46.7% when dialing long-distance could be a clue.

Grambling Weaknesses:

  • The Tigers are a backcourt-heavy team in a Guard-centric era. Tho’ sizey fo’ the big guys they decent enough are. Kinda surprisingly well small-school Roster physically stocked.
  • (Lindy’s Best Playmaker S.W.A.C.): Tra’Michael Moton, (5′12″, 17o lb., Sr.) is netting you 5.o ppg. This is on a declining: 26.8% from the floor with 46.2% from the charity stripe and 15.4% from long-distance. Yikes. This is on having balled in 67% of their games thus far. Having missed everything since nearly Thanksgiving and yet having no nothing listed anywhere regarding anything (reason(s) wise) that Eye or Google could find. Go fig’ here… tho’ do figure on Grambling being poorer for missing Mr. Moton’s shaker of 11 ppg, 4 rpg/apg, and a former team-leading 1.8 spg. As this is one jitterbug quickster who has been slowed to the point to stopped (P.T. wise) of late. Coach God bless (whatever is ‘rong), here.
  • The Tiger’s website is barren. Sterile on anything fun, swaggy; or even remotely biographical. As I had to use previous team(s) websites every single time to find what little Eye could spy.
  • Go’on and W.O.K.E.-up Grambling, it is A.D. 2o22 fo’ a few mo’ days after all.
  • Likewise, familiarity, gelling, cohesion… Grambling ain’t— due to a truly masssssive Roster churn, here.

Tigers den: (depth=8 or so… lotta guys get P.T. love/run here)

Terrence Lewis is a 6′6″, 2o5 lb., 5th-Sr. and grad’-transfer Swing by way of: Iowa State and prior to that by way of: South Alabama. T.Lew’ is said to be a defender by trade who has been traded 3-times so collegiately far. Lewis was on campus last year tho’ this is his first year of Grambling ball (clearinghouse). As Terrence’s 9.3 ppg married to 41.7% from long are career bests; to his credit. Tho’ as said it is his lockdown defending (team-leading 1.4 spg) that gets him from the pine squad to the hardwood itself. Good role guy (with a history of dings; Coach God Bless) who has learned how to shoot along the way and there are worse things you can say. Although there are less things you could say from the former: four-star recruit, who was only ranked the top high school player in Wisconsin and who only earned a National top ranking of No. 58 from As mo’ was (H.S.: 28 ppg on 55.8% three-pointing) expected here.

Third-year, 6′7″, 18o lb., Jourdan Smith, is a Northwest Florida State College baller, then a Coastal Carolina playar, and now a Grambling Tiger. A Swing guy or S/G … S/F ‘tweener in old-school vernacular. Jourdan is your signature substitute shooter (4o.o% on 3’s) in relief. Made a Texas AAU name for himself and was All-Panhandle Conference at the lowercase level. Said to be a defensive rebounder by trade as the 5.7 ppg are gravy and the 4.3 rpg are the main course.

Big ole (almost) 7′, 255 lb. true-Jr. year, narrow-shouldered: Jon’ Aku from: Kaduna, Nigeria… is one of the few Lindy’s was impressed by. His 3 ppg and 3.4 rpg with a send-back would be mo’ impressive with mo’ P.T. (playing time). As this kid was a pretty big get (pun intended) from: Stephen F. Austin by way of aTm (Aggies). Where his totem has mostly been as a rim-protecting shot-blocker for both. As he does have three seasons remaining if he wants ’em and everyone wants to see him take the next offensive steps; plural. A curious paint-prospect if/when he ever does (next)-step-show out.

Holding serve with our Cassell Guard crossbows hosting Grambling is all about, what(s)?

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Illationconclusion(s) and OPT digits:

Number of Tigers who could brindle @Tech=2 to 3.

the takeaway:
The takeaway here is

…all my pre-season preview magazines are NOT very taken with these Grambling (State) Tigers. Even if the C.P.U. rankers or rankings are themselves.

Such is the realm of divergence at least and an outright previewing quandary at most.

Clearly, this is why I am still here.

…as Eye am clearly always want to create so much of each, or; both. {sic: divergences/qunadries}.

LOL… that attempt at self-deprecation aside, mea culpa; Eye do not see as much in the other side as most others apparently do.

Which means someone is not exactly seeing straight. And we must leave it to
Saturday evening ’round 7 PM to adjudicate and educate us as to which.


Our handy-dandy friend the so-called Forum Guide of Graham Houston fame is calling for a sooner rather than later A.c.c. intra-league ask, back.

