Virginia Military Institute basketball preview!

#345 R.P.I. V.M.I. #1o2 R.P.I. Virginia Tech: 

Virginia Tech men’s basketball returns to the hardwood to hopefully Nativity Fast feast upon once upon Southern Conference time ex-archrival Virginia Military Institute.

The Hokies finally looked better/good for the first time in my estimate since offing ex-no.1 Magic Johnson down in Hawaii. Basically, having our way with overmatched Gardner-Webb by 27-points @home ramparting pre-Holiday cheer in our very own Cassell. Though I for one was happy to see us apply ourselves to playing some defense. As we only have 1.5 to 1.75 surefire offenders most nights. Anywho… now we move on to the post-Exam Keydets of Lexington Va., fame. Nonetheless, you wanna know who is gonna win and by how much, right? So, read on… to find; out!

Virginia Military Institue Head Coach: Dan Earl: age=45, 36–92 (.281) overall and at V.M.I. Has a rep’ for: defense, Guard/backcourt 3-point play, and discipline.
$200,000.oo (not including incentives)

Youngling Dan Earl was born October 12, 1974, and is an American college basketball coach, hired as the head coach of the Virginia Military Institute on April 12, 2015. He is from Medford Lakes, New Jersey and attended Shawnee High School in Medford, graduating in 1993. He was a 6′3″, 195 lb. 1993 Parade all-American Point-G and was named 1993 USA Today New Jersey Player of the Year in high school. He was named 2nd team All-Big Ten as a junior for the 1995–96 Penn State Nittany Lions before missing two seasons to injury. Earl starred on the basketball court at Penn State where he helped the Nittany Lions to one of their most prolific winning periods in the mid-’90s. He completed his eligibility for the team in 1999 and led Penn State basketball in assists four seasons. received a Bachelor of Science degree in marketing from Penn State in December 1997 and earned a master’s degree in business logistics at Penn State in 2007.

Is Dan… th man?

Baller Earl played professionally in Germany, Poland, and Portugal. He also spent time in the Continental Basketball Association as well as the NBA Development League. He got close to making a National Basketball Association team, wherein during the 2001–02 and 2002–03 seasons he spent time with the New Jersey Nets during their training camps.

Afterward, in 2006, Coach Earl joined his alma mater as an assistant coach. He spent six seasons with the team until 2011, at which time he became the associate head coach at the United States Naval Academy.

Then three seasons ago he made the obvious pipeline transition to the Virginia Military Lexington based school smoothly and well-disciplined resume` turnkey enough.

The Earl family has deep roots in basketball as father Denny was a starting forward for Rutgers in the mid-1960s where he played under head coach Bill Foster and alongside the late Jim Valvano.

Dan’s younger brother, Brian, started for Princeton from 1996-99 and helped the Tigers to 95 wins —the most of any player in school history. Brian currently serves as an assistant coach at Princeton.

Dan and his wife, Sheila, were married in the summer of 2008
and have two daughters,
Mila and Alyssa.

V.M.I. at a glance:

  • 3rd in 3’s made per game!
  • 5th in Assist:Turnover ratio! (thrifty backcourt 1o1)
  • 26th in Steals.
  • 260th in defensive-rpg is their lowest marker.
  • (surprisingly, as V.M.I. fields not less than 13 metrics 82nd or better outta 351 D-1 teams in the 29 Team Categories that I track. i.e. this team may be sneaking on beeing a bit better than you thinks)

Keydet Returning Starters=3

V.M.I. Strengths:

