The Road Ahead

The Hokies are set to play 5 games in 29 days.

[Mark Umansky]

It's been a weird football season for the Hokies.

The pantsing of Florida State didn't square with the sum of Virginia Tech's offseason defensive losses. Vegas, pundits, and pollsters all pegged the Hokies to lose in Tallahassee. Instead, they won. Unexpedictly and big. Forget the week one to week two leap, that adage Frank Beamer was so fond of citing. Bud Foster's group seemingly grew up overnight. (Spoiler: They didn't.)

The only par for the course was the William & Mary waxing. That was a clean drive, iron in, and two putts out.

The East Carolina game, iteration twenty-three of the longstanding series the overwhelming majority of Hokie Nation wished would end, was abruptly canceled. The Tech faithful was a blend of sad, mad, and dejected. Irony overload.

Then, Old Dominion happened. You know it's a splendid football season when the result of a September contest, one scheduled on the road against an in-state program two orders of magnitude below in weight class strictly for off-the-field reasons, forces the discussion of all-time Virginia Tech losses, upsets, collapses, choke jobs.

Dominating then undefeated Duke in Durham went against prognostications and revitalized the masses. Notre Dame both dismissed the notion Tech was approaching national relevance, and bolstered the theory Lane Stadium's teeth were dull. A handful of bungled North Carolina red zone trips coupled with a 98-yard touchdown drive proved college football's cruelty isn't exclusive.

To summarize: This season has been all over the map and I don't have a handle on this Virginia Tech team.

Inexperience across the board increases variance of expectations. Progress for the Beamer teams, the ones from the Vick through the Taylor eras that is, was simple to track. It was binary — national championship or bust. From conference championship crowns to marquee bowls, those teams accomplished everything else but. Beamer raised the bar high, and although never taken, the next step was logical.

Five games remain on the Hokies' 2018 schedule. Virginia Tech's conference record is unblemished. By virtue of 3-0 away from Lane, Tech closes its conference schedule with 4 home games and one road trip. That's a more than manageable slate against a group absent a single squad that's separated itself from the pack.

A Coastal Division championship is most certainly on the table.

That may or may not be a fair measurement of success down the stretch, but it's there. However, at some point during the season, a team stops being "young". It's the end of October, the underclassmen have benefitted from six games of experience. It is time for the Hokies to grow up. It's time for on-the-field play to support the claim these coaches form one of the best developmental staffs nationally. Correctable, non-talent issues — misfitted gaps, wrong quarterback reads, coverage snafus, etc — should be eliminated. Play calls and personnel deployments need to put the team in the best position to succeed, and on-field player progression should be more noticeable than a before-and-after Hilgartification photo.

Do all that, and it's still no guarantee the Hokies make the December trip to Charlotte. This team is flawed at positions which will take one-or-more recruiting cycles to address.

However, the road ahead, the long haul, that destination is much more palatable and appealing.

Comments

We should go 4-1 or 3-2 down the strech and keep the bowl streak alive (losses to da U and another inexplicible one like GiT or *shudders* loluva). Let's do this, Go Hokies!

I can imagine no more rewarding a career. And any man who may be asked in this century what he did to make his life worthwhile, I think can respond with a good deal of pride and satisfaction:
“I served in the United States Navy"

KCCO

Idk man. Nothing about that 22-19 last second victory against the worst team in the ACC makes my think we should win anymore than 1-2 games. We certainly could win 3-4, but I wouldn's suggest that we should.

22-19 last second victory against the worst team in the ACC

We don't play Louisville this year

Ok worst coastal team.

I am in no way trying to excuse the performance at UNC; that was the worst win of ours that I've ever watched. However, the one thing no one is talking about is the disparity in preparation time for that game. UNC played Miami on Thursday September 27th and then did not play another game until ours on October 13th. That is 16 days; a lifetime in football. You wonder why those double stunts worked so well? They had an extra week and a half to practice them.

We had 2 weeks to prep for ODU

Recruit Prosim

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller

They spent the time recruiting and posing for pictures and forgot to game plan. It happens.

I'd have to say 2013 Marshall game was pretty bad, it took crazy luck for us to win in OT.

Everyone in this thread now remembers the Willie Byrn touchdown off the deflection on 4th and goal.

The Orange and Maroon you see, that's fighting on to victory.

That was no deflection. That was God himself pushing the ball straight through that defenders hands.

No one is talking about that becuase it probably doesn't have much to do with anything. We were just really bad. We had a lifetime to prepare for ODU. That didn't matter. You can only gameplan so much before a game.

Thx for the read, Joe. I too am having a hard time digesting this year's menu. As the head ball coach puts it, "each game will be a 4-hr stomach ache."

Bring on the pepto and after dinner mints, I'm ready to cheer these boys on till dessert is served.

