Duke football preview!

#144 R.P.I. Virginia Tech #51 R.P.I. Duke:

Today’s word of the day is… well, Duke!



  1. a male holding the highest hereditary title in the British and certain other peerages.
    the fists, especially when raised in a fighting attitude.
  3. verb. INFORMAL
    to fight it out.
  4. Highnoon? or: “Give me Liberty or give me hooVa?”

Duke Head Coach: Mike Elko: age=45, (o-o overall to begin ’22, now 6-3 @Duke so 1st year far); has a rep’ for Defensive football, Lb’s/Secondary in particular; and for a: “remarkable football mind”.

Raised in South Brunswick, New Jersey, Baller Elko graduated in 1995 from South Brunswick High School, where he played baseball, and basketball and was the Qb1 for the school’s football team. He was recognized by the coaches of the Greater Middlesex Conference as the league’s top quarterback in 1994 and was inducted into the school’s athletic hall of fame in 2o12. He graduated from the University of Pennsylvania, where he played for the Penn Quakers football team that won the Ivy League championship in 1998; as an Fs1 mind yah. So, he knows both sidelines of throw fits or passing fancies if you will.

Prior to being named defensive coordinator at Notre Dame, Elko had coached under Dave Clawson for 12 seasons. He spent two seasons with Clawson at both Fordham and Richmond, five seasons with him at Bowling Green, and three seasons with Clawson at Wake Forest. During the 2o16 season, Elko’s Wake Forest defense ranked in the top 2o for NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) in defensive touchdowns scored, turnovers, red zone defense, sacks, and scoring defense. Alabama, Clemson, and Washington, the three other FBS teams to accomplish this on defense, were among the four teams selected to compete in that season’s College Football Playoff postseason tournament. The Fighting Irish fired DC Brian VanGorder the prior September after Notre Dame started the season with a 1–3 record and a defense ranked third from the bottom of the FBS. On January 4, 2o18, Elko was hired by Jimbo Fisher as the defensive coordinator at Texas A&M inking a three-year deal averaging $1.8M/year. Then he got a boost to being the 4th highest-paid ass.coach ($2.1 large) in all the land.

Family ties 1o1…

In Elko’s 23 years of coaching, 18 have been spent as a defensive coordinator, including 13 at the FBS level. He has twice been named a semifinalist for the Frank Broyles Award (2o17 and 2o21), which is given annually to the top assistant coach in college football. He began his coaching career at Stony Brook in 1999 where he guided the linebackers in the fall and the defensive backs in the spring. Elko’s coaching experience also includes one-year stints at the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy (2oo1), where he served as defensive coordinator, and at his alma mater, the University of Pennsylvania (2ooo), directing the secondary. The Quakers won the 2ooo Ivy League title during his lone season on staff.

He is a defensive guy who has surely cut his defensive teeth along the way. Granted. As his last ten, that’s (1o) Total Defenses (as a top-kick Defensive Coordinator) have all ranked ≤41st in D-1 ball or better. (With an apex predator of 6th best in those last ten Total D’s). That is pretty sporty by me. Does that a big whistle blow though?

Poppa-bear Elko is married to the former Michelle Madison of Franklinville, N.J., and they are
the parents of three children Michael, Andrew, and Kaitlyn.

2021 record: 3 up 9 down and o-8 in the A.c.c.

USE old stars tribute PICS

 Duke Defense: (starters back=4)

  • 84th in Total D.
  • 34th vs. the run!
  • 111th vs. the throw!!
  • 1o1st in Passing Efficiency D!
  • 11oth in zone D!
  • 8 of 10 in dLine Havoc (mostly from their De1 and Dt1, tho’). The Duke defensive front wall does court some pretty solid pass-rushers in De1, R.J. Oben; and in Dt1 DeWayne Carter. They can and have and will make northward-bound plays. 320-pound tackle Gary Smith is off to U.c.la., tho’ DeWayne Carter is a big veteran to start with on the interior –he is a good factor in the backfield. The pass rush has to show up with leading sacker RJ Oben on one side and a rotation coming on the other. Dt1 DeWayne Carter, is quite useful and quite a few would have me say: ‘quite, good.’ As he is one of the better A.c.c. Dt’s at: pass-rushing, pass-coverage (i.e., zone-blitz), and in terms of pure fumbles forced. This guy puts a lotta checks in a lotta at least ‘good’ boxes. Make no misQ there. Kinda their Jim Baron+++ or so. So, they do have two true legit D1 starters here… do they have a 3rd; (much less a, 4th)? That said, Obein + Carter makes the 1’s = pretty dang good all by their ownselves. As Dt1, Carter is tied for second nationally with three forced fumbles and tied for fifth with three fumble recoveries. Handys guy, huh? They are legit disruptors. Dt’s look the part, De’s look mo’ normalized.

