When Virginia Tech (9-1,6-1) and UVA (8-3,5-2) clash Saturday afternoon in Charlottesville it’ll be more than bragging rights on the line. For the first time since Tech joined the ACC, UVA can not only knock the Hokies out of the ACC Championship game with a win, but spring-board themselves into the title match against Clemson.
It’s been a weird season all around college football. The BCS, with the exception of LSU’s continued stellar play, is in shambles. To date there are only two undefeated teams in the nation (LSU and Houston) and only LSU will play for the national championship. So it comes down to which team gets to play the Tigers, what one-loss team is most deserving? Every one-loss team in the nation is chomping at the bit for a shot at the Tigers, and remarkably the Hokies are right in the mix.
Now ranked 5th in the BCS the Hokies will be moving to at least 4th by next weeks standings with Arkansas losing to LSU Friday evening. All the Hokies need to do is take care of business against the Cavaliers, but that might be a tougher task than they think.
The Virginia Cavaliers are having a resurgent season under head coach Mike London. He’s got them playing tough defense and running the ball very well on offense. They’ve recruited extremely well in London’s first year on campus and will be a force to reckon with for years to come. The question is: do they have the firepower to keep up with the Hokies explosive offense or the grit to stay with the Hokies D?
I think we’re a year away from this game being a true slug-fest, for now the Cavs will hope the Hokies have an off-day offensively and the game is close late in the fourth so they can play spoiler.
It’s been a trend this year in college football for favored teams to lose games they’re supposed to win. See: Oklahoma-Texas Tech, OK State-Iowa State, Oregon-USC, or even GT-UVA. Virginia Tech has played one bad game since their loss to Clemson (the 14-10 sinker at Duke). It’s very plausible that the Hokies will look at their standing in the BCS, look forward to the rematch with Clemson, and forget they have one more game to win before any of that is important.
Coach Beamer has done a great job of getting his team prepared and keeping them level-headed all season. Do they have a let-down in them? Or is Logan Thomas the best QB in the ACC and he’s out to show the nation?
Somehow, some way, the Hokies have gone through this season with only one loss. They weathered the storm that was an inexperienced QB, they rounded the defense into a top-5 unit again, and they’ve run the ball with power and speed better than almost any team in the country. They might not have a realistic shot at a National Championship but a chance for a mulligan for the Clemson loss and another Orange Bowl appearance are definite possibilities.
Look for the Hokies to play inspired football as the Cavs keep it close in the first half but can’t keep up late in the game.
Prediction: VT 35 – UVA 21
About the Author
Written by Frank Sullivan
Frank is a graduate of Old Dominion University, sports fan, author, and founder of TheBloosh.com. He's been working with prosportsblogging.com since April 2011, and has covered the Chicago Bulls, Baltimore Ravens, Virginia Tech Hokies Football, and the Washington Wizards. Frank can be reached @franksullivan on twitter.