CC on Sunday: Running Game Dominates As Virginia Tech Thrashes NC State

Khalil Herbert Virginia Tech
Khalil Herbert scores Virginia Tech’s first rushing touchdown of 2020 on a 37-yard romp against NC State game. Tech won 45-24 behind 314 yards rushing. (AP Photo / The Roanoke Times, Matt Gentry, Pool)

If the 2020 season had been cancelled due to COVID-19, I was seriously thinking about continuing my summer series of 1995 by extending it to the 1996 season.  Fortunately I didn’t have to do that, but there were times on Saturday night where I felt like it was 1996 all over again.  That’s because Virginia Tech’s offensive line was in 1996 form in Saturday night’s beatdown of the NC State Wolfpack. 

At times I thought I was seeing guys like Billy Conaty, Gennaro DiNapoli and Dwight Vick out there.  Instead it was Christian Darrisaw, Brock Hoffman and Doug Nester doing the dirty work.  The perimeter blocking was pretty darn good in it’s own right, with Tech’s wide receivers pouring the syrup on the offensive linemen’s pancakes.

I’ll talk more about the offensive line and the running game later, but man, what a good feeling it is to get that win.  It was frustrating to see everybody else around the country playing and the Hokies unable to do so.  It was frustrating seeing the comments from Bronco Mendenhall and the UVA players after that game was postponed and being unable to do anything about it (though I suspect Tech’s players will do something about it on December 12).  It’s frustrating to sit around and talk about the situation all day every day, with a fanbase that was growing more irritable by the day.  Everybody was frustrated, a lot of people were irritable, and it just creates a toxic environment that isn’t fun at all.

All those feelings are gone now.  Everybody’s happy.  Sure, a loss could send us all off the emotional wagon once again, but for now, today, everything is all right.  The Hokies are 1-0, and they looked good doing it despite the situation they found themselves in heading into this game.