Game Preview: Virginia Tech Looks To Regain Black Diamond Trophy

Virginia Tech vs. WVU
WVU topped the Hokies 27-21 in Morgantown in 2021. (Ivan Morozov)

Virginia Tech (2-1, 1-0 ACC) hosts West Virginia (1-2, 0-1 Big 12) in Lane Stadium for a big Thursday night contest. The history of Hokie football on Thursday nights began with the 1994 WVU game in a 34-6 win. When VT and WVU take the field this Thursday, Sept. 22, it’ll mark 28 years to the day. Tech fans are hoping for a similar result this week.

West Virginia suffered a tough opening-season loss to one of their other main rivals, the Pitt Panthers. On the road, it dropped a 38-31 game that was a bit higher-scoring than expected. The next week, the Mountaineers inexplicably lost at home in overtime to Kansas 55-42 before breaking into the win column against FCS Towson last week (65-7).

The Kansas loss seems bad on paper considering the history, but the Jayhawks are 3-0 under second-year head coach Lance Leipold after beating Houston and former WVU head coach Dana Holgorsen on the road this past weekend. West Virginia’s loss to Kansas doesn’t seem nearly as bad as it did a week ago as it now appears that Kansas is a legitimate bowl team.

The Mountaineers come to Lane Stadium with playmakers on offense but a shaky defense. This is the last game currently scheduled between these two programs, so whoever walks out of Lane Stadium on Thursday night with the Black Diamond Trophy is going to get to keep it for a long time. Could that be forever in these days of unknown conference realignment?

Virginia Tech
Former Virginia Tech offensive lineman Doug Nester returns to Blacksburg. (Ivan Morozov)

The West Virginia Offensive Line

Though it dominated Towson over the weekend, the WVU offensive line hasn’t been a strength so far this season, especially with multiple players seeing time at multiple positions. The best example is former Virginia Tech right guard Doug Nester (6-7, 320, Jr.), who has seen time at three different positions in three games. Here’s how it breaks down…

Pitt: 43 snaps at right tackle, 33 at right guard
Kansas: 80 snaps at right guard
Towson: 51 snaps at right guard, 11 snaps at center

I think Nester’s best position is at guard, but the fact that he’s played three spots in three games shows there are some depth issues up front and the coaches are still trying to figure out exactly what they have. Nester is listed as the No. 1 right tackle despite the fact that he hasn’t played there since game one, but he’s also listed as the No. 2 right guard. Likewise, Jordan White (6-2, 298, r-Fr.) is listed as the No. 1 right guard and the No. 2 center.

This was the starting group the Mountaineers went with against Towson…

LT Wyatt Milum (6-6, 307, So.)
LG James Gmiter (6-3, 310, r-Jr.)
C Zach Frazier (6-3, 306, So.)
RG Doug Nester (6-7, 320, Jr.)
RT Ja’Quay Hubbard (6-5, 318, r-So)

That group dominated Towson easily, though there were struggles against Pitt and Kansas. Here were West Virginia’s PFF pass blocking and run blocking grades in those two games…

Pitt: 50.9 pass blocking, 53.3 run blocking
Kansas: 71.1 pass blocking, 61.7 run blocking

Meanwhile, here are the pass blocking and run blocking numbers posted by each Virginia Tech FBS opponent against the Hokies this season…

ODU: 16.8 pass blocking, 49.6 run blocking (and Tech still lost…sheesh)
BC: 54.9 pass blocking, 51.3 run blocking

The Mountaineers did fine pass blocking against Kansas, but they didn’t run block particularly well against either FBS opponent. Though the WVU offense is good on the whole, their weakness is probably up front. However, I want to stress that this group is much better than the Boston College unit that the Hokies dominated in week two.

The West Virginia Running Backs

Despite inconsistent blocking, a pair of West Virginia running backs have played very well…

Tony Mathis Jr. (5-11, 207, r-So.): 49 carries, 234 yards, 4.8 ypc, 2 TDs
CJ Donaldson (6-2, 240, Fr.): 29 carries, 274 yards, 9.4 ypc, 6 TDs

Donaldson is an interesting story. He was recruited as a tight end after playing that position and wide receiver in high school, and he’s still listed as a tight end on the official West Virginia roster. However, he’s in the rotation at running back for the Mountaineers, and he’s had a big impact so far. His numbers include an 82-yard touchdown run. He’s an absolute load. Donaldson has forced nine missed tackles while carrying the ball. 215 of his yards have come after contact, and he’s averaging 7.17 yards after contact.

