I thought that Virginia Tech played a really good game. We came back there in the second half, took the lead and I thought had some momentum, and we got the big penalty that really kind of changed the game. If you could point to one thing that changed the game, we’re going to be up five, they’re going to be punting from inside their 10- or 12-yard line and we have a chance to get the ball back and instead, they get a first down, go down and score a touchdown, re-take the lead.
It’s disappointing. I thought that Virginia Tech played well and did what they had to do. They kept the ball for the most part. After the first two drives, I think they scored every time they had the ball except for the one time they turned it over, and we couldn’t match it.
Q: How much did the penalty take the wind from your team?
A: It was huge, and you compound it with the fact that then they drive it down and they score. Instead of getting the ball back somewhere around midfield, up five with all the momentum, maybe you’ve got a chance to go up two scores, and in that game, you needed to be up two scores with the way the game was going. It changed. I couldn’t see what happened. The play was dead, it seemed like, forever, and they never blew the whistle or the guy just kept trying to move. And we couldn’t ever get the guy down anyway. He must have averaged eight yards on quarterback sneaks. He’s a big, strong guy.
Q: Have you ever seen a quarterback who got so many yards on sneaks like Thomas was?
A: No. I haven’t seen anything like that. You asked me, my answer would be no.
Q: Was the desire to go up two scores the reason why you elected to go for it on fourth down?
A: I elected to go for it on first down because I felt like we needed to score. It’s fourth and one, but I think since the second possession of the game, if I’m correct, we didn’t stop them. So we needed to go down and score and I thought we could make a yard and we didn’t. We didn’t do a very good job with the play. Maybe could have been a better play call. We didn’t execute the one that was called very well, either.
Q: How did Jay Finch look?
A: I have no idea till you watch the tape. I know we had a couple of late snaps, but until you watch the tape… I know we had a couple of late snaps, but until you watch the tape inside, you have no idea. I know we had a hard time blocking 98.
We had a couple of busts and the other thing that hurt us in the first half was I think it was the second time we got the ball, we scored, we kick off, they start on the 10-yard line, flip the field, punt us out on the 7 and we had a chance tor a really big play the first play that we pitched the ball and we busted two assignments. We pitched off no one and we blocked the wrong guy and turned a guy loose and then on third down, we had a drop, I think, and just kind of lost momentum there too and got off one of our 30-yard punts and flipped the field.
You have to give them credit. They flipped the field. They took it from the 10 and put it down there.
A: We weren’t getting a whole lot of pressure and they were throwing it and catching it pretty good. I don’t know what they were on 3rd down – 10 of 16 – yeah, that’s pretty good, considering they had 3rd and 11’s, 3rd and 12’s. Really, the first series of the game, we had ‘em in 3rd and 12 and they convert and we were very fortunate that their punter punted it in the end zone because instead of having them stopped and getting the ball in good field position, we end up taking it over on our 20. And those things are big. It’s kind of hidden yardage when that happens. But, yeah, they converted a lot of third and longs. The play right before halftime really hurt, too, the touchdown pass.
Q: What’s going to bother you about this game?
A: We just didn’t make enough plays. We didn’t get it done. Offense, defense, special teams – nobody got it done. Offensively, we weren’t efficient enough. We didn’t score enough points. Defensively, we had a hard time stopping the run.
I don’t know what they rushed for – 267. They outrushed us. When teams do that, not usually going to win.