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Virginia Tech reeled off their sixth straight victory on Saturday, beating Pittsburgh 19 to 9. The final score was a little misleading, because of the Hokies inability to get into the endzone. The Hokies were well in control of this game and if they could have scored more touchdowns instead of field goals, then the score would have reflected that. If someone would have told me that Tech would be 6-1 going into their bye week, I wouldn’t have believed it. Yes, some of the wins haven’t been pretty, but you cannot knock the record. Last year it took the last game of the season to become bowl eligible, but this year it is a whole different story.
Offense Showed Some Signs
The offense was able to consistently move the ball down the field. Logan Thomas finished with 239 yards passing, one touchdown, and no interceptions on 19 for 34. The lone touchdown was thrown to true freshman Calvin Kline (hopefully this is the first of many to come in his career). This was another solid game for Thomas and the receiving core. Logan has been doing a great job of taking care of the football the past three weeks, by not throwing one interception. It seems like they are beginning to get a feel for each other and are having some success.
Ground Game Still Struggling
I wish the ground game could say the same as the air attack, but unfortunately once again they struggled. They accounted for 76 yards total as a team. This continues to be the one major problem for the offense. If Tech could find a way to run the ball with some consistency then our offense could have a chance to really get going. Hopefully this bye week can get the offensive line healthy and give the coaches some time to figure something out, because we cannot continue to be one dimensional going forward.
Kicking Game Steps Up
Cody Journell was three for four on the day, including kicks from 48, 37, 42, and 23 yards out. Besides his one lone miss, he had a solid day. It’s refreshing to see Cody bounce back with a great performance. The offense was able to move the ball fairly well, but we couldn’t score once we got down the field. I would have liked to see our offense score some more touchdowns so the score would have really reflected how great the performance was. But most importantly, we were able to win the game, and put points on the board when the opportunity was there, even if it was only three points.
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Defense Continued To Dominate
Virginia Tech’s defense once again showed everyone just how dominate they are. The Hokies finished the game with 8 sacks. This is the most sacks the Hokies have had in one game since 1999 (9), which ironically was also against Pittsburgh. Dadi Nicolas had three sacks while playing in a new role at whip linebacker. I personally liked the move for him. It allowed him to get onto the field without pulling some of the starters out. If anyone continues to doubt that our defense is the best in the nation, they better wake up and smell the roses. I just do not want to see our team get a little big headed and not play every game with the intensity they need to. I hope they continue to stay hungry and attack opposing teams.
A Much Needed Bye Week
The Hokies have this weekend off. The bye week could not come at a better time, unless it was before the Miami game, because of the injuries to the offensive line. There are a couple guys banged up there and this rest will do some good. Hopefully this bye week will also allow the coaches to find a way to get the run game going. Thomas has also had a few injuries bothering him, although they haven’t seemed to hinder him too much.
After the bye week the Duke Blue Devils come to Blacksburg. This is another game the Hokies should win and I like our chances coming out off a bye week, but we cannot take them too lightly. Duke is another team that can put up points if the defense doesn’t come ready to play. This means our offense is going to have to find a way to score more touchdowns, instead of kicking field goals. I think our team continues to improve every week and steady improvement is all I have wanted to see out of them this season. Are they where they could be? No, but I think they continue to take steps in the right direction.
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