After a longer than expected break (see UVA’s COVID result & game postponement), the Hokies are back in action Wednesday evening. The win over Miami last week has helped lift Virginia Tech five spots in the AP rankings to 19th place. Tech and Clemson are tied for 19th place and are the top-ranked ACC schools at the moment, but let’s not forget the Hokies beat Clemson earlier this season.
Only three schools are off to a 2-0 start in the ACC so far and the trip to Louisville will see two of them face off (NC State is the third). Last season the Hokies lost at Louisville by 16 points in their only meeting during 2019-20. In fact, VT hasn’t beaten the Cardinals since the 1990-91 season. Can the Hokies break the 30 year streak?
Wednesday, January 6th, 2021
Matchup: Virginia Tech (8-1 | 2-0) vs. Louisville (7-1 | 2-0)
Venue: KFC Yum! Arena (seriously) (Louisville, KY)
Time: 6:30 pm ET
TV: ACC Network
Radio: TuneIn Radio
Live stats: HokieSports
ESPN Favorite: 55.6% for the Cardinals.
All-time series: 8-35 in favor of Louisville.
Scoring: Aluma (VT - 16.0) & Jones (Louisville - 16.4)
Rebounds: Aluma (VT - 6.7) & Withers (Louisville- 6.9)
Assists: Bede (VT - 3.1) & Jones (Louisville - 5.1)
Louisville opened their season with four straight non-conference wins before they had two games in a row canceled due to COVID. They returned to action with a huge 37 point loss against Wisconsin in the ACC / Big Ten Challenge. The Cardinals rebounded with two ACC wins surrounding a three-point victory over their rivals Kentucky (who are 1-6 at the moment). Overall the season sounds quite similar to Tech’s season, right?
Fans may already be familiar with Louisville’s leader in points and assists - Carlik Jones. He transferred to the ACC school from Radford where he was the Big South Player of the Year last season. Jones has faced the Hokies once, his freshman season at Radford, when he scored nine points in a 95-68 win for Virginia Tech. However, Tech will be facing a much different player this time around.
Perhaps of equal concern Wednesday evening, Mike Young and Hokies fans will be paying attention to the free-throw line. Last time out Tech went 13 for 21 against Miami as the Hurricanes closed the deficit late and misses from the charity stripe nearly cost Tech what should have been an easy second half. Time to test the Hokies against one of the better schools in the conference and see if VT can get their first win over Louisville in three decades years.