Coming at You

Virginia Tech features a three-pronged attack in the backfield, the likes of which Boise State (or few other teams) has ever seen.

Boise State has faced some top rushing attacks in recent years, most notably Nevada and TCU.  

Nevada featured an NCAA-record three 1,000-yard rushers in the same backfield:  running backs Luke Lippincott (1,034, 7.72 avg. and nine touchdowns) and Vai Taua (1,345 yards, 7.82 avg. and 10 touchdowns) and quarterback Colin Kaepernick 1,183 7.35 avg. and 11 touchdowns).  The Wolf Pack led the nation with 4,484 yards, a 7.39 yards-per-carry average and 48 rushing touchdowns.  

TCU featured Joseph Turner (754 yards) and Matthew Tucker (676) and the nation's fifth-best rushing attack (3,114 yards).   

Virginia Tech, the first opponent on Boise State 's schedule this fall, presents yet another challenge to the Bronco defense.  Rarely does a team get blessed with having a running back that has all the tools—strength, speed, change of direction and the instincts that such backs are born with.  

Virginia Tech has two of them in the same backfield.  

 This may be the best collection of talent ever for the Hokies.  Sophomore Ryan Williams (5-10, 211) and junior Darren Evans form a devastating 1-2 punch that is going to be nearly impossible for opponents to stop this season.  The pair represents the last two Atlantic Coast Conference Rookies of the Year.  Evans debuted as a freshman in 2008 with 1,265 yards rushing (an ACC freshman record) including a school-record 253 against Maryland .  Evans suffered a knee injury in August that ended his season last year.  Williams stepped in and gained 1,655 yards and scored 21 touchdowns (on 293 carries).   

Williams is explosive, a game-changer.  He can turn a missed tackle at the line of scrimmage into a 70-yard touchdown in the bat of an eye.  Williams has a great ability to read blocks, a burst of speed to the hole and balance.  He just does not go down, absorbing hit after hit before kicking it into high gear.  He has the instincts of all the great runners, being able to turn on a dime and make cuts that make defenders look silly.  In the off-season, he had the word "Superstar" tattooed across his chest.  Williams runs a 4.62 40.  

Evans' style is more power-running, straight ahead; either get out of the way or I'll flatten you (as he did a Maryland defensive back in '08).  Although he too has great speed (4.56), Evans will bolt through the line and look to overpower you, churning his strong legs while he moves forward for yards after contact.  He used his rehabilitation to add 10 pounds and bulk up his upper body.  

Evans was such a dangerous runner in high school that defenses would line up seven, eight and nine defenders in the box around the line of scrimmage.  He still ran for 61 touchdowns his senior year at Warren Central in Indianapolis , fourth most in United States prep history.  Evans once ran for six touchdowns on just 12 carries against his school's biggest rival.  He was named EA Sports' Player of the Year and a Parade All-American and led his team to four consecutive Class 5A state championships.  

Quarterback Tyrod Taylor (nicknamed "T Mobile") adds to the confusion for opposing defenses.  Taylor gained 370 yards and scored five times on the ground.  More often than not, his rushing yards are picked up on scrambling after the defensive rush has overpursued and left him a hole.  Taylor is adept at sliding around the pocket, using his quick feet, instincts and athletic ability.  

Taylor is highly-accurate, whether it is zipping the ball on a rope for a short first down or floating a ball to a deep receiver on the fly; he gets the job done.  Taylor is accurate on the run, even across his body.  That ability forces defenses to be alert to the pass even when Taylor is breaking out of the pocket.  He has good moves in the open field and can take it to the house in a hurry (4.55 speed). The Virginia Tech senior is above all, a winner.  Taylor has led Virginia Tech to a 28-6 record in three seasons as a starter.  His dual-threat ability is being compared to Vince Young.   

With a quarterback that possesses that kind of running and passing ability and two running backs of the caliber of Evans and Williams (each bringing their own set of skills), Virginia Tech's backfield is scary good.  They will cause headaches, heartburn and nightmares all season long among opposing coaches, players and fans.

