Before last night, I would've been the first to tell you that I wasn't hearing anything about Boise State and how they were a top 10 team and returning 23 starters from a Fiesta Bowl-winning team. I did watch their game against Oregon last year, but I chalked up their defensive performance up to a down game by LeGarrette Blount.
No one was rooting for Virginia Tech harder than I was last night to send Boise State back to Idaho with their tails between there legs. I first noticed it in the first quarter when Boise State was up 17-nothing before Virginia Tech had even finished lacing up their shiny, new orange cleats. Looking around the stadium, FedEx Field must have been 75% Tech fans last night.
Boise came out with something to prove and then they proved it. Boise's defensive front dominated the Tech offensive front for the entire first quarter including holding Tech to fumble, punt, punt on it's first three drives. Unfortunately for Boise fans, someone told Tech that the season started and they did make the game competitive.
Boise did also have to overcome 11 penalties for 105 yards and a furious Hokie comeback, but let's fast forward to the 4th quarter with 1:47 left. After receiving a great return by Mitchell Burroughs that may or may not have received a gift from the officials, Kellen Moore flawlessly and methodically shredded the Hokie defense going 4-5 on a 56 yard drive that ended with Moore connecting with Austin Pettis, who also had a breakout game.
As Moore was executing his 4th quarter comeback drive, it looked very similar to drives led by Peyton Manning and Tom Brady to win games. When you watch Brady and Manning march their teams downfield, there isn't a doubt in your mind that the drive is going to result in a touchdown. That was the same feeling I had last night about Moore, who certainly now has a gun to bring to the gun fight that is the Heisman race.
So, instead of going back to Idaho with their tails between their legs, they are now firmly a top-10 team with a quarterback that has cemented himself in the Heisman race. Now, they still have a Charmin-soft schedule the rest of the way, with the exception of an October 25 match up with Oregon State on the smurf turf. I am still not necessarily putting them in the national title game even if they do run the table, but I think Boise State earned the respect of a lot of people last night.