#263 R.P.I. Presbyterian @ #92 R.P.I. Virginia Tech:
Virginia Tech men’s basketball faces Presbyterian College, commonly known as PC, Presbyterian is a four-year, private liberal arts college located in Clinton, South Carolina and affiliated with the Presbyterian Church. (And “yes” I had to look that up).
The Hokies take to the court at 7pm on Tuesday night with one more day of Fall Semester Exams (Godspeed); in front of them and a pretty competitive L in which they actually led at halftime @ all-world Kentucky behind them. The game will air on ACCNetwork Extra vs. the 6 up and 5 down Blue Hose. Aye, that is their nickname, “no” I’m not making that up; as the B.Hose has won five in a row. The nickname “Blue Hose” began in the early 19oo’s, when sportswriters referred to the Presbyterian College athletic teams as the “Blue Stockings” because of the blue socks they wore. Writers used the terms “stockings” and “hose” interchangeably over the years; and they often shortened “stockings” to “hose”. Don’t know if that’s a strength or a weakness; so I’ll just list it here in P.C. terms. I do know however who is gonna win… read on to find, out…
Presbyterian Head Coach: Dustin Kerns: age=36, 6-5 overall and at PC. Has a rep’ for: not being the abb’ed up actor named Denis Kerns that I found. Seems to be a recruiter and a backcourt oriented guy; although it’s only his first year; so it is tough to get a legible read thus far.
A Kingsport, Tennessee native, Kerns played at the Dobyns-Bennett High School, which ranked first in the nation in all-time wins at the prep level.
Kerns is a 2oo2 graduate of Clemson University, where he earned a degree in secondary education. As an undergraduate, he worked as a student assistant for Tigers men’s basketball team under then-head coach Larry Shyatt,
Kerns comes to PC after completing his seventh season on the Terrier coaching staff and fourth as associate head coach. It was his second stint at Wofford, previously serving as an assistant coach from 2oo4-o7. In the six seasons between, he was an assistant coach at Santa Clara. Kerns has received national recognition as one of college basketball’s top assistant coaches and recruiters. CoachStat.net ranked Kerns the No. 4 Low-Major Recruiter in the nation, as well as its No. 20 Mid-Major Assistant Coaches. CollegeInsider.com recently featured Kerns in its article “30 Assistants Ready to Run their own Programs.” Of any and all of that… well, I’m not sure either way… though it is too early to be sure in the first place when you take over a last-place squad.
Kerns is married to the former Brittany Wright and are the proud parents of Emory Sulianne, born in 2o11.
The Hose at a glance:
- 39th most personal fouls committed (16.1 pfpg)!
- 55th most 3-point makes/game (9.6 3-point makes/game).
- 296th in 3-point percentage defense allowed (39.1%).
- 3o2nd in FG percentage D (47.3% allowed).
- 321st in blocks. (2 bpg).
- NO injuries listed (thank Coach God).
- Fifth year 2-guard, one #14, Reggie Dillard is the Blue Hose’s leading scorer at 17.o ppg. The 6′4″, 22o lb. off-Guard is the one emerald among the tall weeds at PeeCee and is about as close to an all-star candidate -at least in conference terms- as Presbyterian is likely to see any time soon. Reg’ is a second year starter after missing a full season two years ago due to injury (foot; God Bless). That from a guy who has gone from 9 and change ppg his whole career to 17 ppg this year– which is pretty smart work if you can get it. Possibly Most Improved in Big South work as well. Now mix in 3.3 rpg, a couple of assists, all on 53% overall, 81% FT’s and 38% from deep and you’ve got a kid on your hands who same as Mister Scott is “giving you all he’s got”. And the kinda kid a new coach remembers for a good long while; additionally, Dillard was a T&F star in high school so he does have the speed in the open-court.
- Davon Bell is a 5′10″, 175 lb. r-Junior year Pt.Guard who is second in scoring for the Blue Hose at 13.9 ppg. Bell too got rung up last year by the injury bug and only played in six games last season. Bell leads the way in assists (4.1 apg) and in three-point shooting at 43% for Presbyterian. Bell has more 3-point makes this season than his previous three seasons combined. He also sets the pace in swipes for PC with 1.8 spg. This from a kid who is basically unlisted -other than roster numeric- in any of my preview mag’s. Bell did however win three straight North Carolina high school state championships; that do not suck; and neither does his penetrating team lead with 59 FTA’s on 80%. His brother, Rico Bell, played football at virginia, and his uncle Billy Williams played major league baseball with the Chicago Cubs. So there is that to this likeable gamey, gritty get ‘er done type Davon Bell kid, who Godspeed has a history of varying leg dings and dents throughout his collegiate career.
