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Return to the 2006-07 Top 144 Preview

September 13th, 2006

By Joel Welser

Broadcast Basketball


Virginia Tech Hokies

Overall Rank: #59

Conference Rank: #8 ACC


2005-06: 14-16, 4-12, 10th (t)

2005-06 postseason: none


Virginia Tech lost a lot of close games last year.  Instead of 14-16, they easily could have been 20-10; however, at some point those close losses move from the bad luck category to the bad finishing category.  With just about everybody returning, the Hokies have reason to believe they will be better than last year, but they will have to finish games to make the NCAA Tournament.


Whos Out: Forward Wynton Witherspoon wont return to the Hokies after earning ten starts last season.  Thats the main loss and his 6.3 points per game will not be too difficult to replace.  Seldom used Shawn Harris, Bob Ritchie and Allen Calloway have run out of eligibility and have wrapped up their hoops careers in Blacksburg.  Terrance Vinson, who missed most of the 2005-2006 campaign with a back injury, will be sidelined this year as well after undergoing reconstructive surgery on his right knee. 


Whos In: Nigel Munson is a solid point guard and will immediately help out in the backcourt.  Munson has great vision and will develop into a good floor leader.  He has a decent outside shot, but generally looks to find his teammates first.  Seven-footer Robert Krabbendam missed last season with a knee injury.  The Dutchman is a solid shooter and passer for his size and will compete for a starting gig in the paint.  Power forward Lewis Witcher has the potential to become a big scoring threat.  Hes quick, can hit the mid-range jumper and can score on the blocks. 


Who to Watch: Deron Washington and A.D. Vassallo are a dynamic duo on the wings.  Washington, who averaged 10.5 points and 5.0 rebounds as a sophomore, is ready for a breakout season.  The 6-7 slasher will likely see minutes at the four, which should not cause too many problems for the Hokies.  Vassallo showed plenty of promise during his freshman campaign and with a year under his belt the 6-6 wing is ready for a breakout season of his own.


Final Projection: Zabian Dowdell, Jamon Gordon and Markus Sailes are an underappreciated group in the backcourt.  Dowdell is a decent outside shooter and will provide senior leadership in the backcourt.  Gordon is a solid distributor and rebounder and averaged 11.4 points per game last season.  Sailes has the experience to be a great option off of the bench.  Up front Coleman Collins averaged 14.5 points and 6.8 rebounds last year.  Hes more of a power forward than a center, but at 6-9 and 240 pounds, Collins can be effective on both ends of the floor at either the four or five.  If Coach Seth Greenberg can manage to win some of the close games, VT can reach the NCAAs.  If they lose too many of those, the NIT will come calling.


Projected Post-season Tournament: NIT


Projected Starting Five:

Jamon Gordon, Senior, Guard, 11.4 points per game

Zabian Dowdell, Senior, Guard, 15.3 points per game

A.D. Vassallo, Sophomore, Forward, 6.9 points per game

Deron Washington, Junior, Forward, 10.5 points per game

Coleman Collins, Senior, Forward, 14.5 points per game

61 South Carolina Complete List 58 Bucknell

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