2020 Coastal Path to the ACCCG

Since a lot of people want/expect for Tech to play in the ACCCG, I wanted to look at what not only our schedule looked like, but that of the other Coastal teams. Don't forget, we could go 11-1 and lose to another coastal team, and if they only had one other conference loss, they'd go, not us. I went down the list from the 2019 standings, listed the 2019 #conference wins, listed the conference opponents and my guess as to whether that team would win or lose against those opponents (or if it was a tossup).
For tossups, if there was an even number, I split them for anticipated 2020 wins, if there is an uneven number, I favored the loss.
I think our biggest challenge will be UNC. They also seem to have a relatively easy schedule for 2020. So think that is a must win for us to play in the ACCCG.
Feel free to contest my number of wins for each team (copy and paste the table with your W/L) – I'd love to hear other's thoughts.

Virginia (2019 6-2) (2020 3-5)
Clemson (L)
Duke (W)
GT (W)
Louisville (L) (don't think they'll have the firepower to take on what always seem like high scoring Louisville offense)
Miami (L) (a lot of talent on D, ? on O, think their D will hold them low enough for Miami to win given loss of Perkins)
North Carolina (L) (Sam Howell is a really good quarterback)
Pitt (W)
VT (L)

Virginia Tech (2019 5-3) (2020 7-1 I put us at 1-1 for the tossups)
GT (W)
Miami (T) (their D is strong, so the big question is with their O – if they choke we win, either way Miami always seems to play us hard)
BC (W)
LOLUVA (W) (Perkins gone, we win)
Duke (W)
NC (T) (Sam Howell gave us fits this year – if we can improve on the D-Line, Farley and Waller are healthy, and hopefully we get some good play at safety, we should win)
Pitt (W)
Louisville (W) (I think the strength of our defense and their usual lack of defense gives us the edge)

Pitt (2019 4-4) (2020 4-4)
FSU (T) No clue how good FSU will be next year
Miami (L) (I think the D wins this for Miami)
UNC (L)
Duke (W)
GT (W)
Syracuse (W)
VT (L)
UVA (T)

North Carolina (2019 4-4) (2020 6-2)
GT (W)
Pitt (W)
VT (L)
NCSt (W)
Duke (W)
Miami (T) (This matchup is between Miami's O and UNC's D)
UVA (W)
BC (W)

Miami (2019 4-4) (2020 6-2 but feel like this should be less, maybe an extra tossup goes against them)
GT (W)
Duke (W)
FSU (T) (based on how FSU did this year, I'd put an L here, but it's a rivalry game)
UNC (T)
Pitt (W)
UVA (W) (This one depends on what sort of offense UVA can put up without Perkins, don't think UVA
VT (T)
WF (T)

Duke (2019 3-5) (2020 2-6, but feel like Duke will get at least one more W)
UNC (L)
UVA (L)
VT (L)
WF (L)
GT (W)
Miami (L)
NCSt (W)
Pitt (T)

Georgia Tech (2019 2-6) (2020 1-7, although feel like they'll get at least one more W)
Duke (L)
Miami (L)
UVA (L)
UNC (L)
Pitt (L)
Syracuse (T)
VT (L)
Clemson (L)

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Comments

I think it will be between VT and UNC for the Coastal.

The most frustrating thing is that it feels like every year I look at the schedule and look at the Coastal and think "there is no reason we shouldn't win this -- all these teams have issues that can be exploited" and every year I am rudely reminded that we also fit that description to a T.

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

Unfortunately, I think with D'Eriq King Miami has firmly placed themselves back into the Coastal race. He is simply far too much of a playmaker, and their defense is unlikely to take a huge step back. A QB like King will cover for their offensive sluggishness/playcalling much like our dual threat QB's did during the Stinespring years.

Yeah, I thought about putting in a sentence about Miami with the addition King, but I won't believe in a Manny Diaz-led team until he gives me a reason to do so. So many "capable" QBs just gives Diaz more opportunities to screw up managing his team and locker room.

