Four years ago Tyrod Taylor came to Blacksburg poised to be the next great Virginia Tech quarterback. He proved his worth on Saturday against Central Michigan, becoming the winningest quarterback in Virginia Tech history with the 27th win of his career.
Taylor was tied with Bryan Randall for the most wins all-time in Virginia Tech history heading into Saturday's game, and now he alone holds the title. He didn't disappoint, either. Taylor was, in fact, one of the few bright spots on offense.
He went 13 for 23 for 161 yards and one touchdown. He also added 127 yards and two scores on the ground.
Virginia Tech came into the game as heavy favorites and won 45-21, but the offense struggled at different points in the game—they still have plenty of room to grow.
The problem with the aerial attack was the wide receivers' ability to catch the ball. There were a number of dropped passes by the receivers in this one which hasn't been a problem for Tech in the past. Hopefully, this will remain an anomaly for the Hokies, but dropped balls are definitely something the coaching staff will address this week.
The rushing attack was okay. There were a couple of huge runs, including Taylor's 72- yard run for a touchdown (which made this his second straight week with a rushing TD over 70 yards) and David Wilson's 68-yard rushing score.
Despite Wilson's long touchdown run, he carried the ball only six other times for 16 yards. Darren Evans only received seven carries and had 35 yards rushing and a touchdown.
Central Michigan did a good job of holding the Hokies offense in check, and Tech's offense wasn't on the field all that much. Tech ran just over 50 plays, compared to Central Michigan who had close to 90.
The defense had an average day as well. After the Chippewas marched downfield in 13 plays for 80 yards and a touchdown on the opening drive of the game, the Hokies defense settled in. Chippewa quarterback Ryan Radcliff was able to move the ball on offense but didn't have a tremendous amount of success.
Radcliff did throw three touchdowns, one against the Hokies second team late in the game but was only 21-for-48 on the day. Tech's defense dropped a number of potential interceptions, which Bud Foster will likely remind them about in practice next week.
Jayron Hosley returned a punt 80 yards for a touchdown, making that the second straight week there's been a special teams score. David Wilson returned a kickoff for a touchdown last week against N.C. State.
Tech won the game which is the important thing. However, they still need to do a more consistent job in their run blocking, and the receivers need to do a better job of making plays. Tech's next two games come against Wake Forest and Duke, so they have a couple more weeks to work out the kinks before taking on some of the ACC's best (GT, Miami and UNC).
Jarrett Boykin was the only receiver to have multiple receptions and finished with eight catches for 117 yards. Logan Thomas also got his first action of the year but was only on the field for four plays.
Central Michigan outgained the Hokies 401 yards to 394, but they also took 40 more offensive snaps. This just proves the Hokies have to become more consistent in all facets of their game if they want a chance to compete for the ACC title in Charlotte come December.