That’s a pretty good start to the career of Donaldson, who was rated as the No. 111 player in Florida coming out of high school, as well as the nation’s 46th-best tight end. Here are all his offensive snaps (as well as his notable special teams play) against Pitt…

He’s a load, and the Tech defense has not faced anyone with his physical ability so far this year. There was a big fourth-and-one play late in the Pitt game where the WVU coaches elected not to give the ball to Donaldson, and given everything they know now, I don’t think they’ll make the same mistake again. There are times when he can be caught ball-watching when he doesn’t have the ball in his hands, but this is a guy who appears to be a very good player now and could be an excellent one before it’s all said and done. His only other recruiting visits were Tulane and USF. WVU certainly found a gem. It’s important that the Hokies stop him at the line of scrimmage and not let him get his 240 pounds going downhill.

Mathis is no slouch in his own right. He’s forced eight missed tackles on 49 carries, and he’s probably more trustworthy with the little things that are required of a running back. He’s a very shifty player, and he and Donaldson are a good complement to each other.

Playmakers In The Passing Game

West Virginia brought in veteran quarterback JT Daniels (6-2, 226, r-Jr.) as a transfer, and he has assumed the starting quarterback duties. He started for both USC and Georgia in his career, though he was unable to hang on to either job long term. Here are his career numbers, including his three games at WVU this season…

Passing: 455-of-713 (63.8%) for 5,593 yards, 38 touchdowns, 18 interceptions
Rushing: 70 carries, -263 yards, -3.8 ypc, 1 TD

Through three games in Morgantown, Daniels has completed 64.1% of his passes for 753 yards, six touchdowns and two interceptions. His career numbers show that he’s a very capable passer. The good news is that Virginia Tech doesn’t have to scheme for him in the running game as he’s a traditional pocket passer who lacks mobility.

Daniels has help on the outside in the form of Bryce Ford-Wheaton (6-3, 224, r-Jr.). Through three games, he’s caught 24 passes for 296 yards (12.3 avg) and four touchdowns with a long of 67. In the VT-WVU meeting in 2021, he only had one catch, but it went for 29 yards and a score in the first quarter.

Ford-Wheaton has been one of the nation’s best and most productive receivers in the country so far this season. He ranks No. 8 nationally in wide receiver grade of all receivers with 15 or more targets. He didn’t play as much against Towson because the game was decided early, but check out his numbers against Pitt and Kansas…

Pitt: 9 catches, 97 yards, 10.8 avg, 2 TDs
Kansas: 11 catches, 152 yards, 13.8 avg, 2 TDs

Those are big-time performances against two Power 5 teams, and Pitt was supposed to have a good defense again this year.

Two other WVU wideouts have double-digit catches on the season…

Kaden Prather (6-4, 211, So.): 14 catches, 151 yards, 10.8 avg, 1 TD
Sam James (6-0, 182, r-Jr.): 11 catches, 194 yards, 17.6 avg, 1 TD

Between the running backs, wide receivers and quarterback, West Virginia has more playmakers than the Virginia Tech defense has seen this season. It’s the Hokies’ biggest challenge in the month of September.

Virginia Tech
The West Virginia defense has struggled in coverage. (Ivan Morozov)

Struggles At Linebacker For West Virginia

Generally, West Virginia has two traditional linebackers on the field at a time. The Mountaineers play a total of three guys across those two roles, and all three have struggled against Power 5 competition, especially in coverage.

Lance Dixon (6-2, 220, r-So.), Lee Kpogba (6-1, 230, Jr.) and Exree Lee (6-0, 214, r-Sr.) are the guys who have gotten the snaps. Here are their individual grades in WVU’s games against Power 5 offenses.