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

Bets on Diaz being around past the end of next season?

Here's the thing. Yes, many of the teams in this division have weaknesses that should be exploited. But, for some reason, our gameplanning doesn't do nearly a good enough job of exploiting it. If we had just attacked the hell out of UVa's weakness in the secondary, from the start of the game, forcing them to either sell out on the blitz, opening the screen, or selling out to stop the pass, opening up the running game, we'd have won that game going away. But we didn't.

For the life of me, I'll never understand why, as a program, we struggle so much with punishing teams that have a weakness. Its very much like the Orange Bowl against Kansas, when we whipped their ass with Ore to close out the first half, only to completely abandon the run the rest of the game. Sometimes, it seems like we get so wrapped up in trying to follow a plan, and trying to outsmart the opponent that we lose focus on the game and miss critical opportunities to expose and exploit what the defense is doing, and its been this way for a while, going back to the end of the Stinespring days under Beamer.

King Alum of the House Hokie, the First of His Name, Khal of the Turkey Legs, The rightful Heir to the Big Board, the Unbanned, Breaker of Trolls and Father of Gritty

We struggle so much, because the other team adjusts at halftime- or sooner to what we are doing moreso than the other way around. I also heard Fuente say that if you try to pass against 2 high safeties, you are a fool. so maybe UVA was showing 2 high safeties.

If he said that, then our passing attack is just not sophisticated enough to attack a defense. Yeah two high safety takes away the deep ball usually, but as French astutely pointed out in the film review, the flats were wide open all day long for some intermediate out/crossing routes. TEs would have plenty of space to work up the seams. Of course our offense though is just four verts, one read deep ball, if nothing there scramble drill.

Of course our offense though is just four verts, one read deep ball, if nothing there scramble drill.

comments like these make me wonder if anyone around here actually watches the games

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

I was just thinking the same. I can't remember the last time I saw us go over the top successfully.

My 2019 Season Challenge: only comment with Star Wars memes. (completed as of Nov. 29)

Yes, and there needs to be mid-game adjustment not just in play calling but technique as well. Feel out the aggressiveness of the gap fit/ shooting to adjust blocking techniques. They did a better job of this the second half of the season. They did a good job in quarters 1 and 2 in Miami at this but when Miami readjusted it evened out again.

Hokie Club member since 2017

My bet is that he meant, VT would struggle to throw against two high safeties with the QB that was playing. The deep out (anything outside the hash past 10 yards) and the middle of the field could certainly be worked if the route tree on a particular play was designed well and if the QB can accurately read what is happening with the safety movement.

Is it basketball season yet?

I could be wrong, but guess that once the coaching staff is comfortable with several things (making the right reads, accurate passes, etc.) that the play calling may get more aggressive. Fuente talks about expected outcomes, and the #1 expected outcome is not turning the ball over. I think the coaches are trying to build up a level of trust/confidence in the QB. I would assume that play calling involves both looking at what a defense gives you, but also understanding where your QB is at with his reads/progressions. Assuming HH starts next year (and finishes), it will still be the first time Fuente has had a QB for two whole seasons (hopefully that helps with offensive effectiveness as well).

If we had just attacked the hell out of UVa's weakness in the secondary, from the start of the game, forcing them to either sell out on the blitz, opening the screen, or selling out to stop the pass, opening up the running game, we'd have won that game going away. But we didn't.

I understand this take but personally believe it is slightly off the mark. Yes, UVA's secondary was a weakness because they didn't have experienced personnel as a result of injuries. However, UVA knew that as well and to address it they decided to mostly drop players into coverage and play a 4 man front. Now if you think about our offense, it is predicated on making the correct reads based on the numbers advantage. When the opponent is consistently rushing 4 and dropping everyone else into coverage, the numbers advantage tells the offense to run the ball. Well we ran the ball 45 times (compared to 30 passes), but we still only managed 3.8 yards per carry and struggled to break big runs. When we had to drop back in obvious passing situations, they were able to only rush their front 4 and generate significant pressure against our OL, which caused issues as Hooker struggled with limited time to make his reads against 7 man coverages (and Hooker is much more risk averse in passing compared to Willis).

