Don't Look Now, But the Hokies Are 4-1 in ACC Play

Justin KundratCorrespondent IJanuary 25, 2009

The Virginia Tech Hokies are on a roll.

Forget the ACC Preseason Poll that had them finishing sixth and the projected record of 18-12 and an 8-8 conference record. Forget the expectations of another failed ACC tournament run which leads to a disappointing NIT bid. Forget the critics who said that they weren't experienced or talent enough to piece together a successful season. Virginia Tech has surpassed all the expectations this season en route to a 14-5 record and 4-1 in the ACC.

Who knew that sophomores Malcolm Delaney and Jeff Allen would combine for 30.8 points and 13.2 rebounds per game? Apparently, they did.

"We’re a couple of baskets away from being one of those top teams,” Delaney said. “We still have the confidence of being one of those top teams."

Virginia Tech is fresh off two of their biggest wins of the season. A stunning road victory over the undefeated Wake Forest Demon Deacons and just recently, a five-point overtime triumph at Miami, a team that was 9-2 at home.

In both of these games, they held their opponents to 16-47 from beyond the arc and forced 27 turnovers. 

And the Hokies, who only have two seniors, seem to have found a rhythm on offense, having won five straight and nine of their last 10.

Their scoring average has increased, and nobody, I mean NOBODY, has been able to stop Malcolm Delaney, who has scored 50 points in the past two games.

But you can't count out senior leader A.D. Vassallo, the Hokies' leading scorer (17.8) and second leading rebounder and passer. Vassallo hit some key shots down the stretch in the win over Miami en route to 29 points and showed no mercy in taking it to the hoop.

Now with a 14-5 record, you must be wondering what kind of games they lost if they managed to knock off the hottest team in the nation, Wake Forest.

Well, aside from an ugly loss to Duke (the top team in the country), their other four losses have totaled to EIGHT points, all of which came down to the final minute. Two buzzer beater losses to Xavier and Wisconsin as well as a one point loss at Georgia and four to Seton Hall.

Yes, those are some tough losses, but not necessarily ugly ones, considering only one was played on their home floor.

Life doesn't get any easier for the Hokies this week though.

A home game versus Clemson and at Boston College, who is looking to get revenge from their previous clash on the 17th. Virginia Tech must not let themselves get overconfident or comfortable with their current record, because it is never too late to fall off the map and lose all hope for an NCAA postseason.

We know how dangerous confident teams can get, but we saw the same exact thing happen with Boston College, who, after beating UNC, lost to Harvard at home and then followed up with three more losses.

In any event, Virginia Tech's turnaround week has proven to be quite an interesting one and maybe now they finally realize what they are capable of.

Don't look now, but what could be the nation's most dangerous sleeper is finally coming alive.

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