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Thread: VT vs. MSU

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    VT vs. MSU

    #1 MSU struggled a bit against Columbia and Portland. Any chance we hold this game close? Regardless, this will be a good test for our young team.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hOkies3737 View Post
    #1 MSU struggled a bit against Columbia and Portland. Any chance we hold this game close? Regardless, this will be a good test for our young team.
    I think they experience in the backcourt and size in the frontcourt are going to be a little too much for VT. I think it'll fall between a 12-18pt loss. I'll really only be disappointed if the team gives up and tanks it to a 24+pt loss. It's such a young team, it'll be their first experience of big travel and a big time game for a lot of them, which will be tough to overcome.

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    We need to be very aggressive and draw fouls on their guards. Keith Appling is probably the best PG in the country, but he's small so if Wilson can take it at him and get him in foul trouble that will take out a major facilitator of MSU's offense. However, all those shots VMI/WVU missed MSU will make, and we have no answer for Adrien Payne down low, that guy will abuse us.

    I'm hoping to see us run with them and get some highlight reel alley-oops and just have fun. I think we'll lose by 15+ but this is very valuable experience for the freshmen to see what conference play will be like.

    Quote Originally Posted by hoosnowahokie View Post
    I think they experience in the backcourt and size in the frontcourt are going to be a little too much for VT. I think it'll fall between a 12-18pt loss. I'll really only be disappointed if the team gives up and tanks it to a 24+pt loss. It's such a young team, it'll be their first experience of big travel and a big time game for a lot of them, which will be tough to overcome.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by hOkies3737 View Post
    #1 MSU struggled a bit against Columbia and Portland. Any chance we hold this game close? Regardless, this will be a good test for our young team.
    Columbia is a somewhat verteran team (5 JRs and 5 SOs) and only has 2 big men (1 6'11" 258lbs and 1 6'10" 205lbs). Columbia lost by 9 points playing a Princeton-style game (low scoring). Also, it probably helped Columbia that Michigan St played Kentucky 3 days earlier and the players were still recovering/celebrating the epic #1 vs. #2 battle.

    Portland is a verteran team (mostly JRs and SRs) and has 3 big men; 2 are 6'10" and 1 is 6'11" (all weigh between 235lbs and 250lbs). Portland still lost by 15 points.

    Given that Michigan St has 3 days to prepare for VT, I do believe their players will be "focused." If VT tries to keep it up tempo, then I believe the Spartans will win by at least 15-20 points because VT does not have enough "big men" to endure that kind of game. If VT wants to keep the loss to less than 15 points, then VT may be forced to play a slow and boring game (not take any shot until there is under 5 seconds to go on the shot clock). The alternative is that VT makes over 60% of its 3-pointers and that Michigan State players have overlooked VT because they are focused on playing in the championship game the following night.

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    Quote Originally Posted by VTHokie2000 View Post
    Columbia is a somewhat verteran team (5 JRs and 5 SOs) and only has 2 big men (1 6'11" 258lbs and 1 6'10" 205lbs). Columbia lost by 9 points playing a Princeton-style game (low scoring). Also, it probably helped Columbia that Michigan St played Kentucky 3 days earlier and the players were still recovering/celebrating the epic #1 vs. #2 battle.

    Portland is a verteran team (mostly JRs and SRs) and has 3 big men; 2 are 6'10" and 1 is 6'11" (all weigh between 235lbs and 250lbs). Portland still lost by 15 points.

    Given that Michigan St has 3 days to prepare for VT, I do believe their players will be "focused." If VT tries to keep it up tempo, then I believe the Spartans will win by at least 15-20 points because VT does not have enough "big men" to endure that kind of game. If VT wants to keep the loss to less than 15 points, then VT may be forced to play a slow and boring game (not take any shot until there is under 5 seconds to go on the shot clock). The alternative is that VT makes over 60% of its 3-pointers and that Michigan State players have overlooked VT because they are focused on playing in the championship game the following night.
    Good Luck to our young team. Looking forward to seeing them play on TV.

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    Quote Originally Posted by VTHokie2000 View Post
    If VT tries to keep it up tempo, then I believe the Spartans will win by at least 15-20 points because VT does not have enough "big men" to endure that kind of game. If VT wants to keep the loss to less than 15 points, then VT may be forced to play a slow and boring game (not take any shot until there is under 5 seconds to go on the shot clock). The alternative is that VT makes over 60% of its 3-pointers and that Michigan State players have overlooked VT because they are focused on playing in the championship game the following night.
    seems to me we have better big men depth than they do

    I'd be more worried about wearing Wilson out than the big men

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Pylons View Post
    seems to me we have better big men depth than they do

    I'd be more worried about wearing Wilson out than the big men
    Please define what you mean by "better" because it is a subjective term and we could have completely different definitions. The reason I focused on the big men is because Michigan St have more depth of players that can play the 4 or 5 position and are physically built to play those positions.

