Photo Credit: Liam Sment
The All-Time Virginia Tech Basketball Draft continues as we reach Round 5 with our teams looking to round out their starting lineups and add another star talent or role player that fits just right.
This round sees a Buzz Williams era takeover with three out of the four players that were selected being from Williams' teams. Additionally, another one of VT's stars of the 1990s gets drafted as the Hokies' best eras continue to dominate the draft.
So with that said, here's Round 5 of the All-Time Virginia Tech Basketball Draft.
17. Team Tim: Nickeil Alexander-Walker
If Nickeil Alexander-Walker didn't understandably leave early for the NBA Draft last year, NAW would have had the potential to become an all-time great that likely would have seen his jersey retired. Even with his career being only two seasons, Alexander-Walker is still one of the most talented players to ever put on the orange and maroon inside Cassell Coliseum.
After a solid freshman season, Alexander-Walker took his game to the next level as a sophomore with 16.2 points, 4.1 rebounds, 4.0 assists, and 1.9 steals per game while shooting 47.4% from the field including 37.4% from three-point range plus 77.8% from the free-throw line. His impressive performance helped the Hokies reach higher levels than VT has seen in a long time with their Sweet 16 run while he's shown the potential to become one of the best NBA players VT has ever produced.
Alexander-Walker rounds out an impressive lineup pairing with Dell Curry and Zabian Dowdell in the backcourt with Ace Custis and Chris Smith in the frontcourt.
18. Team Robert: Justin Bibbs
Keeping with the same theme, I decided to complete my starting five by taking another Buzz Williams-led shooter with the 18th pick: Justin Bibbs.
Bibbs was not quite as versatile a player as Hill, but he was one of the best shooters the Hokies have ever seen. In his four year career, Bibbs shot over 42% from behind the arc.
Bibbs did struggle at times with consistency, but on a team where he would likely be the fourth or fifth option, his skill set is exactly what I was looking for.
He will essentially play the same role as Hill, just spotting up on the other end of the three-point line. Adding Bibbs will give my team a perfect amount of spacing.
19. Team David: Shawn Smith
When I was deciding who to take with my fifth pick, I was tempted to take someone with more height. Then I found Smith, hovering on the all-time scoring list at 21st, and decided to go with the NIT Champion.
Another fan favorite, Smith helped lead the Hokies to the 1995 NIT Title, clinching the victory with his game winning free throws. Averaging 16 points and seven rebounds that season, Smith, along with Ace Custis, helped bring a title back to the New River Valley. The following season, he helped lead Tech to the second round of the NCAA Tournament. He’s another fan favorite, someone my dad frequently raved about growing up, and he’ll fit right into my team.
20. Team Grant: Ty Outlaw
This is probably my most surprising pick of the draft. He was the last starter from the 2018-19 team left on the board, and statistics wise, he may not measure up to the other four. However, Outlaw has something that can not be taught: pure shooting ability.
Despite battling multiple injuries and medical issues throughout his career, I believe he will go down as one of the best three point shooters in Virginia Tech history. His 44.6% career mark from beyond the arc probably doesn’t even capture just how good he was from outside. I wouldn’t want anyone else taking those important three pointers for my team.
Coming up tomorrow is the final player round of our draft as we get closer to voting on which is the greatest All-Time Virginia Tech Basketball team.