“Beamer ball” lifts Virginia Tech to ACC title

Frank BeamerEver since Frank Beamer took over as head coach at Virginia Tech University in 1987, the Hokies have excelled in two areas: defense and special teams. And thanks in large part to their defense and special teams (as well as sophomore quarterback’s Tyrod Taylor’s athletic ability), VA Tech won the ACC Conference by crushing Boston College 30-12 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa on Saturday.

The Hokie defense forced four turnovers, returned a fumble recovery for a touchdown, and essentially dominated Eagles’ freshman QB Dominique Davis for four quarters. While Davis looks like a nice young talent, VA Tech’s defense made him look every bit like the freshman he is.

Speaking of young talent, how good did Taylor look? His passing numbers weren’t too impressive (he threw for just 84 yards on 11 of 19 passing), but he rushed 11 times for 30 yards and added two touchdowns. He also kept drives alive with his legs throughout the game and his one mistake was a batted ball that was eventually picked off. Freshman running back Darren Evans was an absolutle beast, too, rushing for 114 yards on 31 carries.

While the Hokies were impressive, what a dud of a championship game this was. Of course, the entire ACC Conference was a dud this year so I guess it’s only fitting that the title game was, too.

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Nebraska kicker converts a 57-yard field goal to beat Colorado

Alex Henery set a Nebraska school record by nailing a 57-yard field goal with less than two minutes remaining in the Huskers’ 40-31 win over Colorado on Friday:

That’s absolutely incredible. He’s only sophomore.

Texas Tech crushes Oklahoma State to remain No. 2

Michael CrabtreeSo much for Oklahoma State pulling off the biggest upset of Week 11. No. 2 Texas Tech had zero issues with the Cowboys, rolling to a 56-20 win in Lubbock on Saturday night.

Many pundits thought that OK State would hang with the Red Raiders, but the exact opposite transpired. The Cowboys did take a 7-0 lead after recovering a fumble on Tech’s first possession of the game, but Graham Harrell (40 of 50 for 456 yards, 6 TDs) and Michael Crabtree (8 rec., 89 yards, 3 TDs) took over the rest of the way. Speaking of Crabtree, I don’t think there’s any doubt that he’s going to be an elite receiver at the next level. He’s big, he’s physical, he can run and he has phenomenal hands. He won’t be bust in the NFL – he’s going to be special. And watching Harrell run Tech’s offense is like watching an artist paint a freaking masterpiece.

Not that any team does, but OK State had absolutely no idea how to defend Tech’s explosive passing attack. If they blitzed, the Raiders picked it up and Harrell shredded the Cowboys up the middle and down the seams. If State stayed back in coverage, Harrell took what the defense gave him and still found open receivers. And down on the goal line, the Cowboys stood zero chance against Crabtree or the Raiders’ spread attack.

I’m not surprised that Tech won and won convincingly, but I am surprised at how easy it was. OK State is a good football team and an improving program, but as soon as they got up 7-0, it’s almost like they put it on cruise control the rest of the way. Tech made them look like a Pop Warner team.

I want to see Tech play for a national championship. People can talk about how they don’t play defense, but they just held a powerful Cowboys’ offense to only 20 points. They’re exciting to watch and they play with an attitude. They’re the most exciting team in college football and I’m not so sure that even a top defensive team like USC or Alabama could slow them down.

Tech is just that good.

Clemson situation is one fine mess

Clemson TigersThe final seconds hadn’t even run off the clock in the Tigers’ 21-17 defeat at the hands of Georgia Tech, and already Clemson athletic director Terry Don Phillips could be seen screaming at his coaches down on the sidelines.

Phillips was the one who fired helped Tommy Bowden make his decision to resign earlier this week and replaced him with Dabo Swinney. The move looked like it would pay off when Clemson took a 17-14 lead deep into the fourth quarter, but a late GA Tech touchdown sent Tiger fans home with yet another defeat.

The scene on the sidelines at the end of the game paints an ugly picture for Clemson’s current situation. There’s no doubt Bowden had to be replaced (his own brother said so after it happened), but Phillips and the rest of the big wigs in the program need to realize that change won’t happen overnight.

Although he got way to cute with his play calling on Saturday, Swinney did a nice job rallying the troops in the wake of Bowden’s firing. Given what was said by a couple of the players in the media this week, it appears that the locker room had been divided. But given the circumstances, Swinney kept things in order and deserves a chance to turn the Tigers’ misfortunes around this season.

Or at the very least, deserves the respect of not being lashed at on national television by an AD who should be nowhere near the sidelines at the end of a game. (Although to be fair, nobody knows at this point why Phillips was yelling at his coaches. Maybe he was upset that the concession stand ran out of Diet Coke?)

Louisville freshman Victor Anderson scorches Kansas State

Victor AndersonWeek 4 in college football kicked off with a bang as Louisville pulled off a small upset, beating Kansas State 38-29 at Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium Wednesday night.

Cardinals’ quarterback Hunter Cantwell had the game of his collegiate career, completing 22 of 33 passes for 274 yards and two touchdowns. He got into a nice rhythm several times during the game and was able to pick apart K-State in the short, to mid-range passing game.

While Cantwell was impressive, UL freshman running back Victor Anderson stole the show, rushing for 176 yards and three touchdowns on only 18 carries. He had touchdown runs of 29, 56 and 27 yards, and flashed incredible speed and athleticism on every score. And while Anderson was incredibly impressive, it’s only fair to note that Cardinals’ senior back Brock Bolen pounded his way for 104 yards on 23 carries. Bolen was essentially the backbone of UL’s offense Wednesday night.

While Cantwell and Anderson shinned for Louisville, Cougars’ quarterback Josh Freeman threw two interceptions, the first of which the Cardinals turned into a touchdown and took a 14-7 lead. Freeman did manage to throw for over 300 yards and three touchdowns, but the lack of a running game allowed UL’s front seven to focus on crashing the pocket and forced the Cougars to rely on the pass. Falling behind by two touchdowns didn’t help Freeman and the K-State offense, either.

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