If it ain't orange, it better be maroon...and if it ain't maroon, it better be soon!

Great write up Joe. I can't remember the interview but Fuente adomished a question noting the "youth" of the team, particularly the defense. His response was that we are not so much "young" and we are very inexperienced. Experience is a great teacher and unfortunately with so much inexperience on defense that unit is likely to struggle the rest of the way. I think they'll have bright spots here and there, but we're going to have to rely guess on the offense (shudders) to put points up.

Not to be "that guy", but I'm going to go ahead and be him anyway...

This is 5 games in 30 days. If you play every saturday, for 5 straight games, it's 5 games in 29 days. In our current situation, we play Thursday, for the 1st of the 5, then play Friday for the last.

Wolfram Alpha would disagree and I don't do math before 9:00 AM. Either way, as the author, that's the least important sentence written.

To play the other side of this, the 5th game is 29 days after the 1st. So the time from October 25th to November 23rd is 29 days, but, to your point, the total time encompasses 30 days.

Either way, thanks for the write-up, Joe. As mentioned above, I'm prepared to expect nothing from this team for the rest of the year, while still knowing we can win every matchup. Where's the bourbon?

I'd be happy and surprised if we went 3-2. I think it's generous.

Then, Old Dominion happened.

"How the ass pocket will be used, I do not know. Alls I know is, the ass pocket will be used."
- The BoD

It is what we thought it would be. Rebuild year. We are hanging in there so far.

"I play real sports, not trying to be the best at exercising..." - KP

At this point I think you need to specify which weeks of the season "It is what we thought it would be".

Come to Blacksburg and see what the Hokie Pokie is really all about

Every week a crapshoot. Ok, ODU was a stretch of reality, but the team is just super green so anything is possible.

"I play real sports, not trying to be the best at exercising..." - KP

Even in a rebuild year, I expect the team to have the discipline to beat ODU.

1-0 + 1-0 + 1-0 + 1-0 + 1-0 = 5-0.

Leonard. Duh.

order of operations checks out

Yep. Our task is to figure out how to beat GT and their Mennonite offense. It may take the swan-diving ghost of Kyle Fuller, two pancake eating clones of Tim Settle, three David Wilson heat-seeker KO returns and four Terrell Edmunds jump pass fake punts to do it, but we must find a way.

Worry about next week next week but this week we got this week business.

Yep. Our task is to figure out how to beat GT and their Mennonite offense. It may take the swan-diving ghost of Kyle Fuller, two pancake eating clones of Tim Settle, three David Wilson heat-seeker KO returns and four Terrell Edmunds jump pass fake punts to do it, but we must find a way.

And a partridge in a pear tree.

Marshall's passes look like partridges.

You could say he is a real chukar.

You from western US? Didn't think chukar was something in East.

I live in Blacksburg, I like my bird dogs and the birds too.

Until he plays us.

"I play real sports, not trying to be the best at exercising..." - KP

Yep. Our task is to figure out how to beat GT and their Mennonite offense. It may take the swan-diving ghost of Kyle Fuller, two pancake eating clones of Tim Settle, three David Wilson heat-seeker KO returns and four Terrell Edmunds jump pass fake punts to do it, but we must find a way.

Worry about next week next week but this week we got this week business.

I think there is a bit of confusion here, our job is to be fans and supporters. (See the fanciful post by Chris below) IMHO it is the task of the coaching staff to figure out how to beat GT. If part of being a fan means speculating on what schematic design and personnel decision would be most effective, count me in, I love that stuff. However, I think there is strict limit to the amount of influence fans have on the product delivered on the field. Only two ways as I see it, monetary donations to support the program and contributing to a raucous football environment from the stands.

"Don't go to, go through"

My hopes for GT:

A chilly Blacksburg night = hard/slippery ball = fumblerooskis on the option tosses/handoffs.

VT Marketing Class of 2009
Current Roanoke-Hokie
Go Hokies!

We're going to get the chilly part, but I don't know about the slippery part. Should be a pretty dry evening.

"What kind of person would throw away a perfectly good dog?"

The chilly night needs to be Miami.

Bud/Wiles 2020

"How the ass pocket will be used, I do not know. Alls I know is, the ass pocket will be used."
- The BoD

Alternative math 1-0 x 5 = 5-0

#Let's Go - Hokies

This i like

#inFuentewetrust

1-0 x 5 = 1 though

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller

What we need to realize is that we are in a position where we can achieve the peak #GoACC moment, ascending to a level once thought unattainable even for our most ridiculous of conferences. If we win the Coastal, then through a combination of our best game ever and a bad, sloppy performance from Clemson somehow win the ACC, we can ascend to a new tier of absolute chaos agent. From losing to Old Dominion to winning the ACC and killing our conference's only playoff contender, we will become the physical embodiment of #GoACC as we lift the ACC conference championship trophy high above our confused heads, cheering loudly in disbelief.