On paper, I completely understand why it looks like we should've easily exploited their secondary. In practice, UVA schemed to cover that weakness by daring us to beat them at the line of scrimmage. I hate the result as much as everyone else but their game plan banked on their front 4 being able to control our offense, and it worked.

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"there is no reason we shouldn't win this -- all these teams have issues that can be exploited"

You're probably forgetting to include us in all the teams that have issues that can be exploited.

My 2019 Season Challenge: only comment with Star Wars memes. (completed as of Nov. 29)

Hard to argue this...Howell looks to be the real deal down there. Dazz and him seem to really have something special (insert obligatory "wish we got him to commit to the Good Guys" comment) rapport-wise.

Duke will be down without Harris at QB who accounted for 96.6% of their passing and 28.3% of their rushing. They also lose their top 2 tacklers, and both of their DTs

Never Forget #1 Overall Seed UVA 54, #64 UMBC 74

Also, UNC seems to have one head-scratching loss a year too

Never Forget #1 Overall Seed UVA 54, #64 UMBC 74

UNC is going to be a battle this year. That team has a lot of young talent and took us to the wire in Blacksburg this year. No question that game will be decisive for control for the division. But when I look at the schedule, at Louisville is going to be incredibly tough, and playing at Pitt has historically not gone in our favor. Miami is loaded with talent and if they can figure something out at QB, that also will be a tough out. I also think GT will be much improved as well.

Right now, I can't confidently look at our schedule and predict a 7-1 conference record. I think 5-3 is much more realistic. Still a lot of questions on our defense that I'm not sure will be sorted out in one offseason with a brand new staff still getting adjusted, and until further notice our offense has to prove to me that they can actually score when it matters and put a game away. I still see 8-4 with all the questions.

I think I'm counting on Farley and Waller, then getting improvement out of our D-Line with Teerlinck coaching - basically having a really solid D. From there, I compare offenses, and while we may not exploit everybody's weaknesses, I like having Herbert coming it, we've got TT and TR, HH coming back, Mitchell at TE. Just feel like we have a lot of solid weapons - hopefully we can make the best use out of those and have a couple other receivers step up. It'll also be interesting to see what an offseason of strength and conditioning will do for King. And what we can muster up as a power back. Hopefully that's not just O&M glasses...

I'm legitimately concerned about the loss of Kill. By all indications, he came in and really improved our coaching and commitment to the run game. I worry we aren't going to continue that emphasis and will be relying fully on jet sweeps and screens for our bread and butter yardage. I'm also concerned about the D because we got rid of Mitchell because he couldn't recruit well enough, but by all indications he was a very solid CB coach. We hire a safeties coach to replace him who may not have any experience coaching corners. Plus for all the potential JHam has, safety play was very disappointing this past season after we thought it would greatly improve. I do have hope that Teerlinck and Claeys can improve the play of the DL and LBs because of their experience. But a whole lot of maybes and ifs at this point.

Kill was a big help. Hopefully, having him for most of the year at least impacted our offense running knowledge and scheme and we can pull on it going forward.

The Jet sweep is everyone's hated play but at the end of the day the offense really just uses it for the motion it creates. It has to be called 1-2 times to keep the D honest and open up the rest of the scheme. The timing of calling it could VASTLY be improved on. We all agree on that.

Mitchell, in my opinion had a some question marks. Former DB's and Players were highly critical of his ability to properly coach technique. BHill was probably the most vocal. Obviously something happened between the year prior and this past year where the DB's dramatically improved. Was it coaching or athletic ability and another year older making up for lack of technique? That will be interesting to see...

