10 Things I Learned 2010 … VT

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Coach Mike London’s first season ended with a loss to Virginia Tech.

And just when you thought hope was lost, the Hoos stormed back, relying on their 3-point shooting to knock off No. 13 Minnesota on the road …

… oh wait, you wanted to talk football? That was not quite as much fun this weekend. After all, that was a competitive quarter of football Hoo fans saw … but the rest of the game? Not so much.

1. The Storyline. When you are on the road playing a better football team – and even before the outcome was decided this week, Hoo fans knew Tech was the better football team – you cannot waste an opportunity. And when you hold the better team to zero points and zero first downs, that is an opportunity.

Likewise, when you are on the road playing a better football team, you cannot gift-wrap an opportunity for that team. And when you hand the ball over to the opposing offense inside your own 10-yard line, that is an opportunity.

In the end, however, it is hard to say that it would have mattered. This year, like most recent years, Virginia Tech was faster and more talented. On top of that, this year, Tech was more disciplined in its play. Add those factors together and the only way you could see the Hoos winning this week was if the Hokies had a JMU-like letdown.

Of course, with the Hoos not having beaten the Hokies on the football field in … oh … 403 years, and with the Hokies having locked up their spot in the ACC Championship Game before taking the field, I suppose a letdown was not out of the question. But if you stop and think about it, that is a sad statement on the “rivalry” if one could envision that VT actually could “look past” its in-state “rival” … and it certainly was not that hard to envision.

Maybe the first quarter was a case of Tech having to find its rhythm or get focused, or maybe it was a case of the Hoos playing over their collective head for a quarter but regardless, the next three quarters were a stark reminder of the current gap between the programs. Simply put, Mike London and crew