2010 Virginia Tech Football: East Carolina Game Guide

Virginia Tech (0-2, 0-0)  vs. East Carolina (2-0, 2-0)

Time: 1:30 p.m. EDT
Date: Saturday, Sept. 18, 2010
Place: Lane Stadium/Worsham Field (66,233), Blacksburg, Va.
TV: None (ESPN3.com)

East Carolina: The Pirates are off to a good start in the Ruffin McNeill era after knocking off conference foes Tulsa and Memphis the first two weeks ... former BC QB Dominique Davis has been impressive in his first two games, completing 64.3 percent of his passes for 627 yards, eight touchdowns and one interception ... he has also run for three touchdowns ... ECU's defense has struggled against the pass, giving up 9.6 yards per attempt and eight touchdowns.

Trends: ECU has won five consecutive regular season games, dating back to their home loss to the Hokies on Nov. 5, 2009 ... the Pirates have lost seven consecutive non-conference games against FBS opponents dating back to their win over West Virginia on Sept. 6, 2008 ... ECU has six consecutive true road games against a BCS opponent since it beat NC State on Nov. 25, 2006 ... Virginia Tech's loss to James Madison snapped its streak of 32 consecutive home wins over non-conference opponents ... the Hokies have not lost three consecutive games since they lost four consecutive games from 2003-04 ... Tech lost its last three games of the 2003 season and again to USC to open the 2004 season ... Virginia Tech has not lost consecutive games in Lane Stadium since November 2002 when it lost to Pittsburgh and West Virginia.

History Lesson: The Hokies are 10-5 all-time against ECU, 5-2 at home and 9-5 under Frank Beamer ... Tech has won seven of its last eight against ECU ... ECU has lost four consecutive games in Blacksburg since Jeff Blake led No. 14 ECU to a 24-17 win over unranked Tech on Nov. 16, 1991 ... the Hokies and Pirates last met in a Thursday-night game in Greenville in November of last year ... the Hokies won, 16-3 thanks in large part to three Matt Waldron field goals ... the Tech defense shut out ECU in the second half, giving up 95 yards in the half.

What to Expect

  • Expect ECU to attack the middle of the field. The Pirates run the Air Raid offense, similar to what you saw out of Texas Tech under Mike Leach. ECU will spread the field wide and use short routes to mitigate the pass rush.
  • Expect ECU to do anything it can to get the ball in the hands of its best playmaker, Dwayne Harris. Harris only has two carries this year, but is a dangerous receive and leads the Pirates with 13 catches and three touchdowns.
  • Expect to see more zone-read option. ECU will probably have some success with it with Davis and running back Jonathan Williams. Williams is averaging 6.3 yards per carry this season.
  • Expect the Hokies to try and get Ryan Williams going again. Although if we couldn't run block effectively against James Madison, should we really expect it to happen against ECU.
  • Expect Tech to have some success through the air. ECU's pass coverage is weak over the middle and the Hokies should be able attack it.
  • Expect a lot of points, but it will definitely benefit ECU if this turns into a track meet.
Hokies win if: They get pressure on Davis, force turnovers and control the ball with the running game.

Pirates win if: They're able to take advantage of Tech's weak coverage over the middle and win the battle up-front on both sides of the ball.

Dot-dot-dots: Virginia Tech's loss to James Madison was its first to an FCS team since it lost to Richmond on Sept. 7, 1985 ... Virginia Tech did not punt against JMU ... Tyrod Taylor is now second on Virginia Tech's all-time total offense list behind Bryan Randall ... the Hokies have lost two of their last three home games after winning their previous 12.
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