Hokies Report: Brewer back under center


Hokies Report: Brewer back under center

Check back every Wednesday for the Hokies Report to get all the biggest Virginia Tech headlines for each week, a recap of last week's game and a look ahead at next week's contest.

Virginia Tech 3-4, (1-2) in the ACC

In the news

Back under center: Michael Brewer will start for Virginia Tech in their upcoming game against Duke, Frank Beamer announced Monday. Brewer made his first appearance on Saturday since suffering a broken collarbone in the team's opener against Ohio State.

Though he was declared available prior to Saturday's game, the team elected to start Brenden Motley. The decision was criticized after a poor performance by Motley, but it is easy to be critical in hindsight. Prior to the game, however, it made sense. Motley has played reasonably well in place of Brewer, much better than many expected. He was coming off a strong performance against NC State whereas Brewer had spent the week leading up to the Miami game working his way back from the injury. Motley spent the week practicing as the starter. It was not shocking to see him get the nod against the Hurricanes.

With another week of practice under his belt, however, Brewer was the clear choice for this Saturday's game.

Brewer was the team's starter last year and had his struggles, but he looked very strong against Ohio State before leaving the game with the injury.

Newsome suspended: Wide receiver Deon Newsome was charged with driving while intoxicated and public intoxication on Sunday and has been indefinitely suspended from competition, though he is still permitted to practice with the team. The Roanoke Times was the first to report the arrest.

Newsome was also suspended from the Military Bowl last season for violating team rules.

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Last week's game: 30-20 loss at Miami

See the 5 big takeaways from this game here.

It was not the blowout loss from a season before, but the result was still the same as Virginia Tech fell to rival Miami.

Brewer was declared available prior to the game, but Motley was given the start. It was not Motley's finest day as he turned the ball over three times with one fumble and two interceptions which Miami turned into 10 points.

Motley was replaced by Brewer but he was not able to lead Virginia Tech to the win.

Besides Motley's struggles, it was not a terrible day for the offense. Travon McMillian rushed for 99 yards and Isaiah Ford caught four passes for 76 yards and a touchdown. The bigger concern going forward is the defense which allowed 395 yards to the Hurricanes. The loss of Kendall Fuller in the secondary seems to be taking its toll.

Next game: Virginia Tech vs. Duke, Sat. 3:30 p.m. ET


A ranked Duke team heads to Blacksburg to face an unranked Virginia Tech team that is having issues on defense. Talk about a role reversal.

Duke sits at 5-1 on the season with their only loss coming to the better than expected Northwestern Wildcats. While Virginia Tech is hoping just to keep their bowl streak alive at this point, the Blue Devils have their sights set on winning the Coastal Division for the second time in three seasons.

Brewer returns as the starter this week and should be a bit better prepared with a full week to prepare as the team's No. 1. Brewer helped lead the Hokies to a 17-14 lead over Ohio State before he suffered a broken collarbone and now has an established running back to hand the ball to. The team has got to get tight end Bucky Hodges more involved, but with its starting quarterback back in the fold, this is a game in which the offense could make real strides, that is if they can figure out Duke's defense.

The Blue Devils defense ranks third in the ACC overall and second nationally against the pass, giving up only 131.2 per game. Granted, Duke's schedule has not been all that daunting to this point, but those are still impressive numbers.

One of the bigger keys of the game, however, is the matchup no one is watching: Virginia Tech's defense against Duke's offense. The Hokies have struggled defensively of late and their true Kryptonite may very well haunt them again in this game. Duke's leading rusher is quarterback Thomas Sirk and we all know how much the Hokies struggle against a mobile quarterback.

Sirk is not exactly Michael Vick when it comes to running, but he is averaging over 12 attempts and 53.5 yards per game on the ground. The Hokies must account for him or he could have a big day.

One more critical point is penalties. A David Cutcliffe coached team does not beat itself and Duke is averaging just under five penalties per game. Virginia Tech is dead last in the conference as they cost themselves an average of 71 yards per game just in penalties alone. That has got to change or Virginia Tech will find itself in a 3-5 hole.

MORE COLLEGE FOOTBALL: Neutralizing Christian Hackenberg comes down to one thing

New AP Poll for Top 25: Ohio State drops to No. 11

USA Today

New AP Poll for Top 25: Ohio State drops to No. 11

Clemson is back at No. 2 in The Associated Press college football poll behind top-ranked Alabama, moving up to where it started, after a convincing victory and Ohio State's first loss of the season.

The Crimson Tide are a unanimous No. 1, with all 61 first-place votes Sunday, for the first time this season.

The Tigers trailed only Alabama in the preseason rankings, but a couple of close wins in September -- combined with seemingly impressive performances by other highly ranked teams -- dragged Clemson to as low as No. 4.

Coming off a lopsided win against North Carolina State, Clemson rose a spot this week. Notre Dame is No. 3 and LSU is No. 4, setting the stage for a top-five matchup between the Tigers and Crimson Tide in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, on Nov. 3. Both have an open date this week.

Michigan is No. 5 and Ohio State dropped to No. 11 after being upset by Purdue.