First, Dixon…

Pitt: 50.0 overall, 58.2 rushing, 80.0 tackling, 58.0 pass rush, 46.7 coverage
Kansas: 60.1 overall, 44.1 rushing, 64.0 tackling, 57.8 pass rush, 76.6 coverage

Now Kpogba…

Pitt: 56.5 overall, 72.3 rushing, 51.8 tackling, 47.5 pass rush, 48.0 coverage
Kansas: 42.8 overall, 43.7 rushing, 81.0 tackling, 74.9 pass rush, 40.9 coverage

Lastly, Lee…

Pitt: 70.7 overall, 77.3 rushing, 50.2 tackling, 66.9 pass rush, 54.0 coverage
Kansas: 29.9 overall, 26.8 rushing, 73.1 tackling, N/A pass rush, 47.0 coverage

Lee was the only one of the three to see significant snaps against Towson, and he performed poorly in that game with an overall grade of 44.7.

Out of those three linebackers, WVU got exactly one good coverage performance against Power 5 teams. They are a big reason why the Mountaineers have one of the worst coverage grades in the country in the early portion of the season. Their team coverage grade of 57.2 ranks No. 111 out of 131 FBS teams, including grades from last week’s matchup with Towson.

As you can see, these linebackers have also been very inconsistent against the run. On the whole, they find themselves out of position quite often. Sometimes you don’t even have to block them…you can get them out of position simply by going against your tendencies and messing up their reads, running “smoke and mirrors” type of plays, etc.

Key Injury In The West Virginia Secondary

The Mountaineer secondary has had its own struggles in coverage this year, though some of that can be blamed on the loss of Preseason First Team All-Big 12 cornerback Charles Woods, who went down with an ankle injury after just 12 plays against Pitt. His loss can’t be understated. He was dominant in coverage for WVU last year after transferring from Illinois State where he was one of the best FCS players in the country.

It was recently reported that Woods had surgery on his ankle, so he certainly won’t be back to face the Hokies on Thursday night. The Mountaineers have played a lot of corners this year, especially against Towson, but we can bet on these two players lining up at wide corner on Thursday night…

Rashad Ajayi (5-11, 182, r-Sr.): 58.1 coverage grade, 166 snaps
Wesley McCormick (5-11, 200, r-Sr.): 56.9 coverage grade, 97 snaps

Malachi Ruffin (5-10, 195, r-So.) can also play there or at safety. With a 54.9 coverage grade (42.1 against Kansas), he has struggled against the pass this year, like most of the rest of the defense.

No West Virginia defensive player has graded out higher than a 67.2 in coverage this season. The player with the highest grade played just 34 snaps in one game (Towson). A large number of WVU’s best coverage grades come from guys who played just a few snaps in that game against a FCS opponent.

For those of you who are more into the traditional metrics, here is where the Mountaineer defense ranks against the pass …

Yards per game: 263.5 (No. 91 nationally)
Yards per attempt: 9.9 (No. 123 nationally)
Opp. QB rating: 172.58 (No. 116 nationally)

This defense can be beaten through the air, and this would be a fine week for Virginia Tech’s wide receivers to get healthy and make progress.

Better Rushing Defense

West Virginia is much better when it comes to defending the run. In two games against P5 competition, the Mountaineers have allowed 138 yards per game (No. 63) and 3.73 yards per run (No. 54).  Those numbers are mediocre on the whole, but the Virginia Tech rushing attack has been pretty punchless.

Tech’s run blocking grade ranks No. 125 out of 131 teams in the country, which is even lower than that BC offensive line that the Hokies dominated. Tech’s running grade ranks No. 102, a number that would be even lower without Keshawn King. Hopefully he’s able to play on Thursday night.

Dante Stills (6-4, 290, r-Sr.) is West Virginia’s best player up front. The West Virginia native was recruited very hard by Virginia Tech coming out of high school, and the Hokie coaching staff even went to his basketball games to show how much they wanted him.

“They showed me a lot of love,” Stills told Tech Sideline during his recruitment. “It’s ridiculous. The only love a coach can give you is an offer, but they showed me tons of love and they want me to come around a lot. That’s the only other school I’ve seen that came to see me during basketball. That’s love, I respect that. So, I like that.”

Of course, his father Gary was a great player for West Virginia back in the 1990s, so there was never really a question of where he was going to sign. Stills can line up inside or outside in West Virginia’s multiple-front defense, and he has 47 career tackles for loss and 22.5 sacks. He’ll be the biggest challenge of the season thus far for a Virginia Tech offensive line that has struggled, particularly in run blocking.

Others to watch for up front are Jordan Jefferson (6-3, 310, Jr.), Taijh Alston (6-4, 255, r-Sr.) and Sean Martin (6-5, 288, So.). These players are experienced, but they aren’t standouts in terms of ability or production.

