Turnovers and Short Fields Doom Hokies at Clemson

Virginia Tech fell to #14 Clemson 38-17 despite outgaining the Tigers by over 100 yards and playing a very good game defensively.  The Hokies are now 4-4 overall and 2-2 in the ACC, while Clemson is 6-1 and 3-1.

It was a gorgeous day in Clemson, SC.

The Hokies outgained Clemson 406 to 295, yet still lost the game by 21 points.  After forcing Clemson to punt on their first possession, the Hokies went right down the field and scored to take the lead.  Michael Cole made an amazing interception while lying flat on his back on Clemson’s next drive, and the Tech offense drove down the field to try and take a double digit lead.

On fourth and 1 at the Clemson 18, Frank Beamer elected to go for it rather than taking the short field goal to go up 10-0.  The Hokies ran it with Michael Holmes to the left, right behind David Wang and Eric Martin, who have not been effective in the running game this season.  Martin was stood up at the line of scrimmage, while Wang pulled, fell down, and didn’t touch anybody.

The Hokies also went on to throw three interceptions – two by Logan Thomas and one by wide receiver Marcus Davis – and one of them was returned for a touchdown.  A punt also hit Christian Reeves in the foot, and Clemson recovered, giving the Tigers a short field and resulting in a touchdown.

It was a 17-10 game at halftime, and although the Tech defense continued to play very well, short fields did them in.  Let’s take a quick look at Clemson’s scoring drives…

13 plays, 73 yards, field goal
6 plays, 26 yards, TD (after a punt bounced off Christian Reeves)
INT return for a TD
7 plays, 52 yards, TD (after Watkins fumbled, but the officials didn’t overturn the call)
3 plays, 47 yards, TD
9 plays, 41 yards, TD (after a Marcus Davis interception)

Clemson’s only touchdown drive of greater than 50 yards was actually the result of a major mistake by the replay official.  Antone Exum knocked the ball out of the hands of Sammy Watkins – clearly before he hit the ground – yet the play was not overturned, and Clemson kept the ball, giving the Tigers a first down.  In short, the Tech defense did almost all they could do in this game.

That tough call came immediately following an equally bad call on the previous Tech drive.  On third and 8 from the VT 29, defensive tackle Josh Watson got pressure and got a hand around the leg of Logan Thomas.  Thomas stayed on his feet and threw  pass for a first down to a wide open J.C. Coleman, who had the sideline in front of him.  It would have gone for a huge play, but the head official blew the play dead before Thomas threw the ball, and the Hokies had to punt.

Tajh Boyd was ruled down on this play, even after an official review.

The officials blew another call late in the game, when Tajh Boyd clearly fumbled at the VT 1.  The ball rolled into the endzone and was recovered by Clemson for a touchdown, but the officials ruled that Boyd was down at the 1, and apparently there wasn’t enough evidence to overturn it.  Though the call didn’t matter, it was a great example of the poor officiating that hit the Hokies hard in the second half.  See the picture at right…Boyd clearly fumbled before he was down.

In three meetings with Clemson over the past two years, the Tech defense has played great football in two of them.  In Lane Stadium last year, the Hokies held the high powered Tigers to just 323 yards of offense, and Tajh Boyd was only 13-of-32.  Today it was a 295 yard performance by Clemson, easily their worst output of the season.  Boyd was 12-of-21 for 160 yards, with a touchdown and an interception.  He was also sacked five times.

The common theme in all three games was the Tech offense failing to play well against a Clemson defense that was much maligned.  The Tigers finished 71st in total defense a year ago, giving up nearly 400 yards per game.  The Hokies managed just one touchdown in 8 quarters of football.  Through 6 games this season, Clemson’s defense ranked 97th in total defense, allowing 445 yards per game.  Though the Hokies put up 406 yards, their running game was inconsistent and their performance was marred by turnovers.

Virginia Tech returns to action on Thursday, November 1 when they take on Miami at 7:30pm on ESPN.

91 Responses You are logged in as Test

  1. Four blown calls on ‘game changing’ plays against a very good team on their home field really hurt Tech’s chances. I can only chalk the incompetence of the officials to ‘ they are just that bad’. Don’t know what else to say. Are they answwable to anybody? And, how does one get a job in the relay booth since it is obvious that no knowledge of the game is required. I thought the team played hard. It’s all I can ask at this point. Play calls were, at times, baffling; and, worse, predictable.