At the end of the day staff continuity is an under rated thing so it will be an interesting year on D. No doubt.

I personally don't really care what the rest of the division looks like. Its Year 5 under this coaching staff, its time to show the results. This is a make or break year in Blacksburg, and if we don't win the Coastal, we probably should be looking for a new coaching staff come December. If we don't win it because Miami or UNC suddenly became very good and became a block in our way, that's even more damning to our staff that we are being passed by programs with a coaching staff that has only been in place for a season or two.

So yeah, I don't really care what the path is. The only acceptable result here is to win.

King Alum of the House Hokie, the First of His Name, Khal of the Turkey Legs, The rightful Heir to the Big Board, the Unbanned, Breaker of Trolls and Father of Gritty

I agree the expectation should be to get beat by Clemson in the ACCCG; however, if UNC and Miami wind up ranked next year and one of them squeezes into the ACCCG ahead of us on a tie breaker or something like that I wont be calling for heads to roll.

If the coastal is obviously the worst division in P5 football, like 2019, and we cant win it... then yea... change has to happen.

you don't care what the rest of the division looks like, but if Miami or UNC become good then it's even more damning for fuente?

pls help me understand

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

We've had 5 years to get this figured out. We need to be the ones stepping up and rising above the Coastal Muck this season. If we do not, I have zero faith we ever will be able to do so with this staff, especially if other programs start to rise above us.

King Alum of the House Hokie, the First of His Name, Khal of the Turkey Legs, The rightful Heir to the Big Board, the Unbanned, Breaker of Trolls and Father of Gritty

ah i see. I misunderstood what you meant by "i don't care what the division looks like". it's more that it doesn't change your expectations of the coaching staff in year 5

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

Yeah, exactly.

The perceived strength of the rest of the division is meaningless to me. The expected result this year is a Coastal title, and quite frankly, in my opinion this staff has run out of excuses on not getting that done. The stunt with Baylor last week has only solidified this stance on my part.

King Alum of the House Hokie, the First of His Name, Khal of the Turkey Legs, The rightful Heir to the Big Board, the Unbanned, Breaker of Trolls and Father of Gritty

So 7-1 with a close loss to UNC.. is that considered a failure ? Team could have a great year and still not win the division. I don't think we can stay ACCCG or you're out. I think 7-1 is showing you that they know what they are doing.

there's some people who are only gonna be happy if we win the coastal. If the whole division sucks and we can't win it, then it's "we cant even win the worst division in college football and i have no faith in this coaching staff", but if UNC and Miami and VT each have 7-1 years and we lose out on a flukey tiebreaker, it will be "we've been surpassed by newer coaches who know how to turn around a program and build a team and this only gives them even more momentum and i have no faith in this coaching staff"

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

I think everyone is just tired of excuses. For some reason, VT needs 4+ years to 'establish relationships' with kids to get them to commit to Vt while others don't. We need 4+ years to 'get out guys' while others don't. For us, a change in a position coach cripples is for a few seasons, while it's commomplace everywhere else.
If it's not one of those, revenue is a catch-all.

At some point, our coaching staff must be accountable, and it is possible we may not have a staff good enough to get it done long term. This year is telling.

I agree! I think it's mostly because our fanbase has never had to adjust to "the new normal" of college football

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

This is the Coastal, so I expect chaos. Expectations are Duke and loluva take steps back. GiT is still rebuilding a high school offense. I fully expect Pitt pull some upsets and to get upset. I think it does come down to us vs UNC. My maroon and orange glasses say Fuente takes a step to endearing himself to fans and gets us back to the ACCCG. However, I think UNC might take it. Experienced QB, not playing Clemson, easy ACC schedule.

I would love to have some of what you are drinking this morning, what have you seen to prove we will be that good in conference play? Losing our top rb and TE to draft and top WR to the transfer portal (possibly), and our D is still gonna be swiss cheese and we are breaking in an all new D staff. Plus corney still on board. I likethe optimism but i feel we will be struggling to be bowl eligible again this year though our OOC should help outside of the lions.

