How Good Can This Defense Be?

Virginia Tech’s defense is expected to be one of the best in the country in 2012.  How good can they actually be?

Warning: this is one of those articles that asks a question, but it doesn’t provide an answer.  We can look at the numbers all day and compare them to previous seasons, but even after 2012 is over, it will be a matter of opinion on how this defense stacks up to past great defenses.

How do you judge a defense?  By comparing stats?  Who passes the eye test most impressively?  Level of competition?  All of that, I think.

This article is going to focus on the 2012 defense and compare it to the 1995, 1998, 1999, 2001, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2010 defenses.  What do they have in common, and what do they not have in common?