Week one has some good match ups, but the Boise State-Virginia Tech game is the biggest. This game has national title implications, for both teams. It is the hardest game for each team this season. Whoever wins could go undefeated, which just might be enough to finish in the top 2 of the BCS.
Virginia Tech has won 20 games over the last two years, but the Hokies feel they should have done better. While defense is always a strength for Tech, the offense is loaded this year. Tyrod Taylor has played in 36 games his first three years. Taylor has always had lots of up side, but until the last four games of 2009, he had played short of his potential. If he can pick up 2010 where he left off in 2009, then this could be a special year. The presence of Ryan Williams and Darren Evans in the backfield will help. Williams ran for 1,655 yards in 2009, and Evans had 1,265 in 2008. Taylor will also benefit from having his top 3 receivers back this year. When all else fails, Taylor has the ability to do some damage with his legs.
Boise State has taken a lot of heat for winning a lot of games against poor competition. The Broncos can silence many of the critics with a win in this game. Winners in 26 of their last 27 games, and with 21 of 22 starters back from last year, Boise State is on the verge of doing the unthinkable: qualifying for the BCS National Championship game. Boise State will play Oregon State two weeks later, and a win against a second team expected to contend for a conference championship in a BCS AQ conference would do wonders for the Broncos' credibility.
Both teams feature high powered offenses, which is why this game will be decided by the defenses. Boise State showed it is more than just a finesse offense when they shut down TCU in the Fiesta Bowl last year. Boise State needs stop the Virginia Tech run game, be it Williams, Evans, or Taylor. Then it will be up to the secondary to stop the passing game. Virginia Tech will need to work in reverse: stop Kellen Moore and the pass first, and the run second. However, the most important thing for Virginia Tech to do is remember who they are playing, and be ready for anything at anytime. While Boise State is legit, what has gotten them over the hump has been to catch their opponents off guard by strategically resorting to "trick" plays at critical moments. No one should expect anything different this week.
Date: Monday, September 6
Kickoff: 8:00 PM (EDT)
TV: ESPN, ESPN3.com
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