Creampuffs, my …

Cut Seth Greenberg some slack on early-season schedule

Column by Chris Graham
freepress2@ntelos.net

I get tired of hearing how if you’re, say, Virginia Tech, you’d better put together a marquee nonconference schedule, because if you don’t, you know, you’re committing some grand sin.

Case in point: an article by Roanoke Times Virginia Tech beat writer Mark Berman on Sunday that took Seth Greenberg to the woodshed for having a strength of schedule rating in the 250 range.

“The Hokies are off to a 10-1 start thanks to a soft schedule,” Berman wrote in the piece, which goes on to blast Greenberg for scheduling a home-and-home series with Georgia instead of getting together with a tougher SEC foe and doing the same with Penn State instead of getting another Big 10 team.

Greenberg tried to answer the criticism. “We tried to get in the Jimmy V, we couldn’t get in,” Greenberg said. “Syracuse isn’t playing me home-and-home. Georgetown’s not playing me home-and-home. Villanova’s not playing me home-and-home. I tried to play West Virginia in Washington, D.C.”

The bigger thing, if you ask me, and Greenberg knows this better than me – Virginia Tech plays in the friggin’ ACC. So, yeah, it’s wonderful that if you’re Gonzaga, you go out and put together a Murderer’s Row nonconference schedule, because once conference play starts, it’s Sisters of the Weak up ’til March Madness.

“We don’t have to impress anybody,” guard Malcolm Delaney was quoted in the column. “We’ve got a top league. We don’t care about this. People can say whatever they want about our schedule – we’re playing good basketball. If you want to say, Well, we’re not playing good teams, you can say that. We don’t really care. We’re getting better as a team.”

And the Hokies are 10-1 heading into games this week with Longwood (2-9, #300 in the Jerry Palm collegerpi.com rankings) and Seton Hall (9-2, #75 in the collegerpi.com rendering). And then – it’s ACC time.

“We’ve got 16 chances to impress the NCAA committee – plus Seton Hall,” Greenberg said. “So it’s not like we don’t have opportunities to impress people.”

  





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