I agree with some others on here saying its time to quit worrying about conference optics and just focus on your last sentence:

as we lift the ACC conference championship trophy high above our confused heads, cheering loudly in disbelief.

I don't care if Clemson doesn't take care of their business and the ACC gets left out of the Playoffs. The rest of college football will play out as it may, but if we don't win (go 1-0 baby!), it won't matter how it all plays out.

Come to Blacksburg and see what the Hokie Pokie is really all about

I actively want the ACC to not have a playoff contender if that means Clemson not making the playoffs. I will never root for a conference opponent who shares our recruiting hotbeds to win a national championship. Why would anyone in their right mind want Clemson to further the gap between themselves and the rest of the conference?

I dunno, I kind of like the playoff money, and it's also good for recruiting if the ACC has a good reputation in terms of quality wins.

Yeah, I get the recruiting thing, but I prefer the ACC be in the National Championship conversation with the SEC and Big 10, rather than not in the conversation at all. I'd rather Clemson be in there than a second SEC team or a Big 10 team. Building up the SEC or Big 10 isn't good for us, either. In a perfect world, Clemson, FSU, Miami, and VT would be in the national championship conversation every year.

There are going to be other good teams out there. Our job is to be one of those.

All of this. While the outcome is far away, I can easily see us working our way into the title game and having all the bounces go our way against Clemson just to ruin the Clemson v Bama Part IV matchup that makes me throw up in my mouth. But first we gotta go 1-0 against the pesky Jackets and work on heating up the Paul Johnson hot seat.

we can ascend to a new tier of absolute chaos agent

I am become #goacc, destroyer of conference perception.

The Orange and Maroon you see, that's fighting on to victory.

Yeah this isn't the SEC. I swear people that are Tennessee fans here in Johnson City act like they have a piece of the national championship trophy when Bama wins just because they are in the same conference. You aren't good just because someone in your conference is good. Let's go win and see what happens.

Wins for us are always good for us. I really couldn't care less if Clemson doesn't make it and/or ND for that matter.

Hoisting that conference trophy and heading to NY6 is a great way to end a season regardless of whether we win said NY6 or if Clemson gets left out of CFP. Let's worry bout us and get better.

Vols Fans are more delusional than LOLUVA

Hokie in Tennessee

Yeah. FUCK Pat Narduzzi.

"...sticks and stones may break my bones but I'm gonna kick you repeatedly in the balls Gardoki!"

This game Thursday night is going to tell me everything I need to know about this year's team. We've had a bye week to prepare, we've had six games under our belt, and we're playing a night game at home against a team that isn't great. If I had a nickel for every time this has been the narrative and we've flopped... With that said, we desperately need to get the job done. Bring the edge back to this defense, bring the edge back to Lane Stadium, bring the edge back to this team as a whole. Something's gotta give, right?

"What kind of person would throw away a perfectly good dog?"

Bud on a bye week is one of the best bets out there. I think the defense will be ready. Be prepared for one of the young DB's to bite on a play action and get beat deep for a long touchdown, but overall I think they'll show up. Bigger worry is the offense. We can't take half the game to figure out want we want to do. Get down by double digits to Georgia Tech and you'll never have the ball long enough to make a comeback.

Bud/Wiles 2020

Bud on a bye* week is one of the best bets out there.

*Scheduled bye week. That bye before ODU didn't really help us much.

Warning: this post occasionally contains strong language (which may be unsuitable for children), unusual humor (which may be unsuitable for adults), and advanced mathematics (which may be unsuitable for liberal-arts majors)..

Touché

Bud/Wiles 2020

It hurt me to give a leg on that but great point.

Vols Fans are more delusional than LOLUVA

Hokie in Tennessee

Honestly, if we don't take advantage of GT's terrible defense for the third consecutive year I will be extremely irritable. FuCorn have got to figure out how to make this GT defense pay like seemingly every other ACC team has figured out except us. We deserve to have a GT game where our offense finally wins one for us instead of expecting the defense to force punts/turnovers on 10 out of 12 drives every game.

You'd rather have two SEC teams again? Or ND make the playoffs? It's not like they don't also eat our lunch on the 'crootin trail.

Edit: Meant as a reply to your Clemson comment upthread.

You should know by now that I will never root for Clemson to win a NCG. Plus Bama winning is the best possible outcome for us because it would just be status quo. Bama being the the most dominant team doesn't change anything. It doesn't help other teams recruit better, it just keeps Bama recruiting at a top 3 level like they always do.

