The Virginia Tech Hokies are currently ranked 10 in the Coaches Poll and in the top 10 in all the others. The Hokies are no strangers to the top of the rankings because they have started there in years pasts. The year is different in many ways. This year the Hokies have stars at many positions , This year they have a fully developed recruiting class from 2006 now into polished seniors that will likely make impacts on Sunday afternoons and the major difference that separates the 2010 team from all others…. They Can Go All The Way!! One thing that may get in the Hokies way is as usual their brutal schedule. Starting in week 1 where they will square off with the Boise State Broncos in DC. The Broncos like the Hokies are very experienced especially on defense where they are returning 1o out of 11 starters from last years squad. This marquee matchup will also be very different but equally effective leaders at the Quarterback position. For Boise State it is the star-studded sophomore Kellen Moore. Moore racked up 35,000 yards and 39 TD’s in the passing game in the 09 season. Moore also is a candidate for the Heisman Trophy this year. On the other side the Hokies will be led by Senior QB Tyrod Taylor or as many know him as “T-Mobile”. Tyrod has had a successful career with the Hokies last year racking up a career high 2,300 yards through the air and around 3.8 yards on average when running the ball.So if you look at it closer this is basically New School (Taylor) vs traditional (Moore) and both will be lighting it up on Monday 9/6/10 in our Nation’s capital. Another key matchup to watch is one that will feature two NFL ready prospects on the perimeter. The Matchup that I am talking about will be between Boise wide-out Titus Young and Hokie Corner Rashad Carmichael. Both these guys have 4.5 speed, are 5’11 and most important are both extremely physical when it comes to getting the ball. Anyway we will all have to wait and see how this matchup goes now let’s get on to the rest of the season… What the Hokies have this year that they lacked last season is a good group of receivers that can be compared to guys that are succeeding on Sunday afternoons. For example senior WR Danny Coale is a small little speedster who knows when he must come through and will be Tyrod Taylor go to guy in many crucial situations throughout this season. When I see Coale I immediately think of the Patriots and there two slot receivers Julien Edelman and Wes Welker. Another prime example of a talented Hokie is Jaret Boykin who many Hokie fans will remember for his last second Hail Mary reception against Tennessee to close out the 1st Half of the 2009 Chick Fil’a Bowl. What Boykin possesses is size at 6’2 and good speed to be a potential deep threat like say a Santonio Holmes or maybe a Sidney Rice. But I don’t see either one of these receivers getting over 1,000 yards this year not because they can’t but because they won’t have the opportunity to do so
This of course is because of two things… 1. They are Virginia Tech and they play “Beamer Ball” by running up the gut and getting physical. My second point is that Tech has two Runningbacks who have rushed for over 1,200 yards in a single season. We start off this dangerous 1-2 punch with Ryan Williams who led the ACC with 1,600 rushing yards and 21 TD’s last season. Williams is entering is second year as the starter and has already announced that it will be his last in the Chicago Maroon and Orange. Who can blame him… He is projected as a sure 1st rounder in this year’s NFL Draft. Part 2 of the attack is led by Darren Evans who missed all of last year with a torn ACL in a practice scrimmage. Evans had a brilliant 08 season where he had just over 1,200 yards and rushed for 11 TD’s including a Thursday Night game in Blacksburg against Maryland where he set a school record with 253 yards rushing in a single game. Unfortunately for the Hokies like Williams, Evans has his eyes set on the NFL where he should be picked around the 2nd or 3rd round depending on his 40 time. What Tech also has as a back up plan is another talented runner in sophomore David Wilson who ran a 4.3 in his recent 40 yard dash. What the Hokies also have to help their electric ground game are experience linemen like senior center Beau Warren and redshirt juniors Blake DeChristopher and Jaymes Brookes on the right side of the line. As we all know size matters and the Hokies know this by having 3 linemen over 6’6 and two of those 3 weighing in over 300 lbs. Now the key to every Va. Tech football team is always on the defensive side of the ball by legendary defensive coordinator Bud Foster who as usual will have a defensive unit that ranks in the top 10 in yards and points allowed. This year the Hokie defense will be led by defensive backs like Davon Morgan , Jayron Hosley and Rashard Carmichael. But it will as always start-up front with the “Big Nasty’s” in the trenches like John Graves, Steven Friday and Chris Dragger who will be looking to keep the pressure up throughout the course of the game.Next and probably most important to this Hokies Defense will be there linebackers. This years linebacker crew will be without the experience of a true leader due to the injury of junior Barquell Rivers. This unit should still be in the opposing backfield on every play even without the experience. My final prediction on the Hokies this year is a year of 10-1. I see Tech losing a close one with Boise in DC and then winning out and when all is said and done they will be ACC Champions for the 3rd time and will face either UCONN or Pittsburgh in an ACC vs Big East Showdown in a BCS Bowl.