    I realize that the offense is a disappointment. However, I am more inclined to be more forgiving of an offense with new wide receivers, running backs, and OL. What I don’t understand is why most folks are giving Foster a pass. This was supposed to be one the best Foster’s defenses. His defense gave up 31 points. Pittsburgh and Northe Carolina? He gets a pass? His defense was great in the past, but not now.

    Tech played hard last week, and they are getting better. It’s all I can ask for at this point.

    1. Foster gets a “pass” because in prior seasons he has demonstrated two things the offense never has in the 17 years I’ve been watching Tech football:

      1. Success
      2. The willingness to make schematic changes to overcome strategic weaknesses that have been exposed by our opponents (see 2004 changes to defensive scheme).

      The offense has rarely been consistently successful, and has not had any sort of coherent identity for many years. Bud Foster is not the problem, the offensive coaching staff and the head coach who refuses to change it are the problems. Do you honestly believe that firing coach Foster will make this a better football team? That’ll fix all our problems?

      -Alpha ’99

      1. I see. If someone critical of the defense this year, he is calling for Foster’s resignation. Really? All I see on this blog is how bad the offense is and how bad it has been for years. No, I am not calling for Foster’s resignation, but 48 points to UNC, 35 points to Pitt, 31 points to Clemson, and 27 points to Cincy seems to me counts as an issue worth discussing. But hey, stay on the anti-offense bandwagon. You have a lot of company.

        1. Dude, it isn’t an unthinking “bandwagon” issue. The defense has made changes in the last two games that have netted results. Yes, we gave up 31 points against Clemson, but our defense played very well in that game. The offense had 4 turnovers, frequently giving their outstanding offense short fields. You have to dig a little deeper than just looking at the score if you are trying to make an informed analysis. Yes, the defense has it’s issues, but they have also shown some progress towards fixing their problems. Read Will’s “Reflections: Clemson” article and scroll down to the section on the defensive performance.

          Criticizing Foster doesn’t make you a rebel who’s willing to speak truth the the uninformed masses, it makes you look like someone who doesn’t know what he’s talking about. Bud Foster has shown a willingness to change when things aren’t working. Our offensive staff has not. It’s as simple as that. If Stinespring can show an ability to identify the weaknesses in his unit and take decisive action to change them, then I’ll give him the same benefit of the doubt that I’m giving to Foster. The fact is that Foster has shown that he has what it takes to fix problems in his area of responsibility and Stinespring hasn’t. Results matter.

          -Alpha ’99

  2. I do not go back and review the plays, so miss “XX got stood up, and YY fell down and did not block anyone. But clearly there are missed assignments, and perhaps of lack of talent/experience at key spots. But I’ve been surprised at the inconsistency all year by Logan Thomas. He consistently throws high balls, and that makes the passes hard to catch, as well as leads to tipped balls and overthrows by five feet like the one to the CU safety. Watching the Kansas State QB throw was a study in consistency, and placing the ball perfectly. This team is lacking fundamentals, and is inconsistent. I do not have the knowledge for the reasons, but the pattern is there.

    The officiating was poor, and how the review officials did not overturn two or three of the calls is beyond me. That would have kept several drives alive. But that’s not the reason Clemson won the game.

    I’m watching Mack Brown’s team here in Austin fail to achieve to the level of their talent level. Coach Beamer’s team is struggling. Has the speed and intensity of the game passed some of the longest serving coaches by? Why is VT so inconsistent? I don’t know.

  3. STOP the nonsense! I went to this game at Clemson and had a great view from high above the field and we lost this game simply because we do not have the talent of Clemson. You could switch offensive coaches and offensive philosophies with Clemson and they still win the game because they have more talent, more playmakers, and they made more plays. Boyd placed the ball perfectly on two touchdown passes, LT missed a wide open reciever for a touchdown. The Clemson recievers made the tough catches and when Hopkins dropped one in the end zone he didn’t look to the officials for a pass interference (like our #7) he went out and made tough catches later in the game. Boyd overthrew one reciever and it was tipped and intercepted, LT overthrew two recievers and the ball was picked off twice, once to the house.

    From my view up top the o-line created holes and our running backs did not have the vision or talent to exploit the holes. I don’t have the advantage of watching the tape with coaches like many of the people on this message board, but there were holes or times our running backs needed to plant and cut up and they could not or would not make the play. I hope the vision and ability to plant and cut will come with playing time.

    There were also big lanes on the kick-off return that a quicker David Wilson gets through but we don’t have that type of kid returning kicks this year.

