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#83 R.P.I. Virginia Tech @ #3o R.P.I. Duke: 

Virginia Tech men’s basketball travels (pardon the sporting pun) 121-miles So-by-So-East, on down to Tobacco Road for a massive in-league match-up vs. one of two even mo’ massive Atlantic Coast Conference basketball factory programs on Wednesday nite (8 PM).

The Hokies must now face big, bad, bad-azz and seemingly fully reloaded and remotivated for Coach K’s curtain call swansong seasonal run, Duke! Duke only checks in at a mere 10 up and 1 down on the campaign thus far. (o-o in A.c.c. play as we are their debut mind yah).  As of right now, it nearly is (sans: getting upset by 2-shots @’the’ Oh.State) it nearly is Duke’s world. “All the World’s a stage…” and this is coach K’s Shakespearean parting shot. Did Eye mention his farewell tour, yets? ‘K… and nevertheless, what you wanna know is… who is gonna win and by how much, rights? So, read on; to find, out!

Duke Head Coach: Michael William Krzyzewski: Age=74, 1,180–362 (.765) overall,
1,107–303 (.785) at Duke. Rep’=best, ever?

Fare the well final-year Touring… Coach K is pretty good, and this just in, rain is rumored to be, wet. As this is about as well preserved of seven-decade-years-old gentlemen as you will ever ever see. And his resumé is about as well-heeled as any you will ever sporting read.

Among them {sic: accolades}: Baller K Played at West Point under Bob Knight as a 5′10″ combo Pt.G/Shooting-G. He was captain of the Army basketball team in his senior season, 1968–69, leading his team to the N.I.T. as Vietnam-era West Point finished fourth in the tournament. From 1969 to 1974, Krzyzewski served in the United States Army and directed service teams for three years. In 2005 he was presented West Point’s Distinguished Graduate Award. And thank you for serving –after that Mike has not really done much of anything as a coach…

We should all age this well

…he has only won nine, that’s (9) Gold Medals for the USofA! He has only won five, that’s (5) National Championships in men’s hoops (1991, 1992, 2001, 2010, 2015)! He has only won thirteen that’s (14) Atlantic Coast Tourneys. Among men’s college basketball coaches, only U.C.L.A.’s John Wooden, with 10, has won more NCAA Championships than Coach-K.

Can’t spell Coach Knight sans the: coach “K.

Coach Krzyzewski has the most wins of any coach in college basketball history. Coach-K became the first Division I men’s basketball coach to reach 1,000 wins. And is only a six-time national coach of the year and a five-time A.c.c. coach of the year; that’s all. He is a two-time inductee into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, in 2001 for his individual coaching career and in 2010 as part of the collective induction of the “Dream Team.

Additionally… Coach-K has only won 24 (varying) Coaching Awards, he is National Polish American Sports Hall of Fame inductee (class of 1991), he was the 2011: Sports Illustrated “Sportsman of the Year”, the United States Military Academy named the “Coach Krzyzewski Teaching Character Through Sports Award for him, and he was merely inducted as a Laureate of The Lincoln Academy of Illinois and awarded the Order of Lincoln (the State’s highest honor) by the Governor of Illinois in 2014 in the area of sports. That’s, it!

Coach K is back after a (family) contact-tracing close call.
St.Nikephoros bless!

And God Bless the Emily Krzyzewski Center (charity) that he and his wife (Carol “Mickie” Marsh) founded to honor his reposed mum. Daddy K and Carol have
three daughters and nine grandchildren.

Duke at a glance:

  • 3rd in Assist:Turnover ratio!!!
  • 6th in Scoring O!!!
  • 9th in Turnover Margin!!!
  • 18th in Shooting (overall)!!
  • 18th fewest personal fouls “whistled” against!!
  • 31st in Steals!!
  • 33rd in Swats!!
  • 47th in Free-Throwing!!
  • 53rd in 3-point Shooting!
  • (Lowest team metric is offensive-rebounding (171st), tho’, they miss so few…) Still yet, this is a very complete-looking team to me; @both ends.
  • NO injuries listed. (“THX” @Coach God!)

Returning Starters=3! (Pretty good fo’ them!)

