Your Commonwealth Cup hoops preview is, up!

#4 R.P.I. Virginia @ #28 R.P.I. Virginia Tech:

Virginia Tech men’s basketball hosts intra-state archrival virginia hoo travels 150 miles -or 241 km’s for you frenchies- for round no.3 of this year Revenue Sports Commonwealth Clash. And after their downright fumbling, bumbling, stumbling, non-VicTory in football? You know Hoo, just cannot possibly wait for round no.3 to go… “ding!” As this is their shot to go 2-1 in revenue sports play.

The Gobblers and the ‘Cavs clashed last time for a rarefied Commonwealth Cup Top-10 hoopology intra-state D-1 rivalry hardwood smash. As the actual SportsWar boss-man, his very own self, Will -freakin’- Stew’ just told yah! This time both teams have actually improved their national R.P.I. Rankings (uva ⇑ 3 spots, VT ⇑ 4 spots). However, the Hurrying Hokies have been physically beaten down and dinged-up of late as their national media ranking has slipped a bit for it. Still, yet, tune in this Monday night for a 7 pm kickoff on ESPN and ESPN3/ACC streaming to see what could be a pretty testy contest as these two do not exactly like each other as the rematching and Revenue Sports rubber-matching stakes could hardly be any higher, here. Nevertheless, you wanna know who is gonna win, right? Read on, to find… out!

Virginia Head CoachAnthony Guy “Tony” Bennett: Age=49, 309–121 (.719) overall, and 240–88 (.732) @UVA.

Crooner: Anthony Dominick Benedettoage=92, with 19 Grammy Awards (including a Lifetime Achievement Award, presented in 2001) and two Emmy Awards, and was named an NEA Jazz Master and a Kennedy Center Honoree. Bennett has sold over 50 million records worldwide.
$200,000,000.oo (est. net worth)

This Tony, known professionally as Tony Bennett, is an American singer of traditional pop standards, big band, show tunes, and jazz. He is also a painter and the founder of the Frank Sinatra School of the Arts in Astoria, Queens, New York.

The other Tony Bennett is also a pretty fair to middling basketball coach up at uva. In point of fact, he is basically the Bud Foster of D-1 men’s hoops in defensive terms. His motion-offense is about an efficacious as can be, albeit overshadowed a bit by his much-vaunted pack-line defense. Coach Bennett is the only A.c.c. coach to win 16 conference games in consecutive seasons, and one of three in A.c.c. history to enjoy back-to-back 30-win seasons overall. Coach Bennett is known as a rapport annexing basketball player developer or the coaching (verb) in the truest sense. He has only won nine Coach of the Year Awards at Washington State and UVA combined, and yet curiously enough Coach Bennett only wears three conference crowns to show for it. He does own the single-season win records at both Virginia (31) and Washington State (26, twice). And he does sport a: FIBA Under-19 World Championship gold-medal to boot. As a Christian, coach Bennett is known for the use of his father’s “Five Pillars”: humility, passion, unity, servanthood, and thankfulness.

Baller Bennett, one (retired #25), was a 6′, 175 lb. lowercase shooting-man’s Jeff Hornacek/Jonny Stockton hybrid type of player of a Green Bay Wisconsin Pt.Guard who balled for coach Dick Bennett (his pop’s); and oh yes… Tony Bennet the now elite coach, and formerly ex-baller, is merely the #1, as in first-best all-time in college basketball history for career three-point field goal accuracy, at 49.7%, peaking at 53.3% in 1990–91; wow! i.e. baller Bennett is the best shooter in college basketball history; all-time; ever! He was awarded the Frances Pomeroy Naismith Award in 1992 as the nation’s top player under 6′ in height and was an Academic all-American in ’92 on top of all of that. When Bennett left college he was the Mid-Continent Conference’s all-time leader in both points and assists before being drafted 35th overall in the 1992 NBA draft. Then playing three years for the Charlotte Hornets and several more in Australia and New Zealand, where he started coaching after foot and knee injuries forced the now highly esteemed coach Bennett to suit-n-tie, up.

