Brewer's injury ends Hokies' upset bid: 5 takeaways


Brewer's injury ends Hokies' upset bid: 5 takeaways

Things looked hopeful at halftime for Virginia Tech, but quickly spiraled in favor of Ohio State as they ran away with the 42-24 victory. Here are the five big takeaways from the Hokies' opening loss:

Winning the first half: This game looked like it was going to be over before it really began as Ohio State jumped out to a quick 14-0 lead in the first quarter. The Buckeyes scored on their first two possessions and took the ball down to Virginia Tech's 26 before the defense finally got their first stop. Ohio State missed the field goal and the Hokies quickly turned the tables.

The previously anemic offense finally found its legs as Virginia Tech went 101 yards in two drives for 10 points. A muffed punt by Ezekial Elliott late in the first half led to another touchdown for the Hokies who found themselves up 17-14 at the end of the half.

The Hokies' first-half lead felt inexplicable given how the game had started and suddenly it looked like another upset was possible.

Down goes Brewer: Everything changed early in the third quarter when Ohio State's Adolphus Washington planted Brewer with a vicious shot into the ground leaving the Hokies' quarterback in obvious pain. It would later be revealed that Brewer had suffered a broken collar bone.

Without their starter, the limited success the offense had enjoyed evaporated allowing Ohio State to take back control. The question that will keep Virginia Tech fans up at night is what could have happened had Brewer not gotten injured?

Brewer took a lot of criticism at the end of last season for his inconsistent play, but he looked much improved in the limited sample we saw in this game. He completed 11 of 16 passes for 156 yards and two touchdowns against one of the best defenses in the country behind a still shaky offensive line.

Brenden Motley played admirably in relief, but Brewer made it clear in the first half that this is still his team.

RELATED: Hall, Jarrett head to Blacksburg for Ohio State game

One step forward, one step back on offense: After a dreadful year last season, the offense showed signs of life in the first half when offensive coordinator Scot Loeffler finally decided to open up his bag of tricks.

Let's face it, the Hokies may have talent at the skill positions, but this offense is not good enough to beat teams if they know what's coming. Even if you know Alabama is going to run up the middle, you can't stop it. If thedefense know what's coming from the Hokies, it's tough to move the ball.

After getting shutdown on two conservative offensive drives, the Hokies' play calling suddenly became varied and unpredictable. Motley actually saw his first action in this game before Brewer was injured as he was inserted as a change-of-pace option for the offense. The varied play calling left the Buckeye defense off balanced allowing Brewer to eventually strike with a pass to fullback Sam Rogers on a wheel route for the 51-yard touchdown.

The offense instantly became more limited when Brewer went down as Motley does not pose nearly the passing threat and Virginia Tech became much more one-dimensional and predictable again. With Brewer, Virginia Tech managed 233 yards and 17 points. Without him, the Hokies had only 92 yards, and one garbage-time touchdown.

Quarterback carousel: One of the national story lines for this game was who would start for Ohio State at quarterback. Most believed it would be J.T. Barrett, but instead it was Cardale Jones who led the Buckeyes for much of the game. In fact, Barrett did not get onto the field until late in the game for mop-up duty when the outcome was no longer in doubt.

Part of me wonders if this has to do with the opponent not just because Virginia Tech was the only defense that seemed to rattle Barrett last season, but because of Jones' size.

The Hokies got plenty of pressure on the Buckeyes' quarterback, but rather than crushing the 6-2, 225-pound Barret, they instead had to find a way to bring down the 6-5, 250-pound Jones. There were many instances in which defenders simply bounced off of Jones as he rumbled his way around the field.

It would not be a stretch to believe Urban Meyer was trying to protect Barrett in his first game back after suffering a broken ankle last season. Don't be surprised if you see Barrett get a lot more playing time as the season progresses.

Also, let's not forget about Braxton Miller, the former quarterback turned H-back. The position switch certainly seems to have been a good one as in his first game Miller managed 140 total yards and two touchdowns. He also showed off a ridiculous spin move that looked straight out of a video game.

