Sunday, October 23, 2011

3 Key Plays - VT vs. Boston College

1) After doing absolutely nothing with the ball on their first series, the Hokies still had a chance to keep the momentum balanced. Unfortunately, freshman punter Michael Branthover showed that he is, after all, still a freshman. Despite averaging 42 yds/kick coming into the contest, Branthover shanked a 9 yarder off the side of his foot giving BC the ball on the Hokie 30 yd line. The Eagles converted that into a TD, which despite being their only score of the first 55 minutes of the game kept them in it for most of the game. A good punt could have changed the entire complexion as the Eagles just couldn't break the Hokie defense the rest of the way and there's no reason to think they could have moved it 70-80 yards on that first possession either.

2) 3rd and 3 with 12:25 remaining in the 3rd quarter. The Hokies are down 7-6 but have at least shown a little life at the beginning of the 2nd half. QB Logan Thomas runs the option, splits two defenders, makes a perfect pitch to RB David Wilson and Wilson is off to the races. He gets a great block on the edge by Danny Coale and another by Marcus Davis and Wilson breaks a tackle at the 10 yd line to stay in bounds and leap into the endzone giving the Hokies a 13-7 lead they would never relinquish.

3) 1st and 10 at the Hokie 22 yd line, BC is driving in response to the VT score. Only down 13-7, it looks like the Eagles are going to get either a FG or a TD out of this drive, making it a close game yet again. With Hokie defenders dropping like flies due to injury, one man steps into a role he's familiar with. Sr LB Barquell Rivers, a starter on the 2009 squad, filling in for Bruce Taylor now, rushes BC QB Chase Rettig, forcing him into a throw as he takes the hit. Fellow LB Tariq Edwards makes a leaping grab for the interception at the Hokie 11 yd-line. The Hokies would proceed to score on the ensuing drive, essentially putting the game out of reach. A rich reward for Rivers who has fought so hard to overcome a devastating quad injury that took the NFL out of his future. He made a play for his brothers and helped the Hokies get the win.

7 comments:

LuvzAznChix said...

Alright, I have been holding back on this but can do so no further. CAN SOMEBODY TELL ME W-T-F IS IT WITH THE INJURIES TO OUR D-UNIT THIS YEAR!?!?!? Damn, I mean, for all the nastiness and hits that they dish out, when it comes down to them as individual physical specimens they're bodies are too soft. It's as though they're nothing but creampuffs. Can ANYTHING be done to reduce the amount of injuries our guys are sustaining!?!?!? Something has to be done.

LuvzAznChix said...

Good post, btw.

Illinois Hokie said...

I must admit, I'm a little surprised Boykin's failure to drag the toe for a touchdown (failure to even realize where the hell he was on the field, really) didn't make the cut. I felt that play had as much game changing potential as the Branthover shank. If Boykin gets a foot down there it's knotted at 7 early, and I think VT gets those flood gates opened a little earlier. Who knows, maybe the defensive starters would have even been out of the game by the time Bruce Taylor went down.

**sigh**

MadJay said...

LAC,
The injuries are just flukes. Two Lisfrancs in three weeks?!?! Just bad luck, there's nothing you can really do to prevent that injury. I certainly don't think our guys are soft. James Gayle's ankle certainly leaves my scratching my head a bit but it's like Coach Wiles said, some guys play differently when they are hurt. I expect Gayle and Hosley to both be back this week against Duke and then the whole team gets 3 days off which is going to be huge in the recovery department.

IH, I considered the Boykin catch, and I was really frustrated by his play. He didn't have to jump to catch that ball, and as a senior he has to know where he is on the field (see: Coale, Danny). But the Hokies got a FG out of the drive so I really felt that not catching that pass wasn't one of the three most important plays on the outcome of the game. Hey at least we have Rivers and Tyler at MLB. I feel a lot better about those two then I do Tweedy/Dew at whip (incredible physical talents, with very little game experience).

Illinois Hokie said...

Hey MadJay, just a thought here, but to the best of your knowledge did we by any chance switch to a new type of cleat or is the grounds crew doing anything different to maintain and aerate Worsham Field this season?

LuvzAznChix said...

MadJay, with all the injuries that have been sustained, that leaves the conditioning and training in SERIOUS question IF in fact, the bodies of the D squad are as tough as you claim they are. I think that's a very insightful question. IH, because I believe over 90% of the time injuries CAN be prevented or risk reduced.

MadJay said...

I have no sources that could answer anything about the grounds crew doing anything different but I haven't noticed any usual injuries happening to our opponents and they are playing on Worsham Field same as the Hokies for our home games. I can confirm that the cleats are NOT different than in previous years.

In a game like football I do genuinely believe that injuries come and go for various teams. 3 years ago NC State could barely field a team they had so many injuries. In 2010 they had like 2 injuries the whole season. This year, they are injury-bug bitten again, almost exclusively on the defensive side of the ball. The Hokies had a relatively injury free year last season and this year, not so lucky. A fluke injury ended the career of the greatest running back I ever saw (Bo Jackson) and believe me, you just aren't going to get any more physically fit than that guy was.