Defensive Depth Chart Changes

Georgia Tech is only our biggest game of the season, the winner is almost certain to represent the Coastal Division in the ACC Championship Game. So really there's no better time for Bud Foster to swap around the bodies on the defense.

J.R. Collins is moving inside from defensive end to tackle. If you remember Collins practiced at both end and tackle during spring ball. He's got a heavy shoulder, but didn't maintain the weight necessary to play fulltime at tackle.

Tyrel Wilson will replace Collins at end. Wilson earned the praise of the coaches in relief of James Gayle at stud end, but at 6-1 219 he struggled at times to take advantage of his quickness and rush the passer.

Jack Tyler will start at middle linebacker over Barquell Rivers. Rivers and Tyler were listed as 1 and 1a on the depth chart going into the Duke game, but Rivers played all 72 snaps. Tyler has only started one game, the Orange Bowl against Stanford. Tyler is the better backer against the run. Against Duke Rivers still couldn't move to his left and right like he used to before his quad injury.

Kyle Fuller will remain at Whip backer. Alonzo Tweedy practiced in a blue non-contact jersey Sunday. He's still hampered from a high ankle sprain. That means Cris Hill and Jayron Hosley will play at corner.

ACC Division Races Taking Shape

We’re now into the month of November, and ACC teams have 2 or 3 conference games left on their docket.  Virginia Tech and Clemson sit atop their respective divisions, and there’s no doubt that conference officials are hoping they both win out to stage what would be the most significant ACC Championship Game yet.  No one can deny the appeal of a potential rematch between the Tigers and Hokies – Bank of America Stadium would be teeming with fans from both schools and I would expect the TV ratings to beat out previous ACC Championship Games.  It might be one of the most intriguing matchups that weekend …

… if Clemson and Virginia Tech both win out.

So what happens if someone stumbles?

Week 10 BlogPoll Ballot

My full poll is after the jump, it's especially messy this week. Please leave your opinions, thoughts and suggestions in the comments and I'll adjust as necessary.

  • Alabama - How far should they drop? As of this morning, I can't get the memory of that struggling offense and all those special teams gaffes out of my head. At some point I need to remember they mauled Arkansas and won at State College. Also, no team has a better loss.
  • Arkansas - South Carolina has been overvalued all season, but that was a nice win for the Pigs. They have the best quarterback in the SEC and a nice resume too.
  • The Big Ten - Without a dominant team contending for a national championship the Big Ten looks a lot like the ACC. On the right day anyone can, and will, beat anyone else. It's going to be all sorts of fun to see who comes out on top.
  • Kansas State - They started 7-0, they'll finish 1-4.

Six Pick: Week Ten

Welcome to week 10 of the Six Pick, or as it is correctly called, Super Bowl Saturday. The nation's top two teams are set to square off in Tuscaloosa on CBS during primetime; rare treat of hearing Uncle Vern and not Brent Musburger call the game. No. 1 vs No. 2 during the regular season has only happened 16 times since War World II. A few of the previous games were also called the 'Game of the Century', the most renowned were: '66 Notre Dame - Michigan State, '69 Texas - Arkansas and '71 Nebraska - Oklahoma. Only Beano Cook remembers those games, I however vividly recall '89 Notre Dame - Michigan, '91 Miami - FSU and '93 Notre Dame - FSU from my late teens. Those games made me a college football junkie, leaving me craving my next fix. It's a new century now and time to hook new fans. Let's hope this game does just that and justifies 'The Game of the Century' label. Laissez les bons temps rouler.


A special by request art work from a TKP friend @GovernorofDixie. His weekend cartoon preview of the SEC is can't miss and he is a must follow on Twitter.

Georgia Tech Preview: Glory, or Death by a Thousand Cuts

It almost seems surreal that, given Virginia Tech's long standing rivalries with Miami and UVA, that over the last 4 years the ACC game which has caused many a Hokie the greatest worry has been the Ramblin Wreck of Georgia Tech. Paul Johnson has successfully been able to implement a true flexbone offense in a BCS Conference, and despite a clear drop in his offensive recruiting talent, Johnson has been able to adapt his lesser athletes into a system that works.

