2009 UNC Game Analysis: Hokies Beaten on Both Sides of the Ball

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I am an optimist, but it is difficult to find a lot of positives in that loss
to UNC. The Hokies were beaten at the line of scrimmage on both sides of the
ball. And the Tar Heels did it by beating Tech at their own game – they were
more physical, they were tougher, and they were more consistent. The result was
a surprising and rare Thursday night home loss to a team that had been winless
in the ACC on the season. The Hokies need to get it figured out quickly because
a once promising season now sits on the brink.

Tech’s Offense vs. UNC’s Defense

For the second week in a row, the Tech offense came out in the first half and
misfired on several fronts. Once again, they failed to take advantage of great
field position in the first quarter and were never able develop any rhythm after
the fumble by Jarrett Boykin on the second play of the game. Ultimately UNC
evened the field position and the Hokies went to halftime with a big donut on
the scoreboard. How long has it been since the Hokies were shutout at halftime
in Lane Stadium? I’m sure there is a stats whiz out there that can look that up
faster than I can.

So what happened? I think it was several things. First, that UNC defense was
legitimate. We knew that was the case coming in and they showed it on the field.
They were big, fast, athletic, experienced and disciplined. They sit at the top
of the ACC in terms of defensive statistics and it is easy to see why. Overall,
I would rate their defense just a notch below Alabama’s … and it is a small

But the offense had several other issues in the first half.

There were too many mistakes – the fumble by Boykin, protection breakdowns,
and generally poor execution. The tight ends did not play well, getting
outmuscled on running plays and getting beat for one of the sacks on Tyrod

And there were misreads on play calls and play options. Naked boots were part
of the game plan because the coaches felt like the UNC DE’s were overly
aggressive reacting to their key reads. But Robert