Duke Strengths:

  • Seems mo’ physical than b4.
  • Eye wonder if they wanna send K out as an A.c.c. winner???
  • 6′5″, 214 lb., third-year Wendell Moore Jr. Wendell is an S/F who now gets you a team-pacing 16.9 ppg with 5.6 rpg on 5.1 apg on 1.5 spg. This is way up from his 2o20-2o21 of: 6.9 ppg and 3.7 rpg when pitch-hitting; which is not the worst production. He is also way up from his somewhat anemic-looking 31% overall and 21% from behind the arc last year. All the way up to a nifty twine-tickling 58% overall and nearly 39% from behind the arc this year. Can you say: “Most Improved”? Tho’ do recall this kid was 2nd-string All-A.c.c. preseason and yah; mo’ was expected here. As this Wing struggled with turnovers last year as a super VHT (very highly touted) recruit three seasons ago. Tho’ the dutiful nod fo’ making the All-A.c.c. Academic team is rightfully bestowed. Ditto for the Two-time USA Basketball gold medalist for the 2017 FIBA Americas U16 Championship and for the 2018 FIBA U17 World Cup. And for being the #1 Carolina H.S. kid who was 18th in the nation (ESPN) and only won back-to-back N.C. AAA state titles along with winning back-to-back North Carolina state finals MVP honors. So, there has to be something real here, maybe something cardiac-clutch. And Coach-K and Co. are really waiting for it to Richmond, Va. homespun Wayans Bro’ lookalike emerge. Team Captain never sucks, and neither did being named one of 11 players nationally to the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) Player Development Coalition. Basically, an honorary focus-group or Pride Team the NC2A brings in to ask ballers up (Top—>down) on: “how (we) doin’?” And “Mister Windell” went arrested development and shed one lb. and yet found 1″ in height this off-season. Go fig’ on dat? As he appears to have found some right-mass upstairs across his deltoids/shoulders to me.
  • One #5, 6′1o″, 252 lb., rookie or nugget year Paolo Banchero, and all his flexing and on-court snarling may be the next on-court BIG Duke thang. Well, for exactly every how long he suits up on a Duke court that is. As this is a next-level guy by most accounts. (Fore$hadowing intended). 16.5 ppg married to a team-leading 7.3 rpg and a decent enuff for a Four or P/F big 2.1 apg is not bad debuting work at a P5 conference D-1 celebrant program if you can get it. As this is only the #3 overall recruit from who was only (already) named: Preseason A.c.c. Player of the Year and Freshman of the Year! No biggie and no pressure there, right? Nor is being the 6th MaxPreps National Player of the Year award winner in the last decade to ink with Duke. wowzo! His H.S. box score was good, per 22.6 points, 11.0 rebounds; this while also being his high school’s… Qb, 1! Wild, ain’t it? Does seem to have cooled off a bit from his Buster Poindexter “Hot! Hot! HOT!” start of late; tho’ make no misQ, this guy will obey the Associative Rule. And oh by the way(s)… did Eye mention Lindy’s: Newcomer of the Year, Most Versatile, Top N.B.A. Prospect, and Most Entertaining preseason awards, yet?

    The next Duke… Picasso?
  • Trevor Keels is a 6′5″, 221 lb., play-right-away framed/sized Off-G, by Commonwealth escapee way of:  St. Paul VI, (Va.). Seems to be finding his stroke and game again after a hiccup of sorts after his initial handful of collegiate contests. As Keels has the feels for: a third-best 12.6 ppg, with 3.3 rpg on 3.2 apg with a team-best 2.0 spg. So, the defense is already downloaded and fully installed to boot. This is from the 20th ranked baller outta H.S. per And 1st in the whole Va. H.S. landscape as well. Six, that’s (6) big-O or Magic -esque Triple Doubles his senior scholastic season speak to his versatilely fluently enough. 2020-21 MaxPreps Virginia High School Basketball Player of the Year while winning a V.H. State bling speaks highly of him. Seems to have a cooking with CH4 or explosive outburst at least wannabe look to him, and frankly he does not look soft on film. This is a determined and interesting prospect for it methinks.
  • Second-year, true-C and 7′, 242 lb., Va.Beach escapee Mark Oluwafemi Williams sure looks the physical/enforcing part. As this kid is really tore-up physique-wise or physically speaking. 30th ranked baller overall (ESPN) and was more parts scholastic rebounding and defense with the offense hopefully collegiately emerging. 9.2 ppg, with 5.8 rpg, a swipe, and 3 big swats all conspire to speak to this. Tho’ MOW did net 24 ppg on the high school all-star touring circuit. So, there is some measure of developing a more powerful offensive game hopefulness in play here. And who does not need size, rpg, and bpg down-low? All-ACC Academic Team for brain-factory Duke never hurt. His older sister, Elizabeth, played for Duke from 2011-15 and now plays for the WNBA’s Atlanta Dream— family Genome Project ‘big poppin’ never hurt either. Nor does his put-back and dunk-a-thon 68% from the floor. As this kid’s development has surprised me just a scosche; and do not be surprised if he floats an overseas check-in for it. (p.s. A.c.c. S.W.A.T. Team leader at the moment spank you very much!)

