After such a tumultuous first eight games of the season who would’ve thought that the Virginia Tech Hokies (4-4, 2-2 in the ACC) would still be in position to make a run at the ACC Championship game? Furthermore, the Canes from Miami (4-4, 3-2 in the ACC) have had just as, if not more of a rocky first eight games of 2012. Both teams have lost games they should have won, both have won close and late, and most importantly both squads are full of talented young players still trying to put everything together.
With a win VT will put themselves in contention to win the Coastal as long as they win their last four games (all ACC games: Miami, FSU, BC, and UVA). A loss will all but eliminate the Hokies. Miami has, without a doubt, played a much harder schedule than the Hokies (with losses to both # 3 KSU and #4 Notre Dame). They’ve also put themselves in the mix to win the division, if they can win out (last four games: VT, UVA, USF, Duke). Needless to say, this is a very important game for both teams.
This will be the first of two straight Thursday night games for Virginia Tech, they’ll host Florida State up in Blacksburg next Thursday. For now, they’ll head down to Miami to try and keep their slim championship hopes alive. After getting squashed by Clemson 38-17 in their last game the Hokies will hope to come out and show some signs of rhythm on offense and a mean-streak on D. This has not been the same Hokie aura that the ACC and Hokie fans have gotten used to over the last ten or so seasons. They’ve been dominated at the point of attack, anemic on offense, and even bad on special teams (almost sacrilege in Hokie Country).
I’ve said it each and every big game this season (the Hokies have only won one, maybe two tough games this season: GT in OT and the comeback against Duke): if the Hokies aim to be more than an alsoran this season they need to step up and make a statement in primetime. Winning at Miami on Thursday night would be a great start.
What to Watch For
Logan, Logan, Logan…For lack of a better term Logan Thomas has been…bad this season. At the end of the day his stats will suggest he played better than he really did in most games. He’s been inaccurate and indecisive, all the while under constant pressure from opposing defenses. VT won games on his arm and legs last year. Yes he had a better team around him with more play makers, but that shouldn’t excuse his fall from grace this year. If the Hokies are to stand any chance of turning their season around it will start and end with Thomas. Look for him to either play HUGE in a win tonight, or struggle in a loss.
Prediction: The Hokies will keep it close through the third quarter, but Miami makes just enough plays down the stretch to win a close game; thus ending once and for all the Hokies chances at a trip to the Chip.
Miami 42 - VT 33
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.