2021 Virginia Tech Hokies

Pitt is coming off a bye week. They will enter Saturdays game with an overall record of 4 – 1 (1 – 0 ACC). Their opponent the Virginia Tech Hokies (VT) are 3 – 2 but are tied with Pitt for the Coastal division lead. Here are the standing from the ACC season web site.

The Hokies are coming off a heartbreaking loss to Notre Dame (ND). After taking an eight point lead with about 3:45 left on the clock, VT allowed ND to first tie the game with a touchdown and 2-point conversion. After a VT punt, ND won the game on a field goal with 16 seconds left.

Here are the standing from the ACC season web site:

Year to date schedules for both Pitt and VT.

Both Tech’s (Georgia and Virginia) have played North Carolina. Georgia Tech won by 23. VT won by seven. Does that mean anything? Nah. Just a factoid.

Here is the NCAA stat comparison. Those highlighted in yellow are Hokie advantages. A new layout. I hope it makes it easier to compare.

The Individual NCAA stats. Same old Layout. Those in a pale orange are transfer portal entries. Those in blue are out either for the year or this game. I will be using those coding throughout this article.

On to the individual stats. Of course, starting with the QB’s:

VT is concerned with the loss of Conner Blumrick for this game (and probably more). Blumrick, in for an injured Braxton Burmeister, was the QB who was leading the charge to VT last score when he was injured. Burmeister in obvious pain replaced Blumrick.

Will Burmeister be fully recovered? If not, VT is left with Knox Kadum (Rivals 2019  5.5  3*) and Tahjamell Bullock (Rivals 2021  5.6  3*). I would be concerned if Pitt was down to Davis Beville and Nate Yarnell as the backup to Kenny Pickett.

What about the running backs and receivers?

A comparison of GT and Pitt.

See anything interesting?

Some defensive individual stats. From ESPN team stats and compared to NCAA statistics for accuracy. I did find a discrepancy in the NCAA stats. The NCAA in the above individual leaders has Nasir Peoples with 40 tackles. But he has only 39 in his individual NCAA stats.

I again used the top 15 in tackles for both teams. In total, Pitt has 36 and VT 28 players who made at least one tackle (solo or assisted)/sack/pass defended (PD)/interception/forced fumble(FF)/ fumble recovered(FR). I did add some stats to compare the “chosen fifteen”.

As usual, I do not have any stats for offensive line play. But I do have sacks and tackles for loss (TFL) allowed. Maybe I need to open my shackled wallet and subscribe to Pro Football Focus (PFF).

As to turnovers here is a comparison.

The below is a question from the SBNation Notre Dame site One Foot Down and an answer from the VT site Gobbler Country. Read the whole article at:

Notre Dame Fighting Irish Football: Virginia Tech Hokies Q&A with Gobbler Country – One Foot Down

2. How do you and the Hokies faithful feel about Justin Fuente? Obviously following a legend is always tough, and he started his tenure strong, but he’s 22-19 since 2018. Do you still think he’s the right guy for this job? Is this a critical season for him to prove himself?

Bryan D. Manning: Justin Fuente is a nice guy. A good family man. But Virginia Tech fans have been ready for a new regime for two years — at least. He came here as a “QB guru,” but yet QBs get worse under his watch and leave.

The offensive scheme is boring and unimaginative. Be ready for 20 jet sweeps on Saturday. Fuente has never endeared himself to the fans, the community, or to former players, so he isn’t a popular guy. If he won more games, people could overlook that. He doesn’t. Some big streaks have ended under Fuente’s watch.