    I have said it before and I will continue to say it, those of you blaming the offensive coaches are missing the real fact. We lack talent and playmakers to beat good teams right now. We have great kids playing hard, but we realized a couple of years ago we needed to recruit better talent and CFB made changes in his staff to bolster his recruitment efforts. He made the changes for one reason to get better. Time will tell if the two changes make a difference.

    Yes, I personally would have taken the 3 points and went up 10-0. I said that at the game. I hate the trick play, when we had just drove the field and scored and had plenty of time to drive again and get a score, hold, and get the ball back. But, I am a fan, not the head coach who made or signed off on both those decisions.

    I am a realist and if you think changing all the offensive coaches will sovle the problems at offensive problems at VT you really have to think about it. Look at the talent. As one Clemson fan said to me as we were walking back to our car: “The difference was, we (Clemson) have some future pros on our offense, you don’t”. Clemson was able to attract some top offenseive talent when the program was down and the fans wanted to run Dabo out of town. Yes, he made some coaching changes, but let’s not forget those changes came at the same time guys named Hopkins, Watkins, and Boyd came to town. Funny how talent and playmakers makes you a better coach.

    1. *GASP* You’re not frothing at the mouth like the rest of us…er…should be?

      You don’t want radical changes that’ll make us start putting up 50 pts / game and 700 yards of O like we do in Madden (cuz…you know, it’s easy)?


      In all seriousness — It’s a bit of both; we don’t have the horses right now to score like Clemson does, and our play calling honestly isn’t as bad as ppl make it out to be, but its one of those things that we need to get into a rhythm which the coaches need to recognize and allow us to do — not sure why we run so many orbit sweeps when the defense doesn’t respect that…

      but I think with Clemson’s talent and our current O philosophy, we’d be better.

    2. I couldn’t disagree more. So based on your excuse, why couldn’t we have above average offense with Tyrod at QB and Morgan & Royal at WR? They play in the NFL.

    3. Talent is down this year but our offense underperforms every year. And, since ST and D are not scoring the way they used to, the deficiencies on O play a larger role. The larger role is that now we cannot beat average teams whereas when we had ST and D scoring or at least providing short fields we could beat most teams but not top flight teams.

      So we do need more talent but we need better O as much or more. Our ST are no longer an advantage and our D can contain most teams in a typical year (talent is down there this year as well) but without an O to put points of the board we are not going to be very competitive going forward.

    4. You are not looking at the big picture. The only time our offense is average or slightly above average the last 10 years is when incredible talent overcomes our lack of offensive sophistication.

      Now, take a year like this one with only average talent and the same woeful coaching, and results are really dismal.

      When have you ever seen a VT offense success and said to yourself “great play design”? No, it’s Logan or Davis or Tyrod or Kevin Jones or Vick doing something special because the are aupremely talented.

  4. I have patiently been waiting for a number of years now for the offense to improve to the point that the defense would not have win the games. Our offensive Teams have not developed the consistensity that is needed for an upper tier football program. I am convinced we need some major changes in coaching on the offensive side of our team.
    When I can predict what the next play will be in many circumstances you know the opposing team can do the same thing. I have never posted before but am frustrated with the progress of the ftbl program. I have purchased season tickets for a number of years and I remember the years well before Frank Beamer.

    1. All questions will be answered when the season is over. If Frank Beamer overhauls the Offense, then we will know he is finally trying to get better, finally accepted the face he will never get to the promised land with what he has on the offensive staff.

      If the status quo is continued then we will know Frank Beamer no longer cares about getting to the next level, that he’d rather keep his close friends around as coaches than try to find answers to the continued offensive cesspool.

      At that point, it will be up to the fans to answer some questions of their own, primary of which is, “Do I want to continue to help fund the program, and continue to buy season tickets.”

      1. Atlee Hokie, I agree with you right down the line. Oh Jeez, I didn’t mean to say Line.

  5. Ok, i have heard the belly aching and the p-ssing and moaning for some time. I have to agree with some of what has been said, especially after the Clemson game.

    A number of you think nothing will change … but why sit here and p-ss and moan, do something about it.

    Call or fax your comments to Weaver and FB and TELL TWO FRIENDS TO CALL OR FAX.
    Do you have any idea how quickly this will spread?

    No emails, they are too easy to ignore.

    Athletic Office phone number 540-231-6796
    Weaver 540-231-3977
    FAX 540-231-3060

    Football Office/Frank Beamer 540-231-4132
    FAX 540-231-3473

    Do not suffer in silence. If we start now the fax machine will be out of paper by tomorrow morning.

