Georgia Tech Hosts Surprising Virginia at McCamish Pavilion

The Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets, coming off of a game where they simply looked worn down, hopefully have rested up enough to take on the 20th ranked Virginia Cavaliers to open a four-game homestand.

Date: 2/7/14

Game Time:  12 pm EST

Venue: McCamish Pavilion  Atlanta,GA

Series Record: Georgia Tech leads, 39-35

Last Meeting: February 24, 2013 – Virginia defeated Georgia Tech 82-54

Records: Virginia Cavaliers (18-5, 9-1 ACC) Georgia Tech (12-11 , 3-7 ACC)

Current Odds: 

Injuries: GT – Travis Jorgensen – Out For Season (knee), Robert Carter Jr. – questionable (knee), Jason Morris – Out indefinitely (foot), Trae Golden, questionable (groin); Virginia – None

TV: ACC Network , ESPN3

Radio: 106.7 FM

The 18-5 Virginia Cavaliers come into this game with the second best record in the ACC at 9-1. They are ranked 20th in the nation according to the Associated Press poll. It seems the only people that don’t see the Cavaliers’ success as a surprise are the Virginia Cavaliers themselves.

Cavs’ coach Tony Bennett is one of the best young coaches in the entire country. He coaches a very deliberate half-court offensive style and has his team pace the game, though they will make sure to run out on fast breaks when those opportunities present themselves. Virginia, as a team, scores 66.6 ppg and defensively holds opponents to 56 ppg which ranks second in all of Division I Basketball.

Joe Harris is Virginia’s 6-foot-6 Senior guard that provides leadership for the team as well as a sweet shooting stroke. Harris averages 11.3 ppg on 47% shooting from the field and 41.5% shooting from behind the arc. Both of those percentages are team highs. Malcolm Brogdon who is a  6-foot-5 shooting guard from Norcross, GA is the leading scorer for the Cavaliers at 12.3 ppg and also has a nice stroke from the perimeter hitting 40.3% of his treys.

Coach Brian Gregory’s Yellow Jackets may actually be catching kind of a break playing Virginia. Since Virginia is not really an up-tempo team, Georgia Tech may not fatigue as quickly during this game.  The Jackets could be going into this game even more shorthanded than usual, with Trae Golden having groin issues. Robert Carter Jr. is once again listed as questionable, although it would be nice to see his body back on the court, even if only briefly.

The best thing that Tech can do is pound the ball into the paint. Having Golden out may be a blessing in disguise because the Jackets are forced to have to go down low to Kammeon Holsey and Daniel Miller, who averaging 17 points and 11 boards in his last two games and finally is getting the ball enough to be the force that he should be in the paint.

Marques Georges-Hunt needs to find some consistency. After scoring 23 points against Wake Forest, he followed it up with a nine point, 1 of 13 shooting performance versus Clemson. Chris Bolden, Quinton Stephens, and Corey Heyward are going to have to get their offense together as well since the Jackets could possibly be shorthanded.

Georgia Tech looks like a tired team. The injuries (and dismissal of Solomon Poole from the program) have plagued this squad. Quite honestly, there is no telling how good this team would really be if they were able to stay healthy. However, they are going to have to forget about their issues and try to grab a win over a tough, ranked opponent. Tech’s effort has been seen every game.  Despite their problems, they are due for a big payoff and this game might be it.

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Tags: Basketball Daniel Miller Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets Kammeon Holsey Trae Golden

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