No. 25 Appalachian State is ranked in the AP poll for the first time in school history. The Mountaineers (5-1) have not lost since opening the season with an overtime defeat at Penn State.

"It's awesome to be recognized," Appalachian State coach Scott Satterfield said Sunday. "We've had a lot of positive things happen to our program the last three to four years. The first time we go bowl eligible, which was awesome. Then we go win our first bowl game. That was really cool. And then to go win our first Sun Belt championship two years ago. That was awesome. So there's been a lot of first for us over the last three years. This is another first."

App State transitioned to the FBS, the highest level of Division I football, in 2014 after years as an FCS power. Under former coach Jerry Moore, the Mountaineers were a regular playoff participant. The program peaked in the mid-2000s, winning three straight FCS (Division I-AA) championships from 2005-07. And App State pulled off one of the most stunning upsets in college football history against Michigan in 2007.

Moore retired after the 2012 season and was replaced by Satterfield, a former App State quarterback and assistant coach. The move up in class and into the Sun Belt has been practically seamless. The Mountaineers are 46-23 under Satterfield, with two Sun Belt titles. The only other Sun Belt team to ever be ranked was Troy on Nov. 13, 2016.

"To be recognized in the FBS level football and for our program to be a team that just went through transition four years ago and now to be ranked is pretty remarkable," Satterfield said. "We have a lot of pride, a lot of tradition in our program."

This season's team was expected to contend for another conference championship. A case could be made it is exceeding even those high expectations after replacing four-year starting quarterback Taylor Lamb, two four-year starting offensive linemen, four defensive players that were four-year starters and veteran defensive coordinator Nate Woody, who left for Georgia Tech.

Satterfield said this is may be his fastest team at App State and credited senior safety Josh Thomas, senior defensive tackle MyQuon Stout and fourth-year junior offensive tackle Victor Johnson with providing leadership for one of the least experienced rosters in the FBS. Running back Jalin Moore, another senior who was lost for the season to a knee injury two weeks ago, has become a de facto assistant coach for App State.

Since falling to Penn State, the Mountaineers have outscored their opponents 231-49. Next up is a key game for first place in the Sun Belt East at Georgia Southern (6-1, 3-0) on Thursday night.


  • No. 14 Washington State was the only big mover to rise in the rankings this week, jumping 11 spots after beating Oregon.


  • Ohio State dropped out of the top 10 for the first this season, tumbling nine spots
  • No. 19 Oregon dropped seven spots after taking its second loss
  • No. 22 North Carolina State fell six spots after losing for the first time this season


  • No. 23 Utah is ranked for the first time this season, making it five straight years the Utes started the season unranked but moved into the rankings at some point. From 2014-16, Utah started the season outside the Top 25 but finished it ranked. Utah has won three straight, scoring at least 40 points in each game
  • No. 24 Stanford is back in the rankings after falling out two weeks ago


  • Michigan State and Mississippi State fell out of the rankings again after losing for the third time this season
  • Cincinnati's first loss of the season, in overtime to Temple, cost the Bearcats their first ranking since 2012


  • SEC -- 6 teams (1, 4, 7, 9, 12, 16).
  • Big Ten -- 5 (5, 11, 17, 18, 20).
  • Pac-12 -- 5 (14, 15, 19, 23, 24).
  • Big 12 -- 3 (6, 8, 13).
  • ACC -- 2 (2, 22).
  • American -- 2 (10, 21).
  • Sun Belt -- 1 (25).
  • Independent -- 1 (3).


No. 7 Georgia vs. No. 9 Florida in Jacksonville, Florida. The first of two games involving the Bulldogs that will decide the SEC East. Georgia faces Kentucky on Nov. 3.

  • No. 14 Washington State at No. 24 Stanford. Cougars try to grab control of the Pac-12 North.
  • No. 18 Iowa at No. 17 Penn State. The Nittany Lions will help decide the Big Ten West with home games against the Hawkeyes and No. 20 Wisconsin.

Former Hoya Marcus Derrickson signs a two-way contract with Golden State Warriors


Former Hoya Marcus Derrickson signs a two-way contract with Golden State Warriors

Leaving the Georgetown Hoyas a season early is initially paying off for Marcus Derrickson. 

Less than a month before what would have been his senior season at Georgetown, the 6-7 forward has signed a two-way contract with the Golden State Warriors. 

Derrickson nabbed the second two-way position on the Warriors after an outstanding Summer League translated to a solid preseason.

Fitting right into the Warriors deep-ball oriented scheme, Derrickson was 6-16 from three point range during the five-game preseason. He's a versatile stretch-four that continues to develop and improve on his outside game. 

By signing a two-way contract, the former All-Big East Second teamer will have a chance to get called up to the two-time defending NBA champions at any point this season for up to 45 days. The remaining time will be with the Warriors' G-league affiliate the Santa Cruz Warriors

This arrangement will earn Derrickson a contract of $75,000 and a prorated amount for however much time he is practicing/ playing with Golden State. 

If he is called up to the NBA for more than the allotted 45 days, then the Warriors are obligated to give him a minimum rookie contract. 

Derrickson continues to prove himself as the list of aspiring players dwindles. As each contract begins to near its end, the Warriors time after time offer another opportunity.