Virginia Tech Falls to Pitt in an Ugly Game


— box score —

In one of the ugliest games we’ve seen recently, Pitt defeated Virginia Tech 17-13 in Lane Stadium on Saturday afternoon.  The Hokies dropped to 2-3 on the season, and they are now 0-1 in the ACC.  Pitt improved to 3-1 and 1-0.

Statistics matter, unless they don’t.  In this particular case, you can’t hide from the statistics.  Virginia Tech gained exactly 100 yards of total offense.  That is the lowest amount of yards gained under a Frank Beamer team since Beamer’s first game as Tech’s coach in 1987 when they gained 60 yards against Clemson.

It’s easy to pick on the rushing totals (9 yards, including 57 yards lost on seven sacks), but the passing yards weren’t much better.  The Hokies threw for 91 yards in the course of the game, and on the whole they managed to gain 300 feet of total offense in three hours and three minutes of game time.  63 of their 100 total yards came on their lone touchdown drive in the the first half.

Pitt got off to a 10-0 lead, but the Hokies got back into the game thanks to a 10-play, 83 yard drive (25 yards of which came on Pitt penalties, minus 5 yards of VT penalties, for a total of 20 yards gained through penalties) that culminated in an 11 yard touchdown pass from Brenden Motley to Cam Phillips.  Despite the rough start to the game, Tech seemed to be back in it at 10-7.

The Panthers held a 10-7 halftime lead, but extended it to 17-7 after a two-play, 68 yard touchdown drive to begin the third quarter.  Qadree Ollison had both carries off the left side, and two gains of 43 and 25 yards gave Pitt a 10 point lead.

Pitt's Qadree Ollison rumbles for yardage.
Pitt’s Qadree Ollison rumbles for yardage.

Tech’s defense clamped down for the remainder of the game, and it was up to the offense, which unfortunately couldn’t produce.

Despite their lack of offense, Tech still had a chance to win the football game.  Thanks to a Pitt fumble (one of four on the day, only one of which the Hokies recovered) Tech had the ball on the Panther 23 with 7:37 left in the third quarter.  After Brenden Motley was sacked on first down, the Hokies couldn’t manage to get anything going.  After a 4 play, -3 yard drive, Joey Slye kicked a 43 field goal to make the score 17-10 Pitt.

Early in the fourth quarter Slye added a 48 yard field goal to make it a 17-13 game.  From that point on, the Hokie defense held out, but the offense couldn’t take advantage.  Here’s a quick recap of Tech’s fourth quarter drives after the Slye field goal…

1 play, 0 yards, Motley interception
3 plays, -9 yards, after the Hokies blocked a field goal
4 plays, -15 yards after the VT defense got a stop

To sum it up, after Slye’s final field goal, the Hokies ran eight plays for a grand total of -24 yards and one interception.  In the end, Tech’s lack of offense is the reason they lost the game.  The defense could have played better, but it’s tough to argue with 17 points and 276 total yards.

The ugliest part of the game was Tech’s passing attack.  Brenden Motley was sacked seven times, and he even left the game briefly with an apparent arm injury after an interception in the fourth quarter.  He was hit hard on the play, as he was on many passes throughout the game.  Dwayne Lawson warmed up on the sideline, but Motley returned for the final two drives, though he and the rest of the offense didn’t have any success.

The Hokies have now lost two games in a row, and they will look to right their season on Friday night when they take on NC State (4-1) in Lane Stadium. The game starts at 8:00 and will be televised on ESPN.


40 Responses You are logged in as Test

  1. The time has come for change from top to bottom with the football program. Clean house and hire a complete new coaching staff and rebuild a program that has taken a nose dive. We have no choice at this time but to make the change. Frank should make it easy for the AD and step down at the end of the season. No offers to current coaching staff to be retained period. I am sick and tired of the whole gang. We can do better and we will do better with much needed new blood. This situation looks more and more like Joe Paterno and Bobby Bowden’s departures from PSU and FSU………..terrible way to waltz out of the program but unfortunately the time has come to step aside.

  2. Whoever just said that the only other game Tech will win this year will be UVA , better not count on it . I just hope I’m wrong. These games now are just painful watch.

  3. Shame on these coaches for putting in an INJURED Motley to get Mordered again. This team is pathetic starting with the decisions up top.