Duke Weaknesses:

  • Roster turnover is massive here; yet again… as we only face one true rotational guy from what we caught from Duke at the end of last season. (and ‘yes’, I know… 337 other D-1’s would indeed like to have Duke’s Equipment Manager’s uniform issuing problems; indeed!)
  • Tho this is a lotta Exodus type basketball even for a 1-n-done true Factory School such as Duke. (Only two of the Top-Nine I hit up last year are back!)
  • There is only one basketball to go, around.
  • This is not a highly experienced hoops club. Pretty nubile by the bye.
  • Retirement Tour… distractions?

Dukie Bench: (depth=3 or four (foreshadowing intended), ‘ish.)

(Rarefied) Senior-year, 6′6″, 2o6 lb., Joey Baker (S/F), may or may not be the next B.M.O.C. (Big man on campus). Tho’ he may be the next Chrissy Laettner. Tho’ they both sure spend a lotta time cropping their lettuce (hairstyle) and motif/looks overall. With no word yet from Brian Davis. This is your other Team Captain, and 7.7 ppg with 2.2 rpg with a marksman looking 42% long is not the worst leadership-heavy substitute look. No. 33 overall prospect per 24/7 Sports may have not overachieved any. Tho’ that shooting might still merit an exported sniff. And up on the wall is a good look. Did I mention his hairstyling-n-profiling, yets?

A.J. Griffin is a 6′6″, 22o lb., true-Fr. year S/F or Wing from Ossining, N.Y. Who seemed stronger than his listed metrics to me upon film study. Good looking near specimen typea kid. Only ESPN’s no.9 baller overall. And only #1 in N.Y. and likewise the #1 S/F in America itself. That’s no bad thing… neither is having a poppa-bear like: Adrian Griffin. Who only balled a decade in the N.B.A. and is currently an assistant coach with the Toronto Raptors. That can’t hurt 1ι (one-iota). Nor can wearing a: gold medal. Which Griff’ hung with Team USA at the 2o19 FIBA Americas U16 Championship. Girls still dig on, gold; rights? 6.1 ppg with 2.4 rpg on a Duke blue-ribbon 46% when dialing long-distance digs a lotta things down the next level road too.

6′9″, 242 lb., Theo John is a grad-transfer (Marquette or Al McGuire land) P/F. Who does indeed look the older more matriculated more physically mature part. Might not get carded in fact if you need to go buy some Friday Night Drill suds. Second-ranked Golden Eagle shot-blocker ever (198 send-backs). Though big-John plays mo’ for his D’s than fo’ his O’s. As he is even down from his Marquette metrics of midrange single digits on scoring rebounding what with marking 3.8 ppg with 2.9 rpg on 56% at Duke. Still yet… what if he gets 2 diplomas and 1 ring for this? As this is a glue-guy who does all the little things right at the expense of mistakes themselves. Theo is also a physical, intimidating sort… almost has a little ‘Zo Mourning build to his look to boot.

With no regular Guarding in the 6 through 10 warm-up line-up, one could dare to opine that this
is a very, Forward, facing crew indeed.
(Tho’ shooting they gots).

Upsetting 10-point fave Duke down in Cameron is all about, what(s)?

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Illationconclusion(s) and OPT digits:

Number of Dukies who could duke it out @Tech=1o?

the takeaway:
The takeaway here is

…it is sure hard to know when this 2o21-2o22 Virginia Tech men’s hoops club will take whomever, seriously?

Other than that… they seem a little more serious/willing away from, home.

As they battened down the hatches for Navy.

And then they most recently played their bonniest game of the year so far.

Does the Examination Fall Finals 24o6o really offer that many distractions? Because this is one mercurial allotment of hardwooders; to begin the much was/is indeed expected Regular Season. I mean like several shades of beantown keltic parquet hard to ratify mercurial at that.

Nonetheless, here we Duke go.
And this highly mercurial team had better game-up.


