Boston College (5-3) at Virginia Tech (4-4)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Saturday, November 1, 12:30 p.m. (ET)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Lane Stadium (66,233) -- Blacksburg, Virginia. Television: ACC Network. Home Record: Boston College 2-3, Virginia Tech 2-3. Away Record: Boston College 3-0, Virginia Tech 2-1. Neutral Record: Boston College 0-0, Virginia Tech 0-0. Conference Record: Boston College 2-2, Virginia Tech 1-3. Series Record: Virginia Tech leads, 15-7.
GAME NOTES: Two teams heading in different directions square off when the Boston College Eagle travel to Lane Stadium to face the Virginia Tech Hokies in Atlantic Coast Conference action on Saturday.
Virginia Tech enters the game having dropped two in a row. Most recently, the Hokies fell to Miami 30-6 at home last Thursday to fall into the cellar of the Coastal Division of the ACC.
Virginia Tech had trouble stopping Miami's Duke Johnson who rushed for 249 yards with a touchdown and also finished with 37 receiving yards and a score for Miami.
Mark Leal came on for Hokies starting quarterback Michael Brewer in the fourth quarter and tossed a 14-yard touchdown pass to Isaiah Ford to account for their lone score. Marshawn Williams rushed for 100 yards on 21 carries for Virginia Tech, which fell to 4-4 overall and 1-3 in ACC play.
Stopping the run has been somewhat of an issue for the Hokies this season. The team is allowing 153 yards per game on the ground and 12 of the 20 defensive touchdowns allowed have come via the running game.
Overall, the Virginia Tech defense yields just 352 yards and 21 points per game. However, in their four losses this season, the Hokies are allowing an average of 27 points per game.
The leader on the defensive side is Chase Williams, who leads the team with 54 tackles and 8.5 tackles for a loss. He has added 3.5 sacks, which trails team- leader Ken Ekanem's 5.
Offensively, Virginia Tech averages 26 points per game on 378 yards of offense. However, during their recent slide, the Hokies have scored just a total of 22 points and are struggling to move the ball, averaging 226 yards per game. Two games against Pittsburgh the running game totaled only 26 yards and the passing game against Miami had just 142 yards.
The offense is going to have to be better Saturday and it starts with Brewer under center. He has completed 61 percent of his passes this season with 1,754 yards with 11 touchdowns. However, he has also throw 11 interceptions. Marshawn Williams adds a team-high 62 yards per game on the ground with three scores, while Isaiah Ford averages 56 yards with five touchdowns receiving.
Boston College, on the other hand, comes into this game having won two of its last three outings to find itself in the middle of the Atlantic Division side of the ACC standings.
Last Saturday, Jon Hilliman ran for 101 yards and two scores as the Eagles held off Wake Forest, 23-17 to improve to 5-3 on the season and 2-2 in the ACC.
Quarterback Tyler Murphy completed 11-of-15 passes for 165 yards with a touchdown for Boston College, which led 20-3 late in the fourth quarter and need a Justin Simmons' interception with just over two minutes left to secure the win.
The Eagles have a strong running game behind a veteran offensive line and that could be trouble for Virginia Tech. Boston College averages 277 yards per game on the ground for the season with Hilliman's 72 yards per game leading the way among running backs. The freshman also has nine touchdowns.
Murphy is the leader offensively, though. The senior transfer quarterback is an all-purpose threat. He has completed 56 percent of his passes for 1,034 yards, while running for 105 yards per game. His 14 total touchdowns lead the team.
On the defensive side, the Eagles look to match up well against Virginia Tech. The Eagles allow just 19 points per game, surrendering 300 yards per game. Boston College allows only 91 rushing yards and the Hokies have had trouble running the ball of late, so that will be an interesting matchup, especially since the Hokies air game has also struggled.
Steven Daniels leads Boston College with 47 total tackles, while Josh Keyes has been a defensive star, totaling four sacks and 10 1/2 tackles for a loss this season. Justin Simmons has also been an all-around defensive stud for the Eagles, tallying 46 tackles, one sack and two interceptions.
This marks the 23rd meeting between Virginia Tech and Boston College with the Hokies holding a 15-7 edge in the series. Boston College broke a five-game losing streak to Virginia Tech last season, escaping with a 34-27 win in Chestnut Hill. However, the Eagles have dropped six of nine contests in Blacksburg. Since both teams joined the ACC in 2005, the Hokies lead the regular-season series 5-4, but also lead the overall series in that span 7-4 thanks to the two wins in the championship games.
Even though the Hokies have been solid in ACC play during the month of November, going 63-20 since joining the league, this is still going to be a tough matchup. Boston College seems to have the advantage in every statistical category and Virginia Tech just hasn't been playing well enough of late to warrant a win.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Boston College 24, Virginia Tech 17
10/29 10:57:39 ET