Additionally, Bama's dynasty has a finite end in sight. Given his age, and despite his incredible work ethic and love of the grind, Saban's Alabama will likely end at the latest in the mid 2020's at the completion of his current contract. Alabama will still likely be very strong on the structure and skeleton that Saban has built, but Dabo is on the younger side and if he stays at Clemson will have way longer continuity and time to dominate, we don't want them getting anymore recruiting ammunition than they already have.

...unless Dabo goes to Bama,...

Sure, in that scenario it's still better for Bama to win than Clemson. If Dabo leaves Clemson they will almost certainly take a step back, and the ACC will become a more winnable conference for us. That means we are still in the situation where we will have to swing above our weight for one or two playoff games for a shot at a NCG, but with a weaker Clemson we will have a higher chance of making the playoff.

I'm all for beating Clemson. But I don't think they have as much control over our recruiting as you seem to think they do. I think a strong conference where FSU, Clemson, Miami, and VT are annually competing for playoff spots is much better for VT recruiting than a CFB landscape where two SEC teams and ND make the playoffs. But maybe you're on to something and the way we get there is gradual improvement under the status quo and waiting for Saban to die. I don't see it though.

Your first scenario is better sure, and also unlikely. We will be the black sheep of the 4 teams you named there and all 3 of those teams will be recruiting much better than us, thus greatly limiting our chances at actually winning the ACC. You're putting too much stock in needing a strong ACC to make the playoff. Clemson has walked into the playoff last year and this year (until we beat them in the ACCCG this year!!!) in a mediocre to awful ACC.

My scenario involves making our path to playoff easier. Weaker Clemson means more opportunities to win the ACCCG and make the playoff. The more often we make the playoffs, the more likely our required strategy of swinging above our weight (recruiting/talent) will result in a championship, we need to maximize opportunities since our % chance of winning once we get there will likely be the lowest or 2nd lowest in any given top 4.

Agree to disagree. I remember cutting through the ACC like butter when we first joined as it was by far the weakest of the major conferences. And despite being king of cream-puff hill for a decade, we still couldn't manage an undefeated season or win a BCS bowl game over any team with a pulse (Cincinnati won the Big East which was hot garbage and only made the OB due to a conference tie in tracing back to before the pillaging of that conference).

I think a strong conference makes VT stronger because iron sharpens iron and I think getting better the hard way is the only way it happens.

This. A lot of the middle of the road SEC teams are good because Alabama is good and elevated the conference. The whole PAC12 is viewed as butt right now because USC is down. Oregon and Washington have tried to hold up the roof but losing to Washington state instantly invalidates that. Same with the Big10. Ohio State losing to Purdue was a HUUUUUGE perception blow.

Recruit Prosim

The SEC is good because the SEC has always been good. Its not like during Alabama's recent dominance the rest of the league all the sudden got good too. Before Saban was at Bama, it was Florida or Georgia or LSU or Tennessee. When bama struggled, the conference just didn't fall apart like the PAC12 has. I mean look how long South Carolina, Arkansas, Vandy, and Tennessee have now been nationally irrelevant. You don't see them elevating. Its the same with the big 10, if it hasn't been Ohio State, then its Michigan or Penn State and the rest hoping for a breakout year. Our best chance of breaking through is the ACC. We're Arkansas or Tennessee in the SEC. We're getting back to where we want to be. We're never going to be a team that is in the playoff year after year. I see us being a team that is consistently good and every few years can make a run at it and compete with Clemson.

As for the "somehow not being able to manage an undefeated season" comment, come on man. Since 2000 among Power 5 teams, there have only been 7 undefeated national champions and then there was the undefeated 2004 Auburn team. To act like that's just something that just definitely should have happened during our time in the ACC is unrealistic.

Bud/Wiles 2020

I agree with this. I think the guy above you is making some connections, whether he realizes it or not, between the conference being good and recruiting being stronger for everyone as a result. The SEC is good because their middle of the road teams recruit better than any other conferences middle of the road. The middle of the road teams recruit better than most conferences in part because they make more money through the SEC's (and in part Bama's) success, but primarily because they are tradition rich schools, with big donor bases, big stadiums that they put more people in each week, and more open wallets to fund their facilities and recruiting efforts.

Current 2018 247 Talent composite

10 of the top 25 teams per Talent Composite are in the SEC. That means the other 4 P5 conferences combine to put 14 in the top 25. (Notre Dame is the other)

Let's take a look at this year's recruiting via 247composite 2019 recruiting class rankings.

All of the top 3, 10 of the current top 20 classes are in the SEC, and number 21 is Florida.

The top and middle of the SEC are strong because they put lots of blue chip athletes on the field. There are 11 SEC teams with a more talented roster via recruiting than Virginia Tech at 31, and we are damn near tied with Kentucky who is 32.

