Virginia Tech Notes: Tough Practices, McClease’s Emergence, and More

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Deshawn McClease, Virginia Tech
Deshawn McClease has had two quality games in a row. (Ivan Morozov)

In the lead up to Saturday’s game against Miami, there was an existential crisis for the Virginia Tech football program. 

The Hokies had experienced their worst home loss since 1974. Fans and pundits said the season was done. ESPN’s College Gameday went in-depth on Virginia Tech, going as far as saying players weren’t buying what head coach Justin Fuente was selling and questioning in front of a national audience if he is the right man for the job.

Throughout the week, the Hokies kicked it into overdrive and had one of their most strenuous and demanding weeks of practice. It paid off as first-time starting quarterback Hendon Hooker engineered a go-ahead drive with 1:03 remaining, and the defense kept the Hurricanes out of the end zone to hold on to a gritty 42-35 triumph.

It was the type of win and week of preparation that sets the tone for the rest of the season.

“We are not going back,” Fuente said. “Our team is not going back to go practice laid back or any of that. I’m going to coach, the way that, and I’ve