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:
β€œI served in the United States Navy"

KCCO

What i have seen: 5 returning OL with a minimum of a whole season each worth of starts, one who was just named by 247sports as the top returning OL in the ACC, either a returning starting QB in Hooker or BB will takeover snaps from a QB who started 8 games (pretty exciting), and 2 RB transfers who seem to be marked upgrades.

on defense, all but one starter is returning off a defense that jumped 45 spots from 2018; including pitching two shutouts prior to the last two games that shall remain nameless.

Loss of Keene hurts. The other guys not so much imo. The talent on our team is the same or better than last year and a whole lot more experienced. It is not unreasonable to win the coastal with what we have returning. That's why this is all on Fuente - he has his guys and they've seen action. The tools are there now he has to deliver. I believe he will.

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

I predict that a team that has only won the Coastal once in the last seven seasons will win it this year.

My 2019 Season Challenge: only comment with Star Wars memes. (completed as of Nov. 29)

HOT TAKES!!!!!

Virginia Tech (2019 5-3) (2020 7-1)
GT (W)
Miami (W)
We get them at home this year and I think our defense will slow them down enough to give our offense room to pull this one out
BC (W)
LOLUVA (W) (Perkins gone, we win)
Agreed, they lose a lot and don't have enough talent waiting to make up for it
Duke (W)
UNC (L)
On the road, I don't think our DL will be able to pressure Howell enough to keep him from picking us apart. Long UNC drives will keep our offense off the field and keep us off the scoreboard.
Pitt (W)
Louisville (W
) Even though we are at UL, they don't have much of a history of tough home crowd. I also don't think they will have the depth to keep up in many of their games. This game could also have many different scores depending on whether it is scheduled early or late in the season.

Whatever. It was one bad year.

Seasonal Brew means High ABV for football season and standard the rest of the year.

D end upgrades this coming year would do wonders for our d.

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

My guess is we are 6-2 in conference with a L to either Miami or UNC and a typical one that gets away. What I dont know is whether or not UNC or Miami should be expected to do better than 5-3.

I say it's between us and Carolina.

UVA loses almost all its offense with Perkins gone.
Miami trended the wrong way toward the end of last year and just muddied their QB waters even more.
Pitt might be about the same this year.
GT still needs about a year before they become decent again.
Duke will most likely not scare anybody.

No, I *don't* want to go to the SEC. Why do you ask?

We don't love dem Hoos.

Miami clarified their QB situation. King is their Perkins

Until maybe Manny Diaz decides he isn't!

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

^ Exactly this. Tate Martell was also supposed to be Miami's Bryce Perkins.
No reason to expect stability in a constantly unstable situation.

No, I *don't* want to go to the SEC. Why do you ask?

We don't love dem Hoos.

Martell was unproven at best at the college level. King has proven what he can do, and it's a lot.

Eh. Is it really a lot? He had a great year in a G5 conference, and they played a really easy schedule in 2018. He really struggled this year against better teams than their conference, prompting the redshirt.

Just remember how great we thought LT3 was with all the pieces around him, and then the drop off the next year.

I agree with your point about having the pieces is key but just because he played in a less respected conference shouldn't discount him. Jimmy Garoppolo and Tony Romo both played for FCS Eastern Illinois. Eastern Illinois would have gotten stomped by most P5 quality teams due to the matchups at every offensive position besides QB.

Hokie Club member since 2017

Never in my wildest dreams would I expect to see the names of D-Erik King, Bryce Perkins, Tate Martell, Logan Thomas, Tony Romo and Jimmy G all in the same thread.

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

GT (W).
Miami (W). I still have zero faith in that staff.
BC (W). We should have killed them in 2019.
UVA (W). I hope we run it up.
Duke (W). We always play well in Durham.
UNC (L). Unless Howell hits a sophomore slump, I see no way we win this game in Chapel Hill.
Pitt (L). Heinz Field.
Louisville (W). The random game against a decent team we look like world beaters in.

