The 3-2 VT Hokies find themselves on the verge of not winning ten games in a season. They find themselves on the outside of the BCS picture, looking in. Losing to Pitt and Cincy, beating Georgia Tech and two cupcakes, all the while trying to develop an identity has taken it’s toll on the Hokies BCS chances this season. As they prepare to travel to UNC this Saturday, the number one goal is to return home 4-2 as they desperately try to right the ship before it’s too late.
UNC (3-2, and 0-1 in ACC play, having lost to Wake Forrest 28-27 a few weeks ago) is coming off a 66-0 domination of Idaho. For years under Butch Davis they had some of the best recruiting classes in the country. Now, with Davis gone and the program still under NCAA investigation for recruiting and academic violations, Tar Heels football is still very much in flux.
What to Watch For
UNC junior QB Bryn Renner is a Virginia native, the third best statistical passer in the ACC after FSU’s Manuel and Clemson’s Boyd, and has flown under the radar thus far this season. With over 1400 passing yards and 14 TD’s already this season his aim will be to keep the Hokie secondary on their heels all day long. After their struggles against Cincy the Hokie defensive backfield needs to show up against the Heels. If they miss tackles, drop assignments, and lay off receivers, Renner will torch the Hokies on Saturday.
In their two losses this season VT’s D has given up an average of 517 total yards. Pitt gashed the Hokie D on the ground while Cincy took to the air and abused the d-backs. Where is the defense we’ve gotten used to? All of the big plays by opposing offenses have turned the Hokie D into a liability, when normally they’ve been the catalyst to the team winning. Bud Foster doesn’t mince words when he says his D needs work. Against UNC they better be ready to compete or they’ll continue to get worked.
I won’t yell about the Hokie offensive line or the non-emergence of any viable tailback to take a load off of Logan Thomas; I’ve done that every week. Now, I look towards the coaching staff for answers. Murmurs of Beamer being passed his prime are starting already (premature, to say the least). More importantly it’s offensive coordinator Bryan Stinespring’s play calling that has come under fire. The offense rarely looks in rhythm, the skill players aren’t being put in position to make plays, and now Stinespring once again needs to either step his game up or be relieved of his duties, before it’s too late.
Call me crazy but I still have hope for this Hokie team. A win this weekend followed by another win over Duke next week will put them at 5-2 and 3-0 in the ACC. Let’s just hope the offense gets rolling and the defense finds itself again.
Prediction: VT 38 – UNC 28
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.