Daddy Bennett and his wife, Laurel, have two children – a daughter, Anna, and a son, Eli.

Virginia at a glance: (

  • #1 in scoring D (54.4 ppg allowed)! ( worse, tho’ still no.1)
  • #1 in 3-point shooting percentage D (26.7% allowed)! ( little worse, was no.1)
  • #1 in fewest turnovers (∑=203, t) | and #1 in fewest turnovers per game (9.3 tpg)! ( little worse tho’ still no.1 at each)
  • #5 in shooting percentage overall D (37.8% allowed)! ( little worse, down 3 spots).
  • 6th in Assist:Turnover ratio (+1.57 a/t-pg)!  ( little worse, down 2 spots).
  • 4th fewest fouls “whistled” against (∑=333 pf’s)! ( little better, 3 spots).
  • 19th in free-throwing percentage (76%)! ( 11 spots worse)
  • 9h in 3-point shooting percentage (39.6%)! (neutral, only moved 2/10ths)
  • 20th in Rebounding Margin (+6.7 rpg). ( neutral, moved 7 spots up; +number was same)
  • 324th in FTA’s total (∑=377 FTA’). ( nearly 30 spots, softer!)
  • Everything else is better than average to very good.
  • 1 injury listed: Coach God bless!

U.Va. Returning Starters=3

Wahoo Strengths:

  • Is this Tony’s best team yet? Statistically -as you can see above- “oui”, as a science-fact Coach Spock case can indeed be made that this is his alpha Zima team. (although it has slipped just a scosche in several cat’s | although several individuals are up in their balling)
  • One #5, Kyle Joseph Guy is a 6′3″, third-year oppie (formerly) man-bun (see: below pic) wearing ginger, not Mary-Ann. Kyle Guy is the gem of UVA’s 2016 epic recruiting class. And he only won a slew of 3-point and slam dunk contests along the way to being named Mr. Basketball for the hoops-happy Hoosier state of Indiana. He also won the U.S. Marine Boy’s 3-point championship– so thank you to any member of his family in Service for my freedom(s). This is basically another kid with a very willing very sporting family tree, including a grandfather twice membered in the Indiana Sports Hall of Fame {sic: football and hoops}. Kyle, however, brings a rep’ for hitting the 3 and being electric in the open court, and yet he could mix in a steak and a protein shake; although he is up from 165 lbs. to a buck-seventy-four (174 lbs.) Nonetheless, 7.8 ppg his first year up to a team-leading 15.1 ppg this year with a very spry/heady looking 4.3 caroms and 2.1 dimes on a third-best 44% from the outside and a first best 83% on FTA’s with that kinda marksmanship type resume` makes this one a fun one to watch going forth. Or Tony Bennett’s: “guy”. As I was not so sure of this last year, however; oui-oui, this kid is a Pro’, even if he is exported to do so. Which is pretty decent 3rd-string all-Amerian pre-season work if you can get it. And I have to add, there is something of a situational game-elevation ethos in play here for this aspirant head basketball coach somewhere down the road his ownself that seems willing to rise to the occasion’s need. And he has drawn Dell Curry comparisons of late; of all the, things. (UPDATE:  just a smidgeon, a little worn on FT and 3-point shooting alike).
    Eminem… much?