To nitpick, the Cincinnati team we beat was 11-1, only loss to NCG participant Oklahoma with Heisman winning QB Sam Bradford, and it was Virginia Tech who were 8-4 in the regular season, who only went to the OB because of conference tie-ins. The Big East pretty consistently won BCS bowl games, by the way, the ACC did not.

Exactly. Cincinnati was actually pretty good that year, the same way Kansas was pretty good in 2007, but people see the name and think that they were both middling bowl opponents that we should've beaten in blowouts.

News flash: fans at OSU, Bama, and USCw think the same thing about us, regardless of how good our team is in a given season.

I live in SC here in Clemson country, and yes, two of my kids have gone to Clemson. To say Clemson does not have control over recruiting is insane. I am told by insiders that Dabo has eighty people -- yes 80 -- in his recruiting department. I do not know how many are in Clemson vs out in the field, but their recruiting is very very good. The amount of money they put into it is enormous.

They have lost 6-8 guys on defense two years in a row. The result? They do not blink. Their defense is just as strong. We lose 8 guys and we are decimated.

Clemson recruiting speaks for itself. I have seen so many guys get snatched away by Clemson and FSU and the recruits tell VT to walk. I think our recruiting is improving; we floundered during the latter years of the Beamer era. But we have a ways to go.

I despise how few points we always score against them, save 2011 when David Wilson shredded their asses. Like, every other acc team was able to put up points against Ted roofs defense and we just always looked like idiots on offense.

Even in 2010 when our offense was actually good we only got 21 at home. Wilson had to save us with that kickoff return

Virginia Tech School of Architecture Class of 2014
Fan of Hokies, Ravens, NY Giants, Orioles

Bud on a bye week is one of the best bets out there.

I've always wondered about this statement when I see it. I scraped some numbers together quickly just to take a shot at what this really looks like.

Granted there are a few situations like the ECU game this year where there may have been an unplanned Bye week. But few and far between. I also only pulled just the points to look at scoring average. For example this week's GT game falls in the Bye Week category.

That Bowl one...ouch

That's probably because in "big games" the bowls like to set up a hot defense vs hot offense showdown.

16-1!!! Sooooooo...schedule all games to give the team short prep weeks

Gotcha! Make it so!

Let's Go

HOKIES

Just don't inquire about which loss that single loss is...

Oh fuck me, that's not the game against a certain in state purple team, is it

That doesn't count. That was just an exhibition game.

Let's Go

HOKIES

I love data charts that don't account for the confounding variables, but I digress.

🦃 🦃 🦃

17 points per game against essentially what is always a tough conference opponent that typically has had the same amount of time to prepare for you and rest... I'll take it. If we hold someone to that, the defense is not why we lost that game. The bowl game numbers hurt to see though. Just gives me flashbacks of Aaron Rodgers and Andrew Luck abusing us.

Bud/Wiles 2020

Don't forget Tulsa's fastbreak (even though we won that game.)

Would it be possible to break this down further into teams with a dual-threat QB vs. pocket passer?

Not great, Bob

a) Very cool graphic and thank you for doing the work.
b) I'd be interested to know what the expected winning percentage was for those games to see if the 65% winning percentage after a bye was good, par for the course or bad.

Half a season is like an eternity for a 19 or 20 year old kid. Experience is the best teacher - with half a season under their belts our redshirt freshman are half the way to becoming redshirt sophomores, etc....
It's time!
I predict fewer errors and more consistent play for the next 5 games.

JP

The loluva hype over on the sabre is reaching an all time high. I think if they beat UNCheat(1-5) this weekend, they're going to start talking about stacking up against Bama and Clemson. It's like they completely forgot they were 5-1 this time last year with a win over Boise State and then only had one win the rest of the year before getting blown out by Navy in a bowl... don't know why they put themselves through this. Thank god for them they don't open the basketball season with UMBC or Chaminade.

Bud/Wiles 2020

They are much better than they were last year.

They are, but lets not pretend they've been looking like world beaters. Miami looked like hot dogshit against them, and Daniel Jones' play hasn't been the same since they rushed him back from injury. The Hoos have some good players, which is more than can be said for the last few years, but I'm still not sold on them. We also still have a major psychological edge on them where they know we have their number, no matter how much they try and convince themselves otherwise. One of these years, they very well might get us, but I don't think its this year. If there is one game we always seem to give our best team effort, its that one.

"Some days you’re a horse and some days you’re a horse’s ass. I’ve been a horse’s ass for a little while." - Roy Halladay

Malik Rosier is not a good QB. He looks good thanks to the talent Miami has been able to stack around him, but take away the run game and force Rosier to beat you and I think any team can hand Miami a L.

