#162 R.P.I. William & Mary @ #24 R.P.I. Virginia Tech:
Virginia Tech football stands in at 1 up and nil down and that means that Virginia Tech football stands a fair to middling chance at being a perfected 5-o when we finally get the Fighting Irish of big bad Notre Dameto come home to Blacksburg, Va.! And yes, that was me putting the cart in front of the horse… again…
The Hokies just went down to much vaunted Tallahassee Florida and won a very high-octane Labor Day night effort wise. This does place us/Virginia Tech firmly in a letdown clinical trap-game indeed. Nevertheless, this Tribe is closer to a trail of tears than it is to being a true fire-water, peyote, wild-out, Commanche Nation— and William & Mary’s best D-1aa days seem to be a couple of seasons behind them. That makes this one a glorified scrimmage of sorts or the opening stanza of what we all hope/expect to be 12 consecutive winning quarters of football. Though how much will Virginia Tech win by and what should we R.A.T.T. look for on Saturday afternoon on Saturday afternoon at 2 pm on ACC Network Extra? Check your local listings… and then read on to find… out…
Today’s word of the day is… enervate
word genome: Latin: (ĕn′ər–vāt′)
transitive verb. en·er·vat·ed, en·er·vat·ing, en·er·vates
- To weaken or destroy the strength or vitality of: “the luxury which enervates and destroys nations” (Henry DavidThoreau).
- Medicine To remove a nerve or part of a nerve.
- Hokie football at 2 pm Saturday on a very short 3.5 day work week?
William & Mary Head Coach: Jimmye McFarland Laycock: age=70, (246-189-2 overall and at W&M); has a rep’ for defense, doing more with less and doing it the right, way.
$277,000.oo base + 4k auto + up to a 30k bonus.
Jimmye Laycock (born February 6, 1948) has served as head football coach at the College of William & Mary since 1980. Baller Laycock graduated from William & Mary in 1970 and played Qb under legendary coaches Marv Levy and Lou Holtz. Prior to taking over the Tribe head coaching position, Laycock coached at Newport News High School, Clemson University, The Citadel, and the University of Memphis on his way up.
Coach Laycock has been the most successful head coach in the history of William & Mary Tribe football, leading the team to 24 winning seasons and 12 post-season appearances, including a 48-34 loss in the Division I-AA national semifinal to the James Madison Dukes in 2004. After a win against the Southern Illinois Salukis in the FCS national quarterfinals on December 5, 2009, Laycock recorded his 200th win as the Tribe’s head coach—the 13th coach in FCS history to reach that mark. The following season, he recorded his 200th win as an FCS head coach, making him only the third to reach that mark. He has also won both of his so-called Epson Ivy Bowl games way way back when.
On August 5, 2018, Laycock announced that he would be retiring after the conclusion of the 2018 season.
Laycock is from Hamilton, Virginia. He attended Loudoun Valley High School and lettered in football, basketball, and baseball. He earned 12 varsity letters and had his football jersey number retired. He was also inducted into the Loudoun Valley High School Athletic Hall of Fame. In 2010, he was selected to the Hampton Roads Sports Hall of Fame, honoring those who have contributed to sports in southeastern Virginia. He was inducted into that Hall of Fame in October 2010. Good on Jimmye!
Daddy Laycock is married to Deidre Connelly, a practicing sports psychology consultant at William & Mary. He has four children — three with Connelly.
Nice guy, been a dang good D-1aa coach; so, 3 cheers for a Jimmye dandy
of a final season at 10-1!
Bill & Mary 2017 record: 2 up 9 down and o-9 in the Colonial Athletic Association
Tribe Defense: (starters back=8)
- 23rd in Total D.
- 41st vs. the run.
- 27th vs. the throw.
- 0th in Qb’s sacked. (none so far)
- 96th in Tackles for a Loss (TFL) inflicted.
- Not Available (N/A) in dLine Havoc. One #95, Bill Murray (no relation), is a 6′4″, 290 lb. star Dt in the making as his 7 t-Freshman Qb sacks last year suggest. Billy also forced two fumbles, recovered one, and knocked down two passes at the line of scrimmage. He also blocked two PATs over on special-teams as this is a downright disruptive Dt folks. The Tribe DLine itself fights hard-n-long, physical, willing, gamey; and yet at the end of the day, at the beginning, and in the middle; it still is a D-1aa d-Line no matter how hard it fights. DLine was also noticeably lessened on the edge in film study than it is in run-support up the gut.
- N/A in Linebacking Havoc. Nate Atkins is a 5′14″, 240 lb. tackling machine at Mike-Lb for the Tribe. Nate too seems to have a nose for the ball and he is a pure form tackler who was coached up very well somewhere along the way. Linebacking however did not look good in coverage vs. puny Bucknell… slow, bulky, plodding in a word(s). Tribe Lb’s will (bad positional pun insert:____here; check!) loop, twist, and stunt in pass rushing terms, almost creatively, actually.
- N/A in Secondary Havoc. Fs, Corey Parker, is a 5′11″, 197 lb. a third-year baller who has started 22 games in a row and is coming off another outstanding season. His 79 tackles were second on the team in 2017. Corey also has demonstrated a nose for the ball while collecting no less than 7 turnovers combined his ownself last season. Secondary did rotate and help-defend well on film. Though there is edge room to throw to here.
- D overall: Seven Tribe defensive starters are back, including all of the W&M top-5 tacklers off of what defensive industry insiders described as: “dependable” last year. Though a very basic forty-three set to me on tape, nothing fancy here, keep everything in front of you and make peeps drive long fields. Nearly, vanilla as ice cream goes. Not a bad form-tackling D, not bad halt-unit size-wise for D-1aa terms; and as the W&M O seems to miss more plays or just make more raw misQ’s… I’d have to say the Tribe D has a leg up vis-à-vis here.