  • 6′7″, 225 lbs. r-Soph., De’Andre Hunter is the second leading scorer at 15 ppg and likewise, second-leading rebounder at 5.5 rpg and that makes ‘dre the primacy ranked breakout baller for UVA thus far this campaign. As the Philly native was basically the first-best 6th man in the Atlantic Coast last campaign and he’s slide over into the starting line-up smartly enough. As Hunter (thx @St.Julia insert____here), seems to be right as rain after his play-off left-wrist snap right before UVA’s highly upsetting madness last March. Hunter was the 2016 Pennsylvania Class AA Player of the Year although he has been in-and-out of hoops his entire career. He is a dangerous all-around Swingman when he’s right and 51% from the floor, 53% on FTA’s and 46% from beyond the arc seems alright by me. 2.2 dimes ain’t hurting as Hunter got to UVA with a rep’ as a shooting defensive stopper and he’s filled his all-around game in like a true hardwood intrinsic would. He’s also put up several career highs in statistical categories vs. Vah.Tech and he has a history of clutch-makes, late. (this in addition to being said to be the best “dancer” on the team). (UPDATE: , everywhere! which is late season surging rare and S&C propers, here!)
  • Ty Jerome is  6′5″, 195 lb. junior season combo’-G who is said to be a modern-day Wing with good shooting range and solid passing instincts. Or basically a quality half-court coach T.Bennett heady fit. Right now Ty is -a somewhat surprising- third in points at a now sharp looking a nearly 5 ppg improved from last year all the way up to an outright productive 13 ppg this year. Jerome did pace UVA from downtown (46% on 3’s last year) although he’s down to a reasonable 42% this year so far. Recall he went close to a calendar slam as he had not missed an FTA since o2.o2; of last, year (2017); dang! However, Ty’s FT’s is all tied-up at a middleocore looking 75% this year. Still yet, Jerome’s floor game has now mixed in 4.3 rpg along with the team pace-setting lead at a nifty 5.1 apg, with the team blue ribbon in swipes with 1.5 spg— and that’s not half bad from a somewhat slumping shooter with a history of hip-surgeries to boot. Godspeed on that. And that does show you -in addition to his 2019 weight-cut- that this TeeJay is willing to put that work in. Cannot fault him there as most workers work their way back to their deffest shooting touch. As shooters… shoot! (UPDATE: mostly , playing a more efficacious game; although chilly last week)
  • Jack Salt is a 6′1o″, 25o lb. 6th-r-senior-year Steinlager imported and guzzling Auckland New Zealand native. WAR All-Blacks!!! As Jack Salt was your back-up hub in the Pack-Line defense last season. Jack is a rim-protector who brings starchy defense and collaring type rebounding to the Cavalier table even if he never quite exceeded his offensive or all-around production quotas; (like 48% from the FT-line). Jack prolly won’t get carded to buy beer until his late 30’s, he won 2 state championships down in N.Zealand where he also picked up 2 youth gold medals and his 4.5 ppg, with 4.6 rpg on a ripe looking 6o% for the term thus far overall is not the worst Pack-Line true-Five or Center work, if you can get it. Segueing now… (UPDATE:  by 6% from the floor, a noticeably more efficient baller here)

