To remember from JC Price in front of Virginia
In Saturday’s 38-26 loss to Miami at Hard Rock Stadium, Virginia Tech executed the ball 43 times in 71 offensive plays (60.5%).
Thirty of those 43 rushes (69.7%) came from the two quarterbacks of the Hokies, Braxton Burmeister and Connor Blumrick. Burmeister started the game and played most of the first half, with Blumrick coming in on occasion. After Burmeister was sacked and escaped early in the third quarter, Blumrick played the remainder of the game.
Subsequently, interim head coach JC Price said the Hokies had just played with the hot hand, which was Blumrick.
How will the Virginia Tech quarterback’s situation evolve this week against Virginia? We’ll discuss that, as well as how Miami exposed the Hokies defense on the big plays and how Brennan Armstrong and his receivers make UVa’s offense so dynamic.
The Virginia Tech quarterback situation
It all happened in the quarters of Virginia Tech in Miami.
Blumrick and Burmeister were first and second on the team in versatile yards at 132 and 52, respectively. Burmeister completed 14 of his 17 passes for 109 yards and also one scoring, while Blumrick – who had only thrown the ball four times on Saturday – was five for 11 for 39 yards and two touchdowns.
In the running game, the Hokies hardly used anyone outside of their quarters. Malachi Thomas (7 rushes, 39 yards), Tayvion Robinson (2 rushes, 4 yards), Raheem Blackshear (2 rushes, 3 yards) and Keshawn King (2 rushes, -3 yards) were rarely used.
With Tech’s QB importance established, how will the team handle their QB situation in their last regular season game at Virginia?
“We’re going to decide if this gives us the best chance of winning, as we did last week,” Price said at his press conference on Monday. âBraxton and Connor did a lot of good things in the game. [Offensive coordinator Brad] Cornelsen and the offensive players will determine that later in the week.
Here are the stats for both QBs from the Miami game:
The figures are fairly balanced. Burmeister threw better, while Blumrick ran better.
It’s particularly impressive for Blumrick after getting injured in early October against Notre Dame. He took a month off and re-educated himself, and he played a big part in the Hokies’ attack plan against Miami.
âI think what it has done for us is that Connor has given us a dose of energy,â Price said. âHere’s a guy who probably could have rolled around and not played the rest of the year, but instead he comes out and goes into rehab, gets his body back, gets it back to where he can play and our kids have it. have seen. Our kids saw him come out and every race he tried to complete.
“They [Blumrick and Burmeister] the two bring different things to the table and our attack seemed to click with Connor and we just put up the hot hand.
We’ll see how Tech uses their quarterbacks against UVa on Saturday. Just like in Miami, it could be about riding the hot hand.
The Miami game was a mixed bag for Virginia Tech.
On offense, the Hokies played well enough to win until they kicked all three possessions in the fourth quarter. Defensively, they started off terribly, allowing ‘Canes touchdowns on the first four possessions, but forced four punts and allowed just ten runs after that.
JC Price hit the nail on the head after Saturday’s game:
âWe thought their offense was built around big plays, and if they didn’t get a big play they would have a hard time scoring. If they had big games, they would score. If they had to drive it, we had a chance to get off the pitch. It’s a sort of summary in defense.
Tyler Van Dyke (19-33, 357 yards, 3 TDs) became the first opposing quarterback to score over 300 passing yards on Tech this season, and he had two long scores that helped him reach this brand. He hit Brashard Smith for 75 yards in the second quarter and had 55 yards against Mike Harley in the fourth which sealed the game.
On Monday, Price said the defensive gaps came from breakdowns in every position, not just in the secondary.
âYou need all 11 people to do their jobs to be successful on defense,â Price said. It’s not just on the secondary, it’s on the d line. We didn’t rush the passer very well. If there is good precipitation, there is good coverage. If there is good coverage, there is a good rush. These things go hand in hand.
âI wouldn’t want to sit here and put it on a part of the defense. We need to play better at all three levels.
Tech recorded five tackles for a loss to the Hurricanes, but was not sacked. None of the TFLs – Chamarri Conner, Dax Hollifield, Keshon Artis, Jermaine Waller and Nasir Peoples had one each – came from the top four.
The Hokies are going to have to put pressure on UVa this week to slow down this attack.
Virginia’s Mighty Attack
In many ways, Brennan Armstrong seems unstoppable. He’s carved his name several times in the UVa record books, and although his game against Pitt on Saturday was his first since his injury, he still threw for 487 yards (36-49, 1 INT) and three touchdowns.
He’s the only ACC player to have thrown over 4,000 yards this season, and he’s averaging 404.4 yards per game. Armstrong also has the third-most touchdown count (30) in the league, behind Kenny Pickett’s 36 and 31 of Sam Hartman and Devin Leary.
“The speed of his release, the decision-making [stands out]”said Price.” He’s a double threat guy, he can run. I know everyone knows he’s been assaulted here the last few weeks, but he’s 6-2, 215-220. C “He’s a big, strong guy who you think won’t be as nimble as him. He misses the guys because he’s as big as him and he can put his shoulder down if he wants to and finish.
âThey do a good job of spreading the pitch and he’s been in this system, he has confidence, he has confidence in his receivers and he’s tough to hit and he has a really quick release.â
Armstrong’s receivers are also talented. Three of them – Dontayvion Wicks, Jelani Woods (near end) and Billy Kemp – have had six or more touchdowns this year. That list doesn’t even include Keytaon Thompson, their second wide receiver with 899 yards this season.
Here’s a breakdown of their receivers so far this season, sorted by number of catches:
Kemp is the smallest of the group at 5-9, but the other five are tall – Wicks (6-1), Henry (6-3), Thompson (6-4) and Woods (6-7).
âLength, length and more length,â Price said of Virginia’s receiving body. âThey are all tall, tall and long guys.
“He [Armstrong] trust them, he’ll come out of his read and throw that thing across the field and throw it at these guys who aren’t just good athletes, they can run, but that’s right, the first thing that hits you there ‘screen when you watch their tape is just the length of these guys.
The Virginia Tech secondary, who allowed the most passing yards of the season in Miami, is about to have his toughest test of the year in Charlottesville.