The Virginia Tech Hokies were beat by 20+ points in their first two of three road games, but will look to bounce back today to build some momentum up with Duke looming on Wednesday. The Hokies are big underdogs, but Buzz Williams will have his team ready to play.
However, the Hokies are facing a good NC State team that is right on the NCAA Tournament bubble. Mark Gottfried has turned what was expected to be a borderline NIT team into a team that is on the inside of the NCAA Tournament for now.
Trevor Lacey is going to be a tough player for the Hokies to contain as he is a very good scorer that is averaging 16.5 points per game. The Hokies have the players to somewhat contain Lacey, but NC State will make sure he gets plenty of shots.
Adam Smith has been Virginia Tech's most consistent scorer, and has the shooting talent to be a nightmare. Smith is a very good three-point shooter, and has the talent to go off for 20+ points anu night. If Smith gets hot, the Hokies will have a great chance of pulling off the upset.
NC State is one of the top 40 rebounding teams in the country, bit they only one player barely averaging over 5 rebounds per game. The Hokies must improve on the glass of they are to win this game.
The one player for the Hokies who could be an x-factor is Christian Beyer. Beyer is probably not the Hokies' most talented big man, but he is their hardest working big man. Beyer is a guy who could go off for 10 points and 7 or 8 rebounds which would be a significant boost for the Hokies.
This is a tough matchup for the Hokies, but they will not be beat as badly as they have been in their first two games. However, NC State is the better team and will take down the Hokies in a somewhat-competitive game.
Prediction: NC State 74, Virginia Tech 61