Louisville Cardinals (12-4, 2-1) vs. Virginia Tech Hokies (13-4, 2-2)
Game Time: 4:05 p.m.
Location: KFC Yum Center: Louisville, Ky.
Announcers: Doug Sherman (play-by-play) and Jimmy Dykes (analyst)
Officials: Roger Ayers, Michael Stephens, Bill Covington, Jr.
Favorite: Louisville by 4.5
Probable Starting Lineups:
Series: Louisville leads, 31-8
Last Meeting: Louisville won 94-90 on Feb. 18, 2017 in Louisville
(Ignore the typo in the most recent meeting)
About Virginia Tech:
One of the best offensive teams in the ACC, Virginia Tech leads the nation in field goal percentage (.522) and is 18th in scoring offense (85.8). The Hokies also rank 18th in assists per game (17.8) and 23rd in three-point field goal percentage (.403).
Virginia Tech lost its two leading scorers from last season, but -- in an odd fact -- also returned all five of its starters from that team. The Hokies are led in scoring by junior guard Ahmed Hill, who’s averaging 15.3 ppg. Hill scored 21 points in the team’s most recent game, an 83-75 triumph over Wake Forest. That game came four days after VT beat Pitt 81-67 to improve their ACC record to 2-2. Hill is one of five Virginia Tech players averaging double figures.
—Louisville has won 12 straight games against Virginia Tech, their second longest active winning streak over an opponent and their longest over a power conference foe. U of L has beaten Eastern Kentucky 14 straight times.
—Louisville is second in the nation in blocked shots (7.7 bpg) and ranks 10th in field goal percentage defense (.382) and 54th in scoring defense (66.2).
—Center Anas Mahmoud is fourth in the nation in blocked shots (3.69) and Ray Spalding is 12th in offensive rebounds (3.69).
—Quentin Snider needs just 21 points to become Louisville’s 68th career 1,000-point scorer.
—Virginia Tech made a school-record 17 three-pointers in last year’s loss at Louisville. The 17 three-pointers were the most ever by a visiting team at the KFC Yum Center.
—Louisville and Texas Tech are the only Division-I teams without a single loss to an unranked opponent.
—In conference play, Louisville is holding opponents to just 37.4 percent from the field and just 28.8 percent from beyond the arc.
—Virginia Tech’s Ahmed Hill ranks sixth in the nation in three-point field-goal percentage (49 percent).
—Louisville has a 38-8 record in its conference home games over the last six years (.826), including an 8-1 record last year.
—Louisville is one of just four schools which have won 20 or more games in each of the last 15 seasons (also Kansas, Duke and Gonzaga).
—Virginia Tech’s last win over Louisville came in 1991. The Hokies have dropped 23 of their last 25 meetings against the Cardinals.
—Louisville is 5-2 all-time against Virginia Tech head coach Buzz Williams, including a 3-0 mark against Williams during his time with the Hokies.
—Louisville has a 41-18 record during the month of January over the last eight years, including a 25-9 record in the last five years.
Ken Pomeroy Prediction: Louisville 78, Virginia Tech 73