  • Well, this is just not yesteryear’s offensive juggernaut (made for T.V.) style V.M.I. Points are at a premium some nights here and honestly, I found the Top-7 Keydets hard to separate. As they are all G’s. Less the one kid who plays C. (Although this is a pretty decent albeit very young backcourt)
  • And they take a metric TON of 3’s!!! (seriously, only two D-1 men’s clubs take mo’).
  • V.M.I. currently fields two that’s (just, 2) guys who score in double-digits. They would be: 6′, 17o lb. nugget or rookie voting year one #10, Kamdyn Curfman and 6′, 165 lb. entry or debut year Travis Evee. Both guys net 41% of their 3’s, so range is not an issue here. Kamdyn is a Dean’s List (props) and former DeMatha Summer League 19.3 ppg scorer. So it would appear that this One (Pt.Guard) can put the biscuit in the basket; at least here-n-there. Travis is an honor roll student who netted 24 ppg up in Vermont and holds several smaller-classification 3-point shooting statewide marks as a One his ownself. Kamdyn drops a team leading 12.1 ppg and Travis nets you 11.3 ppg. Both guys mess around with right at 2 rpg, 2 apg, and a steal and change. Kamdyn leads the So.Co. (Southern Conference) at a stellar 91.8% makes from the charity-stripe; although Travis is the better in-game overall shooter at a backcourt-pacing 51% from the floor. That all said; this is a sharp G set that does not misQ much and that gives V.M.I. a decent one-two punch at the overlapping One spot in their backcourt. As they do play the same position, and they are both undersized… so the rest will have to somewhere in between now and 2023, come.

    About half a Bo.Derek.
  • Garrett Gilkeson is your one semi-quality rebounder and leads the way with 5.3 rpg and a decent enough 9.5 ppg. S/G, 6′4″, 200 lb. third-year Garrett Gilkeson, a 3o4 Parkersburg H.S., Wva. product who is known for his engine and how hard he hustles here. Ditto his first-best 1.9 spg. The hometown Mineral Wells, West Virginia native won a number of scholastic shooting contests (47% beyond the arc) and a 2015 state championship to boot. So you and AT&T gotta give him that dialing long-distance round 10-8.
  • Greg Parham (no relation) was the penultimate scoring Keydet last year. This year Greg checks in as a 6′4″, 175 lb., Jr. year Pt.G. who found a much needed 15 lbs. of fight mass tho’ cut scoring weight and is now down to a fifth-best 7.5 ppg. Greg is supposed to be the backup Pt.Guard so his starting beta status in Qb2’ing the O with 2.3 apg is something of a surprise. That said he fields a sharp (all-conference academic) game when off-court, and he was an AAAA Va.H.S. (Richmond area) baller of the year. So, there is some overall encouragement here for a kid who had an H.S. vibe as being as a defensive stopper at the One.

V.M.I. Weaknesses:

  • Opponents typically pound V.M.I. Coach Earl teams in the paint. What with an extremely user-friendly 57% inside shooting allowed since this coaching Earl sailed into Kattegat.
  • All 3 returning starters are down in most major categories this year vis-à-vis last year.
  • V.M.I.’s one true hooping star in the last few seasons (Bubba Parham, 22 ppg) bolted for greener BIG-Major pastures this off-season.
  • This is a team of scoring and rebounding via committee… and same as grade school itself, both committees tend to enjoy being in… recess.

Keydet Bench: (depth=)

Sophomoric Jake Stephens is your one non-Guard guy and the aforementioned Center or the only frontcourter in the Keydet’s top-7 rotation. Jake is one of the aforementioned 3-(ex in his case) starters who is on the schneid this season. Down nearly 50% in ppg. Although 6′9″, 258 lbs. of a bruising true-C does industrialize things here. As this guy is a cross between Dave Cowens and Wes’ Unseld sans the shade and plus a vanilla protein shake or three. Jack is a strong, strapping looking kid with Bunker Hill, W.Va. 3-o-4 D.n.a.; so you know he’s strong like bull. And that’s really what he is, as touch (41%) is not quite his thing, though he china-shops his way to 5.6 ppg, 4.4 rpg and the team lead with a swat and leaves you to pick up the pieces.

That said, Tyler Creammer and Will Miller have appeared in every single game as frontcourt back-ups go. So, this V.M.I. starting line-up opens up in virtually a 5-G offensive set and then actually plays a more familiar 1 through 5 look as the Keydets pine-squad enters the game.