    1. Reston Hokie is exactly right: a call to action. Let’s quit whining and do something. We all can see the game continuing to pass Frank bye. It’s both frustrating and just sad. I’m sorry but Bud Foster gets a pass from me b/c he’s carried this program on his back for 10+ years. The question of the year so far was put on this board several weeks ago: would any top program hire one of Tech’s coaches on offense? Absolutely not. And fans keep building hopes (me include) that we can compete for a national championship? Puhlease. When you can’t figure out Clemson’s 80th ranked D over 3 games, that says so much as well. It’s political season folks and whether you’re complaining about the media or polls or complaining in sports about refs and missing ops – it only means ONE thing always – you’re losing. Period.

    2. Come on guys off year. Giving the poor ladies in the office a head ach will not help anything.

  6. The play call on 4th and 1 is an excellent example of the problem, running left behind linemen which had not been effective, when running behind Benedict makes sense in that situation. BUT you see, Clemson would have EXPECTED that! So we do the opposite because that will fool them. I’ve watched that psychology in action for 10 years now, and it has never and will never be effective.
    Also, we spend way too much time running and passing sideways! Defenses are quick, quick quick nowadays. Even when you do something they don’t expect, they’re able to recover, especially with players as fast as Clemson has.
    Watch Oregon, they hit the line of scrimmage FAST. No wide screens or sweeps. Our offense is slow, even with fast athletes. Slow to snap the ball, too many formation changes, slow to hit the line, and sluggish in appearance.
    Weve got very good athletes and good coaches, but we need an injection of youth and innovation in the offensive coaching, and nothing will change until that occurs.

  7. I’m just trying to get to the root cause of the issues on offense. I don’t pretend to be an expert like Raleigh Hokie, but I keep reading and hearing things that seem to contradictory.

    Chris and Raleigh, for example, both have written that we try to combine too many elements of varied offenses and we need to pick a system and stick with it. However, I was watching the K State-WVU game yesterday and the commentator mentioned that KSU runs elements of the spread, veer and something else that I didn’t catch. They were successful, but WVU, which is spread exclusively, was shut down.


    1. I think it’s more about making things easy for college kids to understand — in their limited amount of practice time — communicating it clearly, and teaching it effectively, through clearly defined assignments and repetition.

      1. Folks,what in the water you people are drinking?Did you listen to the man on the show today?Quote,”we should be able to make one yard.”What did that mean?Could it be that if we can’t make one yard,and this has happened before without that comment,well maybe someone had better get thier stuff together and do the job .As I use to tell my employees,I can lose money with anyone,we are here to make money.For some of you who were around for Claiborne,Frank played for Claiborne and Claiborne was no fool.

        1. He’s of the opinion that if we can’t get a yard, (or stop you on 3rd down) we don’t deserve to win. That’s a great tough attitude and it works for teams ooozing talent. Unfortunately we aren’t there this year… too many limited/inexperienced players on our roster. Ultimately the goal is to win games, even if we’re not doing it the “toughest” way. Combine that with too many “they’ll never expect this!(because it’s such a terrible idea)” play calls instead of just sticking with what works…. and you’ve got a team that is going to struggle

    2. How about having the offensive line fire out instead of standing up reading the defense and putting your hands on them to guide them. The offensive line drive blocking looks like a dance class. It appears they are taught this. You cannot run when there is no movement of the defensive line back from the line of scrimmage.
      Just watch the film and see whose headgears are moving backwards. Unfortunately it usually our O Line.

  8. I cannot for the life of me understand why we go away from the short to intermediate passing plays that are getting thrown all over Clemson by the VT offense and go to running outside zone plays that are getting 1-2 yards at best against a horrible defense.

    I suppose it’s part of Stiney’s philosophy that “if it works, lets go away from it and see if something else does…..and keep doing it until it does work to validate it.”

    Running late in the game was horrible calling, the trick-play, etc. I dont’ get it.

    The scary part is that if we make it to the ACCCG this year and a bowl Stiney will stay where he is can continue to keep tech as a mediocre team that plays tough, at times. The only way we perform well is when we have athletes that are able to make plays out of nothing and make Stiney’s play-calling work (e.g. TT, Ryan Williams, D Coale, Boykin, Darren Evans, D Wilson).

  9. I am normally not one to jump on the fire this or that coach bandwagons. But I think it’s pretty obvious that either A) our guys don’t have the athletic ability to block, B) our guys just won’t block or C) our guys aren’t being taught how to block correctly. Since A and B don’t make much sense, we’re left with C. I’m much less hung up on the arguments about play calling, because no offensive system will work if it isn’t blocked properly. Personally I do not believe there’s an offensive coordinator in America right now who could improve our offensive production through scheme and play calling alone.

