NC State hungry to end Va. Tech's home hex, jump Hokies in ACC
League: NCAA Football
Posted on: 14 Nov, 2023 at 02:26 PM
Credit: Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports
North Carolina State and Virginia Tech will meet Saturday in an Atlantic Coast Conference game with plenty at stake in Blacksburg, Va.
For starters, the Wolfpack (7-3, 4-2) and Hokies (5-5, 4-2) sit tied for third in the conference with North Carolina.
Dave Doeren's North Carolina State squad has won three straight games since losing 24-3 at then-No. 17 Duke on Oct. 14. However, winning has not been part of the team's recent trips to Blacksburg.
The Wolfpack won there just once in four tries since 2004, including three consecutive setbacks. Doeren has never won in Blacksburg.
Also on the losing end of games against the Hokies is Wolfpack starting quarterback Brennan Armstrong, who returned to the lineup in Saturday's 26-6 victory over Wake Forest.
Armstrong, a graduate transfer from the Virginia Cavaliers, topped the game with 96 rushing yards and passed for 111.
"They're the No. 1 pass defense in the league," Doeren said of the Hokies. "I'm excited to get to go play against a team that's playing well in a great environment. ... A good challenge, looking forward to continuing the journey on the road in another senior day for another program. We know we're going to get their best."
On Monday, Wolfpack linebacker Payton Wilson was named a semifinalist for the Chuck Bednarik Award, handed out annually to the nation's top defensive player.
With a win in their home finale, the Hokies would secure an appearance in a bowl game -- the first in coach Brent Pry's tenure. The team went 3-8 in his first season (2022).
Against Boston College last week, the Hokies scored 35 unanswered points in their first road win, 48-22, to snap the Eagles' five-game winning streak.
Virginia Tech totaled 600 yards of offense -- 363 via rushing on 51 carries (7.1 per rush).
"(They) had the No. 1 run offense in the league, and they had 120 and we had 360, so we flipped the script there," Pry said. "That's about physicality and temperament."
The Hokies lead the all-time series 28-19-4 and have been victorious in five of the past six meetings.
--Field Level Media