Offense implodes as Tech loses 6-3 in 2OT

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WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. – For a Virginia Tech offense that has struggled for much of 2014, Saturday’s 6-3 loss to Wake Forest in double overtime was a new low.

“There was just so many, so many plays in that ballgame that you just kind of scratch your head,” head coach Frank Beamer said. “I don’t think lingering on that is what this football team needs. I think everybody figure out what you could have done better, and then let’s get on to the next ballgame.”

Neither the Hokies (5-6, 2-5) nor the Demon Deacons were able to score during the regulation 60 minutes Saturday, the first time since 2005 that has happened in the FBS.

Tied at three and facing a third-and-nine in the first possession of the second overtime, Wake Forest (3-8, 1-6) brought more defenders than Tech could block for what seemed like the millionth time Saturday.

The result, an 11-yard sack, forced Beamer to choose the lesser of two evils. Beamer, who saw his team’s scoring streak extend to 254 games in the first overtime, opted for a 53-yard field goal attempt over trying on fourth-and-21.

Joey Slye’s field goal attempt had the distance, but the freshman kicker missed it left. Wake’s Michael Weaver, who missed three field goals in the first half, all of which would’ve been the game’s first points, connected from 39 yards to complete the upset.

It was Wake’s first win since Sept. 20 against Army and its first ACC win in 2014.

Tech’s 254 yards of offense was the fewest they’ve accounted this season, and the three turnovers tied the season high.

“You name it, we didn’t do it,” offensive coordinator Scot Loeffler said. “Turned the ball over. Didn’t run the ball well. Didn’t throw it well. You name it, that’s what we did and that was the result.”

Both teams were presented multiple opportunities to grab control of the game in regulation, but every time either got close to scoring, the possession ended in a turnover, missed field goal or a punt.

In the fourth quarter alone, Tech had the ball at midfield or better four times and turned it over twice. The first came with just under nine minutes remaining in the game after backup quarterback Brenden Motley sparked the offense with a wildcat run and then a 17-yard completion.

The Hokies then went back to starter Michael Brewer, who tried to connect with tight end Bucky Hodges on a screen pass. Hodges was hit as the pass, which was ruled a lateral, reached him. Wake recovered the fumble, but punted three plays later.

“We had a plan that we were going to play (Motley) roughly between 8 and 12 snaps,” Loeffler said. “Did some good things. We’ll watch the tape to see if we should’ve kept him in there for the remainder.”

Taking over at at the 50, Brewer threw an interception on Tech’s next offensive play.

“Obviously, everybody is pretty down,” Brewer said. “We thought we should have won the football game and we didn’t.”

The redshirt junior was 15-for-28 for 126 yards and one interception. He was sacked five times.

While Tech’s offense was unable to take the lead, a combination of a strong defensive performance and a weak Wake Forest offense kept the Hokies in the game.

The Hokies held the nation’s worst offense to 234 total yards of offense and an average of 3.2 yards per snap.

“Even though we played a good game, I felt like we should’ve done better,” defensive tackle Corey Marshall said. “We still have room for improvement.”

When defensive coordinator Bud Foster was asked to recall a season in which so much has been demanded of his defense, he went all the way back to his early days as an assistant at Murray State.

“We gave up about 13 points a game on defense,” said Foster, drawing parallels to the current season, “but we only scored about 10 points a game.”

“I’ve never seen a defense have to defend such a short field consistently, and we had to do it again today.”

Perhaps not surprisingly, the Hokies’ best early scoring opportunity came on defense. Deep in Tech territory, cornerback Kendall Fuller stepped in front of a John Wolford pass and had nothing but green grass in front of him. Fuller wasn’t able to secure the catch, however.

“He anticipated, I think he knew the route that was coming,” Foster said. “He made a great break. It was unfortunate. I don’t know what it looked like because I was on the other side, I don’t know if he had a pick-six mindset, if it was that wide open. I don’t know, but that would’ve been nice when it was all said and done.”

