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VA Tech vs. ECU: Cupcake Competition
Posted By Frank Sullivan On Sep 7 2011 @ 10:30 pm In Virginia Tech | 1 Comment
That pretty much sums up Virginia Tech’s dismantling of FCS (Div. II) opponent Appalachian State Saturday afternoon in Blacksburg. The Mountaineers of App State have been one of the better FCS programs, but Tech made them look like a much lesser opponent from the word go.
New starting running back, junior David Wilson ran for 162 yards and three touchdowns…in the first half, and started the season-and the game off with a bang. After an App State fumble that gave the Hokies the ball on their own twenty, Wilson took his first carry as the starting back to the house.
“He told me I was getting the first carry and I told him I didn’t have to hear the second play because I was taking it to the grid…but I didn’t think that would really happen.” A joking Wilson said after the game.
Still, this cupcake of a game was important for the Hokies. They’re breaking in new young players at many positions most importantly quarterback. Red shirt sophomore Logan Thomas was efficient and poised in his first action as Tech’s new QB (9-19 149 yards 2 TDs), but there is room for improvement.
Now the Hokies set their sights on their next opponent: East Carolina.
ECU has given Tech trouble in recent years (beating them in ’08). Tech must be careful with the ball and put pressure on ECU’s spread offense attack. They don’t want to give Thomas too much responsibility just yet, so look for them to run the ball a lot with Wilson and backup RB Josh Oglesby. Look for them to try to knock the Pirates out of the game early, much the same way they did against App State.
Tech is still very much a work in progress, one shouldn’t read too much into the Week 1 victory, however dominating it was. New skill players need time to acclimate to their roles, especially Thomas who threw the ball well sometimes, and looked lost and too eager to run at others. If Tech can run the ball successfully on Saturday it would help Thomas get comfortable, and put him in easier situations; if the running game falters we may find out a lot about the young QB.
Virginia Tech set a precedent in recent years by playing tough games (normally on neutral fields) to start the season (Boise State, USC, Bama). They did that to test their team and were on the losing end each time. This season they’ve done the opposite by selecting easier opponents in an attempt to develop the team and build momentum going into conference play. ECU isn’t a team they can overlook, but if they play their game they should be fine.
This game is just another step toward the Hokies ultimate goal of making noise on a National scale.
Prediction: VT 42- ECU 24
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