Bye Week Blues

Broke as a joke.

Liver’s shot,

My (wo)man’s pissed,

And the dog runned off,

The team is spent,

Ill be damned if I ain’t too,

Time to sing the Bye Week Bluuueesss.

A Wrestling Preview: Virginia Tech Vs. Campbell

Matchup: Campbell University (0-0, 0-0 SoCon) @ #21 Virginia Tech (0-0, 0-0 ACC)

When: Nov. 5, 2011 5:00 PM

Venue: Salem Civic Center, Salem, VA (Capacity: 6,820)

  • Address: 1001 Roanoke Boulevard, Salem, VA 24153
  • Directions

                 From Lynchburg: Take I-460 West to the intersection 419 South and follow the signs.

                 From Richmond: Take I-64 West to 81 South to exit 141 to intersection 419 South and follow the signs.

                 From Norfolk/Virginia Beach: Take I-81 to exit 141 to intersection 419 South and follow the signs.

Duke Roll Call

I'm going to play the optimist card here and say that the guys are just beat up, and that's why Saturday's game was so ugly and flat.

I will give credit to the defense, though. Duke isn't exactly Georgia Tech or Clemson, but they mostly did a fine job.

Overall, I thought the guys played well here and there. Some of the third down calls blew my mind. Are we not trying to keep drives alive?

The few extra days of rest couldn't be coming at a better time. Everyone better buckle up for next Thursday...

I'll be honest, I had to watch this game in parts, and I had a better time trying to figure out why Kim Kardashian and Kris Humphries filed for divorce.

Note: My game feed dropped out between Martin's touchdown and Whitley's personal foul.

1. Antone Exum - Quiet most of the afternoon, except when he absolutely leveled one of the Duke receivers on the sideline. It should be noted that I saw him blanketing his assignment multiple times.

2. Josh Oglesby - Who would have thought his touchdown would be the game winner? He knows how to run tough.

3. Logan Thomas - Well, he certainly threw a lot of interceptions. I thought he was actually OK otherwise, but the first pick was just brutal. These last few games are a good time to start giving him more carries, right? By the way, very nice tackle on his first pick.

Week 9 BlogPoll Ballot

My full poll is after the jump. As always I need you guys to keep me in check. So leave your opinions, thoughts and suggestions in the comments and I'll adjust the poll as necessary.

  • My Top Spot - Here's a spoiler, in all likelihood Boise State will not jump a one loss SEC team or Oklahoma. And it's LSU-Alabama week, we can finally crown the national champion.
  • Houston - The 'Coug is probably way too high, but I'd be lying if I said 70 points didn't turn me on.
  • The one loss teams - For the most part, they all played horrible. Arkansas, Virginia Tech, Penn State and South Carolina all struggled to defeat inferior competition.
  • Wisconsin - It's "All Russel Everything" (but only against really bad teams).
  • Georgia Tech - Y U NO CONSISTENT?

SB Nation BlogPoll Top 25 College Football Rankings

The Key Play: Week 9

8-1

Let's start by getting all the pleasantries out of the way. We won. A tick on the left side of the column is all that matters. Boykin and Coale had another stellar game. We're going to reminisce about this duo at tailgates for a long time to come. Anytime we recruit another little known two-star receiver you better believe people are going to say, "kid could be another Coale."

After every game I realize how important Cris Hill is to this team. I give a lot of well deserved credit to Kyle Fuller for being able to step in and play Whip/Nickel, but without Hill filling in for him strongly at corner that'd never be possible. He had another 6 tackles and held his ground all afternoon in coverage.

If that game itself was the trick, then David Wilson was the treat. YEAH BAD HALLOWEEN PUNS FOR EVERYONE. Believe me there are runs when I'm screaming for him just to take the couple of yards that are there, instead of shooting for the moon. But afterwords when I take a look at his entire body of work I appreciate his aggressive and ambitious running style and the numbers and points he puts up. Also, credit to Josh O for doing work and putting up six in relief of Wilson. That was a tremendous cutback on his 31-yard run.

DUKE LIVE BLOG

"Just like basketball."