On the next play cornerback Donovan Riley intercepted Wolford’s pass in the end zone. The Demon Deacons were in Tech territory five times Saturday during regulation. Three drives ended with a missed field goal, one with an interception and another with a punt.

The teams combined for 18 punts on the day.

“We’re not going to spend a lot of time with this ballgame,” Beamer said. “I want each of our players, coaches [asking themselves] ‘What could I have done better?’”

With the Hokies failing to beat the Demon Deacons, even as a 15-point favorite, Friday’s regular season finale against Virginia gains significant importance. The Hokies must beat the Cavaliers to gain bowl eligibility.

“That’s a lot on the line,” Marshall said. “I know the fans feel that. We feel that tension and that atmosphere.”

“The way I see it is if we can get this next game,” Beamer said, “we beat our state rival and we get to a bowl game. I think you get a reprieve in that regard.”

Postgame notes (provided by Virginia Tech)

• Virginia Tech wore white helmets, with white jerseys and orange pants today. This is the first time in program history the Hokies have worn this uniform combination.

• Donovan Riley recorded his third career interception in the first quarter, his second of the season.

• Wake Forest’s Mike Weaver missed three field goals in the game, making it 12 missed field goal by opposing kickers against Tech this season. Opposing kickers missed only three field goals against the Hokies last season in 13 games.

• The last time Virginia Tech played in a game where neither team scored in the first half was in 2004 against the University of Virginia in Blacksburg. The Hokies went on to win that game 24-10 over the Cavaliers.

• The last time Tech played in a game that was scoreless through three quarters was in 1990 against No. 7 Georgia Tech. The Hokies lost that game, 6-3.

• Today’s game was the first in ACC history to finish 0-0 in regulation and head to overtime. It was the first time since Florida Atlantic and Arkansas State in 2005 that two teams played to a 0-0 draw in regulation. ASU won that game 3-0 in overtime.

• Virginia Tech is now 6-4 all-time in overtime, 3-2 on the road. The Hokies have lost their last two overtime games (Maryland, 2013). Today marked the first time Tech has played a double-overtime game. The Hokies have played two three-overtime games, however.

• With four catches, freshman tight end Bucky Hodges broke the single-season record for catches by a tight end under head coach Frank Beamer and now has 39. He moved past Steve Johnson, who had 38 in 1987. Hodges had 39 yards in the game to give him 456 yards for the season and now needs 21 yards to break the record for receiving yards in a season by a tight end under Beamer (475, Johnson, 1987).

• True freshman Isaiah Ford caught five passes in the game to give him 50 for the season. He becomes just the eighth player in school history to catch 50 or more passes in a season. The school record for catches in a season is 61, held by Jarrett Boykin, which he set in 2011 as a senior. The other seven Tech players to catch 50 or more passes in a season were all juniors or seniors when they accomplished the mark.

• Tech beat No. 19 Duke last week, but lost today. The Hokies have now lost four straight and five out of their last six games after beating a ranked opponent.

• Joey Slye’s field goal in the first overtime extended Virginia Tech’s scoring streak to 254 games. The streak is the fifth-longest active streak in the FBS and the 11th-longest of all-time in the Division I-A/FBS history. It marked the first time that Tech was held scoreless in regulation since the beginning of the streak, which started in 1995. Cincinnati beat Tech 16-0 in 1995, making the Bearcats the last team to shut out Tech in regulation.

• Before today, Tech has had pretty good success playing in the state of North Carolina. Despite the loss, the Hokies have still won 12 of its last 15 games in the Tar Heel State. Since 2000, the Hokies are 19-4 in games played in North Carolina.

Box Score (hokiesports.com)

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49 Responses You are logged in as Test

  1. Note to CFB: The game of college football has changed and you have failed to change with it. The days of winning primarily with defense, special teams and an average offensive are forever gone. Today’s game requires a wide open offensive attack – you must become a scoring machine if you want to return to sustained success.