PackLine 1o1:
The “pack line”, is a defensive strategy that was actually convinced by his father (Dick). The pack line is designed to clog up potential driving lanes to the paint by forcing ball handlers to the middle of the floor where more “help” is concentrated. It forces opposing teams to pass and shoot well while limiting dribble penetration to the rack and post play. i.e. this is not a good match-up in Caucasian-board erasable marker theory for the Wing slashing coach Buzz offensive set.

Cavalier Weaknesses:

  • Yet another skyscraping pack-line jamming C, although may St.Nikhon bless this one’s, left-knee and get it all right. As Francisco Caffaro is done for the year. All 6′12″, 233 lbs. of him. As the rookie year El Trebo, Santa Fe, Argentina imported native baller has a wealth of FIBA international hoops experience having balled for his nation since before he could drive (legally) in the states or since age 15! Averaging 16.7 points and 8.8 rebounds per contest in doing so and that makes this big-man subtraction no small measure indeed.
  • I suppose you could always say that Hall, Wilkens, and Johnson are gone. Although the Bennett system is custom made to retool if not outright reload; and; quickly. Plug-n-play pronto or A.S.A.P., most years.
  • Though just one outburst scorer or a light-’em-up offensive bench threat would be nearly downright criminal here.

Virginia Bench: (depth=2 and change)

5′8″, 155 lb. mighty-mite caddying and last years alpha-recruit, Pt.Guard, Kihei Clark is a fun little bugger to watch and an instant fan-favorite for it. Ditto, any kid who refuses to sit and balls-out in a left-wrist cast/brace for it. That makes him a tough little bugger as well. Per his bio’, this hawt Cali’ recruit: “spent several hours at the Children’s Hunger Fund in Sylmar, Calif.” whatever that means though “yes” that is more hours than I spent there, admittingly. That jab being rightfully placed… Lindy’s says Clark has: “extreme quickness” and is a dangerous open-court player for it. Although he must improve his shooting depth (4.3. ppg on 33% deep) and avoid 1-on-1 facebook type tête-à-tête battles for it. (UPDATE: a decent uptick () in particular from downtown.)

Braxton Key who is at least an S/F anywhere else is a towering 6′8″, 225 lbs. shooting-G at UVA. And he is your surprise team leader in Windex work swiping the glass for a 6 rpg with 6.6 ppg per 26% from long-distance all in substitute relief. The Oak Hill Academy basketball factory heritage kid was rolling the tide at ‘Bama before transferring to UVA. Still, yet, make no mistake, this kid is a real overload for any S/G or Two he faces. And he’s not an easy match-up even for a legit Three or S/F. (UPDATE: , way down as Key has only tickled the twine on three -that’s only 3- makes in his last three games! Moreso from behind the arc.)

(7′2″, 232 lb., sophomoric, stretch-P/F, Jay Huff (4.8 ppg, 2.1 rpg, 1 swat and 62% shooting) has really been on the come of late; as he’s been doing close to twice that in ~10 mins. of P.T.) If this guy develops, and gives Tony another post-weapon? Look out! As he only has 53% 3-point range. (UPDATE: has dipped in shooting since last time out ().)

Upsetting visiting uva in the New River Valley is all about... what???

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Illationconclusion(s) and OPT digits:

Number of Cavs hoo could start @Tech=3+.

the takeaway:
The takeaway here is… since we saw you know hoo last… there were two remaining undefeated’s in 2018-2019 men’s D-1 college basketball hoops (Michigan, 17-o; and uva 15-o)… as we are want to hype/say in boxing: “someone’s o has got to go!”

And both “o’s” have gonzo!

uva now checks in at a still very sporty looking 22 up with 2 down (and 10-2 in Atlantic Coast Club play). As the hoo’s are one shot removed from being 23-1 with only really a 10 point rematch with internally and frontcourt powerfully loaded for bear Duke to nag them here.

Though is hoo is R.A.T.T. most likely to have stormed this Cassell, Monday at ~9:30 pm?

As these two are 42-7 combined at the moment— hooever, UVA has five wins vs. ranked teams by an alluring 35 total points. Whereas V.P.I. has only beaten no.23 NC.State, no.23 again Purdue and a couple of other power-conference “name” teams (Notre Dame & Washington). So UVA has the check-mark for being a bit more battle-tested coming into this backyard bash.


7 pm kickoff!

The hoos are a downright shiny .875 in your house whereas the Hokies are .923 as the hostess with the (almost), most(est).

Our handy-dandy friend the so-called Forum Guide of Graham Houston fame predicts a 5.42 wahoo triumph as try as you might you can not spell: “vomiting” post-game when the cavaliers beat the Hokies without the Vee and the Tee.

The seasonal metrics tell us that uva is now up ~3% FG percentage margin overall for the year (thanks mostly to betterment on D). Whereas 3-point shooting margin actually favors UVA by +7% and change (thanks entirely to  defensive acumen); with rebounding margin now () tilting to +4 (rpg) in UVA’s favor.

The more recent 5-game trends say that UVA is now up +4% from the floor on FG percentage margin (, entirely on O), though now only +3% superior on 3-point margin ( down from +17%) and now only up +4 rebounds per game on Rebounding Margin of late ( down four carroms here). (OR IN OTHER WORDS… we faced and got totally scorarated by an eruptive or hot like the Sun uva in C’ville last time. Whereas uva -the team- has come back down to the lawn/Earth of late with albeit some individual sharpening here-n-there).

The Gobblers are technically o.1 or one-tenth better at FT-shooting as the charity-stripe is basically awash in this one.