 

 

 

Darren Evans:

 

2008 OPPONENTS

Att

Yds

Avg

TD

at East Carolina

12

37

3.1

1

Furman

11

72

6.5

1

Georgia Tech

19

94

4.9

1

at North Carolina

14

61

4.4

1

at Nebraska

21

72

3.4

2

Western Kentucky

21

79

3.8

2

at Boston College

17

27

1.6

0

at Florida State

15

77

5.1

0

Maryland

32

253

7.9

1

at Miami of Florida

17

43

2.5

0

Duke

24

111

4.6

0

Virginia

25

72

2.9

0

Boston College

31

114

3.7

1

Cincinnati

28

153

5.5

1

 

 

Ryan Williams:

 

2009 OPPONENTS

Att

Yds

Avg

TD

Alabama

 

13

71

5.5

2

Marshall

 

16

164

10.3

3

Nebraska

 

21

107

5.1

1

Miami of Florida

 

34

150

4.4

2

at Duke

 

24

83

3.5

0

Boston College

 

18

159

8.8

1

At Georgia Tech

 

14

100

7.1

1

North Carolina

 

23

96

4.2

0

at East Carolina

 

26

179

6.9

0

at Maryland

 

23

126

5.5

1

North Carolina State

 

32

120

3.8

4

at Virginia

 

24

183

7.6

4

vs. Tennessee

 

25

117

4.7

2

 

 

 

Tyrod Taylor:

 

 

2009 OPPONENTS

Att

Yds

Avg

TD

Alabama

 

10

-26

-2.6

0

Marshall

 

7

58

8.3

0

Nebraska

 

9

-22

-2.4

0

Miami of Florida

 

10

75

7.5

0

at Duke

 

5

1

0.2

0

Boston College

 

6

9

1.5

0

At Georgia Tech

 

13

63

4.8

1

North Carolina

 

9

-8

-0.9

2

at East Carolina

 

11

61

5.5

1

at Maryland

 

8

81

10.1

0

North Carolina State

 

7

18

2.6

0

at Virginia

 

6

34

5.7

0

vs. Tennessee

 

5

26

5.2

1

 

 

 

Articles about Darren Evans:

 

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2006/writers/dave_krider/09/28/hs.notes/index.html

 

http://www.collegiatetimes.com/stories/12507/evans-brings-family-to-tech-hurt-to-opposing-defenses

 

http://www.roanoke.com/sports/vtfootball/wb/158486

 

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/hokies-journal/2010/04/darren_evans_returns_to_virgin.html 

 

 

Articles about Ryan Williams:

 

http://bleacherreport.com/articles/274422-ryan-williams-virginia-techs-freshman-sensation

 

http://www.vthokiefans.com/2009/11/17/ryan-williams-continues-assault-on-virginia-techs-rushing-records/

 

http://www.ajc.com/sports/ryan-williams-finally-has-263986.html

 

 

Articles about Tyrod Taylor:

 

http://recruiting.scout.com/a.z?s=73&p=8&c=1&nid=1843033


http://rivals.yahoo.com/ncaa/football/blog/dr_saturday/post/QB-Focus-Once-more-for-Hokies-Tyrod-Taylor-wi?urn=ncaaf-241249

 

http://ncaafootball.fanhouse.com/2009/09/18/hokies-tyrod-taylor-taking-what-defenses-give-him/


http://articles.dailypress.com/2010-04-18/news/dp-spt_tyrod_041810apr18_1_offensive-coordinator-bryan-stinespring-acc-senior


http://www.examiner.com/x-22934-Virginia-Tech-Hokies-Examiner~y2010m3d17-Virginia-Tech-QB-Tyrod-Taylor-prepares-for-his-final-season-leading-by-example

 

http://blogs.orlandosentinel.com/sports_college/2010/06/tyrod-taylor-virginia-tech-quarterback-is-a-senior-to-watch.html

 

http://www.gobblercountry.com/2010/5/12/1468583/tyrod-taylors-legacy-could-end-as


Bronco Country Top Stories