Thursday, November 6, 2008

Hokie Matchup: vs. Maryland

I've never had a more difficult time trying to analyze a matchup for some pregrame coverage. The ACC is difficult enough without all of the uncertainties tonight's 7:30 p.m. Thursday-night game between the Hokies and the Terrapins bring into the equation. Both teams have some youth starting, and both teams have suffered injuries. However, the most devastating injuries of them all — Virginia Tech has lost both its first- and second-string quarterbacks to injuries, mounting more problems on top of an already struggling offense.

The Hokies are coming off a bye week too, and the last time that happened things did not go so well. In fact, VT has lost its last two games (vs. BC and FSU) after leading by 10-point margins to start off. This shows one thing — the defense will show up and play its heart out for the Hokies. And neither Tyrod Taylor nor Sean Glennon are definitely out of this battle — they've both been listed as questionable, and that's all Frank Beamer will say. Maybe this is his way of throwing off the other team? What does Maryland plan for? Taylor's running? Glennon's throwing (read: getting sacked)? Or do the Terrapins expect (and perhaps righfully so) to face third-stringer Cory Holt or tight end Greg Boone as QB?

There are a lot of variables going into this game, and let's face it, what happens regarding the quarterback status for VT is likely the key to the game. But even with Tyrod, that wasn't enough against Boston College. The defense stepped up, and so did special teams, but the offense couldn't find the end zone. So maybe a change-up wouldn't even be so devastating.

What VT needs is better playcalling on offense, and Victor "Macho" Harris, the amazing athlete that he is, absolutely must quit getting beat downfield. Harris has allowed long passes to get by him and to the receiver he was supposed to be covering in the last two games. I'm not hating on Macho, he has to be exhausted playing so many positions, but those were key plays that could have changed the outcome of the game. Macho is a playmaker, and if the Hokies win, it'll be because Macho steps up, the playcalling isn't half bad, and the fans in Lane Stadium cause so many false starts and offsides penalties against Maryland that VT gets a "safety" net.

In other news, professors who did not cancel class today are being regarded as "out of touch" and so far have seen a significant decrease in attendance.

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