Special Teams

The big thing to note about West Virginia’s special teams is that its kickoff coverage team allowed a 96-yard touchdown return against Towson last week in the first quarter. The Mountaineers also allowed a 100-yard kickoff return for a touchdown last season, so there could certainly be a weakness in that part of their game.

Kickoff specialist Parker Grothaus has only put six of his 20 kickoffs in the endzone for touchbacks this season, so the Hokies should have a chance or two. For what it’s worth, Cole Beck made his first of appearance of the year on the depth chart as a kickoff returner on Monday afternoon.

Other than that, there’s not much to tell about the Mountaineers in the return game thus far. They are averaging only 15.8 yards per kick return, which isn’t good, but as we all know three games is a small sample size and one big return jumps up that average quite a bit. Three different players have returned a punt, and Preston Fox (5-10, 184, r-Fr.) returned his for 27 yards, but we don’t know which returner we’ll see on Thursday.

The aptly-named Casey Legg (6-4, 216, r-Jr.) is West Virginia’s field goal kicker, and he’s a perfect 4-of-4 this season. He is 30-of-38 for his career, and he entered 2022 as a Preseason First Team All-Big 12 selection. In last year’s meeting, he was 2-for-2 from 21 and 44 yards.

Oliver Straw has only punted seven times this season (that’s a full game for Peter Moore, haha), and only one of his punts has been returned (for three yards).

Final Thoughts

The Hokies are going to have to play their best game of the season on both sides of the football to beat West Virginia. Tech has played very well defensively so far, but that’s come against three sub-par offensive opponents. Not many teams on Tech’s schedule have the combination of quarterback, wide receivers and running backs that the Mountaineers will bring to Lane Stadium on Thursday night. The Lunch Pail defense has to bring it.

Though West Virginia has struggled defensively, they’ve got one player up front (Stills) who will be the toughest player the Hokies have faced so far (and arguably will face all season). The Hokies have improved in some ways since the start of the season, but ultimately they can’t keep relying on the defense to dominate every game now that the schedule is heating up. At some point, they are going to have to cross that 30-point threshold to win a football game, and that’s likely the case this week.

College football is weird these days. I always say there is no parity, but what I mean by that is that there is no parity in terms of competing for a National Championship. There’s a lot of parity elsewhere. Marshall can go on the road and beat Notre Dame and then lose to Scot Loeffler’s Bowling Green team the next week, who in turn had previously lost in seven overtimes to FCS Eastern Kentucky. Appalachian State can beat Texas A&M on the road and then need a miracle to beat Troy at home the very next week.

Texas A&M can lose to Appalachian State one week and beat Miami the next week. Arkansas can handle teams like Cincinnati and South Carolina and then nearly get upset at home by FCS Missouri State. Texas can nearly beat Alabama and then almost lose to Texas-San Antonio. Wake Forest can beat an SEC team (albeit a bad one) on the road and then nearly lose to Liberty. Tulane beat Kansas State. Eastern Michigan upset Arizona State.

Point being, with all of the elite talent in college football stacked at those top few programs, that means the talent levels of all the other teams are very similar. Each team will have its own unique strengths and weakness, but there’s not a lot separating most teams. That’s the case in Thursday night’s game with West Virginia. Both teams are good in some areas, and not-so-good in other areas, and the game will be won by a key play or two, turnovers, field position, and stuff like that.

I’ve enjoyed playing this mini-series with West Virginia. I don’t like them, but I do respect them, and I believe they are Virginia Tech’s most fun rivalry. Not most important, mind you, but most fun. UVA is most important, but at the same time, UVA fans are different. They don’t care much about football. WVU fans are much more like VT fans in that they support their team, show up on gameday and love their program. It’s fun to compete against like-minded fanbases. I only wish there were more of them in the ACC.

If the Black Diamond Trophy doesn’t come back to Blacksburg this year, when will it? No future games are on the horizon, so if West Virginia wins on Thursday night, that trophy might reside in Morgantown forever. That would be tough to stomach. Tech fans were in favor of ending the WVU series after 2005, but that was easy to say at the time because it was the Hokies who possessed the Black Diamond Trophy. If the shoe is on the other foot this time around, I wonder how we’ll feel. Win or lose on Thursday, I’m in favor of playing the game as often as possible.