    Note to CSL: If your QB is too short to see over the OL and your OL struggles to maintain a pocket, do you think it may possibly be a good idea to move the QB out of the pocket by design? Just a thought? And when, game after game your attempts to “set up the pass with the run” has failed, have you ever considered the concept of “set up the run with the pass?” Just another thought I’ve had for about 8 games.

    Note to QB Brewer: I’m sure somewhere along the line – maybe as far back as pee wee football – someone told you to never throw the ball backwards because one day your receiver may not catch it and it will be a fumble and a Wake Forest player will recover it and it will contribute to one of the most pathetic offensive showings that fans have ever seen! Just be thankful that most people had turned the channel by then and didn’t see that one.

    Note to Field Goal Block (Non-Block) Team: Don’t you think you would have had a pretty good chance of blocking the 1st OT FG if four of you would have simply stood tall with hands raised high in the air instead of burying your heads into the line? It required a low trajectory and it had to start out right up the gut to have a chance. Well, maybe you can try my plan next time.

    Note to CBF: We feel your pain!

    1. I can’t say enough about the atrocious play calling this year, especially in the Wake game. It baffles me to see plays called to the short side of the field and no one there to block. Yeah, I understand every play is a potential touchdown if every player does his job, but you have to respect your opponent too. Why on earth can’t the offensive coaching staff and coach Beamer see that Motley was a spark in the last two games and play him more, every Hokie fan in the stands can see that; but coach Beamer and the OC said well we need to look at the video. Do they think the fans are that stupid, probably so based on their responses. After the Ohio State win, coach Beamer made the bold statement that this was the best coaching staff he ever had; I knew that was a mistake when he made that statement, and I thank all the good coaches he had in the past that put VT football on the map. Defensive Coordinator Bud Foster and line coach Charlie Wiles do not deserve this type of dysfunctional offense. We love VT and all the HOKIE Sports teams, so we can get over this bump in the road.

  2. We have season tickets and I live in Texas and travel all the way to Va for about 3 to 4 regular season games a year. I’m not going any more until things change – ie. a new coaching staff. Beamer and his staff replaced. Has anyone noticed all of Beamer’s mistakes lately and he has a dumb look on his face all the time with his mouth open like he doesn’t know what’s going on.

  3. What I don’t understand is why they don’t give the back up players a chance to play. Specifically the OL and QB. Yes I understand the back up lineman may “not be ready yet” but could it be really that much worse than what we have now. Same applies to QB. Even if they are worse. what’s the worse that can happen- you get shut out and lose. That’s already happened.

  4. Bud Foster can be of huge help to the offense.

    The VT offense needs to start playing with a 9-2 offense. 9 offensive linemen (big guys – no receivers or tight ends included), Brewer (or maybe Motley) as the running quarterback, and one guy in the backfield to block for the running qb, go out of the backfield for a pass, or serve as an option-pitch trailing runner behind the running qb. Start with two of the big ol’ linemen in the backfield to confuse the opponent’s defense and shift them into the o-line before the play starts. Alternate Rogers and Newsome in the back field to confuse the opponent.

    Bud can help by teaching the o-linemen how to stop d-linemen. Bud sure can teach d-lineman how to get in so he ought to be able to teach the o-line on how to keep them out.

    I’m starting to like this concept. Next I’ll work on the 10-1 offense.

  5. I have been following VT football for about 20 years, not all that long by some Hokie standards, but still a substantial amount of time. Quite honestly, it certainly was a factor in recommending it to my son to look at VT to further his higher education after HS. I new VT had a great engineering program but that was about the extent of my knowledge about VT’s academics and it’s culture. After visiting Lehigh, Ohio State, Rutgers, Maryland and some other schools. we got to VT. Needless to say, once we were there to experience the school first hand / initial impressions are lasting / his college search ended. It’s academics, beautiful campus, student culture and closness and the college town setting of Blacksburg, VA made it unresistable. If you’re a HOKIE you know what I mean. And attending a Lane Stadium football game was the “icing on the cake”. Most importantly, four years later my “Mechanical Engineer” graduates and is on a path to a successful career.

