Blacksburg Buzz: What a Difference a Year Makes
We're coming up on another college football season with exciting games, hard hits, and more BCS drama i'm sure.
For Hokie fans, there is an excitment in the air that hasn't been felt since the '99 season.
As a record crowd of about 41,000 showed up for a spring game, you could hear talks of going undefeated, talks of being one of the greatest teams we've had, an even talks of winning a title.
Why is everyone so pumped?
There was no talk of any of this last year, so what happened?
Well, if you go back to last year you seen a team depleted by the draft.
All four of our top receivers were gone, with three finding NFL homes, and two playing significant time.
Brandon Dillard who had waited his turn at receiver blew his achilles and was gone for the season. Zach Lukett was booted off the team for undisclosed reasons, and we were left with freshmen to hold all four spots.
The defense took a hit as well losing Brandon Flowers, Xavier Adibi, Vince Hall, Chris Ellis, and D.J. Parker. These playmakers had been some of the best and all found themselves on NFL rosters as well.
I know Bud Foster is great, but man what a loss to reload.
You could feel mediocrity in the fans, the effort on the field, and in the games we lost.
But the team pulled together and finished strong ending ACC Champs and winning the Orange Bowl.
What momentum to take into 2009.
So why Are the fans so sure that the Hokies will have a huge season in 09?
Well, The Hokies are returning 16 starters from last year, seven on defense which Foster always manages to out in the top 10.
The receiving corps has a year under their belt and Tyrod Taylor has done some significant work on his passing game.
And if you happen to follow the Hokies and/or went to their spring game you have seen first hand Tech's possible X factor for the 2009 season.
I'm talking about red-shirt freshman Ryan Williams.
This kid is just plain exciting to watch. He has an average of over 12 yards per touch.
His first touch of spring practice Williams ran an 80 yard touchdown. His first touch of the spring game, a screen pass, went for 56 yards and a score.
Williams is fun to watch, and could be very special to the Hokie offense.
With Williams and Sophmore Darren Evans in the backfield, the hokies will bolster one of the elite running tandems in all of college football.
With a probable preseason ranking in the top 10, and one of the tougher schedules in the NCAA, the Hokies have a legitimate shot at having a special season.
If Virginia Tech can come out of the season unscathed somehow, we could even see them playing a top team for the National Title.
Regardless what happens, Hokie fans definitely have something to be excited about.
With loads of talent, and a favorable schedule where most of the tough games are at home, Tech will once again be the favorite to win the ACC.
The Hokies have a real shot of having the best team Blacksburg has seen since a guy by the name of Vick wore No. 7 and took them to the Title game and fell one quarter short.
Hokie, Hokie, Hokie, HI.
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