Eastern Michigan Preview

Who: Virginia Tech Hokies (9-3) vs Eastern Michigan Eagles (5-6)

When: Thursday, December 22 @ 7:00 p.m.

TV: ESPN3 (Quint Kessenich and Glenn Consor)

Where: Cassell Coliseum (9,847), Blacksburg, VA

The Opponent: The Hokies welcome Eastern Michigan to the Cassell on Thursday evening to wrap up their 2011 home slate. The Eagles are coming off a hard-fought 52-48 win at Radford on Tuesday that snapped a five-game losing streak. Under first year head coach Rob Murphy, EMU has battled the likes of Syracuse (lost by 36), Michigan State (lost by 32), and Purdue (lost by 25) this season.

The Eagles rank near 200 in the RPI and their best win came against IUPUI, which sits at #238 in the early season rankings. Here’s a look at their starting lineup:

#ALLMAROONEVERYTHING

Hopefully in New Orleans these will be more than just pixels on a computer screen. Created with Clark Ruhland's uniform builder.

I've been struggling to write this post for the last couple of days. I've been going back-and-forth in my head, trying to put my finger on why we want to see the Hokies decked out head-to-toe in all-maroon. It's undeniable they're sharp as hell. Stare at them for just a couple of seconds and they snarl and bite at you. They clock a 4-4 forty, they got heart. They're as "Virginia Tech" as the Hokie Stone that watches students get stung by the wind as they walk across the drillfield in the winter. They're simple, not overstated, perfect for a team that carries a lunchpail to work.

There's no mention of pants. Of course not, that Tweet ran out of characters, and it's not worth noting we'll wear the same old white pants. That was me being logical. However, my initial conclusion was presuming and irrational: @VT_Football neglected the pants because they want the all-maroon uniforms to be a surprise. That's what I want to believe.

2011 Opponent Recap: Marshall

MU RECORD: 1-2 (1-0 Conference USA) (L 44-7 against Ohio)

VT RECORD: 3-0 (W 26-7 against Arkansas State)

SCORE: (13) VT – 30 MU – 10

GAME SUMMARY: The pregame atmosphere was somber, as both teams took time to remember the 1970 plane crash that killed 75 members of the Marshall football program, including two graduates of Virginia Tech, Rick Tolley and Frank Loria. Loria, a fellow defensive back and teammate of Frank Beamer, was the first All-American at Virginia Tech. Like in their game against West Virginia, Marshall came out of the gates quick, moving the ball effectively against Tech until Jayron Hosley forced a fumble after giving up a 32-yard completion to Aaron Dobson. The defense quickly settled in, holding Marshall to just 251 yards total offense and sacking true freshman quarterback Rakeem Cato 5 times (J.R. Collins had half the team’s sacks).

2011 Opponent Recap: Arkansas State

ARKST RECORD: 1-1 (W 47-3 against Memphis)

VT RECORD: 2-0 (W 17-10 against ECU)

SCORE: (13) VT – 26 ARKST – 7

GAME SUMMARY: It was an ominous start for the Hokies. On the opening kickoff, return man Dyrell Roberts broke his arm and would be lost for the season. Arkansas State forced a Tech punt, then drove 59 yards to take a 7-0 lead (51 of those yards coming on a Taylor Stockemer reception). The ship would be righted, though, and Tech scored the final 26 points of the game, beginning with a safety caused by Kyle Fuller’s pass-rushing skills. Logan Thomas passed for 292 yards, and Danny Coale had his first 100-yard outing of the season (he finished with 128 yards on seven catches). Jayron Hosley added two more interceptions to his resume, bringing his career total to 11.

Hokies Crush Campbell, Host North Florida Tonight

After finishing up semester exams, Tech men's basketball team returned to the court Saturday to face a feisty Campbell squad that had already won at Iowa earlier in the season. The Hokies showed a bit of rust in the first half, shooting just 37 percent from the field, but opened things up with a 15-0 run to start the second half.