    NOT a fan-fave this ‘mad’ dog!
  • 6.5 from 1o in Linebacking Havoc. Lb1 Shaka Heyward has shown signs of being a bonafide playmaker in the 2nd-layer for Duke. As in… in 2o21… Heyward led the Dukies in tackles, T.F.L. (tackles for a loss), and in run stops. That is all. He was also their best Blitzer and best linebacker in pass coverage. This is a kid you need to account for Real Estate wise or: “location location location”. As you need to locate the 6′3″, (listed): 24o lb., r-Sr., Lb1 pre-snap. Eye say that, as this is one v-e-r-y lean B.M.I. guy to go 24o. Like no body fat always bikini-season lean. As Shaka Heyward and Dorian Mausi are smallish-looking ballers upon breaking tape who combined for 157 tackles. So, asking for massive minutes may be too big of an ask here. That said and anywho… the rest of the Duke second layer is a drop-off… tho’ a good size 2nd-layer works here.
  • …not sure if I favor the 1st or 2nd layer? Tho’ I do favor saying the Duke front-7 is mo’ favorable than the tertiary layer or Secondary itself.
  • in Secondary Havoc. Why? ’cause the Duke front-7 is prolly a little better and surely has a good deal mo’ experience. As there is a lotta green-wood on the 2022 fire here for the Duke hind-4. Youth in the secondary does not normally bode modern-era basketball (school) on grass well. In particular at the D-1, P5, level. As Duke’s secondary figures to be a work in progress, which could lead to more long -and long gainers- this season. The main experienced guys atop the depth chart exiting spring practice were kind of unseasoned juniors Tony Davis (Cb1) and Jaylen Stinson (S1). Though younger players, like true freshman Chandler Rivers and sophomore Cameron Bergeron, will be asked to contribute significantly. Iowa State transfer Datrone Young will help the cause at one corner, tho’ the addition of former star Michigan recruit Jordan Morant at safety is the bigger deal to help a secondary that is all but starting over. Morant was basically a *****, chip, VHT, cannot miss. So, his (finally) hitting for Hunter (their position parlance) contact would be a major upgrade here. And starting with just 6 picks in ’21 and in ’22 so far. And frankly, 2023 should see a significant improvement(s), here. As they just allowed 32 touchdown passes against those six, that is (6) picks or a really pitifully user-friendly passing ratio of 5.33:1 against! (And guess what… chunk plays allowed have been a bugbear, here). Then… West.Illinois transfer S1, Darius Joiner is suffering/surprising with nothing short of a career year. Real ball-hawking kid now that he is playing body-free and moving unencumbered the same. Cb however is well south of everything else on D. Everything. There are some smaller lowercase peeps here, in particular in the seat of the pants.
Duke base D with red-zone ills… (secondary is a little handsy/flag-prone)
  • D overall: in 2o21 the run defense was bad, the pass D worse, and well, maybe the run-fills are more filling than the passing shapes in 2o22? Tho’ that is surely a relative term as you will read below. As they take so many aggressive run-fill risks that they have to F.E.M.A. file for airborne clean-up. ’cause 126th best in the most opposing drives to penetrate inside of your defensive 40-yard line does not a good look typically make.
    (Film-Study): the Dukie D is not situationally risk-averse, they will go with 7, 8-men LOS looks and dares you hit behind it; even on 3rd-n-long. This tells you just how much they must trust their recovery speed and Knowledge Bowl I.Q.’s on D and the whole football.edu squad of course. The Duke D clearly favors stopping the run and forcing the throw. They load for ground warfare; and yet the odd part is that they are not necessarily super physical in run-fills downfield. Duke D does a lotta variable and semi-variable intensity man thingys with 1 or 2-deep behind that. They will however deal from all over. They move/shift a bit, and they will take 5 or 6 or even 7-man blitzing risk(s). From anywhere. Additionally, they will cheat a Safety (Ss) into run-support situationally allowed. Gotta be some play-action room behind the space he vacates if you can catch it just right. Although not awful, not an epic tackling D, and not s super physical one either. BeeCee did split a few hashmark seams a few times as well.
  • ∑ (summary): returning D production=52% (112th most)! The whole D is your conflict defender here. 16th best in defensive scores (3-TD’s) says so. New coach Mike Elko wanted to establish a mind-shift in his players, after a winless A.c.c. season a year ago. That effort started with setting a different tone in practice, where competition was open across the board, and players were encouraged to be much more physical. Including a renewed teaching/fundamental emphasis this past Springball. They do have three pretty sharp pass-rush guys in their forward-7; and not a lot after that. And they have their work cut out for them… as in: in 2021 The Duke D allowed an A.c.c.-worst 517.9 total yards per game, dogged by poor tackling and coverage errors. Or to put it a final ’22 way… there were 13o teams in D-1 college football last year, and Duke was ranked 13oth in total defense. i.e., there literally is only one way to go, here… ⬆️.

