Men’s Basketball Begins Practice Today

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Fresh off an appearance in the NCAA tournament, the 2007-08 Virginia Tech
men’s basketball team begins practice this afternoon at 5pm. The Hokies lost
five seniors off last year’s team, and their lineup will look a lot different
this season. However, thanks to a highly-touted recruiting class, Tech has plenty
of young talent to work with.

It will be very strange watching basketball games that don’t feature Jamon
Gordon, Zabian Dowdell, Coleman Collins, Markus Sailes and Chris Tucker. Here is
Virginia Tech’s current roster for the coming season.

2007-08
Basketball Roster
Number Name Position Height Weight Year
0
Jeff Allen
F 6-7 258 Fr.
1
Terrell Bell
F 6-6 191 Fr.
3
Tom Amalfe
G 6-0 165 Fr.
5
Marcus Travis
G 6-4 205 Sr.
10
Hank Thorns
G 5-9 140 Fr.
13
Deron Washington
F/G 6-7 210 Sr.
15
Terrance Vinson
F 6-8 219 r-So.
21
Lewis Witcher
F 6-9 228 So.
23
Malcolm Delaney
G 6-2 175 Fr.
33
J.T. Thompson
F 6-6 224 Fr.
34
Cheick Diakite
F 6-9 220 Jr.
40
A.D. Vassallo
F/G 6-6 215 Jr.

Note that freshman guard Dorenzo Hudson is not currently listed on the roster.
He did not finish his coursework in time to be admitted for fall semester, but
hopes to join the team in December after the fall semester is complete.

As you can see, the Hokies have a shortage of scholarship guards. In fact,
only two true scholarship guards are currently on the roster. They are freshmen
Hank Thorns and Malcolm Delaney. They will compete for the starting point guard
position. Delaney will also see time at shooting guard.

Because of a lack of guards, A.D. Vassallo and Deron Washington will be
forced into action as part-time guards this year. They are Tech’s most versatile
players, capable of playing on the wing and on the inside, though Seth Greenberg
would likely prefer to keep them both on the wing. Vassallo will likely be
Tech’s starting shooting guard to begin the season.

When Dorenzo Hudson joins the team, he’ll see action immediately, and could
find his way into the starting lineup at some point. He is a true wing guard,
with no point guard skills. Freshman forward Terrell Bell could also see time at
guard, and could serve as an emergency point guard if the need arises. He is a
better ball handler and passer than any other wing forward on the team.

On the inside, freshman forward Jeff Allen is likely to be too good to keep
out of the starting lineup. He is a major recruit for the Hokies. Joining him on
the inside will probably be Cheick Diakite, a very physical player. Although the
Hokies will be young, they are likely to be a better rebounding team this year
with Diakite and Allen on the court together.

Darrion Pellum, a 6-6 G/F from Massanutten Military Academy, did not qualify.
Because the ACC doesn’t admit non-qualifiers, he will never play for Virginia
Tech.

TSL will have more basketball coverage as the season approaches. For now,
here is our projected starting lineup for the beginning of the season.


Projected Starting Lineup

Position

Name

Height

Weight

Year

G

Malcolm Delaney

6-2

175

Fr.

G

A.D. Vassallo

6-6

215

Jr.

F

Deron Washington

6-7

215

Sr.

F

Jeff Allen

6-7

258

Fr.

F

Chieck Diakite

6-9

220

Jr.
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