- Leading rebounder and third year Francois Lewis (5.o rpg), is a 6′9″, 239 lb. right-sized match-up P/F for the Blue Hose. He is also a rarefied double College of Central Florida and Florida A&M transfer, where he was a surprising first-Team all-Conference selection; albeit mainly on the defensive end. Lewis is a Member of the Beat and Interact Club; he nets you 9.8 ppg on 46% from the floor and 38% from beyond the arc. And not to throw too much shade… however, you gotta wonder about a kid who has moved around this much and has his high school segment listed first in his college bio’.
- PC does sport a blue-plaid tartan background header to all individual baller bio’ pages and that’s a +1 Highlander type move any day.
- The Hose won one game after Christmas last year; and has not had a winning season since 2oo7. i.e. program outcome hygiene is not the healthiest; here.
- Finished 35oth in KenPom’s national rankings last year.
- A critical injury to DeVontae Millner (11 ppg, 6 rpg) last season really mucked up what little this team could have been or still could be.
- 0 all-conference candidates listed anywhere by anyone is never a good sign.
- Health -Coach God bless here- as best I can add it up, PC has missed right at 9o games from four different starters and/or contributors in the last two seasons. As it is very tough to win while only putting your best (club) foot forward, in, hoops.
PC Bench: (depth=3 or 4)
6′4″, 2oo lb. sophomoric JC Younger gives The Hose good size on the Wing in addition to his decent enough scoring capabilities. Though (God Bless), he too has been dinged and dented through his non-PC duration same as several others. JC Younger did at least warrant pre-season preview mag’ mention, so that’s something; as is his third best 11 ppg and nearly 4 caroms. 38% when dialing long-distance is fair to middling and the team lead a 85% from the charity-stripe is downright sharp.
C/P-F, Armel Te Te is about the only inside presence The Hose has, at 6′9″, 21o lb. of springy looking second year Pivot. Te Te is a Porto-Novo Benin native (i.e. West Africa), he leads PC in swats at 1.1. bpg, with four points and rebounds on 57% typically put-back type shooting.
Illation, conclusion (s) and OPT digits:
Number of Hose who could spray @Tech=maybe 1.
The takeaway here is… “take off you… hosers!”
Eh, well, I mean, I made it this far into the preview and that was just bound to happen; Elsinore and Bob and Doug fans rejoice. And no we don’t need to go looking for no damn mutants in no damn forbidden zone; though I tangent…
…as yes stranger things have happened than getting upset in a let-down trap game such as this; although that would entail drinking more than a few strange brews to me.
Nevertheless, +2 on rest Presbyterian is playing better of late -to their credit- having won five in a row; even if this was vs. someone named: Toccoa Falls, two schools named “State”, one A&T and U.n.c. Greensboro. So that is actually some version of progress and you’d have to think the Blue Hose is feeling no, pain —so to speak. As they are prolly catching us at just the right time -during Final Exams and with a Kentucky hangover- with O&M kids Jones’ing to see mum and pop; and we surely are their N.b.a. Finals and Super Bowl all rolled into, one.
And yet, when you are picked 10th in a race of ten… the view never changes.
As every single one of my pre-season mag’s has Presbyterian picked dead last in the Big South. That’s not a good look, and it would be a worse look to get upset by the last place Big South team ‾thereby effectively ranking us/VT 11th in the Big South.
Though if you ask me me, even if we/Virginia Tech basketball are a little down, or a little flat or a little off here… with everyone looking forward to getting home for a few Christmas Break days… Presbyterian -even if a bit improved or better than pre-season expected- just does not court enough defense nor the offense (beyond Dillard) to so *that* much of a upsetting threat here.
As this Blue Hose surely invites driving right at the rim and spraying shots everywhere, so to, speak.
And to me, this sure looks like an over-matched type blowout win, albeit a sleepy, ho-hum one as opposed to a upsetting bah-humbug one.
(96% confidence interval)
Virginia Tech=9o, Presbyterian=63