North Carolina State Wolfpack (4-1 SU, 4-1 ATS) vs. Virginia Tech Hokies (2-2 SU, 2-3 ATS)
College Football Week 6
Date/Time: Friday October 9th, 8:00PM EST
Where: Lane Stadium Blacksburg, V.A.
by Jay, NCAA Football Handicapper, Predictem.com
Point Spread: NCSU +1/VT -1
Over/Under Total: TBA
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This Friday night the North Carolina State Wolfpack will go into Lane Stadium for a date with the Virginia Tech Hokies marking the first meeting between the two teams in Blacksburg since 2009. The Hokies and the Wolfpack are both coming off narrow home losses last week. Virginia Tech was downed by Pittsburgh in a 17-13 defeat while the Wolfpack suffered their first loss of the season against Louisville 20-13. This Friday both teams look to rebound and get back on track with a victory.
For the most part, the Hokies have been off track all season. Last weeks loss to Pittsburgh marked one of the worse offensive performances in Virginia Tech history. In fact, Virginia Techs 100 total yards against Pitt marked their lowest offensive production since Frank Beamers first game as the head coach at Virginia Tech back in 1987. The offensive line could not protect quarterback Brendan Motley resulting in 7 sacks. The offense could not run the football which has been a staple of Beamers offenses in Blacksburg. Counting the sacks, the Hokies gained just 9 total yards on the ground in 33 attempts.
With such awful numbers, it is rather amazing that Virginia Tech was even in contention to win the football game but they did have their chances. However for the 2nd straight week the Hokies could not make the plays down the stretch going back to their upset loss to East Carolina. Beamer promised that changes would be coming for the team in the days ahead but what that particularly meant remains to be determined. Luckily the Hokies still have a really good defense that should keep them in ballgames despite the offensive woes. Not only has Virginia Techs defense been solid but if you add North Carolina States own problems last week on offense, then we could easily be in for a low scoring close game this Friday night.
The Wolfpack offense was held to abysmal numbers last week as well. North Carolina State totaled just 228 yards on offense and 13 points in the loss to Louisville. Despite the 4-0 start, it was North Carolina States first true contest of the season from a talent/competition perspective and they failed the test. Similar to the way Virginia Tech struggled, the Wolfpack offense was held to just 45 yards on 30 carries. Quarterback Jacoby Brissett hit 16 of 28 passes for 183 yards and a touchdown but was mostly ineffective. With so much inefficiency coming from the both offenses last week, most are wondering who will rebound this week? Because the offense that can establish some type of redemption will likely win this game.
If you notice the betting line for this Fridays contest between the Wolfpack and Hokies is a near pick em type contest. The Hokies have found ways to be competitive despite several weeks of offensive concerns and their defenses as stated before will keep them in striking distance. The Wolfpack actually rank 3rd in total defense holding opponents to just 225 yards per game. Therefore I expect this game to be a really low scoring contest and just a few key plays could determine the outcome.
If you are going by trends, North Carolina State may look like the better team this week. The Wolfpack are 7-1 ATS in their last 8 games and also 5-0 ATS in their last 5 games on the road. Meanwhile, Virginia Tech is just 2-7 ATS in their last 9 games and 2-4 SU in their last 6 games at home. The only flip side is the fact that the Hokies have won 3 straight against the Wolfpack which is tied with Clemson for the longest streak against North Carolina State from ACC foes. One of those recent trends will come to an end this Friday when both teams collide inside Lane Stadium.
Jay’s Pick to Cover the Point Spread: I think Virginia Tech finds a way to win this week in a game where they have to turn things around. I am not convinced North Carolina State is that good based off their soft non-conference schedule and I think that fact is brought to light this week. Take Virginia Tech -1
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