1) After Tennessee roared back from a 14-0 deficit to tie the game at 14 with 18 seconds left in the first half, everything looked like a repeat of the 2006 Chik-Fil-A Bowl that the Hokies lost to Georgia. But with 9 seconds left, QB Tyrod Taylor uncorked a screaming bomb to WR Jarrett Boykin that traveled 65 yards in the air (Taylor has been amazing with his accuracy on balls traveling more than 50 yards in the air this season) and hit Boykin behind the defense. Boykin was down at the 4 yard line and the clock appeared to expire but the officials reviewed it and saw that there should have been 2 seconds left. Since the Hokies had a timeout left they were able to kick the chip shot FG and go into the half leading 17-14.
2) After being bottled up most of the first half, including a twisted ankle, RB Ryan Williams took the handoff at midfield on VT's first possession of the 2nd half and ripped off a 32 yard run that included a burst through the line, moves in the open field and two broken tackles. In other words it was a microcosm of the type of running he did all season. With this run, he moved the ball deep into Tennessee territory setting up a QB sneak for a TD (which I was screaming at the TV for the Hokies to run and when they did I was so relieved) to put the Hokies up by two scores and broke the spirit of the Tennessee defense. A quick shout-out to the offensive line for putting it upon themselves to manhandle the smaller UT defense after halftime. Wang and Render were beasting people all over the left side in that 2nd half last night and it was great to see.
3) With 13 minutes left in the game and the Hokies up 27-14, Hokie FS Kam Chancellor got completely toasted on a move by UT receiver Denarious Moore. QB Jonathan Crompton delivered a perfect ball and the Vols were about to put the game back to within one score at 27-21 and completely change the complexion of the 4th quarter. But Moore dropped the easy TD pass and took out what little wind was left in the Tennessee sails. Game over.
As a final note, there is an honorary key play. The final play of the game was a 4th and 10 with 52 seconds left. Tennessee coach Lane Kiffin, down 23 points, had the gumption to call a timeout to try and score a meaningless TD. As a result, Coach Foster dialed up a blitz from rover Dorian Porch and Porch blasted in on Crompton and popped him into the turf. Crompton ended up with a minor concussion. I hope he's OK, but I think that says everything you need to know about Coach Foster. The game is 60 minutes long and if you want to tangle the entire time, he's ready to go. I sure am glad VT locked him up with a 5 year extension. Zero points given up in the 2nd half of 5 straight games should tell you all you need to know about Foster's ability to make adjustments. One more time, I'll say he's the greatest defensive coordinator in college football and certainly one of the top 5 of all-time.