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X&O Preview: Virginia Tech Hokies @ Miami Hurricanes 11/4

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Both teams come into 2017 with a new starting QB

NCAA Football: Miami at Virginia Tech Peter Casey-USA TODAY Sports

The Hokies slapped Miami up in Blacksburg, VA 37-16 a year ago. This will be a great battle as it always has been in this 2nd tier rivalry. I call it 2nd tier because it’s not UF, FSU, or ND for Miami. This is one of those rivalries that means more to VT than Miami, even if it’s a usually a toss up on who will win. The S&P+ pre-season rankings have the Hurricanes at #18 and the Hokies at #25. That’s pretty darn close and this one is in Miami but I’m not quite sure if Hard Rock has the same home-field advantage as Lane Stadium just yet. Coach Fuente vs Coach Richt should be a great chess match the next 4-5 years.

The Hokies came back from a 24-0 deficit to win the Belk Bowl this past December. That shows some steely toughness because they also overcame a 17 point deficit against the Irish.


Offense

Freshman QB Hendon Hooker completed 10 of 11 passes for 113 yards and a TD in the spring game with an INT. Tech has to replace a starting QB once again. Fuente’s offense looks to run the ball, mix in H-Backs and 20 personnel sets.

Below- One freshman connecting with another

Below- a beautiful fade for a TD

An offense looking for big plays can be picked apart by a Miami defense with a strong front 7 and a talented yet inexperienced back 4. Whichever QB wins the battle going into the fall, they’ll be hit in the mouth by the Miami D.


Defense

A Bud Foster defense is known for TFL, sacks and turnovers. With being aggressive and looking for sacks and turnovers- you’re susceptible to giving up big plays. Think of Berrios’ and Herndon’s TD’s against VT in ‘16, but also the two big TD’s above. However, a Foster D will make some big plays too.

Below- Faison comes up with a pick against the freshman

Below- the Hokies’ defense gets a sack

Below- Fuente gets the QB out in space and the DB’s make a nice play for a PBU

The #Canes needs the O-Line to step up big against a Foster defense. Bud Foster will bring speed and pressure and attempt to make big plays. Think of the past Miami vs VT games... they’re full of big hits and big misses. Kevin Everett wide open, Brock Berlin’s interception, Dorsey under pressure, Mike Vick knocked out of the game, Ed Reed’s 2 picks against Grant Noel in 2001- this has always been a big play game.