Virginia Tech Hokies Hoops Game Day: Coppin State Pick and Preview

by Carter Hill
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Photo courtesy of Virginia Tech athletics

Virginia Tech is coming off a huge win over the 24th-ranked Clemson Tigers on Tuesday night in Cassell Coliseum.

Mike Young’s Hokies will return to the hardwood tonight to face off against the Coppin State Eagles in a “get right” non-conference match-up. 

Game Day Information

When: Saturday, Dec. 19, 5:30 p.m. ET

Where: Cassell Coliseum, Blacksburg, VA

TV: Raycom Sports Network

PXP: Evan Lepler 

Analyst: Dan Bonner 

Series History: Virginia Tech Leads 3-0

Last Meeting: Virginia Tech Won 74-42 on Nov. 8, 2019

Line: Virginia Tech -26

Avoid An Easter Egg

It’s Christmas time, so we certainly don’t want to see any Easter eggs. Virginia Tech won’t want to see that either, after it may have secured a return to the top 25 with a conference-opening 66-60 win over the Tigers. 

The Hokies dropped out of the polls early this week after falling in an ugly one to Penn State while ranked 15th in the nation. Their response however, was not so ugly.

Virginia Tech had four scorers in double figures against Clemson – who came in undefeated – and were led by Tyrece Radford with 15 points. He was closely followed behind by Keve Aluma (13), Naheim Alleyne (13), and Hunter Cattoor (11). 

The Hokies went 25-for-31 from the free throw line and outrebounded the Tigers, 33-25 in the victory. 

Now, Virginia Tech is tasked with taking care of business once again. It’ll have to do so against a pesky Coppin State team. 

Trying To Take Flight

The last time the Coppin State Eagles came into Blacksburg, they went down big 74-42 in what was Mike Young’s home debut as Virginia Tech’s head coach. They likely won’t avenge that loss this time, but there are some pieces to make this one competitive. 

Anthony Tarke is the guy to watch out for if you’re the Hokies. The transfer from UTEP is averaging 17.3 points per game, while clipping an average of 7.8 rebounds per contest.

Tarke also leads the Eagles in steals, assists, and blocks. So circle his name. DeJuan Clayton can also fire the rock, as he’s averaging 13.7 points per game during his redshirt senior campaign. 

Coppin State comes in 1-5, and was picked fourth out of six teams in the always cannibalistic MEAC North division. It hung around with Duke though, only losing by a score of 81-71. But the Eagles have since dropped games to George Washington, Drexel, Georgetown, and UMBC — all in blowout fashion. 

The Eagles are coached by Baltimore native and former Washington Wizards’ star Juan Dixon, who is yet to compile a winning record in the Charm City. He can coach ball though, and his guys will give it their best shot in this one against a big-time opponent. 

The Pick

Ultimately though, speed, strength, and athleticism will win the ball game. 

We’ll give the edge to the ACC team in this one, which happens to be the Hokies. Virginia Tech will keep rolling with a smooth win over Coppin State. 

Prediction: Virginia Tech 90, Coppin State 64

Up Next

Before heading home for winter break, the Hokies will match up with Longwood on Monday night for one more pre-Christmas contest.

That game will be at 8 p.m. ET and will appear on the ACC Network.

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