Our handy-dandy friend the so-called Forum Guide of Graham Houston fame is calling for a deeper into All Championship Conferencing ask back; once Robin round balls into head-to-head, shape.

The annualized year-to-date vitals say that… Duke is only up +2% in shooting percentage margin (better on O, tho’ we/VT are a little better on D); with VeeTee up a nearly nifty +9% in 3-point percentage margin (we/VT are better on both sides, mo’ better tho’ on D), and Duke is up +2 Windex Wipes in rebounding margin (year-to-date). (More so on the D-glass FYI).

The most recent 5-game metrics say that… Duke is now up +4% in shooting percentage margin (all on O, as they nearly tied on D); Duke is also now up +2% in 3-point percentage margin (1% each on O & D), and yet equilibrium was reached in rebounding margin on carroms in the last fortnight of play. (Tied at +2 backboards apiece).

Armchair Pt.Guard’s:

The two teams are tops in the A.c.c. in scoring margin, with Duke at 21.7 and Virginia Tech at 15.1.


VeeTee is up a nutty looking +9 in R&R in the last fortnight+. (Due to a tourney very compressed workweek. Tho’ Duke had 2 testing cancellations prior to that as well… FYI).
Duke is a 1.oo host; whereas  VeeTee is .667 as a guest.
Duke is up +3% at the charity stripe for the year.

The Call

No.28 Net Ranking Virginia Tech @ no.7 Net Ranking Duke:

9:02 PM kickoff!

Duke (1o-1) is the preseason favorite in the A.c.c. and is also the only team in the conference in the current Top 25.

This is about as good of a Duke team that I’ve seen in quite some time,” Virginia Tech coach Mike Young said.

Not totally sure Eye (as a One myself), agry?
(Am 1,000% sure that is *the* very thing Duke needs to head-game, hear).


As fo’ me and my committee of One?

Well, this could very well be one the better Dukie teams in a few seasons, fo’ reasons twofold…

  1. Have you heard? Coach-K’s final year is the word!
    Surely there must be greater send him out right impetus, here?
  2. Allow the Pt.Guard in me to forward this thought to you… this Duke team has a better ‘fit’ to it on breaking-tape. Not so much balance, less juxtaposition. More there is no “i” in Together Everyone Achieves Mo’. (Or, less “me” in team).
  3. K’… so this is now threefold… this Dukie squad seems to work a little bit harder -when they need to- on D. And they rallied from their getting buckeyed to curb-stomp three in a row. And that’s a sign of ‘getting it’. Or wanting some get-back or revanche itself. As they went dorsal-fin and won by: 25, 27, and 41-points. (Recall Jerry ‘logo’ West teaching us in Basketball Camp that great teams beat bad teams, badly. As one of his two detectable signatures of greatness itself). Ditto the factoid they have had consistency in the very same starting line-up and rotation every single game so far. No tinkering-n-puttering around looking for bench chip-ins this time.


The closer:

All of that conspires to tell me that we/VeeTee had better land an even St.Bonnie+++ or A’est +++ game punch here.

As there is a sneaking chance our sharp-shooters could snipe this one from the outside. However, they are not epic athletes, n’est-ce pas?

Or, in other words, we have to gear down and win the battle of the throttle here. As run-n-gun fun-ball vs. Duke skywalkers, gliders and gazelles could get us gunned-down indeed out on the visitor wins 3 in 10 times A.c.c. road.

Now, I’ma not One to say that this Duke team has mo’ Talent(s) than several seemingly grandpaw or twilight fading era squads did.

I am One to say that this one seems a bit mo’ mentally durable, and less brain-box double-dribbled.

Which is to say… Duke is the rightful favorite here…
(…unless we have really been in the tank and sandbagged to begin 2o21?)




(67% confidence interval)
Virginia Tech
=63, Duke=77

please support the VT F.C.A.!




2 Responses You are logged in as Test

  1. Well I logged in just to disagree with you on the backcourt comparison … until I see our backcourt handle pressure and not lose their ability as a group to shoot when pressured I’m not rating our backcourt over anyone the rest of the year. I started the year impressed with our backcourt but the way to nullify them seems pretty clear to me. Good writeup as usual. Thank you

  2. Eye understand.
    I was/am hoping they are meshing into at least their offensive stride– of late, maybe?

    Pressure and so forth may not be their thang… let us see…

    thanks & Merry Christmas!

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