I picked Boston College to beat Virginia Tech in Lane Stadium because they have more playmakers. With Zay Flowers, that’s probably right. However, their offensive line is so bad that it negates whatever playmaking advantage they might have over certain opponents. The Mountaineers’ offensive line hasn’t been great, but it is miles ahead of the BC line, and they have a number of good skill position players who are capable of putting up big numbers.

On the other side of the ball, West Virginia’s defense hasn’t been good against the pass, but the Hokies haven’t been able to throw the ball consistently against anybody besides Wofford. Something has to give.

West Virginia is the slight favorite, and I can see why. It has more proven playmakers on offense, and the Hokies managed to lose to Old Dominion despite not allowing a touchdown to the ODU offense until the final minute. I think I would almost certainly pick the Mountaineers on a neutral field.

Lane Stadium has been pretty great this year, though, and it’s going to be jacked up to another level on Thursday night. If the Hokies are going to win a “big game” in Lane this year, this one is probably their best chance. The fanbase is going to be ready, the tailgating will be great, and everything on Thursday night is going to be full throttle. Will that be enough? I don’t know.

If I knew Keshawn King was 100%, I’d feel better. Same thing if Kaleb Smith, Jadan Blue and Silas Dzansi weren’t banged up. If I knew all four of those guys were healthy, I’d pick the Hokies.

But I don’t know that. In terms of numbers, Virginia Tech has been a healthy team throughout the preseason and early portions of the season. However, the Hokies have been extremely unlucky when it comes to who has gotten injured. The top two tailbacks, two of the top three receivers, and now the best offensive lineman. Ugh. I expect all of those guys to play (except Malachi Thomas), but I don’t know how healthy they are.

Chris’s Prediction: West Virginia 27, Virginia Tech 24

Will Stewart’s Take: Just when you think you know a team, they can go out and put together an unexpected game. Hokie fans are hoping Virginia Tech does that Thursday night.

More precisely, the Virginia Tech offense, so let’s start with that. The Hokies have not blocked well this year, and I don’t expect that part of their game to take a big step forward yet. I think this will be the toughest matchup for Tech in this game, the one that could settle it.

If the Hokie O-line can hold its own and Keshawn King can play a full game, that could turn the tide. We’ve seen Grant Wells get better week by week as a passer in this offense, and against Wofford, receivers Jadan Blue and Christian Moss showed some playmaking ability to complement Kaleb Smith, limited though he is.

The Tech offense is improving, but how quickly can it happen? Can it take a big step forward, enough to put up 30 points or more? It’s possible, especially with the weaknesses that WVU’s back eight has defending the pass. It’s also possible that Dante Still and his D-line will control the line of scrimmage. We’ll see.

Switching sides, Virginia Tech’s defense showed itself to be the strength of the team against Boston College. Can it continue that against a WVU offense that has some dynamic playmakers but an unsettled offensive line? The Hokie defense we saw against BC is Tech’s best chance of staying in most games while the Hokie offense figures things out.

The kicking games appear to be pretty even, especially when it comes to field goals.

I’m going to be a homer for this one and put my faith in the Virginia Tech offense to take a big step forward, the defense to keep it going, and special teams to help bring it home.

Will’s Prediction: Virginia Tech 30, West Virginia 28

David Cunningham’s Take: At the start of the season, this is a game I thought West Virginia would win. I didn’t think Virginia Tech’s defense would be as good as it has played, but I thought the offense would be slightly better. And then there’s West Virginia, who I expected to be better.

It’s going to be a like-for-like battle, strength against strength, for the VT defense and WVU offense. I’m not expecting JT Daniels & Co. to run away with it, but I am expecting them to put up some points. Can Tech keep up, though?

From the Virginia Tech team we’ve seen in the first three games, my inclination is no… but only slightly. Then again, this offense hasn’t always been 100%. Keshawn King, Kaleb Smith and Silas Dzansi should all be good to go on Thursday night based on Brent Pry’s comments in the past few days. So, what will this offensive unit look like?

I think you’ll see a little bit of what you saw against Boston College, which included controlling the clock and being methodical. I don’t expect it to be a super conservative outing, though. Tech needs to be aggressive, and I think this is the game where you pull out some trickery and throw away the vanilla playbook. I think that’ll keep Tech in the game.