    The intervening years of attending / watching / following Hokie FB have been a mixed bag of emotions and on a somewhat downward trend. From holding season tickets (4 seasons) to attending (or not attending) the occassional individual game, to no longer feeling guilty for not watching every game because I might miss that special “Hokie moment” that first sparked my attention and interest about VT, all are a part of it.. The apple has lost it’s shine. No longer are we a darling of ESPN. Slowly but consistantly VT has fallen from the top tier of college football to almost not worthy of discussion out side of it’s decreasing core of supporters. No one even hates us anymore because we no longer are a threat on the playing field. Everybody has their own set of excuses for what has happened in Blacksburg and many of them are pretty much similar in one form or another. And they have all contributed to the decline taking place now. Make no mistake, the HOKIES have indeed morphed into the CHOKIES in the last 3 seasons. This morning on “VT Sports Today” Coach Beamer looked like a humbled and a beaten man. How long can this continue before it become a permantent stain on his career resume? This Friday evening will say a lot. Losing to UVa will end a ten year winning streak and also a 22-23 straight year bowl game streak. If VT loses that game, we will have hit ROCK BOTTOM-Bedrock and the Chokies can truely be re-labeled the CROAKIES. And if we do win, really, how much better can things get for the future if problems aren’t addressed and decisions made. Whit Babcock, so far has proven to be a positive change as AC, but he’ll have to be at his absolute best to resolve this mess.

    1. I have the same story with my dad. We went from season tickets while I was there in engineering to going 3-4 games after graduation. Now we don’t go, have sold season tickets and I couldn’t care less when we are the laughingstock of football on tv. I simply switch to a top game that’s on and forget about VT football with ease.

      It’s sad our backups don’t get a chance, even as Brewer and the OL suck it up. Motley made some good plays and gets us down the field and SL TAKES HIM OUT. ARE U KIDDING ME!!??? What a joke. I’m done til Beamer and all his staff are gone.

      1. Anybody that “couldn’t care less when we are the laughingstock of football on tv” not only isn’t a fan now but probably never was. I don’t like it either but I refuse to quit on ’em. They didn’t lose to Wake on purpose.

  6. I think we hit rock bottom yesterday. So maybe now we can start to realize truly where this program stands. CFB has ignored the offensive side of our game for so long and was able to mask its deficiencies by a stout defense (thanks to CBF) and a few great tailbacks. But with the injuries this year and the culmination of poor offensive line recruitment & coaching his philosphy has been exposed. To hear him say he thinks they get a reprieve if we beat UVA and make a bowl game just tells me how out of touch he is with reality and the level and status of our program. It’s time Frank.

  7. Brewer had his chance, nice guy but so is Motley. Does anyone really believe we have any chance this week with Brewer? Those that do, do you think we have a better chance with Brewer than Motley? Really? Give Motley a chance. If we land Settle and Sweat then keep Frank under the condition that he replace Shane and Cordell. If we don’t land them then thank Frank for many great years and replace him and start next chapter of Tech football. Either replace him with Offense minded coach who can retain Foster, or replace with Foster and let Foster decide what to do about OC, whether to replace or not. Whitt makes a lot of money, so does Frank, time to make tough decisions that the job demands. Not a year from now, not two years from now, now.

  8. If now isn’t the time for a change, when will it be??? We have consistently played bad football as the season progressed. We’ve heard nothing but excuses on why fundamental mistakes keep happening but CFB always makes certain he comments reflect how proud he was of how we played and how hard we played! This started back at the Pitt loss in early 2012, we got taken to the woodshed and everybody knew it, yet he seems to have watched a different game! Understand he won’t throw coaches, players, or himself under the bus in a press conference, but think this mindset has contributed to VT not being a tough team and undisciplined when it comes to execution when game is on the line. Don’t see much leadership coming from the players either this year despite the injuries. VT has set the bar at a new low yesterday on Offensive. Not being able to score a single point in regulation against a 2-8 WF team is simply beyond belief and embarrassing. Thanks to CFB for all the years and building the program, but if we don’t make a change soon, we’ll be back at same spot when CFB took over. This movie is the sequel to Bowden and Paterno…not productive to stay on too long!