Defensive letter-grade:

Duke Offense: (returning starters=5)

  • 49th in Total O.
  • 21st in ground O.
  • 97th in aerial O.
  • 6oth in Passing Efficiency O.
  • 84th in zone O.
  • O overall: Qb(?): (Apparently), there remains (something) of an open quarterback competition between dual threat Jordan Moore and Riley Leonard. Riley Leonard (a 6′4″, 2o5 lb., rookie, or nugget year voter) may just be your future Qb1 for Duke. Although 51% on an even ratio (1:1) of passing does not aerially frighten me at all. My own words last year… and the only place improving comes b4 ‘owning’ is still the dictionary.
    However, the No.14 dual-threat Qb in America (Rivals) and AAAAAAA or septa-A Alabama Player of the Year is none too shabby. As there are those who say Riley is a better hardwood player than a hard-way gridiron player just waiting to happen. As he was only named two-time basketball AL.com Edward Jones Coastal Male Athlete of the Year (2020 and 2021)! Dang… yah, that counts. As does his T&F career with 3-letters earned there to boot. So, athletics he gots… as his whole Y-chromosome family played college roundball and his old man is only the Citadel’s all-time Steals Leader! Riley also picked up Hudl’s Top-5 Dunks of the Year Award last year! wowow! An inverted spin (‘rong way) 180º windmill Quixotic flush!!! As his national (in-game) dunk sure looked 1st-best to me. (See: pic). Riley Leonard is a big passer with the mobility to be a problem when he gets room to move. Is he a trusty roommate, however? FWIW and FYI… the vibes say that… Leonard is the better passer and the speedy Moore is able to make big plays with his legs. Kind ‘pends which Set you play-calling favor? Ground-chuck or Falconry 1o1:?
    Sourcing says r.Leo’ to be a heady, gutty, and all-’rounded Qb1.
    Surveying says r.Leo’ to be a rapidly developing Qb1. Pretty close to run+pass weaponizing the Pivotal position itself. Prolly ahead of schedule to Staff+baller credit(s) alike. Check it… so, Leo’s 2nd worst RTG -the more lenient Qb marker- of the year=a nice enuff 111-points. For comparison’s sake… our older Qb1 (g.Wells) has five, that’s (5) games already logged south of that for ’22. Leo’ has only had one suspect game in eight contests. He has not thrown a pick in nearly 11 Q’s, and he has only chucked 4-INT’s in his two collegiate campaigns. Leo has been on a rushing tear of (3-game) late… including massive chuck-yardage carries great for 5 TDs in the dirt (with 3 majors passing). And now for the you did not wanna read this… news… ➕18%. That’s how much better he is @home than @away!!! WoW. 43-points better in Durham in RTG to boot. Does throw a few mo’ Picks after intermission, although he is now up to 7.3 ypr(ush) and honestly he does not appear to be roofing just yet. As this kid keeps improving and #LookOut if he ever goes Hawk & Animal and becomes a legit Road Warrior. As Riles might just be dual-threat truly special in a year or two.

