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Chick-fil-A Bowl preview: Virginia Tech's unit rankings

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Yesterday, we looked at Virginia Tech's 9-3 resume and the drive charts for the games they've played. Today, we're going to take a look at the Hokies unit rankings.

OFFENSIVE RANKINGS
Category
National
Rank
Actual
National
Leader
Actual
Conf
Rank
Atlantic Coast
Conference Leader
Actual
Rushing Offense
15
206.42
Nevada
362.25
2
Georgia Tech
307.15
Passing Offense
98
181.83
Houston
450.00
9
Duke
305.00
Total Offense
55
388.25
Houston
581.23
6
Georgia Tech
442.69
Scoring Offense
28
31.42
Boise St.
44.15
4
Georgia Tech
35.31
Passing Efficiency
13
150.17
Cincinnati
166.19
2
Georgia Tech
157.43
Sacks Allowed
T-91
2.50
Boise St.
.38
8
Georgia Tech
.69

 

Offensive observations. As we suspected, Virginia Tech's quite good on the ground, ranking second in the ACC and 15th nationally with 206.42 rushing yards per game. In the passing game, they're not very productive -- 98th in the nation with 181.83 yards per game -- but they're efficient. They're not very good at all at protecting their QB (or perhaps he holds the ball too long), as they're giving up 2.5 sacks per game. On balance, the Hokies are sort of middle-of-the road from a yards standpoint (55th nationally), but they're good at turning those yards into points, scoring 31.42 per game, good for 28th in the nation.

DEFENSIVE RANKINGS
Category
National
Rank
Actual
National
Leader
Actual
Conf
Rank
Atlantic Coast
Conference Leader
Actual
Rushing Defense
52
138.67
Texas
62.15
4
North Carolina
92.83
Pass Efficiency Defense
6
96.19
Alabama
88.81
1
Virginia Tech
96.19
Total Defense
14
300.08
TCU
233.25
2
North Carolina
267.75
Scoring Defense
11
15.75
Alabama
11.00
1
Virginia Tech
15.75
Pass Defense
6
161.42
Air Force
148.67
1
Virginia Tech
161.42
Sacks
29
2.50
Pittsburgh
3.67
3
Clemson
2.62
Tackles For Loss
32
6.50
Middle Tenn.
8.83
4
North Carolina
8.42

 

Defensive observations. Frank Beamer's team are always stout defensively, and this season is no exception. It leads the ACC in pass defense, pass efficiency defense, and scoring defense, marks that are basically all top 10 rankings nationally (scoring defense is actually 11th). If they're weak anywhere on defense, it's against the run, where they're giving up 138.67 yards per game for a national ranking of 52nd. Still, it doesn't hurt them much, as they're still in the top 15 nationally in total defense. The Hokies also appear to get decent pressure on the QB and in the backfield.

SPECIAL TEAMS AND TURNOVERS RANKINGS
Category
National
Rank
Actual
National
Leader
Actual
Conf
Rank
Atlantic Coast
Conference Leader
Actual
Net Punting
27
37.37
Georgia
42.84
1
Virginia Tech
37.37
Punt Returns
41
10.52
LSU
18.64
6
Florida St.
16.81
Kickoff Returns
21
24.03
TCU
30.62
1
Virginia Tech
24.03
Turnover Margin
16
.67
Rutgers
1.54
1
Virginia Tech
.67

 

Special teams and turnovers observations. The Hokies rank first in their league in net punting, kickoff returns, and turnover margin. They rank only 41st nationally and sixth in the ACC in punt returns, which, when you're talking about Tech, just means that they're due. They have returned two punts for TDs, one each against Marshall and Miami, and one kickoff for a score, against Alabama.