That puts us at 6-2 in the conference with both losses coming to Coastal opponents. This means that we probably don't make it to the ACCCG assuming Pitt and UNC both lose less than three games. Until this staff gives me reason to be confident, I'm going to lower my expectations.

Marshall University student.
Virginia Tech fanatic.

This is how I'm seeing things shaking out as well.

I can see Pitt with 3 ACC losses next year. Not that I wish this on him, but Howell's injury status will pretty much dictate if we can beat UNCheat this year. If we get them late and he's a little nicked up, we should be able to put them away.

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)..

@UNC will be tough....unless it's raining, then we will blow them out

I expect VT to win it but reality might be to flip a 3 sided coin between VT, UNC, and Miami. (thank goodness Perkins graduated)

Hokie Club member since 2017

If our front 7 on D doesn't get better about getting off of blocks and applying pressure, we will be stuck back at 8-4. Not being negative Nancy, but we need some dogs- and right now I don't see them . Defense must either become more aggressive with blitzes or hope someone off the bench can step up to get some production. Hopefully offense can replace the Keene, McClease, Hazelton production with our bench strength and transfers. Offense was putting up 30 points per game with Hooker.

Gonna hold off til the ACC schedule comes out. Unc and Miami (now that they have those transfers coming in) will be the toughest outs. Thankfully they're both home games (unc and duke are always home games). If we catch them at the right point in the season, I think we can win both

EDIT: I like getting miami late and UNCheat mid season, actually. Given how Miami has been doing, it seems like the further into the season they get, the more things fall apart. UNCheat will be dangerous, but at least we'll have had September to get our shit together.

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)..

There's so many unknowns for VT, I'm not sure how anyone can confidently say we'll win the coastal.

Questions/Unknowns:

  • New defensive staff with a first time DC, who might be tweaking the scheme.
  • Losing our go to redzone target to the portal
  • Will the new RB's be able to produce?
  • How will our players respond to Fuente thinking about leaving?

Reasons for Optimism:

  • 18(?) returning starters (including possibly the best VT QB of the last 5 years)
  • Brock is eligible, probably the best OL in recent VT history

Twitter me

I'd be shocked if we didn't improve running the ball. Herbert isn't like a recruit coming out of high school who has a level of unknown about him. He is a proven P5 back who has put up big games against P5 competition. Same with Raheem Blackshear, and he did it for one of the worst and least talented P5 teams in the country. Plus, King is a known quantity who should be bigger and better next year.

If we aren't better running the ball with all our OL coming back + Brock Hoffman then we need to fire our entire offensive staff because that would be a catastrophic development failure.

their D is strong, so the big question is with their O – if they choke we win,

So turned on

Are we not doing phrasing?

Never Forget #1 Overall Seed UVA 54, #64 UMBC 74

Wonder if there are some new wrinkles in the D?

I've got a lot of questions about winning after they choke.

Since a lot of people want/expect for Tech to play in the ACCCG,

I stopped reading after this. I'm tired of people telling me that Virginia Tech shouldn't expect to win the coastal. If our goal isn't to win the coastal, what is it?

I have no idea why my username is VT_Warthog.

Arkansas blew a 24-0 lead in the Belk Bowl.

There is a huge difference between "our goal is to win" and "based on everything we know about these teams, this is the most likely realistic outcome"

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

That shouldn't change our goals.

I have no idea why my username is VT_Warthog.

Arkansas blew a 24-0 lead in the Belk Bowl.

since when is a goal the same thing as an expectation?

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

It says "want/expect" which covers both.

