The Hokies were probably one of the first teams left out of the tournament when the bracket was unveiled this afternoon. The last at-large teams in were Utah State and UTEP, who were both given No. 12 seeds.
In the end, the Hokies have no one to blame but themselves. They weren't screwed by the committee. The Hokies didn't schedule anyone, didn't beat anyone and didn't play well down the stretch. Yes, Tech got a big road win against Georgia Tech to close the regular season. But they quickly negated it by falling to Miami in its first ACC Tournament game.
If you don't want to be on the bubble, you have to go out and schedule good teams from outside your conference. Virginia Tech tried to pretend to do that by scheduling Penn State and Seton Hall. Those teams weren't very good. At the end of the day, Temple was the best non-conference team we played and that is absolutely sad.
It's unfortunate that the Hokies' ACC schedule ended up being the weakest possible, but we have to live with it. We could have not come out flat against Florida State or we could have come through in overtime against Maryland. Either of those wins would have put the Hokies in the tournament.
You want to be in the NCAA Tournament? Win more. So what if Tech had 23 wins? None of them were against anyone decent. Wake Forest, Georgia Tech and Clemson all went out and either played quality opponents or won big games they had to.
Wake beat Gonzaga, Richmond and Xavier. Georgia Tech beat Duke and Maryland. Clemson beat Butler, Florida State and Maryland. Virginia Tech's best win was over a fellow bubble team, Wake Forest. Look, if this wasn't an historically bad at-large pool, the 23-win Hokies would have known they were going to the NIT two weeks ago.
It comes down to who did you play and who did you beat. Virginia Tech played no one and beat no one.
But hey, at least the NIT games will be at home!