    Athlete playing Qb?
  • Rb(?): …similar to Qb1 above… Jordan Moore actually led all players in rushing in the spring game; Jaylen Coleman (dinged, Coach God bless), Jaquez Moore, Jordan Waters, and possibly freshmen Terry Moore and Eric Weatherly— are all in the mix here. Jordan Waters is said to have even mo’ pop in his cans than departed Rb1: Mataeo Durant (testing-wise) did. We will see about that. In the meantime, we see a Duke Rb rotation via committee. As their second-leading ’21 rusher is likely their ’22 backup quarterback: A.K.A., Jordan Moore. Jordan Waters is a good-sized back who ran for 197 yards, and he will be the main man in the rotation early on; or until overrun otherwise. See notes below… tho’… Waters+Moore+Coleman are prolly gonna trump 1,500 rushing at least… on course for 30 big TD’s! So, this is not the worst Rb via committee crew.
  • Wr’s & Te1: The Dukie catch-corps does enjoy a pretty high-end Slot-Wr1 in: Jalon Calhoun. He good. We could use him in point of fact. Wr1 Jake “good hands people” Bobo is legit. Very. Legit on size as well, standing in at a whopping 6′5″ and yet a pretty athletic 215 lbs., (Sr.). Like a really elongated possession guy. As he don’t net too many long ones (only one snag ≥36-yards), he don’t score too many points (6); that rightfully said… 59 grabs for 628-yards working underneath is pretty fair to middling work if you can get it. As Bobo is quietly sneaking up on some level of all-A.c.c. Fun guy to watch if you like Don Maynard’s technical/efficacious routing to boot. As someone coached this kid step-show up. (Bobo said Portal “bye-bye); dang. Wr2: Jalon Calhoun is the mo’ vertical guy who at least gives you some northward relief. As the Duke catch-corps is experienced and it is pretty deep as well. As eight different guys already have ≥11 receptions, and their 3-Te’s all have at least 100-yards receiving. Not quite HR-hitting epic, tho’ trying to be good-hands-people and work that singles/doubles game all around. And the Dukie catch-cadre is tall. Nearly every less one-Wr. Duke does have a senior receiver, Jalon Calhoun, returning for his fourth season as a starter; so, same like Jimi Hendrix, he is: “experienced”. Though steady, he is only caught only five touchdown passes over the last two-point-five seasons. Experienced is not code for exploded, is it? As the Dukies seriously still need the big-play deep or vertical threat that has been missing the last three seasons to go’on and 2022 emerge. As the up-n-down Calhoun was a decent deep threat at times —and Eli Pancol (possibly OUT, Godspeed!) and Darrell Harding are big targets with experience. Jordan Moore is a home-position Qb3; though he has nice mits. Tho’ as said, Duke really needs a serious Wr1 to seriously emerge. Catch cadre is just a bit lowercase for my liking. Not Redskin smurfs, tho’ lightweight.