  4. I didn’t see mention of Clarke’s personal foul on a failed 3rd down pass play that extended one of Pitt drive’s ( I think it was a TD drive but not sure). It was early but costly and needless.

  5. I also wondered why we didn’t try some screens to slow down the blitz. But Motley was very tentative and staring down receivers so I figured the coaching staff saw the screens as too risky, too likely to turn into a pick six. It has to be hard to call plays when you can’t rely on your O-line can’t run block or pass block.

  6. Too bad we don’t play Klampson! CFB could punch one of the tigers in the neck and go out like a boss!!!!

  7. It’s been 3 years where Hokie Nation was waiting for the coaching changes to steer the ship in the right direction. That simply hasn’t happened and one only needs to take a look at our recent Lane Stadium record of 2-10 against “real teams”. CSL is not the answer. He’s had his chance and his system is not working. That goes the same for CFB, he’s had time to get things corrected and clearly he has not …especially on the offensive side of the ball! Things continue to stay in the ditch and based on the product that’s been put on the field, he won’t/can’t fix things. It’s simply time for a new coaching staff to bring in a breath of fresh air and new styles which will also likely put a breath of fresh air in recruiting. Obviously no guarantees when any team makes that change, but in the case of VT, how much longer does it make sense to continue the failing status quo? I will always be a big CFB fan given what he has done over the years for the program, but him staying is not going to help get this program back to where Hokie Nation so badly wants it to!

  8. Frank deserves a tremendous amount of credit for building the program up but that doesn’t give him the right to slowly destroy the program. It’s being going down hill since the Sugar Bowl loss and we need to do something before the hole is so deep it’s going to take a miracle to get out. Whit should give Frank a choice. Step down now (he can say for health reasons) and let Shane take over as interim coach or wait until the end of the season and I’ll clean house.

    1. Are you crazy!! Replacing Frank mid-season would only make things worse. Especially with Shane! What has Shane done since coming to Tech? RB situation is horrible and recruiting (one of the major reasons for hiring him we were told) is still in the tank.

      And to say nothing of the fact that Frank deserves better. It is true that the state of the program is in a steady decline, but he is the ONE who PUT TECH ON THE MAP in the first place. All the success Tech has enjoyed over the years is because of CFB. DON’T FORGET THAT!!

  9. I heard a FB interview this week where FB said he had heard about the punt over the scoreboard but hadn’t actually seen it. Does that give any indication actually how out of touch coach FB is? FB has been a great coach, but our football program should be more than a front porch for Frank to sit on in his later years with his son. If Whit is the AD that folks think he is then it is time for him to earn his money and step in. Wait until the end of the season if you must, but take care of business. This is ridiculous.

  10. Motley showed his lack of experience in this game as I expected. He didn’t feel the rush or get the ball out quickly. However Pitts secondary was doing a good job. Receivers didn’t seem to get a lot of separation either to me. It was hard to see everything in the rain.
    I thought going into this game it would be cold , wet, low scoring and a miserable loss. I also expected to see JC Coleman get the first carry for 2 yrds or less on the first play of the game. We’ll see that again on Friday. First play on Friday will be Coleman for 2 yrds or less again. Not much point even talking about the running game. The O line and D line got pushed around a lot. I didn’t expect to see that. Pitt pushing the defense back 5 yrds when their backs were against the goal line was shocking. Other teams this week had one player get over 200 yrds themselves. We couldn’t get that as a team. The game was just sad and more miserable than I could imagine. I’ll still be there Friday and I’ll be there when we lose the rest of the ACC games. No bowl this year and a loss to UVA are coming.
    The uniforms looked good and the High Techs had some jazzy dance numbers. Nothing else to brag about. We need to get more from the cheer team and flag core. The Football team isn’t much to watch.

    1. There were no short-pass / misdirection blitz relief packages or plans yesterday. If CSL says that BMot did not change into the right call – then that is on CSL for not recognizing it by the 2nd half and doing some thing different.

      Son – the Yankees are killing your fastball today…but coach – you call the pitches!

