Virginia Tech (15-13) at (5) Duke (24-4)
Saturday February 25th, 12:00 p.m. (et)
The Sports Network
By Lucas Gulotta, Associate College Basketball Editor
FACTS & STATS: Site: Cameron Indoor Stadium (9,314) -- Durham, North Carolina. Television: ACC Network. Home Record: VT 11-6, Duke 12-2. Away Record: VT 3-7, Duke 8-1. Neutral Record: VT 1-0, Duke 4-1. Conference Record: VT 4-9, Duke 11-2. Series Record: Duke leads, 38-8. .
GAME NOTES: The fifth-ranked Duke Blue Devils will look to continue their stellar play today as they host the Virginia Tech Hokies in an Atlantic Coast Conference bout at Cameron Indoor Stadium.
Today's contest will be the second game between Virginia Tech and Duke this season and the 47th encounter in history. The Blue Devils extended their series lead to 38-8 with a 75-60 win over Virginia Tech in Blacksburg on Feb. 2nd. Duke dominated the first meeting by shooting better from the field, winning the rebounding battle 33-29, and committing six less turnovers.
The Hokies are 15-13 overall after their 61-59 loss to the Virginia Cavaliers on Tuesday. Head coach Seth Greenberg could not have been pleased as his team turned the ball over in the final seconds when it had an opportunity to even the score. The loss to the Cavaliers put Virginia Tech in ninth place in the ACC standings. The Hokies are a decent shooting team, as they lead the conference in free throw percentage (73.6) and are second in three-point percentage (36.6).
Erick Green had a team-high 19 points in Tech's loss to Virginia on Tuesday. The junior guard's scoring ability has been quite apparent this season, as he leads the team with 15.7 ppg. Dorenzo Hudson is the second leading scorer for the Hokies with 10.8 ppg. Jarell Eddie, Victor Davila, and Dorian-Finney Smith all get into the mix for Tech as well, which gives it a balanced attack. Marquis Rankin was a spark off the bench his last time out as he went 2-of-3 from three-point range on his way to eight points.
Mike Krzyzewski's Blue Devils won their fifth in a row on Thursday as they avenged a January loss with their 74-66 victory over the Florida State Seminoles in Tallahassee. The victory made Duke 24-4 overall and 11-2 in ACC play, which has it tied with North Carolina for first place. The Blue Devils scorched the nets from deep against Florida State, as they knocked down 46.4 percent of their shots from beyond the arc to push towards the victory. Duke has won of the best offenses in the nation, as it is netting 79.3 ppg while allowing opponents to average 68.5 ppg.
Duke has one of the most feared backcourts in the nation as Seth Curry and Austin Rivers are virtually impossible to contain. Rivers has amazing ability to penetrate and finish at the rim, while Curry and Andre Dawkins punish opponents with lights out three-point shooting. Dawkins led the team with 22 points off the bench, while Rivers netted 20 points and dished out four assists in the recent win over Florida State. Ryan Kelly and Mason Plumlee provide frontcourt balance for Duke. Plumlee is near a double-double average as he is scoring 10.9 points and grabbing 9.5 boards per game.
Although the Blue Devils were upset twice at home already this season, they seem to have hit their stride at a proper time. Duke has shown it possesses what it takes to compete with anyone in the nation. Virginia Tech has not been an easy matchup for its ranked opponents this season and was very close to upsetting Florida State last Saturday. Still, the Hokies do not match up well with the Blue Devils at all.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Duke 81, Virginia Tech 62
02/25 10:35:05 ET