The Hokie defense went above and beyond the call of duty against the Miami Hurrcanes last Saturday. But it's the offense that's been getting most of the headlines this week. Some people are saying Ryan Williams should be a Heisman candidate, others say Tyrod Taylor has turned a corner, a few others claim Bryan Stinespring has figured out how to run an offense. I'm not completely buying into any of those statements until this month is over. After this week's game against Duke we run a pretty decent gauntlet against BC, GT and UNC. Until then, here's what's going on around the Hokies and the ACC.
Hokie Beat Writers
Bryan Stinespring’s mea culpa (Darryl Slater)
"Stinespring’s players want to continue that success in the regular season’s final eight games, starting Saturday at Duke, a game the sixth-ranked Hokies (3-1) ought to win. However Stinespring’s mea culpa affects that goal – and this seems difficult to measure – his words earned admirers and raised eyebrows."
Taylor Adds New Dimension With Legs (Mark Viera)
"Quarterback Tyrod Taylor earned the nickname "T-Mobile" for his highlight-reel moments running the football. But at times this season, he has seemed hesitant to break the pocket and make plays with his legs. In Saturday’s 31-7 win over Miami, Taylor added a dimension to Virginia Tech’s offense by rushing for 75 yards on 10 carries. He kept the Hurricanes defense on its heels and was never sacked."
Hokies clean up in ACC awards (Nathan Warters)
"Worilds was a pain in the Hurricanes’ backside for most of the game. According to official stats, Worilds had 1.5 sacks and six total tackles. Tech’s coaches credited him with three sacks and eight total tackles (six solo). Either way, he had a great game. Worilds’ second-quarter sack of UM quarterback Jacory Harris was Reggie White-esque. The 6-2, 240-pound end bullrushed 6-7, 307-pound tackle Matt Pipho and knocked him to the ground to get to Harris."
Oh, Oglesby (Kyle Tucker)
"Did you know Virginia Tech has tailbacks not named Ryan Williams? I know, I know ... it’s easy to forget. Williams has been nothing short of spectacular in his first four games as a Hokie. BUT there’s another guy in the backfield who, in limited action, has been busy trying to make you remember him. No, not that other electric freshman, David Wilson. I’m talking about sophomore Josh Oglesby. Oh, yeah, THAT guy. He has carried the ball just 25 times in four games, but he is making the most of every tote."
Tech can’t take Duke lightly (Randy King)
"Tech had its hands full with the pesky Devils last season in Lane. The Hokies trailed 3-0 before scoring a touchdown with 38 seconds left in the first half, and got an interception return from Macho Harris with 83 seconds left in the game to emerge with a 17-3 victory over the 17-point underdog visitors."
Rashad Carmichael on his late father's influence (Norm Wood)
"Last Friday, I led a story about all the missed tackles and big plays Tech's defense had surrendered in the first three games with an anecdote involving Carmichael and his father. Carmichael told me he still always hears his father's voice criticizing him whenever he makes a mistake on the field. Carmichael considers the voice a friendly reminder to constantly work on improving his game, as opposed to a nagging presence. Bernard passed away in the summer of 2008 of a heart attack, weeks before Rashad made his first start in the season-opener against East Carolina."
The difference between 2003 and 2009 (The Football Girl)
"And before I start, let me say this: 2003 VT/Miami is my all time best football experience. Loudest crowd EVER, a sense of a team on a mission, the crowd working as part of the game, wow, good memories. That game was why I love college football. But Saturday’s game showed me why this game was perhaps even better."
College Football Viewing Guide Week 5 (Beer Control Offense)
"It's doook, they are hurting, they suck and VT has their mojo back that they left in Miami after the Orange Bowl."
Game Preview vs. Duke (Tech SuperFans)
"Yes, Duke comes from a pair of states that have never produced a sustained powerhouse in Division I college football. Yes, Duke only completed two passes against Virginia Tech in last season's game. Yes, Virginia Tech turned the ball over five times in the 2008 contest, and still won handily. But you can't add all that together and come to a conclusion that the Hokies can just take Duke lightly and look onward to later contests against Boston College and Georgia Tech."
