(At VaTech; Sunday, February 19th; 4:00 P.M.; ESPN2)
Virginia Tech is currently in third place in the ACC with a 11-4 conference record. With the best center in the ACC, six-six senior Elizabeth Kitley; with the best point guard in the ACC, five-six junior Georgia Amoore; with the former best player for B.C. on the roster, five-eleven graduate student Taylor Soule; and with the second-best arc shooter in the conference, six-feet senior Cayla King; VaTech surprisingly started in conference 3 and 3.
After losing at Duke on January 26th, Tech ran off 5 straight wins which included beating State in Raleigh, FSU at home and Duke at Home. The FSU and Duke wins were VaTech crushes.
VaTech won their first game in Raleigh in the most recent Play4Kay game 73-61. VaTech has only two other wins against State; one during the ACC Tournament in 2015 and one in Blacksburg in 2021. Otherwise, State has dominated play against VaTech winning 27 of the 30 contests.
With the Tech players mentioned above, the starting five for Tech is rounded out by five-nine senior Kayana Traylor. VaTech tends to play the five starters plus D'asia Gregg who has logged 23.7 mpg in conference play. VaTech for this season added to its roster Maryland's Ashley Owusu, considered to be one of the top players in collegiate basketball, but she due to an injury has played in only eight conference games logging 10.4 mpg.
State, currently in eight place in the conference, is 18-8 overall; 8-7 in conference; has a Live RPI of 22; has a NET of 17; has an ELO of 28; and has a SOS of 4. State's quad one NET record is 1 and their RPI quad 1 record is 8-6. State has one NET quad 3 loss and that is the home loss to B.C. State's best win was at NET 7 Iowa. Data from warrennolan.
For VaTech, their NET is 12; their Live RPI is 12; their ELO is 7 and their SOS is 42. Tech's NET quad 1 record is 7-4 and their RPI quad 1 record is 7-3. Tech's best win was a home win over NET 9 Duke. Also, from warrennolan.
RPI predicts VaTech to down State 70-62 with a 76% win-probability. Honestly with the way Tech beat 21-7 FSU and 22-4 Duke, State losing by only 8 would be a moral victory; however, we know that State is not looking for anything other than outright victory.
What does Lobo predict? Lobo predicts VaTech to defeat State 66.5 to 63.2 with a 61.5% win-probability. Again, State losing by just over 3 points at VaTech would be a moral victory; however, again, we know that State is not looking for anything other than outright victory.
Tech is probably the best team in the ACC right now. They should be.
Just hoping for Aziaha James, who always brings the energy, to shoot on the road like she does at home and against UNC Thursday night. Just hoping for Jada Boyd and Jakia Brown Turner to continue what they started against UNC Thursday night-bring the intensity-lead the team. Finally, hoping for Mimi Collins to play like she did at Georgia and like she did against UNC Thursday night.
This is interesting:
The chaos of the ACC race (six teams separated by two games) extends beyond the conference. Seven ACC teams among the top 24 teams on the S-curve -- three on the 3-seed line and three on the 6-seed line -- created myriad bracketing complications. Adjustments had to be made to keep those teams from potentially meeting in the second round of the NCAA tournament. The rules of bracketing allow teams to be moved one seed line to avoid such matchups and to maintain bracketing integrity or accommodate more viable travel. It's not ideal. Keeping the true seeds of teams is a goal of the committee, but sometimes seed adjustments are necessary. That's what happened this week thanks to the logjam of ACC teams. NC State was shifted from a No. 6 seed to a No. 7 seed, and Florida State from No. 6 seed to a No. 5 seed to keep the second round from looking like the ACC tournament quarterfinals.
Crème does not have an ACC team higher than a 3 seed!