My 2019 Season Challenge: only comment with Star Wars memes. (completed as of Nov. 29)

I get it - maybe bad phrasing on my part. My question that I was trying to answer was if there was another school with an easy schedule in the coastal as well (easy cross conference opponents). Looks like UNC is the one. That's why I said we could go 11-1 and lose to Carolina, and if they somehow only lost one other conference game, we'd lose out. I HIGHLY doubt that's what we'd see, but if we're both at 2 conference losses, they still go (even if we're 10-2). I have the expectation as well, so don't think I'm being soft. Just that if we're 11-1 and don't go (which also means we would have beat both Penn St. and LOLUVA), I'd still be happy.

Here's one known:

Our schedule, even with Penn St on the docket, sucks.

Its a put up or shut up year for this staff.

King Alum of the House Hokie, the First of His Name, Khal of the Turkey Legs, The rightful Heir to the Big Board, the Unbanned, Breaker of Trolls and Father of Gritty

Sadly, Miami has an even easier schedule than us.

It seems like there's more unknowns about their schedule. Will Wake improve again next year (who would have pegged them doing as well as they did?)? Will FSU be as laughable next year? Can they actually perform on offense (not their schedule, but it affects how they do against the schedule)?

I'm just going along with the narrative and rationale presented.

Yeah, and 7 of the bottom 10 are ACC schools, who just happen to play, uh, pretty much each other. Coincidence? I think not.

Nailed it. We can predict that the ACC is going to be terrible but it's not actually a known. That SOS is clearly predicated on the ACC sucking, which is why 11 ACC teams are ranked 40 or lower. If the ACC was much improved, then it would quickly change (not arguing that the ACC hasn't been weak recently).

For OOC games, Alabama plays USC, Georgia State, Kent State, and UT Martin. Virginia Tech plays Penn State, Middle Tennessee State, Liberty, and North Alabama. As a fan, I understanding wanting to play better opponents but the games we control are about the same quality.

Joffrey, Cersei, Ilyn Payne, the Hound, Jeff Jagodzinski, Paul Johnson, Pat Narduzzi.

True - we (the ACC and us VA Tech) need to start winning against the one good out of conference opponent. I have a coworker who went to Penn State and loves PSU football. She also thinks her conference is hot shit. I would absolutely love for Tech to win by more than 2 touchdowns against them.

I think all of FBS P5 football needs more OOC games. You can easily flip the coin and say well SEC teams play a hard schedule because they are all great but is that also true? The rankings... everything is a beauty contest.

Hokie Club member since 2017

Yeah, there's been a few years where the Big 10 was good because they were the Big 10 and not anything else (I had checked out of conference opponents for most of the good teams a year or two and they lost a good number) but it's Penn State and OSU and Michigan, they HAVE to be good, ammiright?

Personally I am burned out on playing the ACC Coastal schedule and wish we had more variety within the ACC at the very least. It's completely insane that next year will be our first ACC game against Louisville. I do understand the desire to maintain regional match ups and rivalries but over time conference realignment has ended or degraded a lot of those outside of the major ones. The most important change I'd like to see in scheduling is no more FCS opponents and even limiting games against G5.

Joffrey, Cersei, Ilyn Payne, the Hound, Jeff Jagodzinski, Paul Johnson, Pat Narduzzi.

I agree. I think playing the same Coastal teams over and over is starting to get stale.

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

Its a put up or shut up year for this staff.

We said that about 2019 and this time next year there will be people saying it about 2021

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

Yeah, but it's not the same at all. 2019 we were coming off of a disastrous 2018, and "put up or shut up" meant "improve a lot or shut up", not "win the coastal or shut up". I don't think the majority of fans expected we'd win the coastal in 2019 - certainly the preseason media didn't. The team did improve, in a huge way, relative to 2018.

2020 is different. We're coming off of a 2019 season filled with positive improvement and young talent. Preseason media will view us as the favorite (or maybe runner up) in the coastal, and with good reason. We really should be able to win it this year. Even though UNC and Miami will be good, we should be able to win it.

