The start to this game was beautifully scripted by Bud Foster and Scot Loeffler. Foster put Kyle Fuller — playing the whip/nickel position — up close to the line and had him shoot the gap and cause trouble for the quarterback.
Paul Johnson has seen it all and has ways to adjust, but what you hope is that before he adjusts, you can do some damage. Fuller did just that, forcing a fumble that the Hokies recovered on the Georgia Tech 27 yard line.
Two plays later, Logan Thomas hit D.J. Coles on a misdirection play where the entire offense moved right, but Coles slipped from right to left, and Thomas hit him on a crossing pattern. Coles motored the rest of the way for the touchdown. The play went for 21 yards and staked the Hokies to a 7-0 lead very early on.
On Georgia Tech’s next possession, Brandon Facyson made an incredibly athletic interception on the sideline at the Virginia Tech 14 yard line. But the Hokies couldn’t do anything with it.
A couple of possessions later, the Hokies put together the type of drive they seem to have once a game: a 10-play, 91-yard masterpiece that ended with a Logan Thomas 5-yard run up the middle to put the Hokies up 14-0 with 11:25 to go second quarter.
Georgia Tech responded with a field goal drive, hitting a 49-yarder to close the gap to 14-3, where it stands at half time.
The story of the first half is Logan Thomas, who hit 11-of-14 for 149 yards, 1 TD, and 0 INT. LT hit his first 9 passes, and it’s obviously his best game so far. Demitri Knowles leads with 3 catches for 54 yards. D.J. Coles, with his TD reception, has 8 catches this year, 3 for touchdowns.
The Virginia Tech tailback rushing game has been atrocious. Trey Edmunds and Chris Mangus have combined for 4 carries for (-6) yards. As they say in the business, “that is not a typo.” Logan Thomas has carried it 7 times for 36 yards and a TD.
Defensively, the Hokies have held GT to 160 yards overall, but only 62 rushing. GT has hit a couple big pass plays, but neither one has hurt the Hokies, though the first one did set up the 49-yard field goal.
Virginia Tech, for their part, has 181 yards. Time of possession is 16:40 to 13:20 in favor of GT, and the Jackets have run 33 plays to VT’s 27, but the Hokies have been opportunistic, and they have the one long TD drive to their credit.
Kyle Fuller has been disruptive, and James Gayle has completely controlled his side of the defensive line.
VT gets the ball first to open the second half.
Virginia Tech Halftime Notes
courtesy Virginia Tech Athletics Communications
• Tech’s permanent captains for the year are Jack Tyler, Kyle Fuller, Andrew Miller and Logan Thomas.
• Tech is wearing Hokie Stone helmets for the first time in program history. Hokie Stone is a type of rock mined from a university-owned quarry near campus that adorns all new buildings on campus. The helmets also have a sticker representing the War Memorial pylons a landmark on campus honoring those who made the ultimate sacrifice while serving our country.
• Tech is wearing maroon jerseys and maroon pants for the first time since the Miami game in 2009, a 31-7 win. Under head coach Frank Beamer, Tech is 12-7 in the maroon on maroon combo.
• Freshman tight end Kalvin Cline made his first career start. He becomes the sixth true freshman to start this year, joining Kendall Fuller and Brandon Facyson in the defensive secondary, Jonathan McLaughlin at offensive tackle, Sam Rogers at fullback and Mitchell Ludwig as the kickoff man.
• With Tech’s first score, the Hokies extended their scoring streak to 235 games, the 13th-longest in NCAA Division I history. Five of the 12 streaks ahead of Tech’s are active streaks.
• D.J. Coles caught his team-leading third touchdown pass of the season in the first quarter.
• True freshman Brandon Facyson, playing just 30 minutes from his hometown of Newnan, intercepted his fourth pass of the season in the first quarter. The mark ties the Tech freshman record under head coach Frank Beamer for a season just five games in. Eric Green had four in 2000, coming in 13 games. Facyson also had a pass break up, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery on separate plays in the first half.
• Senior Logan Thomas picked up his 23rd career rushing touchdown, moving him into a tie for first place at Tech all-time for quarterbacks with 23 (Tyrod Taylor). Thomas now has 16 games with a passing TD and a rushing TD since the start of 2011 season, the most among active FBS players during that span.
• Thomas now has 42 career touchdown passes. He needs one more to move into a tie for fourth place at Tech (43; Will Furrer). The record is 48 by Bryan Randall. Thomas now has 6,903 career passing yards and needs just 115 yards to break the school record of 7,017 held by Tyrod Taylor.