Come to Blacksburg and see what the Hokie Pokie is really all about

It really is incredible how awful the Miami QB position is. Rosier is the kind of QB who will actively lose games for you. He's Jimmy Clausen in the NFL levels of bad. Sad thing for them is, their backups are so much worse they don't have a choice but to play him. You're right, force him to throw, and you stop that offense.

Though, if our secondary doesn't click soon, that could be the one game he puts up huge numbers.

"Some days you’re a horse and some days you’re a horse’s ass. I’ve been a horse’s ass for a little while." - Roy Halladay

Which really just blows my mind how they handled us and Notre Dame last year. I get that both were night games at the height of their confidence last year but those games shouldn't have turned out that way.

Bud/Wiles 2020

They rode a wave of ridiculously good turnover luck that was completely unsustainable over the long term. You look at some of those games last year and that season would have been much different if their turnover margin was closer to netting out.

And really, ND probably isn't as good as everyone makes them out to be. They completely imploded last year, and they're probably good for a nice pants shitting every year. I thought it would have been in Lane, but we out shitted them, that's for sure.

"Some days you’re a horse and some days you’re a horse’s ass. I’ve been a horse’s ass for a little while." - Roy Halladay

I don't know though. I think so defensively but that's completely based off the Duke and Miami games, against offenses that really don't have it together. I mean I thought they were decent last year after manhandling Boise State at Boise. That's really not something that happens and is at least a comparable win to one at home over a Miami team with a QB crisis.

Bud/Wiles 2020

They have a reason to be hype. They are a very disciplined team that probably isn't going to go on the same type of losing streak that they went on last season. It is conceivable that LOLUVA wins the Costal Div this year.

Is it football season yet?

I really hope not. I hope GT and UNC trounce UVA.

They are better than they were last year, and have looked better than us through the first half of the season.

"For those who have passed, for those to come, reach for excellence."

I thought the same thing last year after they were 5-1 with wins @Boise St, Duke, and UNC. I think they heavily lean on there quarterback scrambling to make things happen on offense. Their defense is solid, but yet again has really only been tested once by NC State. I'm not saying they aren't better than last year and that they aren't going to be a challenge. We lost to ODU, everyone is going to be a challenge. Just saying I find it humorous watching that hype train leave the station.

Bud/Wiles 2020

And we saw how good NCSU was this past week. Their reputation really benefited from avoiding WVU due to the hurricane.

"Some days you’re a horse and some days you’re a horse’s ass. I’ve been a horse’s ass for a little while." - Roy Halladay

NC State will lose to Cuse in the dome this week, its my lock of the week. They are extremely overrated, especially after the NFL losses they had from last year.

LOLs entire team is predicated on the performance of Perkins. He's a good qb but that's really all they have on offense. Clearly their defense isn't bad but I think we still beat them

I'd say that have quite a few play makers. Zachius and reed are solid, and their running back who's name I can't remember has been solid as well. The offense is nothing to sneeze at

VT 2016
Go Hokies

I think we can win every game left on the schedule, including the ACC Championship. I think our receivers are good enough, but the QB is too inconsistent at this time. We probably need to run the ball more, even if we're only getting three yards and it appears to me that we are trying to "scheme" running lanes when I think we have an OL that can move people off the ball. Stop being cute and knock someone on the mouth.

For the Defense, I think this is where we are really going to miss Trevon Hill, but you have to move forward with what we have at DE. I really really hope that Divine Deablo is healthy the rest of the year because it seems like we are a different team when he's playing.

Overall, I think we win our remaining games and get to the ACC Championship!

We probably need to run the ball more, even if we're only getting three yards and it appears to me that we are trying to "scheme" running lanes when I think we have an OL that can move people off the ball. Stop being cute and knock someone on the mouth.

This is the one thing I miss from the Bustle and Stinespring Era. We need some more ISO runs in our playbook. FuCorn can still design back and end motion into the presnap for the reads, but run that power and knock the DLine on their backs.

My favorite play from those days was the ISO counter we used to run. Often left a LB on an island as the only guy to beat.

I think we can win every game left on the schedule, including the ACC Championship.

I think you are preparing yourself for disappointment.

Twitter me

I mean, he's right, we can win each game left on the schedule. It is a possibility. On the other hand, we could also lose each game left on the schedule, and has probably about the same probability of happening as the first scenario.

Wining the next 5 games and reaching the ACCCG is certainly a realistic goal. IMO in order for that to happen, Stephen Peoples needs more carries... Like 20+ carries per game. On top of that, Ryan Willis needs to be involved in the Zone Read rather than the offense simply running inside/outside zone.

Is it football season yet?

Its funny but I seem to remember a couple months ago people bemoaning Peoples getting any carries let along 20+.

'an ACC-caliber back' and 'the best we've got' can be mutually exclusive

Honestly, I'd rather see McClease get more touches/carries. He quicker, faster & hits the hole with more speed, intention & determination than Peoples.