  9. Maybe the one play Motley has learned is the bubble screen. We run and throw east to west. Someone need to tell the coaches north south the direction you need to go.

    1. I’m with you Cary! It seems to me that the offense is geared to spending as much time running around in their own backfield as is possible. They only try to break out when it really gets crowded back there. However, they are working hard on improving the screen pass from a 5 yard loser to a 3 yard loser.

  10. Bud has never said anything like this to the media before…….big trouble in paradise…..would not be surprised if Bud and Charlie jump ship after this season!! As for our recruits, you can forget about Sweat and Settle coming to VT!!

    Asked to recall a season in which so much has been demanded of his defense, coordinator Bud Foster recalled his second year at Murray State under Beamer.

    “We gave up about 13 points a game on defense,” said Foster, drawing parallels to the current season, “but we only scored about 10 points a game.”

    “I’ve never seen a defense have to defend such a short field consistently, and we had to do it again today.”

  11. It’s a shame to see Michael Brewer go from hero to zero. He seems like such a good person … but … he doesn’t have the speed, elusiveness, arm strength, or size to compete at this level. EVERYBODY, it seems, has a better QB than we do. WF was playing a true freshman! As for Motley not getting the reps in practice to be an able back up … whose fault is that? Do our coaches not realize that we are one play away from not having Brewer healthy. What was the plan for a back up?

    We have hit bottom … not rock bottom, mind you … that will happen this coming Friday. The Beamer era is over. Whit must make a move. Until he does, it’s not going to get better. Our football program is too important to be held hostage by CFB’s uncertain retirement schedule.

  12. Motley running only 10 plays in the playbook might be more effective than Brewer running a full playbook. The QB competition at the end of the season better be open.

  13. I have not bashed Loeffler all season. Today,on the other hand…. Loeffler cost VT the game with his poor decision making. Brewer was not able to move,made several poor decisions in the passing game,and wasn`t able to throw the ball on basic throws to receivers. Yet,Loeffler left him in for most of the game. Motley,except for the early fumble,moved the team effectively including a very good out pass completion. With Motley in,the defense had to account for him and the TB. With Brewer in,they only had to focus on stopping the TB in the running game.

    Against UVA,VT needs to start Motley and have Coleman and Edmunds running the zone read option. Then,have Motley throw some play action passes. If Brewer plays,the UVA DL will have a record number of sacks.

  14. Another great day for the defense. VT is the place to be if you want to be one of the best defensive players. However, why does VT struggle so often all these years with offense? When we do have good offensive years it is primarily due to superior athletes (Tyrod, David, Ryan, Jarrett, a number of others), not great schemes or play calling. Coach Beamer is a defensive coach. He played defense in college. He doesn’t think like an offensive player. I sense that Beamer has kept Loefler to a conservative approach. He likes to win 13-10 with no turnovers versus 42-28 with 3 turnovers. He can’t change his nature. He also won’t change once he has made a decision. His friend?? at Clemson told him about a TexTech player. Beamer decided that Brewer was good enough. Problem is he doesn’t seem to have the arm strength to play at this level. Or, the speed required. Or, the size to take the beating or to see his receivers. Not sure about a few bad decisions, might be just frustration. Brewer will be about the same next year. He can’t change physically. And, Beamer won’t change QBs or maybe play Motley half time. Yes, the OL has its problems and the RBs are hurt. The bottom-line is this is a 4-7 team (very lucky we won at Duke). And we lose ugly. Year 3 of the down years and getting worse. We need to stop the self-inflicted damage now, so … Coach Beamer needs to announce his retirement after this season. However, I suggest that he make it effective after the end of the next season. I do think next year will be a little better. But the future for VT football is getting a new head coach, … soon. So, let’s complete a good coaching career on an upswing. Let’s pull back from the increasing frustration with a retirement date, a transitional year, and a new coach search/announcement. If we do this I believe that everyone would really be all-in for Coach Beamer and the team next year, and excited about the next chapter for VT Football.

