The Virginia Tech Hokies suffered a shocking collapse against Notre Dame in the second round of the ACC Tournament that pushed their pre-NCAA Tournament record to 21-11. Now, the Hokies have a long wait till Selection Sunday, but they don’t have to worry about whether they’ll make the Big Dance.
Despite the shocking collapse, the loss didn’t really hurt the Hokies’ projected seeding too much, but did decrease their ceiling from an outside shot at a 6 seed to a slim shot at a 7 seed. With that said, here are some of the latest bracket projections.
- Bracket Matrix: 8
- ESPN: 9
- CBS: 8
- Shelby Mast (of USA Today): 8
- SB Nation: 8
- NBC Sports: 8
- Bleacher Report: 7
As you can see, the growing consensus has the Hokies on the 8 seed line with Joe Lunardi being on the low end seeding Virginia Tech on the 9 seed line and Bleacher Report still having the Hokies as a 7 seed. At this point, VT seems almost locked in to an 8 or 9 seed with most of the teams around them likely to not make a lot of movement in either direction on the S-curve.
The Hokies’ poor non-conference strength of schedule continues to prevent VT from climbing anywhere beyond the 7 or 8 seed line. If VT had a non-conference strength of schedule similar to Miami, we’re likely talking about a 6 or 7 seed for the Hokies with an 8 being the low-end projection. In addition, their RPI ranking of 62 makes it hard to see the Hokies going any higher than an 8 seed even if the metrics like KenPom and BPI have VT ranked much higher.
However, VT is being helped a lot by the fact that they have arguably the best set of four wins in the country based on the RPI. Up until Clemson recently dropped out of the RPI top 10, the Hokies were the only team in the country with four wins over top 10 RPI teams and are still the only team with four wins over teams ranked in the top 12 of the RPI. That may be the biggest reason why this Virginia Tech team should end up with a higher seed than last year’s team despite how similar their resumes are.
With VT appearing likely to end up on the 8 or 9 seed line, the Hokies are likely headed to Pittsburgh, Nashville, or Wichita for their first and second round games with Charlotte set to be taken up by highly-seeded ACC teams including likely #1 overall seed Virginia. The Hokies will have a full week of rest if they end up in Pittsburgh or Wichita, and eight days of rest if they end up in Nashville.
The one thing we do know for sure with the Hokies is that they will be returning to the NCAA Tournament for the second-straight season for only the third time in program history. That’s impressive for a program that was almost as Pitt when Buzz Williams first arrived.