    1. I think that the blocking schemes that we use are both too complicated and too passive. In particular, these long “reach blocks” in the outside zone game are simply too hard for our players to execute with any consistency.

      During the Texas/Baylor game last night, the announcers were talking about how defensive fundamentals in the Big 12 as well as around the country seem to have gone right out the window. (Those two teams were in the process of moving up and down the field at will, ultimately scoring almost 100 points combined. It was almost like an arena league game.)

      Chris Spielman made an interesting point. He says that over time “You become what you do.” and that the increased prevalence of off-season 7-on-7 “non-contact” leagues has a lot to do with the poor tackling that we see among LBs and DBs these days.

      In 7-on-7, the emphasis is on non-contact. So if you do enough of it in the off-season, when you then get into a real game situation and you’re in full pads, the fundamentals have atrophied and the result is poor tackling and the inability to shed blockers.

      I think the same thing has happened with our offensive line. Under Newsome, we place so much emphasis on “moving our feet” and “walling off defenders to create running lanes” that when we need to line up and smack somebody in the mouth, we simply can’t do it.

      Curt Newsome needs to go and we need to bring in an old-school “smash mouth” OL coach who will simplify our schemes and take us back to the fundamentals of firing off the ball quickly, staying low and keeping the feet moving after contact.

      1. We can’t seem to find a happy medium! We used to be an O Line that was very good at run blocking and not worth a damn at pass blocking. Now we seem to be much better at pass blocking and stink an run blocking.

  10. Anyone tells me why BS loves Eric Martin so much?

    Obviously cannot catch. Can he block? Every time I watched him trying to block, he was pushed behind the LOS for 3,4 yards and run into our RB, including the 4th and 1, M Homes run. I don’t mind have another OL in that situation, many team are doing that.

    We don’t need too many role models on this team, we need people we can play!!!!

    1. I can’t figure that one out either. If it were up to me, #86 would never get another snap at VT except in garbage time.

      1. And add Wang to that never play list as well. Mind blowing why he is in there at all. Gibson need to be in there until Farris comes back.

  11. Blocking….if you can’t run block, WHY do you think you have time for reverses, doubles reverses, and crazy mis-direction.. It gets DAMNED crowded on our side of the ball 9in the backfield).

    The only way that crap works is if some defender falls down.

    If you cannot block effectively, you cannot play football!!. It is as true with today’s video-game high octane offenses as it was in Vince Lombardi’s day! Fix the freaking blocking..THAN decide WHAT you want to be..and BE IT!!!

    1. As I was watching this game yesterday, one thing repeatedly jumped out at me:

      At the snap of the ball, on running plays Clemson’s OL was always moving forward. At times they may have been moving at a 45 degree angle, but they were always moving forward.

      On the majority of our offensive running plays, at the snap of the ball the VT offensive line was moving sideways.

      Once you start looking for it, it becomes strikingly obvious.

      Our entire blocking philosophy and all of our blocking schemes need to be changed. We have totally lost the aggressiveness and physicality that used to characterize the VT running game. These long zone “reach” blocks might work at the NFL level with NFL caliber players, but they simply do not work at VT and they never will.

      Curt Newsome needs to go at the end of the season an Bryan Stinespring needs to be removed from the position of offensive coordinator, although I would like to see him remain on the staff because of his recruiting ability. If it takes a 6-6 record to get those things to happen, it’s worth it for me.

      1. Perhaps having BS for recruiting but not as OC is not an option as in “I only stay if I am OC– make your choice FB”

        1. If I were Stiney, I would swallow my pride and take a demotion. It is time for someone to show loyalty to FB.

        2. Then he can hit the bricks also. Stiney’s choice. At least it would be if I were the Big Whistle during personnel evaluation time.

        1. I wouldn’t be so sure. Beamer moved out long-term assistants and close personal friends Billy Hite and Jim Cavanaugh to make room for Shane and Cornell Brown two years ago … and that was after a 10-win season and an ACC championship.

          You have to understand that underneath his mild exterior, Frank Beamer is an intense competitor. He absolutely hates losing. At anything. I’ve been told this by people who know him very well.

          I was also told by one of my best sources yesterday that he’s hearing that Newsome won’t be back next year. I hope he’s right.

          1. I really hope you’re right Stud. We’re on the same page here. I don’t think Stiney is an offensive mastermind by any means, but I bet his system (even if his system is “borg”) would work if we just blocked better. Like you, I would like to see Newsome gone and Stiney demoted, but if I can’t have both of those things, then I’ll choose Newsome gone every time.