As good as advertised? The strength of this Virginia Tech team, as it has been for years, was thought to be its defense. Ohio State managed a whopping 572 yards and 42 points against Bud Foster's group.

To be fair, the defense threw in the towel late in the game and the Buckeyes wracked up some yards in garbage time, but Ohio State clearly got the better of Foster a year removed from when Foster's defense embarrassed them in the Horseshoe.

The biggest issues were in the secondary. Kendall Fuller, one of the best cornerbacks in the country, was blown out of the water by a subtle juke from Michael Thomas that left him wide-open in the end zone four the fourth-quarter touchdown. The series before that, Fuller was flagged for pass interference when he was against beat and simply threw his arms up and ran into the receiver without turning his head around to look for the ball.

Nickle cornerback Greg Stroman was also victimized early and often by Jones. The Buckeyes clearly thought they had a favorable matchup and went after Stroman seemingly every time he was left one-on-one with a receiver.

The secondary is something the defense will have to improve on over the season, especially as it looks like Brewer's injury will force the Hokies to lean on their defense yet again.

MORE COLLEGE FOOTBALL: Freshman QB dominates UVa: 5 takeaways

Georgetown gets a boost with Jessie Govan returning to school

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Georgetown gets a boost with Jessie Govan returning to school

After testing the NBA Draft waters, Georgetown center Jessie Govan decided to return to the Hoyas for his senior season.

Govan announced his intention to return on Instagram a week before the final commitment deadline.

Returning to the Hoyas is definitely a boost to the program that will be in their second year under head coach Patrick Ewing.  At 6-10, Govan was the team’s leading scorer (17.9 ppg) and rebounder (10.0 rpg) averaging a double-double last season.

Paired alongside power forward Marcus Derrickson, the Hoyas were nearly unstoppable in the paint. Derrickson though decided to forgo his senior year and signed with an agent after the season.

Had Govan decided to leave that would have meant over 56 percent of the team’s scoring and rebounding would have departed (to graduation or professional pursuits) in a handful of months. Not the best outlook for a 15-win team that went 5-13 in the Big East.

Instead Ewing gets back his leading scorer that many believe he can mold as a young protégée. While in the draft process without an agent Govan had workouts with the Boston Celtics and the New York Knicks. Both are valuable experiences that he will bring to a relatively young Georgetown squad.

Having Govan for one more year will bridge Ewing’s second season to transfer big-man, Omer Yurtseven to his first year of eligibility in 2019. They were set up to having a walk-on and two sophomores being the only returning Hoyas over 6-6 for the upcoming season.


Future NBA prospect Omer Yurtseven transfers to Georgetown from NC State


Future NBA prospect Omer Yurtseven transfers to Georgetown from NC State

The pieces are starting to come together for Patrick Ewing.

On Monday the Georgetown Hoyas picked up perhaps the biggest (literally and figuratively) target of the transfer market, Omer Yurtseven.

From North Carolina State, the transfer from Istanbul Turkey will have two years remaining of eligibility. Due to NCAA transfer rules, he is not allowed to play for the 2018-19 season.


Standing at 7-0, the center helped power the Wolfpack to an NCAA tournament bid this past season. Averaging 13.5 points, 6.7 rebounds, and 1.8 blocks a contest, Yurstseven earned All-ACC Third Team honors in the 2017-18 season. He also touted a 58.3 shooting percentage and was not afraid to pull it up from deep either (22 made three-pointers).

NC State lost in the first round of the NCAA Tournament to No. 8 Seton Hall, but he was limited due to foul trouble with only two points and two rebounds in 14 minutes of play.

Initially, he is the option to fill the void that Jessie Govan will leave, whether that is during this offseason or next. Already the team has lost power forward Marcus Derrickson

Yurtseven will just be another frontcourt talent for Ewing with the Hoyas.

It was widely reported that he was considering playing options, both in the United States and abroad before this announcement. Easily he has the talent to go in first round of the NBA Draft whichever year he declares.

On the same day, the Hoyas also announced the signing of four-star guard James Akinjo.