Greg’s Grades 2018: Virginia At NC State

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Virginia is 3-2 on the season.
The receivers led the grades this week thanks in part to another big game from Olamide Zaccheaus. ~ Photo courtesy Matt Riley/Virginia Athletics

First, and not because it beat Virginia, but from the simple eye test, North Carolina State looks like a team with the potential to win a lot of games this season. More will be revealed about just how good the Wolfpack are following their upcoming games against Boston College and Clemson. There are some defensive deficiencies but they are powerful up front on both sides of the ball and quarterback Ryan Finley has ACC Player of the Year bona fides.

I’m not sure if I wrote the quote down correctly but Coach Bronco Mendenhall said something to the effect that he saw ‘glimpses of capability and the absence of consistency’ (if he didn’t say it I’ll take credit for it because it sounds profound and sadly, accurate). That was the story of the game.

Virginia made a lot of little mistakes and got manhandled by the NC State front lines. The Hoos committed their most penalties and lost their most penalty yardage of the season and lost the turnover battle for the second time this season. UVA missed numerous opportunities for big plays that weren’t executed.

But the two big concerns I saw were as follows. First, it was clear how much more physical the State team was, especially the receivers. Virginia’s inability to get any pressure or any defensive penetration against the NCSU offense and how much pressure the Pack put on Virginia both provided evidence of a more physical team.

Second, opposing defenses are starting to learn that UVA relies heavily on two