    Sonny side up! EPIC passer 1o1.
  • oLine: The Duke offensive line returns experienced players after blocking well enough for Durant to set the school’s single-season rushing record in 2o21. Starting Ot’s Graham Barton (NFL’er for $ure!) and John Gelotte anchor that group. Duke is pretty solid on the outside oLine accordingly. Then, Duke also added G1 Andre Harris (Arkansas State) and Ot2/Ot3 Chance Lytle (Colorado) through the transfer portal. And suddenly a pretty dang reasonable block party got even mo’ reasonable, and a bit deeper to boot. As in… although 80% of their ’21 starters are expected to be back, Eye do not know if Duke is great upfront on O? Although. Though Eye do know they are not bad, or average. C+++/B— or something quite ‘reasonable’ just like dat. As one industry insider described them to me as “effective”, if not downright steamrolling. As most would not hate on having 80% of your oLine, back. Tho’ 60% of their right now 1’s were someone else’s 1’s this time last, year! With a mere 1.5-decades of blocking experience between ’em. wow! Finally, to move/fold as well as they do; this is a towering oLine. Big’ins roam here.
    (UPDATE: Duke last week dropped right-G1, Jacob Monk to a lower-leg injury (St.Philip bless) that will keep him out for the rest of the regular season or until the Bowl game. Thus putting a dent in the offensive line. This is a tri-position starter mind yah; C1, G1, Ot1 all in the past… dang).
Duke base O: wide-Wb look:
  • ∑ (summary): returning O production=44% (121st most)! In particular, Duke only scored 72% of the time in the red zone —close to the worst in the ’21 nation or pretty dang offensive (the: adjective) indeed. And the Kicker (pardon the pun) is… they did have some pretty sporty ’21 skill-position Talent(s), plural. Who are now ’22 plurality, gone.
    (Film-Study): …same as most these days… lotta base ‘gun with Halfback flanking Qb1. Duke has a few more Wing or H-looks boxing the edge just off the LOS (line-of-scrimmage) proper here-n-there. Tho’ the Dukie oLine impressed right outta the breaking @BeeCee tape. They really have neat footwork and pull or shed defenders well. Extremely well ladder-drill schooled here. This aids and abets their folds to your 2nd-layer {sic: of defense} and they do serve Aunt Jemima pancakes in space. Duke will pull one or two guys and they really block back sharply against the grain; sometimes as far as 2-full-holes on gap-overs. Lotta geometry here, and they do have the Fred Astaire dance-by-numbers footwork to get there in time. Did Eye mention the footwork upfront yet? Qb1 (Riles) is nothing short of 15-15 Chuck Yeager eagle-eye field-vision on R.P.O.’s. Sells the same very well on his mesh/belly fakes and he is surprisingly quick. Gets up to top speed in a hurry. Duke does favor the flow of the Wing/H side at times. He musta been a Pt.Guard in another life. Duke does a lotta picking/rubbing on quickie mini-me throws underneath. They have a lotta negative passing (behind the: LOS, line-of-scrimmage). They will Swing pass to Rb’s tho’ Te’s and not so much. Pretty impressive that they have as many schemed open downfield plays as they do… to have such quickie throw points. The only real knock Eye gots is Riles does not have a bionic arm and short-arms a few throws here-n-there in-game. #8 for Duke must have some Lance ‘bambi’ Alworth in him, he (j.Moore) is very slick in the open field. Duke will trips Wide and then do all kinda crossbuck stuff behind and underneath; this is a tricky O to learn in 5-days or less. They even have bunch formations with strangely covered/uncovered Wings/Fl’s for it. Really FUN O to break-tape on— i.e., Duke needs to extend these O-$taffers A.S.A.P. before someone fiscally mo’ better comes a P5, calling. Finally, the only run-shape nag I could find was… not uber physical, tho’ uber technically proficient on turn-n-shield looks. Very textbook/coaching clinic Summa Cum Laude. (p.s. they have neat dancing/choreography camera moves after the score, to boot).
  • The 15th fewest INT’s chucked is a well-coached well-governed sign. Tritto an even superior 5th fewest offensive fumbles coughed-up. That is not just coaching the verb, that’s owning, in full.
  • 58% run:pass 42% mix. NOTE: This is a very high run-tilt not named a Service Academy in the modern basketball-on-grass era. any ball carrier is is your secret sauce offender here. Per David Cunningham of TSL: “Four players have over 50 carries for Duke: Leonard (91), Jordan Waters (94), Jaquez Moore (58), and Jaylen Coleman (58). The main three all rank in the top 13 in the ACC – seventh, ninth, and 13th, respectively.” Well, unless of course, you bother to count the five, that’s (5) guys averaging ⊇16 ypr as pass catchers go. Duke runs mo’ often, tho’ they manage to shake medium+++ throw-fit things free behind your run-fill needy D once their O gets their run-shapes flowing. As six, that’s (6) doods have snags (nearly) north of 40-yards.
    Duke Offensive Coordinator Kevin Johns, a spread offense old hand; with a lotta new cards. And frankly, he is prolly closer to 2, 3, 4, 5… 7 (off-suit) than he is two a Royale Flush in this studly football game. Accordingly, O-cord’ Kevin Johns will want to speed up the attack, open things up by both creating wide open spaces and spreading everyone out, and after working at Memphis and Texas Tech, there will surely be a good tempo. Similarly… just how bad was the Duke offense last season? It was not totally awful. It averaged a solid 418 yards per game –the running game actually put in work at times– the glitchier being… that it was a struggle to score ‘at times’ as well.

Offensive letter-grade:

Dukie Special Teams: (each return)

This could be the strongest part of Duke’s team… no, that is not an attempt (get it?) at droll humor. Duke also added a graduate transfer long snapper from UMass, Evan Deckers, during the semester break. He is one of the best at this as pure specialists go. And he took part in spring practice to get comfortable with his new teammates. That is a plus.

Duke was a nifty 12th-best in Net Punting last year, (now: 4oth) and so is Duke P1, Porter Wilson. Porter goes a heighty-looking 6′5″, 225 lbs. as an r-Soph. Punter. So, aim high on your block point here Hokies. Porter was merely the No. 12 punter in the country as ranked by 247Sports and a *** or three-star prospect per ESPN. Porter ran T&F in high school where he took all-region honors in the discus. So, you would have to think both a leggy and army punt fake will eventually be in play for Duke. Porter is more of a hangtime or seal type of Punter. He does not see many of his punts returned. Improved leg strength; and he did recently have a very good 70’s “Dear Penthouse Forum…” looking porn-stachê, tho’ it looks like he gave his upper lip the axe. Too bad too… (and, this P1 is ‘whispered’ to have leg1 in the A.c.c.). As he has a mess of punts ≥55-yards already.

  • 1st best in all the land in Punt Returns!!! | and a sporting 39th in KO returns. (An XL hidden-yardage edge exists here folks) As #85, one Sahmir Hagans is the PR truth here.
  • A solid 32nd-best in punt coverage | and a decent 52nd-best in suicide squad.
  • Duke has blocked 1 kick and allowed o kicks to be blocked.
  • Duke has blocked 1 punt and allowed o punts to be blocked.

