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2017 Opponent Previews: Virginia Tech Hokies

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NCAA Football: Belk Bowl-Arkansas vs Virginia Tech Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

Team: Virginia Tech Hokies

SBNation Site: Gobbler Country

Game Date, Location: October 7, Chestnut Hill

2016 Record: 10-4

2016 Overall Offense Ranking: 39th

2016 Overall Defense Ranking: 18th

Bill Connolly’s Projected S&P: 25th

Last 2 Matchups: (2016) Virginia Tech 49 BC 0 (2015) Virginia Tech 26 BC 10

Key Players: The key but not necessarily the best player on offense is new quarterback Joshua Jackson who takes over for Jerod Evans. Last year Evans was one of the best players in the ACC throwing for 3,546 yards and 29 touchdowns. Jackson has never taken a snap and will have pressure to live up to what Evans gave the team last year.

Lucky for Jackson, he does have some good weapons on offense. Senior WR Cam Phillips is a top five WR in the ACC and is coming off of a 76 reception and 983 receiving yards last year. At RB is Travon McMillian who had 1,043 yards rushing in 2015 but was injured last year. The Hokies also have three returning starters on the line.

On defense, the Hokies are loaded at linebacker and defensive back and probably have six players on those units would could end up on one of the three All-ACC Teams. The leader is linebacker Tremaine Edmunds who had 106 tackles last year to go along with 4.5 sacks and was voted Preseason All-ACC Team this year. The best of the entire defensive unit might be safety Terrell Edmunds who coach Justin Fuente said of him this week, “I have never had a player like Terrell.”

Why Boston College Will Win This Game: The Hokies are loaded in the back seven but there are a lot of question marks up front. Only one starter returns on the defensive line, and two of the starters lost were All-ACC level players. The potential will be there for BC to run on these guys.

The Eagles will catch a break for how this game sets up on the schedule as well. Virginia Tech will be coming off of a home game against the National Champions in what will likely be a nationally televised game during primetime. Can the Hokies get up for BC just a week later at Alumni Stadium?

Why Boston College Will Not Win This Game: It’s tough to support BC when you consider the fact that the Hokies demolished BC 49-0 just a season ago. If Fuente can get Jackson clicking at QB early in the year there’s no reason that VT should be anything less than one of the best offenses in the ACC this year. Steve Addazio hasn’t exactly been successful going up against high powered offenses recently.

Hoff’s Odds BC Wins This Game: 55% I love how this game sets up on the schedule for BC with VT having to travel here after a showdown with Clemson. The combination of question marks at QB and DL for VT seems like a perfect combo that BC can take advantage of.