  12. Thoughts from 4th Qtr down 31-10:

    1st half: 4 fumbles, 2 interceptions, 1 muffed punt

    Start 2nd half: Over throw clear touchdown pass with Roberts 20 yards behind defense

    Once again, hope crushed by lack of execution —
    year after year after year in games that really matter

    From a zealous fan since my Freshman year in 1964

    1. I agree with your point, but must have missed the fumbles (FOUR fumbles in first half??)

      Also, as one who tries to gives the offensive coaches every break in the book, it is hard to let them off the hook for yesterday (you too Frank..TAKE the points ear;y!!). We had some REAL head-scratcher offensive calls to go with some of those poorly executed plays.

      If we had the talent to pull off some of the things they try to do, it would be one thing. But to use a backyard “flip, pitch, pass” play when we weren’t keeping Clemson out of our backfield to begin with , is just stupid play-calling (or maybe it’s just panic). Then to run off tackle to our weakest side (Wang/Martin) on a critical 4th and 1+ is BAD play-calling…I could go on.

      Some of the play-calling was pretty dang good! THAT is as it always is, but there was no FLOW or CONSISTENCY, never is.

      Couple all that with some horrendous calls by a bunch of NFL “Replacement Ref Rejects”, and I’m surprised we didn’t get beat WORSE than we did!

      Props to the defense. I’ve been critical of their effort this year (up until the last 3 qtrs of last week), but they did what I’m accustomed to seeing them do; kept us in the game!

      1. Couldn’t agree more. The decision by Beamer to go for it on 4th and 1 was yet another in a series of boneheaded in-game decisions that are becoming more and more frequent.

        The decision by Mike O’Cain to try to run behind David Wang and Eric Martin on the 4th down play was terrible, as was our play selection for most of the day.

        I’m usually not one to harp on the play calling, and up to this point in the season I have been relatively happy with our play selection. But yesterday it was awful, as was the offensive game plan. We were facing a Clemson defense that was weak up the middle against the run, and yet we repeatedly attempted to run wide even after it became obvious was sitting on those plays and shutting them down for little or no gain.

        Watching the Florida/S. Carolina game and the Texas/Baylor game yesterday really drove the point home to me of how antiquated and disjointed our entire offensive operation is. It needs a total overhaul from top to bottom.

        Newsome needs to go. Period.

        Stinespring needs to be removed as OC so that an outside OC can be brought in from somewhere, although I’d like to see him remain on staff, probably as TE coach.

        I’m fine with retaining both Shane and Sherman.

        As for O’Cain, I think he’s a good QB coach but he doesn’t add much at all from a recruiting standpoint. So he needs to go so that we can keep Stiney on the staff while still making room for a new OC that can also double as QB coach.

        1. I’m not so sure about Sherman. Damn, we can’t block on the perimeter. That’s mostly “want to” and a coach has to demand that his players want to block.

          1. Earlier in the season I defended Coach Sherman, but he has to coach these guys up and I don’t see it happening. I would also not allow players to take plays off. In the Clemson game his guys were just standing around not blocking or sustaining a block with ball carrier right beside of them. I feel the coaches on the O side need to learn from Coach Foster and light a fire under their players. We have talent, but we are not always getting the best effort. The coaches have to be held accountable.

  13. I love my Hokies but I cannot do this anymore. I was at the game, everyone new the Wadkins play was a fumble. I am tired of watching the Hokies offense which compared to Clemson and other higher ranked teams are awful.. Numerous times Clemsons defense was not ready and it took the Hokies forever to get a play call. How you do not run a power play up the middle on 4th and one near Benedicts side i will never know. I am 20 year season ticket holder and ’84 Grad, not coming back until changes are made on offense.

    1. Poor attitude. The ‘I’m not coming to another game’ mentality does not do the program any good. Changes need to be made, absolutely. But bailing as a fan is horse crap. We h

      1. Couldn’t agree more, JamisonVT. Either you’re all in or you’re not. So turn in those season tickets and head to Charlottesville!

  14. Have we ever run a trick play in a winning effort? I’ve been asking for years to run a few just to give the guys a confidence boost in a non pressure situation. Plus, it forces the other team to waste valuable practice time to be guarded against the trick play. We always wait til the most pressure packed situation and than hope that some rookie ball handler pulls an exceptional play. I don’t care if Marcus Davis was a QB in HS, he hasn’t thrown in a game situation all year so why throw across the field?

