BLACKSBURG – In its home regular-season finale, No. 22/19 Virginia Tech men’s basketball will play host to [RV/RV] Louisville Wednesday at 7 p.m. ET on ESPN2 at Carilion Clinic Court at Cassell Coliseum.
The Hokies (15-5, 9-4 ACC) and Cardinals (13-5, 8-4) have played each other already once this season, with the Cards coming away with a two-point victory at home, 73-71, on Jan. 6.
Tech on Wednesday will be trying to accomplish something that hasn’t happened since 1991 versus the Cardinals, a win for the Hokies. UofL own the all-time series 36-8, dating back to 1979, and Tech is 3-16 at home versus the Cards.
YOUNG’S TRACK RECORD
This will be Mike Young‘s third game versus UofL (he’s 0-2), but his fifth against Chris Mack (is 1-3). They were 1-1 vs. each other when they were at Wofford and Xavier. Mack won a triple OT thriller the first time in 2010, while Young won 56-55 the last time (2012) before they moved on to new jobs.
ON THE CALL
The matchup will be broadcast on ESPN2, with Dave O’Brien (play-by-play) and Cory Alexander (analyst) on the call, while Jon Laaser (play-by-play) and Mike Burnop (analyst) will broadcast on Virginia Tech Sports Network.
LAST TIME OUT
Turning in its biggest ACC win in school history, Tech cruised to a 38-point win over Wake Forest (6-13, 3-13) on Senior Day Saturday, 84-46. Dishing out 19 assists as a team, Tech was clicking on offense by shooting 53.4 percent from the field and made 13 triples.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Hitting a career-high five 3-pointers on Saturday against Wake Forest, Keve Aluma finished with a game-high 23 points. He went 9 of 11 for the field to shoot 81.8 percent and also had eight rebounds, two blocks and assist and a steal.
Scoring in double figures for the 11th time this season and third straight game, Nahiem Alleyne tallied 13 points versus Wake. The sophomore guard made three 3-pointers and also had five rebounds and tied his career high for assists with five.
• Louisville is coming off a seven-point overtime victory at Duke (11-9, 9-7) this past Saturday in Durham, winning 80-73 behind 25 points from Carlik Jones, who also tallied six rebounds, four assists and two steals in 44 minutes of action.
• Mack enters his third season in Louisville, following a nine-year stretch at Xavier where he went 215-97 and led the Musketeers to eight NCAA Tournament appearances. Last season, Mack guided Louisville to a 24-7 record and a 15-5 ACC mark, which tied UofL for second in the regular season standings.
• The Cardinals are paced by Jones, a Radford transfer who won Big South Player of the Year in 2019-20, and David Johnson, a sophomore guard. Jones leads the team in points (17.6) and assists (4.5) per game and Johnson is second in both categories (12.5 ppg, 3.4 apg).
• Some of the things the Cards do well are rebound and play solid defense, ranking fourth in the ACC in scoring defense (66.2 points allowed per game) and first in 3-point field-goal percentage allowed (30.5%), while sitting second in the league in rebound margin (+5.7).
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