No. 19 Virginia Tech (8-1, 2-0) at Louisville (7-1, 2-0)
- Time: 3:30PM PST | 5:30PM CST | 6:30PM EST
- Location: KFC Yum! Center, Louisville, KY
- NAT TV: ACC Network
The Cardinals hold a commanding 35-8 advantage in the series as Louisville has won 16 in a row dating back to the last Virginia Tech win in 1990-91. The two teams first met as members of the old Metro Conference back in 1979-80 and they did not play for a 20-year period as the series picked back up in 2014-15 when the Cards joined the ACC. Louisville won, 68-52, at the KFC Yum! Center last season.
Vs. The Spread
The Hokies check in at 7-13 ATS in their last 20 games as the total has gone OVER in six of their last nine. Virginia Tech is 1-4 ATS in their last five games and 0-6 ATS in their last six roadies. The total has gone OVER in five of the last seven matchups between the Cardinals and the Hokies, but the UNDER has been the play in five of the Cardinals’ last six ACC tilts.
|Teams||Spread||Money Line||Total Points|
|Virginia Tech||+4.5 (-110)||+170||O 131.5 (-115)|
|Louisville||-4.5 (-110)||-195||U 131.5 (-105)|
Last Time Out
Virginia Tech hasn’t played since Dec. 29 when the Hokies outlasted Miami, 80-78, in Blacksburg. Saturday’s game against Virginia was postponed due to contract tracing for COVID-19 within the Cavaliers program. Keve Aluma is playing at a high level for the Hokies as he scored 26 points with six rebounds, four assists and three blocked shots in the win over the Hurricanes.
Louisville won 76-64 at Boston College as point guard Carlik Jones checked in with 15 points and nine boards while David Johnson led with 20 points and eight rebounds. Johnson scored 14 of his points in the first half, including four threes, as the Cardinals built a 37-24 halftime lead and led by as many as 17 in the second half.
Keve Alıma came over from Wofford with coach Mike Young and has made a tremendous impact in leading Virginia Tech in scoring and rebounding (16.0 ppg, 6.7 rpg). His length and athleticism make him impactful as his matchup with Louisville’s Jae’lyn Withers inside will be a key piece in who wins this game. Nahiem Alleyne (11.1 ppg, 1.7 rpg) and Tyrese Radford (10.8 ppg, 5.9 rpg) form a productive backcourt with point guard Wabissa Bede. Tech has been consistent on the offensive end so far this season across the boards. Young would like to see more turnovers forced as opponents only average 12.8 miscues per game and VT only finds 4.6 steals per night.
Louisville Injury Scene
The Cardinals are one of the many hard luck teams in the nation due to COVID as Louisville missed 18 days between Dec. 1 and Dec. 19. Despite injuries to San Francisco transfer Charles Minlend and big man Malik Williams, this team is capable of not only winning the ACC, but making a deep run to the Final Four if it stays healthy and there are no more COVID issues. Minlend is starting to work out again in non-contact drills as he has been shelved since Nov. 5 with a sprained MCL. Williams has been out after foot surgery on Nov. 11 and could return within the next month. Samuell Williamson and Josh Nickleberry are back in the rotation after missing time earlier.
- Graduate transfer Carlik Jones (16.4 ppg, 6.6 rpg) has provided stellar leadership for the young roster as he and David Johnson (14.4 ppg, 6.0 rpg) have taken the lead offensively and are leading the way for the Cardinals’ average of 20 trips to the free throw line per game.
- Dre Davis has come in as a freshman and answered the bell readily due to the Cardinals’ injury woes as he has shot 48.1 percent from the field while averaging 32 minutes per game.
Defensively, is where the Cardinals continue to thrive as they hold opponents to 38.6 percent from the floor to lead the ACC (33rd in the nation) and they are at (+7.2) on the boards. Boston College only made 8-of-33 threes on Saturday, but coach Chris Mack will watch those attempts numbers as Virginia Tech shoots 36.5 percent from three and averages 14.5 3-point attempts per contest.
Winner: Louisville (-4.5) 72, Virginia Tech 66
Over-Under: Take OVER 131.5