*clap, clap, clap*

I think Lester is trying to get arrested by the fashion police. We're wearing maroon helmets, white jerseys and orange pants. The first time we've done so since a 1994 win against ECU.

The chat console is after the jump.

Duke Football Primer: Photo Edition

Where they play: Wade Wallace Stadium 

The Blue Devils have earned the NCAA's Academic Achievment Award more than any other football program. 

The media perenially tabs the Blue Devils as ACC football dark horses... 

...but usually they stick to the hardcourt. 

The future of the ACC?

This is Bill Cosby Decked out in Maroon*


via @virginia_tech

Is the Frankinator consulting with comedian Bill Cosby about the kicking game and how to proceed under the hypothetical situation that Cody Journell can't play? I don't know, you tell me!

You seeeeeeeeee, the Myer has, to, kick, the ball more consistently. It pewwwwwwwwwwwww goes the distance, just doesn't always split the bars.

When asked about how his chat with Cosby went, Beamer responded:

Real strong comedian right there, good staff of writers around him.

/raises his two fists to his chest and slowly pumps them back and forth in short bursts.

He's always well-prepared, has that "want-to". His sets are real consistent: great intro, punchlines always get after ya, finishes strong.

/serious face

Great comedians make great jokes, and that's what Bill's always done.

*And just subtle amounts of orange, Lester please take note.

Duke Preview

Who: #15/15 Virginia Tech Hokies (7-1, 3-1 ACC) @ Duke Blue Devils (3-4, 1-2 ACC)

Time: 12:30 PM

TV Coverage: ACC Network (Tim Brant, Dave Archer, Scott Pryzwansky)

Venue: Wallace Wade Stadium, Durham, NC (33,941 – Grass)

Series History: Virginia Tech leads 11-7

  • Last Meeting (2010): Virginia Tech 44, Duke 7
  • Coach Beamer is a perfect 7-0 against Duke
  • The Hokies have won 10 straight games against the Blue Devils, dating back to 1981
  • In 7 ACC contests, the Hokies have outscored Duke by an average of 37-8

Injury Report

  • LB Alonzo Tweedy – Out (ankle)
  • OL Mark Shuman – Out (knee/ankle)

The Opponent: The Hokies start the final third of their season by facing the first of four consecutive Coastal Division opponents. This Duke team has continued a trend of Blue Devil teams under David Cutcliffe, slowly working its way into a competitive nature. The Blue Devils are more consistent than in years past, but they still have their Duke moments, such as losing to Richmond for their third consecutive time.

At 3-4, the Blue Devils possess wins over Boston College, Tulane, and FIU. They, too, finish the season with all Coastal Division games, but they play all five division opponents in a row, starting with Tech.

MIAMI-VIRGINIA LIVE BLOG

Because why not? The live blog starts at 8:00 and the console is after the jump.

Now, Where Do We Go From Here?

The Hokies' regular season is two-thirds over. In the first eight games there were some bumps along the way. Oh, and the Clemson game too. That was a head-on collision into a Jersey barrier that no one saw us speeding into. Or maybe we didn't care to notice? The airbags deployed, and we moved on from the wreck, but it hurt like hell. Don't drink the Kool-Aid and drive. Now, where do we go from here?

Forward. OK, that was an obvious answer, but all of realistic goals --beating Virginia, earning a spot in the ACC Championship Game, playing in the Orange Bowl-- set by the team at the start of the season (and even the unrealistic one, but I'm not mentioning that) are in front of us, just starting to come into view over the horizon. A better question, what's it going to take to get there?

A Healthy Defense

We lose defensive tackles Antoine Hopkins and Kwamaine Battle for the year, Corey Marshall and Luther Maddy step up. The Hyphen's turnaround season got cut short, Alonzo Tweedy shows he can play, then tweaks his ankle. Detrick Bonner made All-American Jayron Hosley's absence a little more tolerable. Tyrel Wilson earned the Frankinator's praise trying to fill James Gayle's large shadow against Boston College. Tackling machine Bruce Taylor went down, Barquell Rivers didn't skip a beat. Kyle Fuller and Cris Hill have been human Band-Aids, treating any and all trauma suffered by the secondary.

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