    If we get a big lead against anyone else on our schedule this year, (big if) we should practice running trick plays of all kinds just get the nerves out. Not to try and run up the score but just to shake free of the jitters so the next time we actually need one we have a better chance of being successful.

    1. Absolutely. Yesterday…Marcus Davis throw. Sugar Bowl…Danny Coale fake punt. 1999 National Championship…fake field goal. AND NOT ONE OF THEM WORKED! Honestly, I don’t remember us ever running a trick play or fake field goal/punt unless it’s in what you refer to as high pressure situations. At that point yesterday, we had a chance to make the game a one touchdown deal, with enough time on the clock to tie it too…frustrating.

  15. How many times did Mike Patrick and Ed Cunningham talk about how long it takes for Tech’s plays to develop? As someone else pointed out, LT is a great kid and solid leader but he’s having a terrible year. Mechanics are off and throws are either high or too hard or both. But I’m not sure Peyton Manning could execute a O’ CainSpring offense. Again, when the guys calling the game arent hiding their personal thoughts on Techs vast woes on offense – you know it’s bad.

  16. We would have won going away had it not been for the awful play of LT. God love him but something is terribly wrong this year with his game. There were other gaffes, and the officiating absolutely sucked, but – all in all – this game was entirely winnable.

  17. VT’s offense play calls themselves out of these games. The zone stretch running plays take forever to turn upfield. The emphasis on throwing deep so much sets LT up for sacks or pressure. The INTs and bad throws…just horrible. I wish we would simply stick to intermediate passes and we would likely sustain drives so much more… our inability to choose plays that simply get 5-15 yards kills us.

  18. On 4th & 1 with a 7-0 lead, WHY did we run Michael Holmes to the left side of the formation behind Wang & Martin, when only the series before we picked up a 4th & 1 with Scales running behind Via, Benedict and Painter!! And why do we insist on running screens to our 5’7″ tailback? Anyone notice how our play calling is WAY WORSE this year than last year now that Suckspring is in the booth!!

    1. Up until yesterday, I have had no problems with our play selection at all. But yesterday it was terrible.

  19. The missed touchdown pass to a wide open Roberts to start the 3rd quarter was as damaging as any ref’s or coach’s call. Would have been tied with plenty of momentum for the Hokies, and Clemson taking over around their own 25. Plenty of bad calls, but given our lack of consistency can anyone say any of them made a real difference? Over 60 minutes their playmakers were better than ours.

  20. Sorry to pick on the kids, but why do Wang and Martin even see the field? I saw the one play where Wang had the guy straight in front of him and then slid left to double team a guy and the defender had a straight shot at LT. Pitiful.

    1. Couldn’t agree more. Martin is the worst TE we have ever had in this program. Watch that 4th & 1 play from yesterday. As soon as he makes contact with the defender his legs stop moving. As the defender pushes back they turn to rubber and he gets stood up and driven backwards into the path of the ballcarrier, dooming the play.

  21. Not to defend these officials, but on the Boyd fumble, first his foot kicked the ball and then another CU player hit the ball. The O cannot advance the fumble, right?

    I think the officials saw it this way and made the correct call. VT was the only team that could have made an ez play.

    1. Intentionally kicking a loose ball is actually an infraction but they could not flag that from a replay review (is that reredundant?)

    2. No, the fumble is a separate issue. He fumbled, and the referees and replay official completely blew it. Again. The ball “naturally” went into the end zone; that is, it wasn’t pushed there. Clemson could then recover. UNC almost beat Duke yesterday on a fumble that UNC recovered and took for a TD.

      I’m so over instant replay. The Coale overturn in the Sugar Bowl was an abomination, and blew forever the concept of “indisputable.” Now two very clear fumbles were not overturned. If the replay officials can’t get the calls right, just get rid of them and let’s go back to letting the plays go on the field.

      Chris said this play didn’t have any effect on us, but it did. We stopped Clemson on 1st, 2nd, 3rd downs and they scored on 4th. That took 2-3 minutes off the clock which we desperately needed if we were to have any chance to come back.

  22. I’m not surprised we had the WR pass with Davis, since he had practiced at QB a few years ago, but we called that play at the worst possible time.

    1. And the play required davis to throw all the way across the field instead of up the middle or down the sideline closest to him

      1. That’s the way the play is designed!! Get the D flow all moving one way and throw back across the field. It is called offense which is why we sit on the sidelines instead of coaching. Other teams do the same type of play with success but it takes practice, timing and the right players executing the play correctly. If it works you’re a hero. If it doesn’t you’re the goat!

