To say that final season was a curler coaster for first-year coach Mike Younger and the Hokies males’s basketball crew could be a large understatement. The Hokies outperformed their projection to complete 14th within the 15-team ACC, ending tenth. Their scorching begin to the season included a stunning 71-66 upset of No. 3 Michigan State in Maui, and an exhilarating 79-77 double-overtime victory over North Carolina, which left the crew at 14-5 general. From then on, the Hokies would lose 11 of their final 13 video games to shut the season, proper earlier than the pandemic pressured the cancellation of all postseason play.
Earlier than final season, the Hokies had misplaced a lot of their affect gamers, together with Coach Buzz Williams to Texas A&M, from their Candy 16 crew, extensively considered the very best in class historical past. Final yr represented a youth motion and a change in offensive philosophy, as Coach Younger’s rules introduced in far more movement, ball screens and spacing to the playbook. The Hokies performed plenty of freshmen final yr, together with Jalen Cone, Nahiem Alleyne, Hunter Cattoor, Landers Nolley II, Tyrece Radford and John Ojiako, to go together with returning gamers like Wabissa Bede, Isaiah Wilkins, and P.J. Horne.
This season, out go Nolley II, Horne and Wilkins and in come Wofford switch Keve Aluma, and graduate transfers Cartier Diarra, Cordell Pemsl and Justyn Mutts. With them come three freshmen, Joe Bamisile, Darius Maddox and David N’Guessan.
Wanting forward, the 2020-21 season will likely be like no different. The specter of the coronavirus has impacted soccer applications throughout the nation, and it feels inevitable that it’s going to hit basketball applications as nicely.
Coach Younger admitted, “I feel it’s the realist in me that (believes) we’ll all be affected in some unspecified time in the future this season.” He has mentioned that your entire crew has not been on the ground collectively throughout observe, selecting to steadiness distancing with 5-on-5 motion as fastidiously as potential. Younger has credited the energy and conditioning coach, David Jackson, with furthering the bodily growth of the crew’s younger contributors from final season. That can show important in what’s at all times a gauntlet in ACC play.
“It’s going to be a grind,” Coach Younger mentioned. “We all know our league schedule goes to be a bear. There’s a cause individuals think about it the very best basketball league that the nation has to supply.”
The convention schedule is as follows:
Dec. 15: Clemson
Dec. 29 or Dec. 30: Miami
Jan. 2: @ Virginia
Jan. 5 or Jan. 6: @ Louisville
Jan. 10: Notre Dame
Jan. 12 or Jan. 13: Duke
Jan. 17: @ Wake Forest
Jan. 19 or Jan. 20: Boston School
Jan. 23: @ Syracuse
Jan. 26 or Jan. 27: @ Notre Dame
Jan. 30: Virginia
Feb. 2 or Feb. 3: @ Pittsburgh
Feb. 6: @ Miami
Feb. 9 or Feb. 10: Florida State
Feb. 13: Louisville
Feb. 16 or Feb. 17: @ North Carolina
Feb. 20: @ Florida State
Feb. 23 or Feb. 24: Georgia Tech
Feb. 27: Wake Forest
Mar. 5 or Mar. 6: @ N.C. State
CBS Sports initiatives that Virginia Tech will end eleventh within the league this season, which feels awfully low, given the expertise that this crew has from final season and in its newcomers. It could be a stretch to compete for ACC supremacy with the likes of Duke, UNC, UVA, Florida State and Louisville, however there are definitely some winnable stretches all through this schedule. Reasonable expectations for this crew may embrace fringe NCAA Event competition, as this Virginia Tech crew now has the scale and expertise that it lacked a season in the past. Nobody ever is aware of within the ACC, however particularly this season, when these video games are something however surefire, as applications throughout the nation navigate these tough occasions.