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Football Preview: Virginia Tech at N.C. State

by Brittany Gropp
October 1, 2010

In their first ACC matchup of the year, the Hokies (2-2, 1-0) picked up a 19-0 win against Boston College (2-1, 0-1).

Tech's defense, showing its determination to overcome its youth, pitched its first shutout since 2006. After holding BC quarterback Dave Shinskie on the one-yard line at the end of the first half, the defense felt a surge of momentum. That energy carried over into the second half, during which the Eagles offense did not cross midfield.

While the defense went above and beyond expectations, the offense did not. Despite the 19-
point win, the Hokies failed to convert red zone possessions into touchdowns on four out of
five drives.

"Obviously, if you don't score more than three points a drive, there's going to be teams that
outscore you," said tight end Andre Smith. "But we're fully aware of that and we're going to try
to adjust to the situation, try to make some changes and make it right."

The Hokies will indeed need to make some offensive adjustments if they want a win this
weekend. They travel to Raleigh, N.C., to taken on unbeaten and 23rd ranked NC State (4-0).

"[NC State] is really hot," said Coach Frank Beamer. "[They're] very confident, as they should
be. And [they're] rolling. So, it's a big challenge for our football team this week."

It certainly is.

NC State has demonstrated it has a lot to offer so far this season. Last week, they earned a
solid 45-28 win over Georgia Tech. In three of the four games this season, quarterback Russell Wilson has thrown to at least 10 different players, and the Wolfpack special teams have already blocked two punts, one of which was returned for a touchdown.

While the Hokies are not taking this week's game lightly, they are coming in with confidence.

"Each week and each quarter and each game, we're coming out with something to prove," said rover Davon Morgan. "Yeah, they're 4-0, but our job is to go in there and try to change that around."

Step one to changing that around will be for Tech's defense to come as hungry as it did last
week. Step two will be for the offense to produce a few touchdowns.

A win over the Wolfpack would not only move Tech to 2-0 in the conference, but it would also
tie Tyrod Taylor with Bryan Randall's record as the winningest starting quarterback under Coach Beamer. Taylor, however, says the record is far from his mind.

"The goal is just to go out there and win," said Taylor. "I'm not really trying to beat anybody's
record or anything. I'm just out there to do what's best for the team and put my team in the
best situation I can."

Fortunately for Taylor, if the Hokies continue to improve like they have each game since their 0-2 start, a win--and a chance at the record--could be his.

Tech takes on NC State in Raleigh on Saturday. Kickoff is at 3:30.