Our defense improved tremendously in 2019. Our offense improved when Hooker took over but the improvement was less drastic. And now Bud is gone. Remains to be seen how that will effect the season. But we have had a ridiculously easy schedule for the last few years and 2020 is no different. Penn State is really the only tough team we have to play.

VT should absolutely be in the ACCCG. Even after a pretty bad 2018 we had lots of returning talent and experience (which everyone loves to point out every year as a reason to be optimistic) and a super easy schedule and I just plainly disagree that expecting anything less than an appearance in the ACCCG in 2019 was unreasonable. We should have made it to Charlotte and we didn't.

Any time a team like UVA wins the Coastal that is a pretty clear indication the entire division is rubbish. VT could have, and I think should have, won the division in 2019. That is why it is so critical to actually do so in 2020. Because if we don't, then other teams in the division are going to continue improving (lets be honest, they can't get much worse) and if VT isn't also improving VT is never going to win the division again. Not with these coaches.

But here's what will happen in 2020. VT will find a way to lose 4 games (2 or 3 in the ACC) and the coaches will come up with every reason/excuse under the sun as to why it's okay this year but we'll be better next year. After going 8-4 again, and probably losing another bowl game, we'll be right back to where we are this time next year. Talking about how 2021 will be the "make or break" year for this staff. The last 2 years have been "make or break" seasons and despite breaking we're all sitting around supposed to believe that they're going to magically fix everything in one off-season? I don't buy it. Every off-season VT is hit with "challenges" which the coaches obviously struggle to overcome and then everyone starts to talk about next year, when we don't have "challenges' anymore we'll be really good! Look out! Those challenges aren't going away. They'll be there every year. And if these coaches couldn't overcome them the last year or two why is everyone so confident they'll be able to in the future?

I liked Fuente when he was hired. I thought he was a great catch. However, I've been extremely disappointed with how VT has performed in his first 4 years. We looked great in 2016 when we had stellar athletes who were coached up by the previous staff. But offensively we have been back-sliding since 2016 and I haven't seen any measurable progress on that side of the ball. Our defense took a couple steps back when the talent dried up but Bud Foster showed why he's the best in the country in 2019 with an incredible improvement despite all the challenges he faced. And yeah, the defense wasn't perfect by any means, but given what he had to work with he's done way more with way less relative to Cornelson.

I hope that Fuente finally puts it all together. I hope that our offense finally starts to look a little bit like what we expected when he was hired. I hope JHam kills it on defense. I just have a lot of doubts, particularly about the offense, given that we have 4 years of hard evidence suggesting these coaches aren't cut out for coaching at this level. We'll see.

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

Here's a question that I never thought I'd ever formulate...

Anybody know how to calculate how much our schedule would have improved if we still had ECU on the schedule?

No, I *don't* want to go to the SEC. Why do you ask?

We don't love dem Hoos.

Not as much as keeping Michigan.

Looking at Duke's schedule since they are two spots ahead of us and also in the Coastal...

Their non-divisional opponents and the counterparts on our schedule:
-Middle Tennessee (plays both of us)
-Elon (North Alabama)
-Charlotte (Liberty)
-Notre Dame (Penn State)
-WF and NC State (BC and Louisville)

Most of those teams either look comparable or average out. I'd say that most of the difference in Duke's and VT's SOS comes from the VT/Duke game.

Swapping North Alabama for ECU might make our schedule slightly better than Duke's, but I have a feeling that a lot of those teams in the bottom half are not separated by a lot, so even a small change to the schedule could swing us by a lot of spots, making it look better than it is.

Forgot all about Michigan. THAT would have been great, if only for perception.

No, I *don't* want to go to the SEC. Why do you ask?

We don't love dem Hoos.

How the hell is GT number four? Do they play Georgia and Clemson?

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

They do. They also play Notre Dame.

Those two are annual games for them

King Alum of the House Hokie, the First of His Name, Khal of the Turkey Legs, The rightful Heir to the Big Board, the Unbanned, Breaker of Trolls and Father of Gritty