  15. Unfortunately, we have learned to lose and we have become comfortable with it. This not Virginia Tech football.

  16. If I had a sub-par performance at work for 3 years and was trending downward on top of that I would be fired. In fact, 3 years of sub-par performance is being nice, it’s been happening longer than that. For what we pay CFB we don’t owe him a thing. Whit, do YOUR job and take care of this 5 minutes after we lose to UVA!

  17. Beamer doesn’t take resoponsibilty for anything. No next year. Loose to UVa no bowl, Whit recruits next coach after Frank you are done. Bench Brewer play Motley. Start Ford next year. When you put diarrhia in the bowl you flush it. Let’s get real!

  18. Tech Football is at an all time low. It is not the players, IT IS THE COACHES. Time to make the change.

  19. I wish I still had the Ohio State game on my DVR and I had spent my past 10 Saurdays watching that instead of watching VT live

    1. Thankfully, I still have it. Watched it a few weeks back. UNC game too. Still not sure how we pulled those off.

  20. This team has become painful to watch. Today was a new all time low, and WF is a bad team. UVA is going to destroy us. Do something Whit, because
    I love my Hokies and I don’t see things improving anytime soon.

  21. So CFB won’t spend any time looking or dealing with this loss. Remember he has already said something like “we will be a better football team next year.” He has been looking ahead to next season for weeks. Again, I say it is time for a change. I’ve seen enough Beamer Ball!!!!!

  22. I know it’s easy to want to second QB to play but let’s face facts, what does Brewer give you that Motley doesn’t? He throws at least one inexcusable pick a game, he can’t complete a long pass and he took way too many sacks in situations where he should have just thrown it out of bounds. At least Motley gives the threat of running.

    1. Motley probably has very little of the playbook in hand since he was running scout team until two weeks ago. I think that’s the main reason he didn’t play more, because there is very little flexibility in what can be run with him in the game.

      1. Not only was he third team…he rarely took any snaps. Brewer is the only reasonable choice at this point. Motley is way behind in reps, film, playbook, etc. I like the mix, obviously it works for a few plays and adds a spark. But I think that’s all its worth for now.

  23. That comment by Bud about the Murray State D holding opposing offenses to 13 points while Murray State’s O could only score 10 was interesting.

  24. I think they should be forced to watch this game repeatedly. Embarrassing performance for the offense. Get angry. The fans are. Losing happens but the ineptitude of QB and OC cannot be brushed off easily.

      1. If we continue to look like a bunch of scrubs on the field that’s what we’ll recruit off the field. The best players want to wear what’s in fashion. They want to feel proud of the group they represent. Shoulder stripes and orange pants aren’t it. Note even close. Perception is everything and if the program continues to be perceived as “behind the times” then our best college football days are in the past.

  25. This article says it all. Including the screenshot of a “triumphant” Frank Beamer at the end of regulation with the caption “State of the Program “.

    I found this on FTW and wanted to share:
    http://usat.ly/1BYTU8q

  26. Coach says he doesn’t want to send much time looking back at this game. If this game was an aberation I might agree (it made me feel sick watching it the first time); but this game instead is just the latest and possibly the best example of a football program with serious problems. I think highly of CFB but I’m afraid he stubbornly waited to long to address the program’s problems and now they may be impossible to fix without starting over from scratch.

  27. Yes coach, you should have left him in there more than 8 – 12 plays. He could have won the game with the option read. It’s been about the best rushing offensive plays we can count on.

    1. I agree Motley should have been in on more plays. I would definitely had him there in the OT situation. We were going to have to score TD to win. Blocking for Brewer wasn’t good. Don’t know why we don’t use moving pocket for him.

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