I’ve got a feeling this one will come down to the wire just like last year’s game. This time, however, I think the Hokies pull out the win. They’ll do enough defensively to give their offense a chance, and I’m confident that with King and Smith on the field, that group can keep it close, especially after what we saw through the air against Wofford with young receivers coming out of the woodwork. I’ve got a feeling it’ll come down to Will Ross, and I think he nails his first-career game-winning field goal opportunity.

David’s Prediction: Virginia Tech 31, West Virginia 30

 


What's your prediction for the 2022 Virginia Tech-West Virginia game?

  • Hokies Win by 1-10 (45%, 761 Votes)
  • Mountaineers Win by 1-10 (31%, 525 Votes)
  • Mountaineers Win by 11+ (18%, 310 Votes)
  • Hokies Win by 11+ (6%, 104 Votes)

Total Voters: 1,700

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Last Game’s Virginia Tech-Wofford Prediction Poll Results

Game Result: Virginia Tech 27, Wofford 7

What's your prediction for the 2022 Virginia Tech-Wofford game?

  • Hokies Win by 11+ (94%, 1,203 Votes)
  • Hokies Win by 1-10 (3%, 38 Votes)
  • Terriers Win by 11+ (2%, 28 Votes)
  • Terriers Win by 1-10 (1%, 15 Votes)

Total Voters: 1,284

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2022 Virginia Tech Football Predictions Tracker - TSL Staff
Game
Will (2-2)
David (2-2)
Chris (2-2)
Result
@ODU
BC
Wofford
WVU
@UNC
TBD
2022 Virginia Tech Football Predictions Tracker - Fans (2-2)
Game
Fan Poll
Result
Score
@ODU
Hokies Win by 11+
ODU 20, Hokies 17
Boston College
Hokies Win by 1-10
Hokies 27, BC 10
Wofford
Hokies Win by 11+
Hokies 27, Wofford 7
@WVU
Hokies Win by 1-10
WVU 33, Hokies 10

22 Responses You are logged in as Test

  1. His loss can’t be understated“. So WVU won’t miss him at all, a non factor.

    I don’t like our chances. Maybe Pry has the offense improve this week. However, only 27 vs Woefford! Scary

  2. WV looks bigger and faster to me. If we can block those two DTs….might have a chance. Defense will have to win this one.

  3. I just happen to be one of those guys who is a fan of both teams. My parents and grandparents all were born and raised in WV in a very small town about 30 minutes for WVU. So I grew up a WV fan, however my dad retired in Virginia when I was 12. I went to Virginia Tech from 82 – 86 and became a diehard Hokie fan. So, while I like both teams, VT is without a doubt MY #1 team. Unfortunately, for this game I have to go with my number 2 team; WV 34 – VT 13.

  4. Another great article guys- Thursday night should be a real test for the good guys. And Chris, I have to correct you on one thing. You mentioned that UTSA almost upset UT-Austin. A final score of 41-20 is a long way from being an upset. Also, Doug Nester is one big dude- sure wish he had stayed with VT. And, why in the world would Fuente’s staff spent so much time recruiting Stills when everyone knew from the beginning that he was WVU bound- another head scratcher from Fu and Company I guess.

  5. I’ve had four beers tonight, so take this for what it’s worth. I think the VT crowd will be the difference. We’ll get Dax and the team fired up. I wasn’t planning to go to this game until I felt the crowd at the Wofford game. I sense that the fans, and the team, are ready to make a statement.

  6. If we had a guy named Malachi who by now has to have broken his back( geez almighty how long does a sprained ankle last) I would feel better . We HAVE to be multi dimensional on offense to win… our defense is much better than the lowly Eers but we need to really step it up on offense to have a chance

  7. Just OVER half are picking the ‘EERs to win this one.. This is shaping up to be a great game! I can’t wait for Thursday night — GO HOKIES

  8. Whatever happed to Cluckers game picks or whatever the chicken was called? Call it a chick pick that won’t get you in trouble on TSL…

  9. Be interesting game,IMHO, somebody on the VT team and coaching staff better have a Wake-Up Call. For VT to win..can’t call these lame RB plays Thursday night..I’m Pry supporter ..GO Hokes

  10. If the score stays in the 20’s I think VT has a chance, but if it gets to the 40’s I don’t think the offense can win a shoot-out.

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