This game felt over after Virginia Tech took a 17-0 lead and it was. Boston College began to battle back in the second half, but the Hokies had built a lead that proved to be too large a deficit as Virginia Tech held on for the 26-10 win.
Here are the five big takeaways from the game:
Impressive day for the offense: Boston College came into this game with the second-best defense in the nation, allowing only 217.4 yards per game. Virginia Tech had 235 yards by halftime.
The coaches finally featured running back Travon McMillian as the work horse and he proved up to the task with 105 yards on 33 carries. His 66 yards at half time were already the most rushing yards the Eagles had allowed to a single player yet this season. The Hokies' 26 points were also the second most allowed by the defense, second only to the 34 points scored by Clemson.
The emergence of the unit was delayed by Michael Brewer's injury in the season's first game, but we now are beginning to see why there was some excitement for the offense heading into the season.
Another mobile quarterback: Boston College had zero success on offense until John Fadule came in at quarterback. The Eagles managed negative three yards on their first two drives. On his second play, the true freshman walk-on broke a 25-yard run.
As the Eagles struggled, head coach Steve Addazio immediately turned to a mobile quarterback, the bane of Bud Foster's existence. For a team that plays Georgia Tech and the triple option this year, it is baffling to see the Hokies gashed time and again by opposing quarterbacks on the ground.
Fadule ultimately finished with 75 yards on 15 carries. It was not a bad day overall for the defense which allowed only 218 total yards, but as long as the Hokies struggle to slow down mobile quarterbacks, they should expect to see offenses try to exploit that.
Motuapuaka puts it out of reach: The game seemed well within reach at 10-0 until Andrew Motuapuaka's touchdown in the second quarter. On the play, Motuapuaka stood up Boston College running back Jordan Gowins at the line of scrimmage. Terrell Edmunds came in and hit Gowins in the back, allowing Motuapuaka to strip the ball and he was off to the races. Motuapuaka returned the ball 34 yards for his second touchdown of the season.
Given Boston College's struggle on offense, at 17-0, the game felt well in hand for Virginia Tech.
Hokies gifted 3 points at halftime: In their game against Miami, Virginia Tech was burned when they tried to force the Hurricanes into a punt before halftime. Miami was content to head into the locker room with the score tied, but after Virginia Tech took two timeouts, the Hurricanes were able to take the ball down field for a touchdown.
Apparently Boston College didn't watch that film.
After a missed Boston College field goal, Virginia Tech took over at their own 25-yard line with only 1:59 to go. Despite the fact that Boston College had managed only 80 yards to that point, Addazio was not content to watch the Hokies burn the clock. He called two timeouts and Virginia Tech was forced to punt.
On the punt, however, the Eagles were flagged for roughing the kicker giving Virginia Tech a first down. The Hokies proceeded to take the ball down to Boston College's 20-yard line for a field goal as time expired and took a 20-0 lead into half time.
In the first half, Boston College attempted only five passes and completed one of them. They had 80 yards of offense. What made Addazio think his offense could effectively run a two-minute drill? Virginia Tech had dominated to that point, but were still only up by 17 and they were willing to run out the clock. Addazio's decision ultimately gave the Hokies an extra three points because he wanted to give his woeful offense one more drive that likely would have amounted to nothing.
Finding a place for Stroman: Greg Stroman has seen snaps on offense, defense and special teams this season and Virginia Tech has yet to find a good place for him. He began the season as the starting nickel back, but after getting victimized by quarterbacks early on he was moved to offense as a receiver. At the time, it was made clear that he was not a two-way player, he was a receiver.
On Saturday, however, Stroman played on offense, defense and special teams. He had one carry for three yards, one tackle, an interception in the end zone late in the fourth quarter and four punt returns for 28 yards. An average of 7 yards per return sounds fine until you see that his longest return of the day was for 31 yards.
Stroman has been horrendous on the punt return this season and added another to his "highlight reel" in the third quarter when he signaled for a fair catch, then took off running with the ball. That is illegal. He was flagged for delay of game and the Hokies were pushed back five yards.
The coaches must see something in the sophomore they really like because they keep putting him on the field. Putting him in a game at various roles and hoping something sticks, however, clearly is not a great strategy and most likely is contributing to his struggles.
Get him off the punt return where he has been completely ineffective and have him focus on playing either offense or defense, not both.
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