The Hokies knew their opponents for the conference portion of season, but they did not know when those games would be played. However, the ACC released the entire slate of games for each team in the conference this afternoon, including Virginia Tech’s.
The ACC has not been an easy conference to play in for the last few years, and this year the challenge may be even more difficult. The Hokies play Duke, UVA, Miami, and Louisville twice, but for the second time in three years the Commonwealth Clash is scheduled while students are on winter break. They will also play Duke twice within 12 days, and the Florida State and the UNC games are scheduled just two days apart. The Hokies have not beaten UNC since the 2009-10 season, but the Tar Heels come to Blacksburg this year after last year’s blowout in Chapel Hill.
Virginia Tech also has to play three straight road games closer to the end of the regular season, having to travel from UVA to Duke to an improved Georgia Tech side all within a week.
In short, the Hokies will have plenty of opportunities to make their case for back-to-back tournament appearances this season. They certainly have the talent to do so. But if Virginia Tech finds themselves on the short end of a couple of tough games in college basketball’s premier conference, it might be tough to sneak into the field in March.