Saturday afternoon, it was not the return to ACC play that the Virginia Tech men's basketball team was hoping for. After beating Louisville, 75-68, the Hokies went to Winston-Salem, North Carolina, and were steamrolled by Wake Forest. They fell behind by 20 points at halftime and were never able to recover.
It was a disappointing start to the final 19-game ACC stretch for the Hokies, who now have a full week off before playing a game when they travel to Tallahassee, Florida to play a struggling Florida State team that was beaten at home by Lipscomb Saturday afternoon. Head coach Mike Young will turn things around with his team, but if they have visions of an NCAA Tournament berth in March, they better turn it around quickly.
Virginia Tech's NET ranking takes a huge hit after Wake Forest loss
The last time we checked in before the Holiday break, Virginia Tech's NET rating, ''new RPI” and a determiner in which teams make the NCAA Tournament field at the end of the season, the Hokies were strong at No. 50. That all changed following Saturday's loss.
Virginia Tech's NET raking currently is as this article is being written is No. 62, which ironically enough, is two spots ahead of the Demon Deacons, who rolled over the Hokies Saturday at home. Go figure.
Everything that could have gone wrong, did go wrong against Wake Forest, including the struggling return of junior point Sean Pedulla. The Hokies were never able to get into a good shooting rhythm, they were hurt on the defensive boards, and the Demon Deacons attacked mismatches and frustrated Virginia Tech with a lot of one-and-done shots.
There needs to be significant improvements quickly if the Hokies are going to become a tournament team and that begins this coming Saturday at Florida State.