Fearless Picks - Virginia Tech

A much tougher prediction task awaits our staff in this week's contest.


Last Wk: W
Season 3-3

The debate that I am having with myself is whether to go with conventional wisdom or with my gut feeling. Conventional wisdom would say pick the Hokies who have virtually destroyed every team in their path so far this season. Conventional wisdom would say pick against the Mountaineers who are improved but still struggling to find the right mix on offense. Conventional wisdom would say go with experience over exuberant youth. The difference is, I just cannot see this game being anything close to conventional. The atmosphere in Morgantown will be at a level not seen in recent years, and Virginia Tech will have to face a hostile crowd away from the comforts of Lane Stadium for the first time. This contest is about more than football, and the intensity should be unparalleled. The battle will surely be a very physical, hard-hitting contest with each squad leaving it all out on the field. Rodriguez and staff have been holding a great deal back on offense, but will have the playbook wide open against the Hokies and show a better passing attack along with a few new wrinkles. If West Virginia can force the VT offense to score all of the points and not allow the defense or special teams to find the end zone, then this could be the Mountaineers' night. The Hokies will head back to the Old Dominion with their pointed tails and horns between their legs as their hopes for a national title will be crushed by a spirited group of Mountaineers wearing all blue. Don't miss this one; it will be something special. WVU

Last Wk: W
Season 5-1

Virginia Tech rolls into town ranked third in the country, sporting a new conference affiliation and a football team that is solid to excellent in every facet of the game. West Virginia sputters into the game off a lackluster win over hapless Rutgers. The Mountaineer offensive line shuffles more than a deck of cards at the World Series of Poker, with Jeremy Hines expected to get his first start at center, giving WVU their 9th different starter on the OLine. Generally that isn't considered a good thing. WVU's lack of consistency on offense has put too large of a burden on a very good Mountaineer defense, possibly the best defense in Morgantown since 1996. WVU certainly has the talent to play with, and beat the Hokies, as evidenced by performances against Wisconsin and Miami, both games WVU should have won. I'm going with my heart on this one. WVU

Last Wk: W
Season 4-2

Are the Hokies as good as their #3 ranking? Maybe. Are they a Top 10 team? Definitely. Although Virginia Tech's strength of schedule ranks as the 113th in the country the Hokies have been impressive early on this season. The Mountaineers will need to be on the receiving end of a few Hokie turnovers while keeping the Hokies from making the big play. A rowdy crowd will see a great game on Wednesday night but unfortunately will not go home with a victory. VT

Last Wk: W
Season 4-2

Mountaineers have another chance to upset a Top 5 program. Unfortunately, VPI quarterback (and West Virginia native) Bryan Randall is all about efficiency. Look for Randall and Tech special teams to make too many plays. Take Tech minus 12, as it looks like... VT

Last Wk: W
Season 2-4

The athletic department continues to ignore my calls and letters. They refuse to castrate a live turkey at halftime, and they won't be giving away mini bottles of Jim Beam with each Coke sold to anyone 12 or older. Oh well. Mountaineer Field will still rock like it hasn't rocked in years. West Virginia will win if atmosphere has anything at all to do with the outcome of a game. I believe it does. WVU 23, Virginia Tech 6. WVU

Last Wk: W
Season 5-1

Most tangible items would point to a Tech win, and normally we follow the tangible line. But this matchup has a different feel to it. Tech is highly ranked but untested (113th in the nation in sechedule strength), and WVU should be very hungry. WVU

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