Heil Beamer! - Geoff Burke
I don't really know where to start with this one, so I'm just going to fire from the hip and speak from the heart. What we all watched today, what we've seen all season long, it is not Virginia Tech football. In no way does it accurately represent the culture or recent history of the program.
While Virginia Tech did manage to beat the Virginia Cavaliers today, 17-14, and managed to continue their 9-game winning streak against them, setting the record for the most consecutive wins in the series, it was such a miserable showing from the Hokies that it felt like a loss.
Tech allowed a four-win team to shut them down offensively to the extent of comedic proportions. Despite having nearly 2-to-1 possession in favor of the Hokies, they only out-gained the Cavaliers by 86 yards, and required a field goal as time expired to put them past the woeful 'Hoos. It was a game of both teams trying to hand the other the game for four quarters, but neither team wanting to take it. It was a game of mismanaged offenses, mismanaged play-calls and mismanaged play-clocks. It was brutal. That one of these two teams is going to a bowl is definitive proof that the collegiate bowl system is an absolute failure.
The Hokies were held to 303 total yards, a season-low. They averaged a feloniously low 3.2 yards per play on 95 plays. The Cavaliers even averaged 3.9 yards per play. Logan Thomas averaged an abysmal 3.7 yards per attempt and 7.7 yards per completion, while completing less than 50 percent of his passes. The game featured many terrible play-calling and situational gaffes by the coaching staffs, and a missed field goal by Cody Journell from 42 yards after Mike London iced him with one of his three second-half timeouts (effectively the only one he used). Instead of riding the hot hand in the running game as the Hokies coaching staff previously suggested they would do, they went away from it, often leaving Martin Scales on the bench when he was on a roll, or keeping the ball away from Logan Thomas in situations that were typecast for him. They also continued to mismanage and misuse their personal for what the play-call or situation called for (i.e. using Scales on long, deliberate outside runs and J.C. Coleman on dives up the middle and as a lead blocker for Thomas to the outside on similarly long-developing plays).
This Virginia Tech team is a bad football team. There is no getting around that. I won't try to explain the game in detail or give you a blow-by-blow, because if you saw the game you know, and if you didn't you're incredibly privileged, and explaining it to you would force you to gauge your eyes out with a pair of dull safety scissors.
So the Hokies won, and are presumably going to a bowl, which means that those of us who write about how insufferable this team is will inevitably have to watch. But as many Virginia Tech voices on the Twittersphere have posited today, if Tech does not completely overhaul their offensive staff prior to going to whatever bowl they will be going to, there is absolutely no point in going. Without that happening, the Hokies will be staring at their first losing season since 1992.