No. 14 Virginia Tech Hokies (1-1) vs. No. 19 Nebraska Cornhuskers (2-0)
Time: 3:30 p.m. EDT
Date: Saturday, Sept. 19, 2009
Place: Lane Stadium at Worsham Field (66,233), Blacksburg, Va.
TV: ABC/ESPN2 Reverse Mirror
XM Radio: XM Channel 190
Spread: Virginia Tech -5.5, O/U 51
The Hokies face a challenging non-conference game before diving head-first into league play. Last year the Hokies won in Lincoln, 35-30. However, the Huskers look a lot better in their second year under head coach Bo Pelini. Talk about the game in the comments section. I should be around to moderate and answer questions. Go Hokies!
Game Day Reading
Hokies looking for springboard win (Annette)
"For the next two Saturdays, the Hokies have a chance to knock off two more teams ranked among the top 20 in the Associated Press Top 25, starting this weekend with No. 19 Nebraska and Sept. 26 against No. 20 Miami -- both home games. The Hokies struggled to get their offense going in a respectable performance against a stingy Alabama defense, but turned around and ran all over Marshall in a 52-10 drubbing. Odds are Virginia Tech’s true identity lies somewhere in between, and Nebraska -- a program that appears to be on the rise under Bo Pelini -- is a fitting opponent to prove it."
Huskers up to bat again for big-game breakthrough (Dr. Saturday)
"But for the time being, the Hokies are a perennial top-15/20 outfit, an annual BCS contender and a significantly better team than Nebraska has beaten in almost eight years -- and if you want to check on the 'Huskers' last big road win, you'll have to go back to when Pelini was a young position coach in the NFL and everyone on the current roster was in grade school. A win in Blacksburg would be a genuine turn-the-corner moment for Pelini's rebuilding effort."
OTB’s Thursday Pick’Em Post (On The B.Rink)
"The Hokies went to Lincoln and grabbed a 35-30 victory with the legs and arm of one Tyrod Taylor. The Huskers have QB Zac Lee who has already thrown for 553 yards and 6 TDs in two games(yeah Virginia Tech fans–that’s called an offense). You could ask me how the Hokies beat Nebraska last season and I could tell you Tyrod Taylor–a similar key continues to this season’s game."
Tech defense faces challenge stopping big plays (Kyle Tucker)
"The climb begins Saturday against No. 19 Nebraska, which will bring with it a potent (on paper) offense. The Cornhuskers, who've had 23 plays of 10 yards or longer already in two games, provide a perfect opportunity for the No. 13 Hokies to prove this year's defense is as stingy as ever."
Hokies-Huskers an Expensive Ticket (Mark Viera)
"Some of the highest-priced tickets listed on the site exceeded $500 for lower-level seats, while there were less-desirable seats being resold for $150. The average price of tickets for the Nebraska-Virginia Tech peaked in July, at $383, according to Nichole Rozendaal, a spokeswoman for FanSnap."
Heavy volume of Tech play moving the Vegas spread (Randy King)
""With this being the only game on the board matching ranked teams on Saturday, Nebraska-Tech is getting some heavy volume here," my source said. "Obviously, many of the players feel the Hokies laying minus-3.5 points was a cheap number, especially since it's a long-known fact that Lane Stadium carries one of the biggest home-field prices in college football.""
Nebraska Preview (The North End Zone)
"In all fairness, we get what he’s trying to say. And that’s adorable that he thinks the crowd won’t have an effect on the game. But he is f***ing WRONG. Sorry Bo, but this isn’t Iowa State. The noise at Lane Stadium is only rivaled by space shuttle launches and Michael Bay movies."
Game Preview vs. Nebraska (Tech SuperFans)
"On the Defensive side of the ball, Nebraska doesn't have quite the same punch as their offense. They only rank 50th in yards per game (321 ypg) after playing against two far weaker teams from the Sun Belt Conference. MadJay praised the Virginia Tech offensive line in the game against Marshall from last Saturday. This Saturday's contest serves as the perfect opportunity for the Hokie offensive line to bring their play up a notch by giving a strong performance against Nebraska."
Understanding Nebraska's Offensive Philosophy (Corn Nation)
"Remember the Callahan line "We take what we want"? That was Callahan's goal, but Nebraska fans have seen it come true under Shawn Watson. Last weekend was a good example. Arkansas State was determined that the Huskers wouldn't run the ball, so their defense was set up to take away the run. Watson countered by having receivers running all over the field wide open, providing Zac Lee with easy completions."
Pass Protection Key to Beating Hokies (Big Red Network)
"Yes, Shawn Watson can do some things to help like calling up screens, draws, play-action and rollouts to try to buy Lee some time. But at the end of the day, it will likely be the NU offensive line that determines the outcome of the game."
VT Game Should Reveal How Good NU Really Is (Lincoln Journal Star)
"The Hokies made a huge impression on me with the way they took the field last year in Lincoln. They were strong, confident and poised. They blocked a punt early. They intercepted a pass. Yes, Beamerball. It’s been their blueprint for years. They know exactly who they are. They know exactly how they want to go about winning."
Memo to ACC Media (Joe Ovies)
"I find it interesting that none of the pundits gleefully poking fun of John Swofford and the ACC ever present a solution to the conference’s problems. It’s also worth pointing out the loudest critics of ACC football typically originates from the older media contingent. In essence, those who made their bones covering ACC basketball. And no matter how hard they close their eyes and wish their romanticized ACC of yesteryear would return, it’s never coming back."
ACC’s Actions Don’t Match Its Talk (ACCSports.com)
"In fact, an argument can be made that the ACC is in danger of being eclipsed not only by most of the traditional power conferences, but by the Mountain West. The MWC, upstart protestors against the BCS status quo, enjoyed a stunning Brigham Young victory at Oklahoma on week one and an easy triumph by Texas Christian at Virginia’s Scott Stadium on week two."
The downside of ESPN360 (Eagle in Atlanta)
"Why are we relegated to 360? It is all about ESPN. Because of their expanded relationship with other conferences (Pac 10, SEC, and some of the lower levels) there are only so many TV slots to go around. The ACC doesn't have another alternate like the Big 10's network. BC is not the only ones subject to this situation. Clemson and Maryland both have attractive home dates that same Saturday that will also be on 360 too."
More Proof The ACC Needs a New TV Deal (Testudo Times)
"We all knew this would happen, but it's still a bit of a shock that it did. The ACC is getting killed in the TV category, which hurts both recruiting and revenues. The TV deals will be negotiated after this year, and John Swofford & Co. need to get working on a real deal, whether it's with ESPN, FOX, their own network, whatever - ACC teams need to be able to be seen during real time slots on real networks. Please."