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Previewing Virginia Tech

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Virginia Tech Offense 08-09
Four Factors Percent Nat'l Rank
eFG% 49.0 168
Turnover Rate 19.1 90
Off Reb Rate 35.6 77
FTA/FGA 40.9 52
Virginia Tech Offense 09-10
Four Factors Percent Nat'l Rank
eFG% 46.9 235
Turnover Rate 18.1 49
Off Reb Rate 36.9 38
FTA/FGA 42.1 74









Who could you compare Malcolm Delaney to and what do you think sets him apart?
I think maybe the part of him going to the line so much. It's not often you see a guard shoot that many free throws. It's been something... he did the same thing last year in terms of getting to the line so often.

There are guards that quick who can shoot the ball as well, but his ability to get to the free throw line is a tough thing to deal with. Not only is he getting free shots, but he's also putting a foul on your team and your players... it can be devastating to your team if you're fouling him.

I think he sets himself apart in that area from any guard we've faced in the four years I've been here. I don't know if there have been many guards in a while that goes to the line as much as he does.


In ACC Play eFG% (rk) 2FG% (rk) 3FG% (rk) FTR (rk) FT% (rk)
Virginia Tech 44.0 (12) 43.9 (12) 29.3 (9) 43.8 (1) 75.9 (1)
Delaney 42.3 47.4 22.9 75.0 84.9


There's your key, Fishbulb.  Virginia Tech is the worst shooting team in the ACC and they haven't been grabbing a lot of those misses, yet they rank fifth in offensive efficiency.  They're moderately successful because they don't turn the ball over (#2 in TO%) and because they both earn and make a ton of free throws.  Like his team, Malcolm Delaney hasn't had much luck from the field, but he's been to the line 93 times in eight games, and there's no questioning his effectiveness at the stripe.  Lowe rightly points to this aspect of his game--he's making a living at the line this season, something that's done a lot for his efficiency considering his shortcomings elsewhere. 

If NC State doesn't bail the Hokies out by sending them to line, scoring could be a big challenge for them.  I don't know how realistic a goal that is, though.  State is the second most foul-prone team in the ACC, and besides, who is going to stop Delaney from driving at will?  Going zone might be the only way to slow him down.


Malcolm Delaney (6-3, 190) -- Delaney shoulders an enormous load, his assist and turnover rates are outstanding, and there's all those free throws.  But is a guy shooting 42.3% from the field in conference play worthy of player of the year honors?  It's not clear cut either way.  Rest assured he'll look the part tomorrow, though.

Dorenzo Hudson (6-5, 220) -- Hampered some by turnovers in ACC play but is nonetheless having a fine season after dreadful freshman and sophomore campaigns.  He's supplanted Jeff Allen as the #2 option in league play, and thanks to some newfound three-point accuracy, that's been a good thing for Virginia Tech.  I don't think anybody saw that coming back in October.

Terrell Bell (6-6, 205) -- Bell is just an occasional shooter and not a very good one.  He's been valuable to the Hokies because he has significantly improved his defensive rebounding and shot blocking.  His 21.9 DR% in league play is impressive by any standard, but especially so considering his size and the league in which he plays.

Jeff Allen (6-7, 230) -- After his underrated freshman season, I pegged Allen as a future standout.  He hasn't made The Leap and at this point probably never will.  Playing against a bunch of schools with huge to spare, he's really struggled, and it's hard to see this season as anything other than a step back.  He's making just 40% of his twos and turning the ball over 22.9 percent of the time in ACC play.  Still plenty dangerous.

Victor Davila (6-8, 245) -- A light usage guy, the kind of player I like to think of as purely opportunistic.  Rebounds very well at the offensive end, takes good care of the ball.  Needs to have a bigger impact on the defensive glass, though.


J.T. Thompson (6-6, 210), Erick Green (6-4, 185) will contribute, but beyond them it's anybody's guess.  No one else averages more than six minutes per conference game.


Virginia Tech Defense 08-09
Four Factors Percent Nat'l Rank
eFG% 48.0 120
Turnover Rate 18.4 290
Off Reb Rate 31.7 123
FTA/FGA 33.1 97
Virginia Tech Defense 09-10
Four Factors Percent Nat'l Rank
eFG% 44.9 35
Turnover Rate 24.2 20
Off Reb Rate 30.8 89
FTA/FGA 36.3 148







Turnover margin has been a significant factor in Virginia Tech's success this season.  They're +43 in conference play and forcing opponents to turn it over an incredible 26 percent of the time.  Nobody steals the ball more often than the Hokies.  This is big key number two.  Never mind their impressive full-season numbers--conference foes have made 51.7% of their twos against the Hokies, which makes theirs the second worst interior D in the ACC.  They don't give up a lot of second chances, but they do foul like crazy.  Take care of the ball and this is a defense that definitely can be victimized.  Dear Javi: please don't play like you're high.  Thanks in advance.

The Pomeroy Predictor likes Tech by one.  Maybe we can finally win one of these coin flips.