10 Things I Learned From VT

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Aaron Clark and other seniors have played in their final game as a Hoo.

42-13 … that is how it ends. The season … and the Al Groh era at Virginia.

Over the next few weeks, there will be plenty of columns looking back at the Groh era and looking forward to the future. But before we get to that, we first will look back at this one last loss. Here are 10 Things I Learned From Virginia Tech.

1. Not Good Enough. Before the game, I wrote to a friend that I can never be all that confident about my team’s chances in a game when they are the less talented team. That was the case for the Hoos this weekend, and they were going to have to play an awfully good game to overcome what was a very obvious talent (and speed) deficit. Mistake free? Maybe not … but it was going to have to be pretty darn close.

Unfortunately, UVa did not have a mistake-free game. In fact, UVa had plenty of key mistakes at key moments, and had the proverbial (and actual) ball-bounce-the-wrong-way moment with Ras-I Dowling causing a fumble at the end of a long Ryan Williams run and it ending up as a Tech touchdown to put the game completely out of reach.

Certainly, the game was very much in doubt halfway through the third quarter. Virginia trailed by only one point but had the ball after having just picked off a Tyrod Taylor pass into the end zone. The offense had picked up good yardage on first down and had the right play call and right blocking to pick up the next first down on the next play. Then … the fumble. Maybe a flag could have been thrown on Tech defensive tackle Cordarrow Thompson . Maybe if the pitch is just a tiny bit farther in front of Mikell Simpson . Maybe if Simpson focuses on ball first right through the catch. Maybe if the ball bounces a little differently, one of three Hoos around the ball recovers it. Maybe … maybe … maybe … in the end, it does not matter.

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