The annualized year-to-date vitals say that… VeeTee is up a mere and a surprising ≅+1%in shooting percentage margin (both are up right at +7% for the duration, tho’ VeeTee shoots +6% sharper on O and yet Grambling defends 5% saltier on D, and shoots okay enuff in their own right. QUITE the contrasting styles here gents); with Grambling up a near shocking +4% in 3-point percentage margin (due to far stickier defense of the 3 and although decent (126th best), VeeTee is down about 100-spots in 3-point shooting this year to last), and these two are nearly a PUSH in rebounding margin for the duration. (As Grambling really climbs that O-glass well and yet VeeTee scales the D-glass nearly the same. Most curious to see who wins what, here?)

The most recent 5-game metrics say that… the Tigers are now up an astonishing +7% in shooting percentage margin (pur: the Tigers are shooting +4% better and suffocating another -4% fewer of late on D alike ¦ the Hokies margin remained the same compared to the annual metrics; tho’ shooting is a little cooler and defending is a little tighter if you are keeping metrics score @home); with Grambling up another +7% in 3-point percentage margin (due to: the Tigers are really shooting lights out of late behind the arc and their D of the same is stifling (23% allowed)! ¦ same as overall, the Gobbler’s 3-ball is slightly cooler and yet their defense of the same is slightly stricter of late), yet now we see that the Techmen are actually up +2 in collecting caroms off the ‘glass and in rebounding margin in the last fortnight of play. (Due to: Vah.Tech is actually improving a scosche here and Grambling is basically remaining on yearly trend).

Armchair Pt.Guard’s:

The 24o6o vibes hint that Coach Popcorn is happy with his experience and his deeper depth this year than any other year(s) so far over in the chilly New River Valley. They say his Tech troupe is (finally) warming a bit to playing D and rebounding to boot. As…, Coach Young said Virginia Tech has had its best front-court depth since he arrived to coach the team. (Additionally, FTAs and Swipes are on the O&M tracking rise of late, and those are good signs of sweat and/or elbow grease gents).

Further… in the past five games, only one opponent -North Carolina- has notched 7o or more points against the Hokies. And there has been only one game – a home triumph against Minnesota- when the Hokies have committed more turnovers than their opponent. Clearly: “parsimony” in valuing the rock is a word fave of our other Revenue Sport big-whistle.

However, the Hurrying Hokies might want to brush up on their perimeter shooting. They hit 1o or more shots from 3-point range in three of their first four games this season. Since then, they’ve made more than seven 3-pointers just once. (See: below …”It’s all in the maths“. —British Idiom)

Virginia Road Warriors?
This is part of a two-game trip for Grambling, which will head to Liberty in Lynchburg, Va., for another Commonwealth game Monday night.

Grambling is up +6 in R&R in the last 2-weeks.
V.P.I. is a 1.oo host; whereas Grambling is .5oo as a guest.
V.P.I. is up a whopping +13% at the charity stripe for the year.

The Call

No.119 Net Ranking Grambling @ no.27 Net Ranking Virginia Tech:

So, Virginia Tech men’s hoops are the rightful favorite in defense of their very own Cassell here.

4 PM kick!

And this just in… “Rain is (still) rumored to be… wet.”

Is this true?

Do we deny this?


That faithfully and dutifully struck… Grambling has that ugliness factor that mucks things up and that gives smarty coaches pause. They know how to muddy a game and make faves work longer and hard for their VicTory Dance. (Which is where their deep rotation comes into fatiguing late-game, play).

Don’t believe me? Think me ‘stirring the pot’?
Just ask got upset by Grambling (62-64 the ‘rong way); big-bad, So.Eastern, Vandy.
And prior to that ask also P5 got upset Colorado (74-83).

The Closer

In all candor?
Eye personally do not see what everyone else (National Rankings) sees in Grambling.

That said… I have seen a lot in my seven decades in sports… and as I saw ‘over there’, the Brits have (yet another) epic saying that says…

When 10 men tell you you’re drunk you had better lie down.”

Aye, pretty much; ‘hic’, and no lie here… as this much Grambling love has left me wondering what I am missing re: taming these small-conference Tigers?

The VerdicT:

Or, maybe; are we already gone on ’22 A.D. Christmas Vacation?

That is your calculus here men.

🦃 >>> 🏀 >>> 🐅

IF ‘yes’, and/or if our shooters have that once/twice/thrice a season orange paint chipping vibe?

Grambling could bungle or Bengal things and hang around a bit…

If, however, our A-game or near A-game gambit pops offensively clean?
We really should win by mo’ than ten or by at least double-digits @home.



(71% confidence interval)
Virginia Tech
=77, Grambling=52

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