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Duke @ Virginia Tech: Gobbler Country Staff Picks

As we enter week 8 of the season, here are our picks!

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David Kistler(5-2)

This game will be a close one. Michael Brewer returning doesn't mean that the offense will better though. At 3-4, I fear this team will try to force every play into being a game-changing play, which is a huge mistake. I predict Brewer to make some mistakes, the defense to struggle against Duke's mobile QB and ultimately a underprepared Hokies squad to fall close at Home. Duke- 24 Hokies 20

Matt Costello(5-2)

VT actually matches up well against Duke because the Blue Devils lack the ability to make big plays on offense which has proven to be the Achilles heel of the Hokies D. Having Michael Brewer back in the line-up will only do the offense good and can SOMEONE please get Bucky Hudges involved in the offense??? Just throw the ball up to the guy, he's an animal and has been drastically under utilized this year which needs to change ASAP. The game will be close from start to finish but the Hokies will pull this one out, 28-17.

John Schneider(4-3)

Last week, the Hokies disappointed me on so many fronts.  I missed the score by two points - a bit too generous in the direction of the Hurricanes, I suppose.  The major disappointment came because it was a winnable game.  The defense collapsed in the 4th quarter, again; and I so wanted to be proven wrong.  This team is just not consistent, unless in some gestalt sort of reasoning always being inconsistent is in itself consistent.   Duke comes to Blacksburg one game away from being bowl eligible and a real chance at a run for the Coastal Title.  Tech shows up at Lane Stadium with everything at stake and "everything" is the disappointingly diminishing prospect of being bowl eligible.  (When a Booger Bowl is your only redemption for the season, how good are you, really?) Duke's defense is good.  It's offense is spread out and its offense is of the type we just cannot deal with - a Spread Option running QB.  Which Hokie squad takes the field tomorrow?   Heck, which squad takes the field on any down series?  There just doesn't seem to be a guarantee this season.   For that reason, Duke beats us in our house; 28 - 24. (Without Brewer - 35 - 10)

Roy Hatfield(4-3)

Hokies get a little help from the refs in a close game.  Call it karma, luck, or whatever. I call it a Hokies' win 24-17 HOKIES.

Joshua Schneider(4-3)

Duke's offense is blah. Our offense is better than blah. Our defense is meh, their defense is WAY better than meh. It'll be hard to really see what happens in this game, as we've not got a huge sample size of 2015!Brewer to say what this offense is. So it's yet another game where I can't be sure of the outcome. I still think they've got the edge right now overall, and BOY, are we in a sad place where we're looking up at Duke Football AGAIN. Duke 28-20.

Jay Johnson(4-3)

Duke has not defeated an FBS team with a winning record, and the Hokies, at 3-4, qualify for that criteria.  The Blue Devils have a vaunted defense, but when one looks at their resume they have not had to face a quality offense.  They were the first ACC team to beat up on Georgia Tech, and knocked them out of the top 25, but after that victory their best win is against Boston College.  Duke has had two weeks to prepare for Virginia Tech, and is certainly looking to avenge their surprising home loss to the Hokies last year.  Duke's strengths match up nicely with VT's deficiencies.  The Blue Devil defense should have little trouble shutting down the Gobbler offense.  The development of McMillian, Ford, and the return of Brewer, while encouraging, are not enough to overcome one of the best defenses in the ACC.     Sirk, the Blue Devil QB, is a decent enough passer to occupy our secondary.  Even more of a danger to VT is the fact that Sirk is a running QB too.  He has run for over 50 yards in five of the six games they've played.  The Hokies are hurting.  They lost another important ACC matchup and are staring another pedestrian season in the face.  Virginia Tech is at a disadvantage in almost every facet of this matchup.  Expect the Hokies to endure another home loss.  Duke defeats Virginia Tech, 35-10.

Chelsea Lindner(3-4)

I think this will be a close one. I think that with Brewer returning the offense will be looking to improve however Duke has a pretty decent defense that has the ability to force some mistakes. They also have a quarterback that I don't think the Hokies defense will be able to contain. I believe that Duke will pull away and get the win, 31-21.

Joe Roy-Stewart(3-4)

The Hokies are having a tough season and are about to face a ranked Duke squad, tell me the last time you remember that?  What has been so impressive about the Blue Devils this season is there ability to play great defense, especially in the red zone.  With Michael Brewer at QB throwing to Ford and company, it is hard for me to imagine too much difficulty putting the ball in the end zone.  On the other side, the Duke offense really isn't that impressive, having lost the big time players at the end of last season.  I see a somewhat close game for a while, but I think the Hokies pull away to a 31-17 win.

CJ Rooks(2-5)

I never thought I would see the day where Duke has a better football program than Virginia Tech. Head coach David Cutcliffe should be a candidate to win coach of the year every season. The Blue Devils defense is very good and is currently ranked 4th in the nation in total defense. The offense will score points because of Cutcliffes expertise and this team will be competing for the coastal division crown at the end of the year. Virginia Tech on the other hand is going in a completely opposite direction. Yes, I know Michael Brewer is coming back, but It won't be enough. The defense has underperformed and the offense is very inconsistent. I have a horrible record in picking these games and maybe I am wrong. But I will say Duke beats Virginia Tech 24-17.

O.K. Hokie fans... What do you think the score will be?