Duke’s Kicker is Charlie Ham. And Charlie be totally rockin’ an actually ginger-flavored Greg Brady ‘fro too! I actually do not (quite) hate it— with no word yet from: Flock of Seagulls or Ah-Ha. That attempt at Rubik’s Cube era humor aside… Charlie and his Joe Stalin hair that just won’t stop… were both listed as the No. 7 Kicker in the country per ESPN.com. That does not suck, and neither does this collegiately 87% last year. Tho’ sophomore-slumped all the way down to nearly 2 outta 3 so far in 2o21. c.Ham is a: 6′2″, 180 lb. r-Soph. year K1, with a menudo/spice-boy top. Did Eye mention his hair, yet? As Charlie has already logged one more Special-Teams stop (i.e., tackle) than you and I have combined this campaign. The ‘whispers’ say Charlie has touchback range on Kickoffs and at least mid-55’s on FGAs. Even if he seems way more game-log compatible out to his mid-40s give/take. Charlie is also a back-to-back-to-back, or threepeat Georgia State Champion; and a #1 National Ranking to boot! Albeit in the sissy zebra-ball flavored version of foütball. No wonder I’ma making fun of your hair Charlie… with no word yet from Bosley, either. Doh! However, and in all candor, do not die of shock if Duke has found themselves a 4-year starting Place-Kicker. The only knock, I could find is that he’s had a few PATs sent back here-n-there. As this is a line-drive style so-called punch-Kicker.

Well, now Eye see that Charlie (St.Xenia bless) is out due to: “PERSONAL”. It is unclear who will place-kick for Duke now.

Dukie Special Teams letter-grade:
“I” or incomplete sans their K1 with no real experience at place-kicker to sub’ in for him. IF, he was/is right this is an A- group of specialists. maybe even a flat A.

FACT(s): …not much Talent, even less Experience = not; much, hope.

Unit Rankings:

  1. Duke O!
  2. VT D/Duke D (tied).
  3. VT O.


  • motive: Duke is playing for bowl-slotting with a very remote chance at a 10-win season still technically alive; with Tech officially post-season done out. EDGE=Duke.
  • weather: Favors offense overall or passing in particular. EDGE=Duke (a little).
  • health/off-field: Duke has400% fewer guys’ injury reports listed (no bleep). EDGE=Duke Med.School!
  • penalties: Duke wins here being 58th best in yellow laundry by a near 2:1 ranking edge. Tho’ the Dukies will duke it out and draw a strange amount of Personal Fouls somehow. They get the checkmark, tho’ not as big of a checkmark as it may seem. EDGE=Duke.
  • intangibles: Duke holds a massive (read: 3-digit edge!) in the all-important Turnover Margin and is also up quite a bit (33rd best) in TOP (time of possession). EDGE=Duke by a 3o4 country mile and it is not even close.
  • fatigue: The Dukies are actually up +6 in R&R in the last fortnight+ of scrumming and that is NOT what we wanted to see. EDGE=Duke, significantly/potentially in the 4Q here. (FILE that one away for >2:30 PM reference too).


R.A.T.T.: ...what shot does VeeTee have visiting Duke on Saturday?

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Illation, conclusion(s) and OPT digits:

Number of  Dukies who could duke it out @Tech=twelveteen+.

the takeaway:

…the takeaway here is… not to be too taken with either Year #1 coach either way.

Both of these (seemingly) defensive savants (Coach Prybar and Coach Elko) need a season, or four.

So, give them some room to breathe and to get their guys in their way and then see where they, are…

(Or, did that just make too much, sense?)

That fair play squarely struck…

…coming into 2022… Duke is a program that has not played in a bowl game since 2018 and has L 17 of its last 18 A.c.c. games. Duke was also dead last in the A.c.c. in both scoring defense (39.8 points allowed per game) and scoring offense (22.8 points scored per game) last season.

However, Duke is way way up and VeeTee is about the same on… ‘down’.

And yet here we fanbase emotions moving in the opposite directions are…
…go fig’ this oblong spheroid yet again?!?


xxx’s & ooo’s:
Gotta their ‘better, stronger…faster ‘ Lee Majors rebuild.

+several @their nugget or rookie year Staffers.

formulae here favors… the Duke O!!!

Duke O beta’s:

…as there is literally nuttin’ ‘rong here.