ACC and Opponents
The ACCSports.com Podcast (ACC Sports Journal)
"This week Joe has a long list of issues that are really ticking him off. So Jim indulges him in a long podcast in which Joe releases a large amount of anger."
Did you know? (Annette)
"Virginia Tech’s first four opponents are a combined 11-0 in games not played against the Hokies: Alabama 3-0 (4-0 overall); Marshall 3-0 (3-1 overall); Nebraska 3-0 (3-1 overall); and Miami 2-0 (2-1 overall). Marshall, Nebraska and Miami all suffered their lone loss to the Hokies, who are ranked sixth in the country in the AP poll with a Sagarin rating of No. 3 and a national strength of schedule ranking of four."
Useful yardage (Instead of Texting)
"No ACC running back illustrates that better than Maryland’s Da’Rel Scott. Scott looks like one of the better running backs in the ACC. Through four games, he’s fourth in the conference in rushing, with 297 yards. He’s averaging more than 5.7 yards per carry, third among ACC backs with at least 45 carries. Scott has put up two 100-yard games in the season’s first four weeks. Look a little deeper, though, and it’s clear Scott’s not as effective as his standard statistics suggest. Scott is a classic boom-and-bust back. Nearly 40% of his season yardage total came from just three carries."
OTB’s Thursday Pick’Em Post (On The B.Rink)
"Against good to semi-alright offenses, the Devils give up the points and the Hokies have seemed to find something in the last couple weeks."
Guerilla Grilling (Block-C)
"Grilling is something that everyman, no matter the sexuality or manliness, should at least be halfway decent at. If not, then you’re wasting your damn life. Go out and get yourself schooled up on it. I don’t claim to be king, but I’m pretty darned decent and I have a great method that works out very well. Remember that it’s not only how you grill, but what you’re grilling with that makes a difference as well."
Ok, I'm gonna say it (From The Rumble Seat)
"While lots of things came together this weekend, our red zone offense is still alarmingly bad. Right now, a team like VPI scares the crap out of me. Ask Nebraska or any other team that can only add points in multiples of 3 (which, sadly enough, we are having trouble doing) - you are going to lose close games if you cannot squeeze every possible point out of TD opportunities when they present themselves. We are currently 100th in RZO right now according to NCAA stats and that, ladies and gentlemen, is not going to cut it."
Stuff Only I Care About
Bottle Openers Of Our Lives (Troy Nunes Is An Absolute Magician)
"Wife: YOU STUPID SON-OF-A-BITCH. Gas prices are rising, the economy is in the toilet, we can barely get through our utility bills, our rent is going up, little Joshy can't afford a new baseball mitt and you thought it would be a good idea to pay SEVENTY-MOTHER-FUCKING-DOLLARS FOR A BOTTLE OPENER!?!?!?"
Is it important to go into the playoffs "hot"? (Over the Monster)
"Looking back, there doesn't seem to be any advantage to going into the playoffs "hot". Only in 2004 did the hottest team at the end of the season, the Boston Red Sox, go on to win a championship. The 2000 MFY were one of the worst teams to ever win a WS. Anaheim did not finish the season strong in 2002, but still won it all. In 2006, the Tigers backed into the playoffs and still made it to the WS. Detroit lost to an awful Cardinal team that lost 10 of their final 14 games, and only managed 83 wins for the year. "
Pat LaFontaine Q & A: DBTB Talks to an All-Time Great (Die By The Blade)
"One of the highlights of writing a blog like this are the rare opportunities you get to talk to great people. Pat LaFontaine is one of those great people. He is a hockey player that I grew up idolizing but more importantly, he is a great father and a role model for all of us. He is an icon in Buffalo for his play on the ice and his charity and giving off the ice."
Hooray, the NHL Season is Upon Us (Orland Kurtenblog)
"I guess I don't have a good nose for news, because I thought this would be huge: [...] Burke made three offers in total, the first two coming while he was fighting a Colorado civil suit brought against him by Moore. It put the player in the unusual position of suing the general manager of a team offering him a deal. Shouldn't each of those paragraphs end with "!!!!!!"? [...] "The guy Steve Moore is holding accountable for ending his career then says, `Come work for me and let's forget about this lawsuit.'" Yeah, what that guy said! Anyone? IT'S A MASSIVE CONFLICT OF INTEREST! Bueller?"