The reason VT has not been a high level basketball program is a lack of talent. VT has gone a generation without producing a career NBA player; it should be no surprise that the program does not make routine trips (or even semi-routine) to the NCAA tournament.
The identification, recruitment and development of NBA talent is a major component of being a successful coach at the high levels of college basketball.
If you look at Sweet 16 teams, they consistently have 1 - 2 career NBA players acting as the focal point of the game plan. Last year VT had good players at all 5 spots but did not have a NBA guy in the focal roles of Allen or LeDay to take them to the second weekend.
At Marquette, Buzz's game plan worked with Butler and Crowder being the driving force to take them from a NCAA Tournament participant (much like the 2016-2017 VT team) to a Sweet 16 team.
Is Buzz's offense and metric based evaluation really the reason he was really successful at Marquette or was it a couple of stud players?
Can a more developed NAW to be that driving force to get the program to take a step forward to a top 20 type team?
Is Buzz (or VT) going to be able to consistently identify and land NBA level talent that the blue bloods have not identified? Buzz did not out recruit the likes of UNC-Duke-Kentucky-UCLA for Butler and Crowder.
Can you get away with the liability of not playing a center without NBA production from your guard (Butler) or small forward (Crowder) against ACC teams?