BC-Virginia Tech preview
Here we go again. Another season, another fork in the road when we come up against Virginia Tech. When we were slotted as cross division rivals, I don't think anyone anticipated what a litmus test the Hokies would become for us. They even served dual purposes for BC in 2007 and 2008. Proving first in the regular season that we were legitimate threats to win the conference. And then showing that we weren't ready to break through with two defeats in ACC Championship Games. Now it is the Hokies who are looking for validation. They enter 1-2 and don't know how good or bad they might be. If they beat BC, it will signal that they are still the favorite to win the ACC. If they lose to us, their whole season might unravel.
[NEW FEATURE] Overlooked storyline for the game: Both team's ACC schedules
Both teams clearly need a win, but this game might not be as important as it might seem. As BC fans know, our cross division games this year are Duke and Virginia. We should be favored in both and those two wins should provide a nice boost in our ACC standings. The Hokies have Wake Forest and NC State. While NC State looks improved, they still missed a bowl game last year and TOB has a horrid record against Beamer.
Three Simple Keys
1. Get to Taylor. Last year on Virginia Tech's first TD pass, Taylor scrambled all around before launching a bullet. Morrissey just missed getting the sack, and although the game was never close, I felt that type of play was a back breaker. Now -- with our healthy front four and stacked LB corp -- I think we can contain and pressure Taylor. If he is rushed and flustered, VT's offense will struggle.
2. Aggressive offensive play calling. I felt we sort of played into Virginia Tech's hands last year with the play calling. Instead of protecting Shinskie and establishing the run, I think we need to pass out of the gate. I would also like to see some shots downfield early.
3. Mistake free offensive line play. Virginia Tech saw what Kent State did. Why wouldn't they stunt and blitz too? I imagine they will also come after Spinney. So BC's OL needs to be very disciplined with assignments and avoid mental errors.
-- Virginia Tech has not won at Alumni since 2002
-- Virginia Tech is 16-1 in their past 17 road openers
-- BC is 2-3 in ACC openers
The current line is BC+4
Tyrod Taylor has played BC four times (he missed the 2007 regular season game). In those four games he has only amassed 524 yards of total offense.
The most telling game will be NC State vs Georgia Tech. Can TOB's guys go on the road and stop the Yellow Jackets' triple option? If they win, then their start is legitimate and they have to be considered a threat to win the division.
I hope to see...
Dave Shinskie light them up. I really think this might be our most talented group of receivers since the 1980s. Virginia Tech will play plenty of man defense and give these guys chances to make plays. We just need Shinskie to get them the ball.
BC is in trouble if…
The offensive line struggles. If they are overwhelmed by VT's speed and aggressiveness upfront, I think the offense will struggle all day.
I am still unsure of both teams. I still think this can be a very, very good BC team. I don't like what I've seen from Virginia Tech, but trust Beamer and staff to get things turned around. For this game, I see BC getting up early and holding off a VT comeback in the second half.
Final Score: BC 24, Virginia Tech 17