Virginia Tech Hokies (11-1) vs. Seton Hall Pirates (9-3)
Cancun Governor's Cup
Time: 7:30 p.m. EST
Date: Saturday, Jan. 2, 2009
Place: Poliforum Benito Juarez (5,800), Cancun, Mexico
TV: ESPN2 (DirecTV 209)
Radio: XM 191
Spread: Virginia Tech +4
Resources: SBN Coverage | Gonzo Ball | VT Game Notes | SHU Game Notes
What to Watch: Remarkably, these teams are right next to each other in Ken Pomeroy's rankings coming into today ... the Hokies are No. 42 with a Pythagorean Win Pct of .8896 while Seton Hall is No. 43 at .8892 ... it will be a contrast of styles as Seton Hall plays at one of the fastest paces in the country while the Hokies play at a very slow pace of play ... the Hokies have one of the more efficient defenses in the country while Seton Hall has one of the better offenses ... neither team turns the ball over very often ... Tech will likely be without its star guard Malcolm Delaney, who sprained his left ankle against Longwood on Tuesday ... without Delaney I really don't like our chances in this one unless we get a big game from Jeff Allen and slow this game down to a snails pace ... this game is being held in Cancun, Mexico, as a one-game event called the Cancun Governor's Cup ... next season this will be an eight-team ESPN tournament similar to the ones in Orlando, Fla., and Anaheim, Calif.
Seton Hall: After starting the season 8-0, the Pirates have lost three of their last four games ... their first loss came Dec. 19 at home to the same team that handed Virginia Tech its only loss, Temple ... the Pirates led that game by three at halftime, but watched the Owls shoot nearly 45 percent in the second half to win 71-65 ... the Pirates' last two games have been home conference losses to a pair of unbeaten teams, West Virginia and Syracuse ... the Hall is led by junior guard Jeremy Hazell ... he's averaging 23.3 points per game and scored 38 in their last game against Syracuse ... sophomore forward Herb Pope leads the Pirates in rebounding and is averaging a double-double.
History Lesson: The Hokies are 1-4 all-time against Seton Hall, including 1-2 on neutral courts ... the teams' last two meetings have come after the Hokies moved the ACC and have been played on neutral courts ... the last meeting was in last year's Puerto Rico Tip-Off and was won by Seton Hall, 77-33 ... Virginia Tech's only win over Seton Hall came in the 2006 Aeropostale Classic in Madison Square Garden.
Score Prediction: Seton Hall 75, Virginia Tech 59
Game Thread: Use the comments section of this post to discuss the game. I should be around.