Virginia Tech Hokies (9-2, 7-0) vs. Virginia Cavaliers (4-7, 1-6)
Virginia: The Hoos are coming off a 17-13 loss to Boston College last week, the third consecutive game in which they've led in the second half and eventually lost ... with their hopes for a bowl gone and their best offensive option injured, the Hoos gave some of their younger players some experience against the Eagles ... Mike Rocco took some snaps at QB and was 3-for-3 and Torrey Mack had three carries for seven yards ... with RB Keith Payne out with a "lower extremity" injury, Perry Jones got most of the carries for UVa against BC and averaged 5.8 ypc ... the Hoos did a good job stopping BC's run game in the first half, but both Montel Harris and Andre Williams went over 100 yards in the game.
Trends: The Hokies have won nine consecutive games since losing their first two of the season ... the Hokies have won 10 consecutive ACC conference games ... Virginia has lost three consecutive games ... the Hoos have lost their last five ACC road games and 12 of their last 13 conference games overall ... the Hokies are 24-2 in November and December regular season games since joining the ACC with both losses coming against Miami ... Tech has won 17 of its last 19 home games and 10 of its last 11 ACC home games.
History Lesson: Virginia Tech is 49-37-5 all-time against UVa, including 19-9-1 at home, 13-6-1 at Lane Stadium and 14-9 under Frank Beamer ... the Hokies have won six consecutive games against UVa and 10 of the last 11 meetings ... Virginia Tech has won the last five meetings in Blacksburg and six of the last seven in Blacksburg ... the Hokies won last year, 42-13, in Charlottesville ... Tech led 14-13 at halftime, but out-scored the Hoos 28-0 in the second half ... Ryan Williams ran for 183 yards and four touchdowns to lead the Hokies, who scored five touchdowns in five red zone trips.
What to Expect
- I hope the Hokies don't feel like the mission is accomplished now that the Coastal is clinched. I don't want UVa to think it has a chance, like it did last year in Charlottesville. Put this one away early and put Logan Thomas in to get some reps.
- We don't know if Keith Payne will play or not for the Wahoos, but regardless I expect them to try and get the ground game going. Marc Verica is more of a game manager and when the ground game is rolling he becomes a better QB.
- Expect the Hokies to be able to run the ball. The Hoos have the worst run defense in the ACC in terms of yards per game. They're also the only team that gives up more yards per carry in conference play than VT with 5.43 ypc.
- Expect the Hoos to be able to negate the Hokies' return game. The Hoos have over 25 percent of their KOs go for touchbacks in conference play and have held ACC opponents to 19.1 ypr (3rd). Punter Jimmy Howell used rugby-style kicks to help negate BC's returners.