UVA Review: Strange Things on the Defensive Side of the Ball

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Virginia Tech
Hendon Hooker and the offense were better in the second half. (Ivan Morozov)

I thought there’d be a symmetry to this game, with both teams trying hard to work an intermediate passing game that targeted throws between run-worried fronts and capping defensive backs. UVA would throw more between the hashes to stay away from Tech’s corners, while the Hokies would hit the sidelines and target the vulnerable Hoo corners. We saw some of that, but even when we did the results were skewed. While it wasn’t what I expected, both offenses put up yards and points, and that was even with procedural penalties wiping off a given touchdown for Tech and a likely one for UVA.

Offense

Brad Cornelsen called a better game than he’s getting credit for. He protected Hooker as much as he could, and when it felt like Tech was starting to manage the UVA defensive line, he called up concepts for his QB that led to big plays. You can criticize the botched throwback plays because they didn’t work, but those calls have been a big piece of Tech’s offensive identity, and he shelved them after two misfires. If there’s something to pick at, I’d say it was not using the fade game in goal-to-go situations—I can’t even criticize the jet sweep on 3rd and goal

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