#FUENTEenFUEGO
Waho's suck
Uva swallows

hits the hole with more speed, intention & determination than Peoples.

Not sure we are watching the same backs then. And to boot, Peoples leads the team in Rushing yards, yards per carry, and rushing TDs.

Is it football season yet?

the difference between Peoples and Mclease is minimal and their playing time difference may be largely due to fumbles. this team does not have a standout back. they're serviceable, but not great.

"I play real sports, not trying to be the best at exercising..." - KP

That's because Peoples gets more playing time/touches than McClease. Cause & effect. Obviously, if McClease was getting equal or greater playtime, he'd have more yds (& possible/probable TDs) than Peoples. McClease is more explosive. Peoples is a good/serviceable physical back for pounding it out. But for speed & explosiveness, McClease is faster/better.

#FUENTEenFUEGO
Waho's suck
Uva swallows

I think you missed "yards per carry".

Is it football season yet?

On the contrary, I didn't. But the fact of the matter is Peoples has/gets more carries/touches than McClease which factors into those stats, no matter how you wanna paint it.

#FUENTEenFUEGO
Waho's suck
Uva swallows

Except the stats say that Peoples has more production, per carry, than McClease. Meaning it's more than just "who got more carries".

But you can't remove the variable of Peoples receiving a greater number of touches than McClease to arrive at that number.

#FUENTEenFUEGO
Waho's suck
Uva swallows

Are you making the argument that because Peoples has had more touches, he has had more opportunities to break long runs and thus greater ypc? or is there something else to "greater number of touches" that would yield a higher ypc?

If you remove each of their longest runs of the season:
Peoples - 4.16 ypc
McClease - 4.11 ypc

The better statistic, of course, would be percent of runs greater than a distance: > 5yds, >10yds, > 20yds.

🦃 🦃 🦃

Wheatley was providing a spark. I hope he is healthy again too.

To summarize: This season has been all over the map and I don't have a handle on this Virginia Tech team.

Excellent summary. Couldn't agree more. If we could be the team that beat FSU and Duke convincingly the rest of the year...

"What are you going to do, stab me? - Quote from Man Stabbed

As chaotic as we've looked the last few games, I don't know if I like anyone else to win the division right now. GT is a clown show, and probably PJs last season. They really are downright atrocious. Of course, this means we'll probably lose to them, but the way this year has gone, even that won't save his job. Miami is so bad they are literally already calling for Richt's head (seriously, Uncle Luke is already banging that drum). That offense is straight up LoeffOStiney levels of bad made worse by awful QB play. Defensively, it ain't much better. Pitt is reverting to the form we expected of them a couple years ago, and BC kinda fell off a cliff after the hot start. And the Hoos... we've seen this before, and we know how it ends.

This just seems like one of those years we're going to win the division by default. We'd be completely outclassed by Clemson, but hey, at least we'd get there.

"Some days you’re a horse and some days you’re a horse’s ass. I’ve been a horse’s ass for a little while." - Roy Halladay

Having a QB bail out a rough offense by making plays with his legs will keep a mediocre team in a lot of games. The more tape teams get on UVa the easier it will be to contain the guy and force them to run their offense through their lack of playmakers. I wish Devon Hunter was up to speed because I think he would be a perfect QB spy against them.

UVa's defense has shown a lot more moxy than any time in the last decade. They have always had one or two defensive studs, but the sum of the defense amounted up to marshmallow fluff.

Come to Blacksburg and see what the Hokie Pokie is really all about

The more tape teams get on UVa the easier it will be to contain the guy

...unless you're a team that historically struggles with any QB more mobile than a statue.

"Our job as coaches is to influence young people's lives for the better in terms of fundamental skills, work ethic, and doing the right thing. Every now and again, a player actually has that effect on the coaching staff." Justin Fuente on Sam Rogers

BC got AJ Dillion hurt, he is expected back this week so expect them to start grinding people with the run again.

PJ's contract is fully guaranteed and didn't he get an extension the other year? Might be too much $$ for him to be bought out.

He did: two (more) years left now, from 2016 to 2020... nobody in Atlanta paid attention any-damn-way.

"...sticks and stones may break my bones but I'm gonna kick you repeatedly in the balls Gardoki!"

I pray every night or every season that PJ is in his last year.. I really do. But, they will beat us, UVA, Miami and Georgia (who won't be interested in the game) to save his job, unfortunately.

Whoa...strong swagger speech. Me like. but we will see, every one of those teams can easily beat us imo.

"I play real sports, not trying to be the best at exercising..." - KP

As long as we don't lose to loluva I'm good with it. I didn't expect us to win the division this year anyways, though obviously I would like that very much.