    2. Yes, it certainly was. We had the ball at midfield down by 14 points and there was still 7:30 left in the game. Way too early to be resorting to a trick play that requires a WR to throw the ball 20 yards back across the field. Just an awful call by O’Cain.

  23. How can Beamer be so blind to allow this horrid play calling?? Yes the refs were bad! However O’Cainspring lost this game plain and simple! If I were Bud I would give Beamer an ultimatum; either they go or he goes!!! Its not fair for Bud to be held back for this long.

    1. Could not agree with you more, Bud Foster is way too good to coach on a team with absolutely no offensive production. Beamer needs to make a big move this off season on the offensive side of the ball…

    2. Get real. The coaches/play calling did NOT lose this game. It contributed to the loss along with interceptions, fumbles, missed assignments, poor officiating and all the various other factors. Enough of the tunnel vision!!

  24. Gosh, how freaking disappointing. Defense, with the exception of a few plays, played a terrific game. Offense was pathetic – again – against a far inferior defense, with typically poor blocking and bad play calling. Logan definitely not sharp, and at this point in the season there’s no excuse. Ref’s were awful and unfortunately the majority of bad calls go against Tech. A game we could have won.

  25. ACC officials have got to be the worst in the country. They just don’t see the same game we see. Terrible blocking schemes on offense, looks comical at times.
    On defense can’t we find somewhere for Tweedy the tackling machine. I believe he would be a strong safety. It just will not happen because he has not paid his dues so to speak at that position. Can’t help but think would be an improvement on Cole. How about our best players on the field like VanDyke also.

    1. That brain-dead idiot in the replay booth should never be allowed to work another college game again.

      As for the ACC, if they can’t manage to get replay officials who are competent enough to overturn calls that are as obviously wrong as that one, why even bother having replay at all?

  26. Everyone said….everyone ……that Tech didn’t have the talent to match up with Clemson. the only way we could steal a win was to play a perfect game and have them self-destruct…..neither happened. Before people start writing about dropping their season tickets and drop their Hokie Club membership, try to remember that.

    1. Tech didn’t have the talent. It just so happened that the lack of talent was not on the field it was on the VT offensive coaching staff.

    2. We didn’t have the talent they did, and the defense did an excellent job negating their talent advantage for most of the game.

      What ended up being the problem warheads offenses inability to move the ball and score against one of the worst offenses in the country (again).

  27. 3 – 10 – 17… three of the 5 lowest outputs against the Clemson defense last year / this year

    BC only put up 14 last year and Furman only put up 7 this year (the other 2 of the 5 lowest offensive score against the Tigers the past 2 seasons)

    this is a defense that averages giving up 32 points/game against anyone not named VT and 10 points/game against VT. Troy scored 19 on them, Wofford scored 27, that putrid maryland offense scored 50% more points in one game (45 points) than we did in three games (30 points).

  28. I really didn’t expect us to win, but about 6 Bad Calls took away our Competitive edge, We were Hosed Big Time, I will not recite them, but if You watched the Game, you know. I don’t mind getting whupped, but it’s a game if the Blind Refs have vision and perhaps some balls. At least We will destroy UVA at Season’s end, I will be there for that carnage, fer sure. Go Hokies!

    1. I really think the game turned on the completed pass that was disallowed. Football isn’t really football anymore.

  29. Kyle Tucker quote “Frank Beamer has a lot of wins because of defense and special teams. And an empty trophy case because he never turfed his offensive staff.”

    1. Thought Tech played well, couldn’t catch a break, officials sure hurt Tech. Down by two and moving the ball , then that awful ” trick play” call – not necessary at that point. Almost as bad a call as the play with Danny Coale in last years bowl game. Tech’s running plays seem to take way too long in developing. Team is playing with much more pep and ” want to ” than earlier in the year. Still in the race for coastal and may yet fool some people.

      1. I agree, except for the fact that our play calling won’t change. That stops our offense more than any defense we will face.

    2. That’s a truckload of truth right there. I like having one of the very few good guys in college football as our coach, but sometimes, you have to tell your friends the hard fact that they’re not cutting it. I’m sure another school somewhere (hopefully far, far away) would be happy with Stinespring’s “surprise ’em with mediocrity” style.

      That’s not what Hokies want from their teams (regardless of sport) and the reason is the empty trophy case that Frank swore to us that he would populate.

    3. Ironically enough, it was our offense that almost won the 1999 Sugar Bowl, and the defense and special teams that blew it.

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