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Preview: Hokie Football Hosts Central Michigan Saturday

by Brittany Gropp
October 6, 2010

The Hokies (3-2) scored a big win by defeating NC State (4-1) 41-30 in Raleigh this past Saturday.

Things looked shaky for the Hokies after their slow start led to a 17-0 Wolfpack lead just 19 minutes into the game. However, Tech managed to rally back, outscoring NC State 34-13 in the second half to capture the win.

"When things don't go well in a ballgame," said Coach Beamer, "and you've got good kids that care and want to be good, then you've got a chance of coming back. So I think that shows in itself the type of kids...the character...the leadership...that's in our program."

Next up on the Hokies' schedule is the Central Michigan Chippewas (2-3), a team Virginia Tech has never faced on the football field. This will be Tech's  final non-conference matchup of the season.

"I think with Central Michigan," said Beamer, "you've got a team that's used to winning. They won the MAC last year. They know how to throw the football...they're very capable."

The Chippewas currently stand in fourth place in their division in the MAC.

A win over Virginia Tech would be Central Michigan's first football win over an ACC team. However, it would also be the third straight year that the Chippewas defeated a team from a BCS automatic qualifying conference.

Although this game does not have quite the significance an ACC game would for Tech, it's nonetheless an important one. And as the Hokies learned earlier this season with JMU, just because Central Michigan isn't an ACC team, doesn't mean they can count them out.

The Hokies pride themselves on being a football team that makes adjustments and improvements week after week. This week, players and coaches said the focus is working on coming out stronger in the first half.

"(Starting slow is) something that we need to fix because playing catch-up isn't always going to work," said free safety Antone Exum. "We need to come out with more urgency and tighten up on defense and put more points on the board."

After a full week of practice, fans will be eager to see if the Hokies can bring their team together to play tough for a full four quarters.

One weapon that could help Tech come out stronger would be the return of running back Ryan Williams. Williams has been practicing with the team this week but his status for this week's game had not been announced as of this posting (Editor: Ryan Williams is OUT for this weekend's game according to the latest official injury report).

The Hokies take on Central Michigan at Lane Stadium on Saturday. Kickoff is at noon.