Beat loluva and keep the bowl streak and the season is a resounding success, especially after all the attrition and losing our starting QB.

If we make it to Charlotte I DO think we have a chance to win the game.

It's a weird year for sure. One thing has been constant- this defense can't defend the pass and gives up way too many big plays to be "consistent". I have a feeling that Pitt and perhaps even UVA will be good enough to exploit that. Max protect and throw the ball all over the place. If we also stumble against GT, that will be the difference for the coastal. I'd like to be optimistic and say GT just isn't that good- which they aren't- but our young and light defense is susceptible to that option offense even moreso this year.

This is VT's open secret Achilles heel this year.

I'd like to see this buttoned up a lot more, and soon. We've got athletes out there, but sometimes they look really lost.

Bud is playing more zone back there this year out of necessity. We can't pressure the QB with just the front 4, so if you can't pressure them, you have to cover them- and the best way to do that with young guys is zone. The issue is that we don't have a QB back there adjusting properly. We need a veteran FS to take charge and get guys in the correct zone. If we could pressure the QB, the back end would look a lot better too. We are 95th in total defense... a lot of things arent working.

Going into the year I was pissed that I scheduled a wedding every Saturday till Thanksgiving without a break. But now, I am honestly happy or I would have taken years off my life with this team...

via GIPHY

"Welcome to the Terror Dome." -- Corey Moore

Typically you only need one wedding in order to get married, but maybe you found the one and you really just want to get her locked in.

wedding photographer based in Virginia. I get paid to be a wedding crasher.

"Welcome to the Terror Dome." -- Corey Moore

any chance you know http://thetuckersphotography.com/ ?

One of them is my old VT roommates/friend and the other is his wife who also went to VT. They are based in Richmond.

Bleeding burnt orange and chicago maroon

Good summary Joe. Yes the team is very difficult to figure out this year. On one hand, I would say we have not "won" games. In the games we won, we actually failed to lose. That is, we made fewer mistakes. FSU and UNC come to mind. FSU's offense was incompetent with missed assignments. And well UNC ... we know. When we played tams that made few mistakes (ND and ODU), we have lost.

I think that is true for most of the season. The only outlier may be the Duke game. That game was not particularly mistake prone. We outplayed Duke and "won" that one.

But for the most part, we have been a marginal performer, and when we have won it is a game of attrition where we made fewer mistakes.

Fun Fact:

GT has won the last 2 games in Lane.

Only team to win 3 straight in Lane?

Miami. In 1967, 1982, & 1992.

You're the only ones that I can talk to about this, you guys.

I wouldn't classify this as a "fun" fact, tbh.

kiiiind of The Point.

oh, well.

You're the only ones that I can talk to about this, you guys.

I respect your humor, and I will upvote you for it!

This has been a record setting year for us..... in about the worst way possible

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My advice to our young players going forward:

VT '10, Born & Raised in the 804.
Rockin the Bakken.

I don't know what a Hokie is, but God is one of them!

Play defense like we did against the Noles!

VT '10, Born & Raised in the 804.
Rockin the Bakken.

Be interesting how the Defense shows up. I have been waiting for that to happen. Excuses has been in the game plan all season. Sad To say and I hope Corny gets out of Willis's way and let the kid do his thing. Fuente, You out there ??

Jack R.

Lol. I love when coaches get blamed for a player not living up to unreasonable expectations.

If a tree falls in Scott Stadium does it make a sound?

Seriously. If Corn let him sling the rock into zone coverage 60 times in a game, resulting in 5 picks against a triple covered first read, we would all be arguing about how the scheme should have been adjusted to get more one on one opportunities for said first read.

I genuinely feel Willis has been a success, but he's not Peyton Manning.

Jack Crow hitched his horse to Willis and he'll be goddamned if anything that goes wrong is Willis' fault.

The Orange and Maroon you see, that's fighting on to victory.

It must really tweak him that Ashby said the LBs are getting pointers from "54".

"We judge ourselves by our intentions and others by their behavior" Stephen M.R. Covey

“When life knocks you down plan to land on your back, because if you can look up, you can get up, if you fall flat on your face it can kill your spirit” David Wilson

Including the days we play the games, VT has 5 games in 30 days (10/25-11/23). UVA had an early bye and plays us on the road at the end of a 7 game in 42 days stretch, the week after they play at GT. Schedule-wise, this works out in our favor quite a bit. Please beat UVA.

Fake news!

The link provided for October 23rd shows us playing Cincinnati in the Military Bowl on December 31st and I don't see Wake Forest listed at all there? The updated one from 10/30 still shows us in the Military Bowl but does show Wake in the Armed Forces Bowl on December 23rd. https://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/ncaaf/2018/10/30/bowl-projections-...

Way to go Bimbo!