Editor's Note: Beau brings up a few good points. What's the state of the running game? And where is it going? Is/will there be a feature back? A couple of quick stats, Tech is tied 74th nationally in rushing yards per game (141.50). No Hokie has netted more than 100 yards this season (Holmes is the leader with 94, Coleman second with 54, Marcus Davis third with 48). --Joe
Well, I am sure there are some frustrated Hokies out there who are stopping by looking for answers as to why Virginia Tech looked so pedestrian against a bad, but game, Austin Peay team on Saturday. I think before we dive deep into analysis of the performance, we must understand what this game meant to the Hokie coaching staff.
A long review of the film told me that the coaching staff treated this game like a scrimmage. The Hokies ran a very vanilla offensive set with limited offensive line movement, counter-motion, and almost no read option plays. The defense played long stretches of man to man coverage, with very basic slants and linebacker fills up front. If I were a betting man, the staff goals were:
Playing a football game on four days rest is absurd. The players are not rested, and there's not an adequate amount of time to install a game plan. It's absolutely asinine how the ACC handles the Labor Day games. The schedule comes out some time in January or February, and ... surprise, you're kicking off the season on Monday night! I'm sure the athletic directors know in advance, but how far? This last go around, I think the Techmo Bowl matchup leaked a month or two before the schedule was announced. So around then maybe? I don't know. However, I do know that it's silly that these games aren't scheduled two or three years down the road. Everyone knows the conference schedule for an entire cycle, nothing is a surprise there, so why do the Monday night game have to be? The conference needs to do its commissioners a favor and give them more time, on the order of years, to work around the inconvenience. I realize that the ACC is about as progressive as North Korea, so none of that will actually happen, and maybe there's a good reason that I'm unaware of for why it doesn't. The blame doesn't lye completely with the ACC, ultimately Tech is in charge of its non-conference schedule and it should have been on a bye today. Austin Peay is as favorable a I-AA matchup as there is out there, and it took more than a half for Tech to put them away. Given a full week to rest and prepare, and that's not the case. /end rant
The Box kicks off Pitt week a little early. I have a gut reactions post from Peay typed on my laptop, but I'm still without power, so this is up first.
Remember when Pitt had the worst teams ever and they'd still beat us? That sucked.
The last time Virginia Tech opened the season on a Monday night and played a I-AA team the following Saturday, the Hokies lost to JMU. My apologies for that reminder, but that won't happen again. Austin Peay is not a I-AA powerhouse, moreover they're not a competitive I-AA team. In their preseason poll, the Ohio Valley's coaches and sports information directors predicted the Govs would finish last in the conference. Last week Peay lost to Western Kentucky 10-49. In 2011 they lost at Cincinnati 10-72, and at Memphis (who went 2-10 themselves) 6-27. Wisconsin hung 70 on them in 2010. Peay's won just five of 22 games over the last two seasons.
Austin Peay threw for just 11 yards against WKU (164 total). Peay's QB Jake Ryan has started 25 games and over his career he's completed 292 of 602 passes for 3,202 yards 20 TDs and 37 (!!!) picks.
Peay's trying to replace three veteran starters on the offensive line. The group combined to return 38 career starts, but struggled to protect Jake Ryan against WKU.
Peay runs a 4-2-5 defense.
We're back in Blacksburg for a breakdown of Virginia Tech's 20-17 OT win over Gah _ech. The Hokies had some troubles on offense, but there were some bright spots on defense that keyed the W and a stranglehold on the Coastal.
Brian and I also look forward to Saturday's game with Austin Peay with a little background on why it sounds like every APSU fan chants something you hear from a group of girls trying to avoid an awkward conversation at TOTS.
That and more on Episode two of Adventures on Whiskey Lane.
Leave us comments, suggestions and anything we can do to make it better, because we may just give you a shoutout in the coming weeks.
MP3 Download link: http://thekeyplay.podomatic.com/enclosure/2012-09-05T21_55_59-07_00.mp3
After a breakout 2011 season, Coles was expected to be the top returning receiver for the Hokies in 2012. However, offseason surgery on his PCL slowed him down as he missed spring practice and most of August camp. Re-injuring his knee Monday night against Georgia Tech forced him to shelf the season.
The emergence of Corey Fuller and Demitri Knowles softens the blow a bit, but the loss of a talented player at an already thin position can't be downplayed. Look for true freshman Joshua Stanford to get a lot of work against Austin Peay.
Here's the official release from HokieSports.com.
Virginia Tech senior wide receiver D.J. Coles will undergo an MRI on his knee and will miss the remainder of the 2012 season, as announced Thursday by head athletic trainer Mike Goforth. The Maidens, Va., native had off-season PCL surgery on his right knee, but returned for Monday’s opener against Georgia Tech. He injured the right knee again in the first quarter.
Because Coles has not played in more than 30 percent of this year's season, he will be eligible to apply for a medical hardship waiver at the conclusion of the season. Coles has not redshirted, so provided the medical hardship waiver is granted, he will be eligible to return next year for a fifth season. Goforth says it's almost certain that Coles will be granted the waiver and will return next year.
The Hokies' oppenent on this short week (THANKX WEAVER) are the Governors of Austin Peay State University. For those asking, "Peay" is pronouced with a long 'e.' This has led the student body to adopt one of the more grandiose cheers in intercollegiate sports.
Last season the Governors played two FBS opponents, losing by a combined score of 99-16. Why is this significant? Memphis - widely regarded as the worse team in college footbal in 2011, was one of those two teams. Could this perhaps be the signs of bigger things to come for APSU?
Editor's Note: We're going to try to bring you the very best reviews of the games this season found anywhere online. The embedded YouTube video is the complete game, condensed with all commercials removed courtesy of Dozer. It has been coded to start and stop at the times being referenced. If that doesn't work, the time referenced in the play is listed below. --Joe
Welcome to our first film review of the 2012 season. The Hokies came into their opener against Georgia Tech preaching a new attitude on offense after prominently featuring the no huddle, spread, and pistol in preseason scrimmages. Georgia Tech, with Al Groh's 3-4 defense missing several key cogs and lacking depth, seemed like the perfect opponent for a breakout offensive performance after years of struggling in nationally televised openers. By the third quarter, it seemed as if those lofty aspirations had gone up in smoke as the Hokie offense repeatedly stalled against the Yellow Jacket defense.
Holy short week, you guys. **Rubs eyes, I gotta write what by Wednesday night!?** Even though I feel like a zombie after the Hokies Monday night win, I hope to get a pass for the abbreviated, subpar Six Pick effort. One thing I can't excuse are the poor results of 90% of us last week. This week may not be much better as the lines for these games have given me pause. I only wish these games were a bit more interesting. The good news is this may be the worst week of games on the schedule, so we can get this out of the way early while it's still hot outside. I promise, you'll get a big game, good effort from me next week when business picks up.
So ESPN's College Gameday is headed to College Station, Tx for the Aggies first game as a member of the SEC. This is the equivalent of pity sex and was clearly engineered by SEC boss, Mike Slive. The oddity of this broadcast will be seeing everyone sweat their cojones off while a bunch of guy cheerleaders in white do the hand jive behind Fowler, Corso and Herbstreit. Also, who will ESPN find as their celebrity game picker this week? aTm has limited options, with it either being George H.W. Bush or Ryan Tannehill's wife. Hot sells.
Miami at Kansas State -6.5 12:00 PM FX