Virginia Tech Hokies (7-3, 4-2) vs. NC State Wolfpack (4-6, 1-5)
Time: 3:30 p.m. EST
Date: Saturday, Nov. 21, 2009
Place: Lane Stadium/Worsham Field (66,233), Blacksburg, Va.
TV: ESPNU (DirecTV 614)
NC State: The Wolfpack lost at home to Clemson last week, eliminating them from bowl contention ... even though NC State can get to six wins this year, two of its wins came against FCS opponents (Murray State and Gardner-Webb) ... QB Russell Wilson was last year's All-ACC QB as a freshman ... earlier this year he set the NCAA record for most pass attempts without an interception (379) before he was picked off in a loss against Wake Forest ... since then, Wilson has thrown an interception in six consecutive games, 10 total and six in the last three games ... Wilson is a mobile quarterback who has rushed for 319 yards and four touchdowns this year ... NC State has one of the worst pass defenses in the ACC, giving up 274.3 ypg (11th) and 7.8 ypa (10th) in six league games ... its rush defense isn't much better, giving up 167.7 ypg (9th) and 4.8 ypc (11th) in league play.
Trends: Virginia Tech has won two consecutive games after losing two consecutive games ... NC State has lost five of its last six games, including a win over Maryland Nov. 7 ... North Carolina's win over Virginia Tech Oct. 29 ended the Hokies' 12-game home winning streak ... the Hokies have not lost more than one game in Lane Stadium in the same season since 2002 when they were in the Big East ... Tech has won five consecutive Senior Day games, its last loss on Senior Day was to Boston College in 2003 ... NC State is 3-8 in ACC road games under Tom O'Brien.
History Lesson: The Hokies are 24-18-4 overall, 3-2-1 under Frank Beamer, 7-2-2 in Blacksburg and 1-1-1 in Lane Stadium all-time against NC State ... the teams' last meeting was 2005 in Raleigh when Tech won 20-16 ... the Hokies were out-gained 438-232 in that game, but held the Pack to field goals and intercepted two passes deep in their own territory ... NC State won the last game in Blacksburg in 2004, 17-16, when Brandon Pace missed a 43-yard field goal as time expired ... the two teams met in the 1986 Peach Bowl, a game won by Tech, 25-24, on a 40-yard Chris Kinzer field goal as time expired.
What to Expect:
- Expect the Hokies to move the ball on the ground and through the air against the Wolfpack, just like they did against the Terps.
- Don't expect total domination. The Pack will get their points with Russell Wilson and one of the better passing offenses in the league.
- Expect Wilson to be up and down. Wilson is no longer the turnover-free quarterback we saw last year. He's mortal and while he have his touchdowns, he'll also give the ball away against the Hokies.
- Expect Ryan Williams to have a big game. C.J. Spiller, Jermaine Thomas and Montel Harris have all had big games against the Pack's lackluster run defense. The loss of Nate Irving, one of the best if not the best linebackers in the ACC, really hurt NC State this year.
- Expect a fun game to watch. There should be a lot of points put on the board in this one by both sides.
Hokies win if: They wear down the Wolfpack defense and put up the yardage and points we expect them to.
Wolfpack win if: Russell Wilson has a big game, they win the turnover battle and take advantage of those turnovers.
Dot-dot-dots: It's Senior Day in Blacksburg, get the Kleenex out ... Tyrod Taylor had a career-high three touchdown passes last week against Maryland ... he has 12 TD passes this year and three INTs ... in his previous two years he had seven TDs and 10 INTs ... Ryan Williams needs 31 rushing yards to break Darren Evans' record of 1,265 rushing yards as a freshman ... this is Virginia Tech's fourth game against a team from North Carolina this season ... the Hokies also played four North Carolina teams in 2004 when they played UNC, Duke, NC State and Wake Forest.
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