Hokies Must Win Against Yellow Jackets
Virginia Tech enters their sixth conference game against Georgia Tech holding a 2-3 record in conference play.
It won’t be an easy task for the Hokies come Wednesday night, but it won’t be a hard task either.
Wait, what… how does that make sense? Let me simplify it for you. Georgia Tech, as good as they have been this year at winning some key games, they’ve been just as bad when it comes to losing games they should win.
For instance, the Yellow Jackets defeated North Carolina, NC State and Clemson but suffered losses to Georgia, Ohio and Penn State — with all due respect to the Jackets, those three losses should be wins.
The same can be said for the Hokies who let a 19-point lead slip away from their hands like a wet bar of soap to Texas A&M and got beat like a drum by NC State on the road. Tech also was down at home to Notre Dame by 19 and even took a late lead, however, mistakes down the stretch ultimately hurt the Hokies.
As for Georgia Tech, they sit 11-7 on the season but hold a .500 record (2-2) in January. Prior to facing Duke on Jan. 4, the Jackets went 5-2 in December with their only losses coming against Tennessee and Georgia. During that span in December, the Jackets defeated VCU by three who is 14-4, Wofford by four and North Carolina A&T by seven.
Neither Wofford or North Carolina A&T are “good wins” for the Jackets. Combined they are 8-27. However, the Jackets did something this season the Hokies didn’t do and that is defeat the Wolfpack on the road.
This game is however a must win for the Hokies and the Zach LeDay knows the importance of playing Georgia Tech.
“This is a game where they are coming here, we need to protect our floor,” LeDay said. “We didn’t protect our home floor against Notre Dame. We need to do it against a good Georgia Tech team. They come in with some good wins in the ACC — it should be a good game.”
The remainder of the Hokies schedule sees them play Georgia Tech, Boston College, Virginia, Miami, Clemson and Wake Forest at home while they will travel to Clemson, Miami, Virginia, North Carolina, Boston College, Louisville and Pittsburgh.
Looking at their conference schedule there are seven to nine wins there. On paper, they should defeat Georgia Tech but it will not be an easy task as the Jackets like to play bigger than what it says they are on paper. Virginia Tech should defeat Boston College and Clemson both times they play. Looking at that alone, that is five wins brining their win total to seven in the ACC.
With five wins looking at the Hokies, the remainder of their schedule is in the air. On paper, they will take a loss to North Carolina, Louisville, Virginia and Miami on the road. If that happens the Hokies will have seven losses in conference play.
The upset wins for the Hokies will come as they will likely happen against two of their bitter rivals in Virginia and Miami when they play in Blacksburg. That alone will have the Hokies sitting at 11-7 in conference play. Even if the Hokies don’t get a win against Miami or Virginia at home they will finish 9-9 in the ACC, that alone, as tough as the ACC is this season will be good enough to see them get a NCAA Tournament bid.
What will hurt the Hokies though from getting a bid in the NCAA Tournament is if they go out at home and completely flop against Georgia Tech, Boston College or Wake Forest. That isn’t taking anything away from those programs, but on paper Virginia Tech should walk away with wins.