  11. How would you feel if you were a player and kept reading that we don’t have any talent? We have talent, and these are 18-22 year olds who are IMO trying and playing their butts off. Maybe the depth is somewhat questionable in places. What we don’t have is coaching. They get outsmarted week after week. This stunned me: WE ARE 2-8 IN THE LAST 10 GAMES AGAINST FBS COMPETITION. We used to be unbeatable at Lane. No longer.
    Please Whit. Step in and right the sinking ship. The fans are fed up and bailing, and sick of the same old tired excuses.

  12. CFB is wearing an onion on his belt. It was the style at the time. Gimme five bees for a quarter!

    1. My story begins in nineteen-dickety-two. We had to say dickety because the Kaiser had stolen our word twenty. I chased that rascal to get it back, but gave up after dickety-six miles. (the children laugh) What are you cackling at, fatty? Too much pie, that’s your problem! Now, I’d like to digress from my prepared remarks to discuss how I invented the terlet…

  13. somewhere our AD will have to say enough is enough . IMHO, the game yesterday was the cross road for Frank Beamer , VT’s fan base , and the 2015 season. Whit has a choice on what Road VT is going. I trust the man as our AD to make the right decision. It has been too long for the same things to continue . I think the World of Frank Beamer but He needs to make Whit’s job a little easier by stepping aside and letting VT and VT’s Fans move to a new level in their Future. Period..

  14. Imho the only game we have an opportunity to win is uva!! The FB era is over, thank you FB for all that you have done for VT, but please retire!!

  15. Minor nit, but Motley didn’t briefly leave the game due to injury. He didn’t miss a single offensive snap.

  16. Looks like Florida and TCU could turn their offense right around with a good coaching and good systems. The UF offense under Muschamp looked like ours. Now they look good!

  17. At times this season when watching VT, I’ve seen a stifling defense, an offense which made plays when it had to, and a number of fantastic plays on both sides of the ball. Unfortunately it was our opponents that have left this impression. VT has not looked anything like the VT I remember form our glory days for several years. The offense is terrible; motion penalties, missed blocks, illegal formations, the surrender of the running game, a carousel of RB’s without any attempt of establishing a feel for the game, and what appears to be little chance of improvement . Even the once invincible defense now seems just average and incapable of playing a whole game without giving up one or more scores on big plays. We haven’t been able to stop a mobile QB for years and now there’s no part of the defense that looks above average. Its truly a sad state of affairs, one which I’m afraid has no easy or quick answers.

    1. You’re “A” on track. It only reflects an old and tired coaching staff who has lost the recruiting edge it used to have in Virginia as well as the drive to do the job. We need to move on and build on the legacy Frank Beamer has made for himself and Va. Tech. Thank you Frank, but it is time to move on. Tx, J.T. Moldenhauer, Another tired old Hokie (Class of 1970)

      1. Sorry but the O REFLECTS CSL, Brian S, and Shane B – and that is a load of Offensive craposis!…

  18. I think there is a statistical typo in the 3rd paragraph. I’m pretty sure that 83 of their total 100 yards came on their lone TD drive and not 63 yards. In fact, the next paragraph states the TD drive was 83 yards. For some reason when I click the drive chart on Hokiesports now for this game, it brings up the drive chart for the ECU game.

  19. Ok enough is enough time for the AD to step in and make some changes .The program is mediocre at the best and today proved it.How are you going to get top recruites to come to Hokie nation if you are not winning. Without top recruites you start having loosening seasons and the next thing you know the program is dead.

  20. In order to win big, you have to lose big. This (plus the last 4 years) is losing big. Time to cut bait and dare to win big again before this 45 year old dies. Frank looks 100 yrs old. Time to retire and get fresh blood in the program. You were great for the program. Now go drink some ensure and go away.

    1. While I certainly agree with your desire for a change, I think that your exposition is crude and disrespectful.

      1. I think a lot of the fan base right now needs to take a deep breath. No need to be rude and disrespectful.

        1. Let them rant—what more do you expect. CFB is being disrespectful to a proud and once great football tradition. like most I am losing respect for the man period. From an Old Hokie who has seen it all back to the early 60’s.

        2. I agree!
          The stage has been set, unfortunately, and Whit has a Gigantic decision to make, not ponder, sooner than I believe he planned. The eyes of the Hokie Nation are now squarely on Whit.
          I also hope FB doesn’t ponder his decision and makes it in a positive classy way because FB is all about class and integrity.

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