Virginia Tech opens play in the ACC Tournament on Wednesday at 3:30 p.m. against Miami, the only team that the Hokies beat in the conference slate this season.
The Hokies hope to make it three in a row over Miami.
After a 2-16 regular season in the ACC you wouldn't think there'd be much confidence among the Virginia Tech Hokies. But their opponent, the Miami Hurricanes, is the only team the Hokies beat in the ACC this year.
“Yeah we're prepared for them. They're going to come out hard and with fire because we won the last two games against them,” Virginia Tech’s Joey Van Zegren said. “We won the last two games against them but we're definitely going to be prepared for them.”
Miami coach Jim Larranaga said: “They won. That's it. In both games we didn't play very well. We didn't shoot the ball very well, they defended us well and the whole key is you have to put the ball in the basket. We were 7-for-34 at their place from three.”
The winner of Wednesday's contest will advance to Thursday where they'll take on N.C. State.
This year’s tournament is the first-ever 15-team tournament.
Since the last time the conference tournament was here in Greensboro last year, a lot has changed in the ACC. Particularly in the in the teams playing. But there's also been a number of other changes in coaches and players that have been in the league for a number of years when the 2014 ACC tournament tips off Wednesday.
“It's so much longer. Back then we had eight teams. Now we've got almost twice that many. And when I came into the league there were three fewer teams,” Larranaga said. “It's a great league, great teams, great coaching, I find it very humorous in the transformation in just the short time I've been in the league. Last year we won the conference championship and we probably faced a total of 10 minutes of zone against our opponents in our 18 conference games. This year just about every opponent has zoned us.
Another current head coach that has ACC experience is Notre Dame's Mike Brey, who spent a number of years on Mike Krzyzewski's staff at Duke.
“The fan bases are the same. They're good. It was neat to hear southern accents more regularly than Jersey, Boston and New England accents which I used to hear in the Big East,” Brey said. “I can translate the southern accent better than the New Jersey accent given that I'm a Maryland native and lived in North Carolina eight years. There's some nostalgia for me but I think the biggest thing is for our university and our basketball program to play in this historic event. I tried educating our players the other day of how historic of a tradition this is.”