Strength and conditioning coach David Jackson has done a great job with this team. They are in good shape, and they’ve been able to win games late against Wake Forest and Georgia Tech.
Johnson doesn’t know why teams are shooting so well from three-point range against the Hokies. Tech is putting together good game plans, they played zone against Clemson who was the ACC’s worst shooting team … he doesn’t know why it’s happening. A lot of their three-pointers were contested. There were a couple that were wide open, but for the most part they were contested. Once Clemson got going, they were seeing a big basket.
Tech went zone partially to protect their big men from foul trouble. However, that didn’t work, as three Tech big men fouled out.
If Tech played Clemson again tomorrow, they would probably play zone again. They haven’t shot like that all year, and Johnson isn’t sure if they’ll do it again.
Erick Green is playing at a high level. He is consistent. Clemson was running three guys at him on the perimeter, and Green told Johnson that having to go against three guys like that wore him down a little bit at the end. Tech needs some other guys to step up.
Clemson scored 28 points off offensive rebounds and 50-50 balls. If the Hokies take away half those points, they walk away with the win. Tech’s initial defense has been pretty good. They need to do a better job eliminating second shots.
Christian Beyer has a lot of energy. He gets to the glass a lot. Beyer’s man also does a lot of helping, so Beyer is sometimes clean going to the glass for offensive rebounds.
Marquis Rankin played pretty well on Sunday. He’s an energy guy. He’s not a big offensive threat. He makes a lot of contributions on defense, particularly when Tech is in man-to-man. He’s hitting the open three-pointer. Johnson would like to see him get a little more aggressive offensively.
Jarell Eddie needs to play with confidence. He did that on Sunday. He didn’t settle for three-pointers. He drove to the basket and drew fouls.
Robert Brown started a little slow on Sunday, but then he got that dunk in transition and that got him going.
Miami is playing great basketball. They are experienced, they are talented, they are deep and they are well-coached. Johnson was on Jim Larranaga’s staff at George Mason. They have talked a lot this season, as recently as last Thursday.
St. John’s Military Academy was at the UVA game. 2013 VT signee Trevor Thompson plays for St. John’s. They were in Virginia playing Hargrave and Donte Clark, also a VT signee for 2013.
Johnson has seen all his 2013 signees play live this year. He’s been keeping up with them. They’ve got to stay on top of their basketball game, and their academic game. They will all enroll in July for the second summer session. They will get a month with David Jackson before school starts. He will help them get bigger and stronger so they can better adjust to the speed and physicality of the game.
Tech is using the pick and roll very often. Teams are staying with Green and double teaming him. The other guys on the team play better off the pick and roll, rather than using it.
Tech is still in a good place. They’ve had a couple of tough losses, but they are learning and getting better.
Clemson had a hot night on Sunday. They shot the ball really well. Tech played zone to keep the ball out of the hands of Clemson’s big men, but the Tigers made shots.
The Hokies do have to work on their defense. They have to close out better on the shooter, and they have to defensive rebound. They really need to take more pride in their defense, and take a stand. Limiting second chance opportunities will help.
Eddie is excited about the upcoming week. Miami is a veteran team. They play very well together. Shane Larkin is a great floor general.
When Eddie has headphones on before a game, he’s listening to himself. He’s got his own recording equipment at home where he makes music. His current favorite song is called “Blown Out” and it’s about the hoops team. He mixes everyone’s name into the song.
Eddie doesn’t know why Tech isn’t getting off to good starts. They should just relax more. Maybe they are playing too tight.
The toughest player Eddie ever had to guard is Joe Harris of UVA. He’s a really smart player. He’s really good at reading the defense. It’s tough to chase him off screens, and he’s a tough driver as well. The best defender Eddie has done up against was Harrison Barnes. He was strong, quick and smart.
It’s an honor to play beside Erick Green. He’s bringing it every night. Playing next to Green helps Eddie score, because teams are focusing on Green.
The toughest place to play in the ACC is Boston College. It’s usually an early game, there isn’t a big crowd, it’s always gloomy up there, and it’s really tough to get going. Eddie’s favorite place to play is the Dean Dome.
Monday was Day 2,985 of Virginia Tech’s continuous possession of the Commonwealth Cup.