  • Only one team can claim it has knocked off Virginia in each of the past three seasons. That team is Virginia Tech. That’s 3 rivalry wins by 5 total points; and twice into extra innings.
  • The Hokies are one of only six Division I teams with four players averaging 12 ppg.
  • The Hokies new so-called: match-up Zone Defense is the best stop-unit work this side of Bud Böck from two years ago.
  • Kerry Blackshear has been playing Buster Poindexter hoops: getting “hot hot hot” with 28 upside Pitt’s head and he has scored in double figures in five games in a row, per 68.4% shooting in the past week. As he really is a Z.LeDay with more length and less, jump(s).
  • They were good enough to win the national championship last year and they’re good enough to win the national championship this year,” Virginia Tech head coach Buzz Williams said about Virginia.
  • Buzz on Black’: “We have to play through him,” Virginia Tech coach Buzz Williams said. “… He’s our best passer. He’s our best playmaker, and he has the highest basketball IQ on our team.” Or maybe the next Seth Allen, much?
  • The Hokies are 5-o in A.c.c. games when shooting ≥50% from the floor.
  • Virginia has held 11 opponents below 55 points, while Virginia Tech has done so eight times. (or 73% between ’em in totality).
  • The Virginia backcourt of: De’Andre Hunter and Kyle Guy have nearly been en fuego in the last week. Don’t let these two get it going early on! As Hunter has only netted 13 of his last 21 and he and Guy combined only drained fourteen 3’s last week.
  • #4 Virginia hosts #22 Virginia Tech in the 149th edition of the Commonwealth Clash.
  • Virginia is 92-56 all-time vs. Virginia Tech, including a 21-30 mark in Blacksburg, The Cavaliers are 5-2 in their last seven 24060, visits.

Accordingly, of right now, Eye would be inclined to call this a home-at-home series— if only “5” (A.K.A: J.Rob’) were somehow good to go solo. As only three other Atlantic Coast schools have Crowned Tony Bennett more times than Virginia Tech has (6 wins vs. TeeBee). Yes, Netflix and I know… Stranger Things have indeed happened.

Nonetheless, Buzzketball has struggled with stall-ball and/or physical defensively bludgeoning teams thus far this year. That and the fact that the hoo’s are +4 on R&R in the last fortnight of play make this one a tough out.

Still, yet, Buzz is starting to get his O right and he sure has had this (remaining) hoops squad fighting best they can down in the A.c.c. bearpit with what they have left. Ergo, therefore, to wit, methinks we see a pretty game, gritty, gutty and downright grizzly O&M effort from the Hokiebird on President’s Day night.

the call

As you can see above, points figure to be at a premium here. As Tony Bennett is no doubt the roundball of Bud Foster’s oblong spheroid ¦ and Buzzketball be playing some mean-ass halt-unit work per their new aforementioned match-up zone.

It takes shooting to beat the closeted version of zone we know as The Pack-Line Defense, ditto besting Buzz’s match-up zone.

Homecourt would like a word with that and homecourt says to favor the better shooting team @Home here. As VeeTee seems to be cobbling together the best possible Mark Cox -or should Eye say: “Todd Greenwood”- O, sans Cyrus Lawrance, to mix my sporting-metaphor. That and the objective science-fact that although -and to Tony’s credit- the visiting hoo-game does not drop or worsen hardly at all… the homesteading Hokie game gets better straight across. Basically, everywhere you look.

Now, as you do see below, Eye do (rightfully) favor T.B. and the Zeta or Zima heads here.
Nevertheless, this is why the legendary or G.O.A.T. Man o’ War got beat. Just, once.

By a horse named: …Upset!

(67% confidence interval)
Virginia Tech=64virginia=6o







4 Responses You are logged in as Test

  1. Hope your prediction is correct! FYI, poll did not work for me….and probably for others. Go Hokies!

  2. Now that’s what I’m talkin’ bout. Wahoo’s gonna all Boo Hoo back to C’Ville after a shooting 3 spree by an Outlaw……

    Let’s Go…Hokies!!!
    Beat Them Cavaliers!!!!

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