Tyler Creammer is a 6′10″ -now up 15 whooping lbs.- 262 lb., Sr. year P/F who did pace the Keydets last year on the glass. This year however his minutes and his metrics alike ae down (3.8 ppg and 5.3 rpg). Though shooting is not his thang as poor Ty’s is now off to a masonic or brickish looking 37% start to 2019 overall, and he is down from 21% deep to zero% this campaign beyond the arc. Although Ty’ does pitch in, in swatting at .7 bpg and that tells you just how tall the trees grow here. (and Tyler was a Defensive Player of the Year regionally in scholastic terms).

Will Miller is a 6′8″, 22o lb. final-year South Boston, Va. instate baller. He is a career reservist with 57% shooting from the floor, although 2.2 ppg and 1.7 rpg are about all he is in addition to being match-up frontcourt right-sized on D.

Beating underdog V.M.I. @Home is all about what(s)???

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

Illationconclusion(s) and OPT digits:

Number of 'dets who could Key' @Tech=zip, zero, zilch.

the takeaway:
The takeaway here is… after two up-n-down games and coming off a 1-3 schneid run, this is the one that should help us ‘pop’ clean.

A good ‘clean’ beatdown I mean. (or so we all hope…)

And we could use a little BIG-mo’ heading into regular-season Atlantic Coach Championship play where every team courts at least a good coach and most teams industrialize at least 1 or 2 quality ballers too boot.

A.c.c.ordingly, right about now would be a very fit time to finalize our tinkering-n-puttering and get on with locking down whatever this incarnate Mike Young hoops squad can be this year in terms of his foundation-laying systematic and cultural restart.


Our handy-dandy friend the so-called Forum Guide of Graham Houston fame is calling for… not much until next year.

The annualized year-to-date vitals say that… V.Tech is up +5% in shooting percentage margin (nearly equally better on O & D split), V.Tech is up +7% in 3-point percentage margin (little more on D tho’ better on O as well) and V.Tech is up +6 caroms in rebounding margin (mostly on the defensive glass).

The most recent 5-game metrics say that…  (insanely enough) the Keydets are now up a whopping swing-vote of +7% in shooting percentage margin (nearly all on the Hokies user-friendly lack of D), these two are now separated by just four-tenths (.4%) in 3-point percentage margin of late (however, the Hokies are 7% softer on D and 3% off on O in the last fortnight behind the arc) and yet the Hokies are still up a reasonable though declined gathering of +4 misses in rebounding margin.

V.M.I. is up +6% at the charity stripe for the year (and +9% in the last 2-weeks).
V.Tech is .75o as a host whereas V.M.I. is .2oo in your house.

The Hokies should get this one here. As we do enjoy sizeable backcourt shooting advantages and for whatever in-game reason or reasons… V.M.I. tests dirtier than their fairly clean statistical profile analysis read.

As in… the 5 up and 7 down (o-1 in conference) Keydets popped dirty to begin the year. o for 5 to start what with NO wins until the week before Thanksgiving.

However, deeper scrutiny yields that no one with a power-conference early-year food-for-hire name beat them by more than 12-points and three of those BIG-names only beat them by one shot and one of those three needed five extra minutes to get the V.M.I. work done.

Then V.M.I. beat a team 96-20.
(no I am not making that up!)


So, V.M.I. is prolly better than most think or at least better than their modest .417 overall tag reads. As they are 5-2 in their last seven since right before Thanksgiving and they have been actually competitive in all 12 contests all year long; (worst L=15 points). They also have busted 78 points in every game less one since Turkey Day itself.

And inside of a Christmas recess sleepy hollow of a Cassell Coliseum, with most Hokie fans cleverly disguised as empty seats… ‘stranger things’ have happened indeed. And if you don’t believe me why just ask Netflix or Alabama State.

4 PM kick-off!

Accordingly, although still forecasting Vah.Tech and Bruce Smith to Iceburg win; this one has a strange feel to it; at least to me…

As I’ma kinda wondering if the Earl of V.M.I. does not muddy our Duck Pond waters with his bigger bench and slow this game to a crawl.

As fewer possessions narrows any out-talented gap
and that gives the little guy a bigger long-shot chance, here.

(79% confidence interval)

Virginia Tech=76, Virginia Military=63







2 Responses You are logged in as Test

Comments are closed.