They even court some ‘explosion’ this campaign to boot! BONUS: the VeeTee D is a whopping 99th best in run-Beta and nearly the same on long-drives Beta. (i.e., the Eye was ‘fatigue makes 🐈’s of us all… puuuurfectly correct!)

The Dukie D was… Wichita State.
Or, a real live shocker!

Duke D betas:


As in… they score nearly as poorly as we did. In very particular vs. the Pass, on Explosive plays allowed and as ‘fatigue’ goes on longer drives. w0w!

Game Ball or mag·num o·pus:
LOL … whoever has the ball on, O?!?

WWI: “The Great War”…

Trench Warefare favors

Other than power… this is a very sharp oLine; serrated even.

Dline is mo’ physical… tho’ less technically Talented overall.

Our Dline was closer, in particular in penetrating and physicality itself…
…then, however, our Oline came in ranked between 92nd and 122nd best and it’s it and that’s that.

EDGE=Duke, in particular, when on D in head-to-head Battle of Somme terms.


Duke is (now) ranked third nationally in turnover margin (+1.56/game); after going 26 over the previous two seasons combined. …WoW!!!

Virginia Tech: Qb1, Grant Wells. He has thrown eight touchdown passes with eight interceptions and has failed to reach 2oo yards passing in his last six games.

Duke on the other foot has rushed for a bicentennial 200-yards (or more) in six games this season.

200… that is your in-game barometer men.


  1. Δ1=79% chance that Duke goes on and whoops us. We could be due to let go this week— or next week in a rivalry lookahead trap.
  2. Δ2=2o% chance that Duke is: “o-ver-ra-ted”; (clap-clap-clapclapclap). There are signs here that they are not (quite) all dat and a 6 up 3 down, ‘snap’. No joke…
  3. Δ3=1% that we play our Game of the Year pop-clean and win by double-digits.

#ChallangeA.c.c.epted… there are 1,440 minutes in a day and VeeTee must yet again play all 6o-minutes (or, mo’) to win here.

the optics

the skinny

Lo.FM (Long-field Management©)

  • Duke is a centrist 61st-best in 1st-down O inflicted | while VeeTee is a likewise moderate 64th best in 1st-down D allowed.
  • VeeTee is however a lowly 1o8th best in 1st-down O inflicted | while Duke is a little below average as the 84th best 1st-down D allowed.
  • Dukie is a scosche better than average at 56th best in 3rd-down O inflicted | while VeeTee is a pretty dang salty 28th best in 3rd-down D allowed!
  • VeeTee is however a near awful 118th best in 3rd-down O inflicted | while Duke is a surprisingly available 1o8th best in 3rd-down D allowed!

Lo.FM Analysis:
Well, this is a squirrelly one to grade men. As Duke has holes here. The key is 1st-down for the VeeTee O. It could all begin -or all end- right there. Although k.Smith long or something downfield does offer a glimmer of O&M hope. EDGE=Duke. Though not by a metric ton.

TTT (Time To Throw©)

  • The Dukies are an ensconced 28th best in TFL (tackles for a loss) allowed O | whilst the Hokies are a virtually matching northward or 3oth best in TFL inflicted D.
  • The Hokies are a decent 56th best in TFL allowed O | whilst the Dukies are (again) a virtually matching 6oth best in TFL inflicted D.
  • The Dukies are a protective 38th best in Qb-sacks allowed O | whilst the Gobblers are a little dull at 79th best in Qb-sacks inflicted D.
  • The Gobblers have really slipped and are now a near green-light 99th best in Qb-sacks allowed O | whilst the Dukies plum git after people with the 29th best Qb-sacks inflicted D!

TTT Analysis:
Well, the Dukies win oLine wise, tho’ their dLine gunning for g.Wells -if/when- we really have to chase is a soberstreet thought. EDGE=Duke. (And it could widen a bit if this one gets outta hand).

Fu’rther… Σ Yards… since the L streak began you ask?

VeeTee is down in a backbreaking 963 yardage deficit hole!
Over the same time span, Duke was also down 126-yards!

i.e., Duke is prolly not as good as some think and V.P.I. (could) be even, worse!

3-game splits…
…here we see that the VeeTee O has contracted by 35-yards; pretty evenly run and pass worsening split too. The Dukie O has actually improved by a mere ~1st down gained (+10 ypg). Although, they are up nearly +40 ypg on the ground! Even at their aerial expense, Duke is really running downhill hard of late. The V.P.I. D has softened by nearly 60 extra ypg allowed of late. Virtually all of it is in air-waves frequent flyer terms. The Dukie D has gotten about 25-ypg laxer of late as well. All of it threw atmospherically or passing ypg allowed terms.
EDGE=Duke, as “3 things can happen when you throw and 2 of ’em are bad.”