Tech went on to shoot 73 percent in the final 20 minutes, and coasted to a 85-60 victory over the Camels. The game showcased the reemergence of senior leaders Victor Davila and Dorenzo Hudson. Davila finished with 15 points, all in the second half, and connected on six of his nine buckets. Hudson tied for the team lead in scoring with 15, snapping a string of six consecutive games in which he failed to reach double digits. The Hokies' other three starters, Erick Green, Jarell Eddie, and Dorian Finney-Smith all reached double figures as well, adding 12, 11, and 10 respectively.

The Hokies forced 15 Campbell turnovers on the afternoon, converting them into 23 points. Tech also did a better job of getting in transition, notching 20 fast break points to the Camels' 8. The win was Tech's third in a row, moving its record to 8-3 while Campbell fell to 8-3 on the season.

ALL OF THE HOOS

12/19/11 - Someone associated with Virginia came to their senses, realized how ridiculous this video was and closed their YouTube account "UVAFillTheHill". I'm going to respect that and won't re-upload it.

"I Pledge" was the most UVA thing ever, now just one month later Virginia has outdone themselves, again, with a Kanye inspired "All of the Hoos" promotional video for their trip to the Chick-fil-A bowl. I don't even have to make fun of it. It stands alone, triumphantly, atop a pile of smug UVa. But I'm going to anyways.

0:00 - 0:35 Here's some typical we're-not-better-than-your-school-at-football-so-we're-going-to-imply-you're-dumb-and-snub-our-noses-at-your-(agri)culture UVa bullshit.

0:36 - 0:48 Where were these two clowns when Darth Vadar was trolling around the galaxy putting down the rebellion? YEAH, homemade, lightsaber looking, over-sized glow sticks. I bet these would be a hit at the next rave party brah. Let's just head bob like we're both E'd out, and jump on the table because don't give a fuck. WE'RE THE CHILLEST BROS EVER.

0:50 - 1:05 WE WILL HAVE ALL OF THE iMOVIE EFFECTS.

1:06 - 1:08 Superman ran for 13 yards against Virginia Tech.

2011 Opponent Recap: East Carolina

ECU RECORD: 0-1 (L 56-37 against University of South Carolina)

VT RECORD: 1-0 (W 66-13 against Appalachian State)

SCORE: (11) VT – 17 ECU – 10

GAME SUMMARY: Frank Beamer’s 200th victory at Virginia Tech was a tilt in which yards were hard to come by. Tech’s Lunch-Pail defense lived up to its reputation, holding ECU’s potent offense to a mere 112 total yards, and sacking Pirate quarterback Dominique Davis five times. ECU’s defense returned the favor; a week after giving up 56 points to the Gamecocks, the Pirates forced two turnovers, held Logan Thomas to under 100 yards passing, and did not allow David Wilson to score a touchdown. The Hokies themselves played a prominent role in their offense struggles, committing twelve penalties. In the second half, the Hokie defense did not allow any ECU drive to gain more than twenty yards, and Josh Oglesby capped 78- and 89-yard drives with rushing touchdowns.

Big Game in the Big Easy: The Bowl Hokies Have Craved

About two weeks ago I was taking a somber walk out of Bank of America stadium, lamenting over how the ACC championship loss was a sad way to end the season. The depression of was short-lived, replaced the next night by the elation of VT getting a bid to the Sugar Bowl.

Big game featuring two big name playcallers in the Big Easy. What more is there to ask for?

Best Bowl Game Scenario

Of course I'd rather have seen the Hokies get revenge against Clemson and earn another ACC title, but VT ended up with the best bowl scenario. A win would have sent VT to Miami for the 4th time in 5 seasons to play against a WVU team that hasn't been impressive. There is the rivalry with WVU, but Orange Bowl fatigue combined with a Wednesday night kickoff against a low ranked opponent would produce a ho-hum response from fans and the national media. Beating the Big East champion doesn't provide any real upside to national reputation either.

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