    Michigan St
    #2 Alex Gauna 6'9 250lbs
    #5 Adreian Payne 6'10 245lbs
    #10 Matt Costello 6'9 240lbs
    #30 Kenny Kaminiski 6'8 225lb *can also play the 3 position
    #34 Gavin Schilling 6'9 240lbs
    #41 Colby Wollenman 6'7 225lbs *can also play the 3 position

    Virginia Tech
    #2 Joey van Zegeren 6'10 225lbs
    #4 Cadarian Raines 6'9 238lbs
    #14 Greg Donlon 6'8 230lbs *not played this season
    #21 Maurice Kirby 6'9 235lbs *not played this season
    #32 Trevor Thompson 6'11 210lbs
    #33 Marshall Wood 6'8 230lbs
    #42 CJ Barksdale 6'8 235lbs

    I limited the list to players who were either taller than 6'7 or weighed more than 225lbs. Michigan State does have a 6'6 player who weighs 225lbs that typically plays the 3 position, but has a Charles Barkley-like built that could be used in the 4 position (if required). Also, both teams have 6'7 players that weigh less than 220lbs and typically play the 3 position. Tom Izzo teams traditionally likes to be phyiscal and muscle an opponent in the low post. Given the new NCAA foul rules, I would expect Michigan St to try to establish the low post early in the game. The match-up to watch is whether the VT big men be able to play physical with a bigger opponent and remain out of foul trouble. For example Thompson is giving up 30lbs to Payne, which may make it difficult to keep Payne from executing a drop-step move. One a player does a drop-step then it will typically lead to either an easy basket or a foul. I am not sure van Zegeren would fair much better since he can still be muscled around. Barksdale or Raines will probably end up on Payne for the size, but that exposes another risk. Both players are giving 1-2" to Payne which may not seem like a lot, but it could be enough that makes it difficult for them to stop a baby hook shot.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hoosnowahokie View Post
    I think it'll fall between a 12-18pt loss.
    sign me up!

    seriously! if we can play well enough to keep this close, and, like someone else said, throw in some highlight reel plays for fun, i will be a very happy fan tonight. if we lose by 12-18, i'm guessing that would mean we had it ~10 pts with 2-4 minutes to go before fouls bump up the margin late. hard not to be happy with that at this stage in the team's growth.

    i fear the reality will be one of the following though:

    1. 25+ pt blowout where we just couldn't hang
    2. a last minute heart breaker where we play out of our minds but can't quite do enough late

    #2 might kill me. god knows some of the big wins and really tough, close losses over the past 8 years have taken their toll on my life expectancy....
    "This no more resembles that than something unlike something else resembles that." - Loosely quoting PHNC

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    Quote Originally Posted by VTHokie2000 View Post
    Please define what you mean by "better" because it is a subjective term and we could have completely different definitions. The reason I focused on the big men is because Michigan St have more depth of players that can play the 4 or 5 position and are physically built to play those positions.

    Michigan St
    #2 Alex Gauna 6'9 250lbs
    #5 Adreian Payne 6'10 245lbs
    #10 Matt Costello 6'9 240lbs
    #30 Kenny Kaminiski 6'8 225lb *can also play the 3 position
    #34 Gavin Schilling 6'9 240lbs
    #41 Colby Wollenman 6'7 225lbs *can also play the 3 position
    Wollenman, Kaminski, and Schilling have played 1, 2, and 5.5 mpg and the first 2 only played in 1 game. Even Gauna and Costello have only played 9.8 and 12mpg. Payne has more minutes than the other 5 combined. That doesn't seem "deep" to me.

    We have Raines, Barksdale, Thompson, JVZ, and Wood all having played significant minutes.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Pylons View Post
    Wollenman, Kaminski, and Schilling have played 1, 2, and 5.5 mpg and the first 2 only played in 1 game. Even Gauna and Costello have only played 9.8 and 12mpg. Payne has more minutes than the other 5 combined. That doesn't seem "deep" to me.

    We have Raines, Barksdale, Thompson, JVZ, and Wood all having played significant minutes.
    Valid point. Although I am not sure how reliable minute average of 4 games is an accurate predictor for what Izzo will do tonight. For example, Gauna played 13 mins in the Kentucky game and only 5 mins in the Portland game. Costello played 12 mins in the Kentucky game. So it is possible you could see Gauna and Costello end up playing above their average especially if Izzo decides to go with "bigger" lineups throughout the game. Regardless, VT does not have anyone that can shut Payne down; only contain him (at best). Do you think Coach Johnson is going into the game willing to trade fouls in order to better contain Payne?

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