Home/Away splits…
…here we see that the blind hog Hokie O actually finds a bonus 1st-down (1o ypg) out on the road, somehow? We also see that the Duke O antes up +40-yards to the good @Home. Same as above, nearly all down in the dirt as bonus carrying the mail goes. Now here it gets noticeable, as the Gobbler D gives up an extra user-friendly 40-ypg allowed out on the road. Most of which is down in the au natural grass or in terms of hemorrhaging rushing ypg. The Duke D actually tightens up @home by a handsome 5o fewer ypg allowed @home. Every single inch of which was in pass-defense improvementS, quite plural!
EDGE=Duke. Tho’ does the Duke pass-D positive trend mean as much here?

Our handy dandy friend, the so-called: Forum Guide of Graham Houston fame is merely calling for a totally Duked-out and Duked-up azz-beating or routing 46-point VomiT. Or, 23-points when taken pro rata. The truly oddball and extremely outlying part was… head-to-head VeeTee split the Forum Guide 2-2 or .5oo. And yet Duke really punked the two common round-robin opponents that they did actually beat. Meaning… you gotta wonder if they could punk us if this one gets away from us for punking no.3?

i.e., Duke is a vastly mo’ explosive team in final outcome, terms.

the sportlight

…here in the sportlight…

…the limelight focused is all on the other club.
And Frankly (foreshadowing intended) they merit it just the same.
As you could argue these are two Coastal ships passing in the… nite…

As in…, Duke is making their A.c.c. Coach of the Year (for: Elko); and he will surely garner some National C.O.T.Y. votes as well. The ‘leverage’ is all his.

And if we really are getting: ‘better’?
Right about now would be a very good time!

Duke Projected S&P+: 1o1st.
Duke Projected S&P wins: 2.8 W’s.


the call...

Total days since the last VicTory: 56.
Total Miles to Raleigh: 2o2.

…seems long on each (somehow), n’est-ce pas?

The only calculus for you is… just how much longer will the final 18o-minutes, feel?



The Closer

Well, and ‘aye” I know that wells are for water… nevertheless; there is a lot here that favors Duke in this one here. There really is.

Nevertheless, Eye did learn me 3-whole Dukie/new-staff thingys worth passing or picture painting on…

  1. First, and to their credit… Duke hit about a handful of near Park Place portalling gets to upgrade this roster suddenly. They are all healthy. They are all getting maxed out via the rookie-year staff. Again, to their credit… they really hit for Human Resource or Help (the) Roster power here. (i.e., this team is not all dat and a ‘snap’ stem to stern it is rather suddenly a bit top-heavy).
  2. They schematically get what to richrod @w.v.u. smaller-school do. You run odd sets that are hard to prep’ for in a regulation workweek (or a short week). This too only helps max’ out 1.
  3. 1. and 2. are even mo’ impressive once Eye saw just how inexperienced Duke is. You gotta wonder where they will be if they N.I.L. hold this patchwork group together.
  4. K, so, I did say 3-things… tho’ still… I did learn that there are openings or availabilities that even this much portaling succeeding was NOT able to fully patch, work. On D in particular, at K1, and at G1 on the oLine frontline.

That’s the (semi) good news… the news-news is… can you win a shootout down on Tobacco Road?

So, in order for us to pull an 11-point upsetting win, we will have to fight like we’re the 3rd Beaver in line to board the Ark when it is starting to rain!!

Or in other words… which team has mo’ fight {sic: left} in ’em?
A.K.A., which team truly comes to: “Duke” it out?

🙏>>> 🏈

upset Index=31%


Virginia Tech=15, Duke=33


Please support the VT F.C.A.!





4 Responses You are logged in as Test

    1. Offense looks (potentially) very at least 2-levels alluring.

      Mike IS what a system guy does to pure Talent in a BIG conference extraordinaire.


  1. Sweet read and insights. Rebuild continues as Section 7 crew heads to Tobacco Road. The HR personnel comment is spot on for Blue Devils as their player management leader upgraded and bolted on where need. Perhaps a blueprint for Coach Pry this off-season.

    Mochas Gracias

    Let’s Go… Hokies!!
    Beat Duke!

    1. Thanks… tho’ to me?
      Most of ’em (‘cept the last 2 Eyes that had some inSIGHT)… have been boorish or suck.

      Just not a lotta material this year. (Behind or in front of the scenes… time=tell on material +/- as this unfolds, however…)

      thanks again still… Eye ‘preciate it.

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