- ∑ (summary): I suppose this is not a bad D-1aa defense, I’d rate them as being at least decent here on D-1aa terms. As they do court one all-conference caliber guy at all three levels of their defense; and they sure did tackle/strip the ball, O&M runners wrap-up!
Indian Offense: (returning starters=4)
- 51st in Total O.
- 19th in aerial O.
- 86th in ground O.
- 92nd in sacks allowed | 87th in TFL allowed!
- O overall: the Tribe O has standouts at Wr (DeVonte Dedmon, 5′9″, 198 lb. 5th-year… tho’ he is coming off a busted wrist (May St.Jullia bless) and to some extent at Rb (Nate Evans, 5′10″, 190 lb. Soph… closed pretty big to end last year; seems to have some shake-n-bake to his game, with just enough speed). The other Rb (Thunderburke) has really sharp balance and core-strength; might favor him as my Rb1. And beyond that? Ahhhhh, errrrrr, not much lives here as offensive individual talent(s) go. Wr overall is pretty experienced, Rb is 2-deep and well, after that? Not so much. Supremely entrance/intro jacked-up off the charts Oscar Smith High School‘s play-making Qb Shon Mitchell the most decorated passer in VHSL history and he and his lowly 38% 2017 pass completions are back. C Nick Wimmer is back and left-Ot is prolly next best and nearly nobody else is back up front after that!
- ∑ (summary): Saw me all kinda little gimmicky things here… reversing the grain naked Qb bootlegs (a favorite of mine)— as Shon Mitch’ is a very legit dual-threat Qb, no matter how much polish he lacks/or wants for; the metrics are there; and he knows it, too! Tho’ he makes almost whimsical decisions in the pocket, and a real estate or “location location location” Major League pitcher he just ain’t. Accuracy sprays a bit at times here; like a raw H.S. kid who never learnt the game, and just out-athletes everyone at the scholastic level. As Shon (similar to the F.s.u. Qb1) does not have much pocket-presence, he can be stripped and does not play with eyes in the back of his head. Deadmon (Wr) does have some open-field game-breaker to his game… might be a fringe C.f.l. punt-returner or utility slot-Wr caliber talent. He did impress me the more I watched. As #11 (Deadmon) is indeed the no.1 talent for the Tirbe here. O has a lotta spread-gun looks with a broken Veer in front of that and a true Te at times short-side. Lotta pulling 1-gap over internal plunge plays into their gap blocking scheme; they are not real bad at that either. O seemed smoother/better to me when it stuck to Dinty Moore beef-stew and eschewed getting too dang fancy or too Beef Wellington for its own D-1aa dining hall good. Lotta short to near-medium quick-hitting throws to spots here; play-action effects were not bad; likewise the Wr and Rb screens. And I gotta say again, #11 could be a very decent Fu’fense Slot-Wr for us. He’s just downright fun to watch after the catch. Coach Nix and Coach Mitch’… got that?
- 56% run:pass mix 44%.
W&M Special Teams: (return)
91st in Net Punting and Punting did not look any better on tape early in 2018 to me.
- 30th in Punt Returns | 92nd in KO returns.
- 75th in punt coverage | 1st and in suicide-squad.
- has blocked 1 kick and allowed zero kicks to be blocked.
- has blocked 1 punt already (see: pic) and will sell out coverage to do so; and allowed zero punts to be blocked.
Field goal kicking percentage (.562), and even PAT kicking (.842) were iffy at best last year for the Tirbe and that sure seems to be less than sorted out from what little I could 2018 preview find.
Special Teams letter-grade: Well, at least they will plum git after yah on kick-blocks; so, there is that, although beyond that this is a D+++ special teams set due to such suspect incoming FG-kicking.
- VT D.
- VT O.
- W&M D.
- (a distant fourth place) W&M O.
- motive: Tough to say that VT will be as up to play W&M as they were to go war vs. F.S.U. As we/VT is the Tribe’s Super Bowl, N.b.a. Finals and Stanley Cup all rolled into one. EDGE=W&M.
- weather: sure looks wet to me… and wetter typically helps the lesser team by slowing the better team down; although it also helps the better front-line(s) and oLine in particular. EDGE=VT.
- health/off-field: VT did suffer a number of southern hemisphere leg/knee dings/dents @F.s.u. Could see fewer starters here for it, or at least the starters could see less duration for it.
- penalties: About even, both very middleocore at the early moment. EDGE=push.
- intangibles: VT seems to be better at minding the Turnover store ealy in 2018. EDGE=VT.
- fatigue: W&M surely has a noticeable +1.5 or better restive advantage due to the short O&M work week. As the Hokies have to be physically beat-up and mentally worn down after @F.s.u. Labor Day night VicTory. EDGE=W&M.
Illation, conclusion(s) and OPT digits:
Number of Indians who could start @Tech=2 or 3, 4 at best.
The takeaway here is… the bar isn’t set very high for this team, which was picked 11th in the CAA’s preseason poll and I kinda hate that as I’m a big fan of coach Jimmye’s 27 credit hour per semester style of ball… i.e. all, class.
Don’t see too many more who coach this long this hard for this one school. And yah; he prolly is a little better than his most recent 2-win team… though it doesn’t take being that much better to be at least a little better than his worst team in a decade in the first place. Quite possibly his worst football team ever in his 36 seasons William & Mary career.
- Δ1=1%, VT forgets when the game kicks-off, sets their alarm clock on Tonga time, team buss don’t start, or whatever…
- Δ2=1% VT I suppose could always go J.m.u. carpenters dream flat as a board, last girl in high school to get her knock-knocks in flat. That did happen once; right?
- Δ3=97%+ that VT simply rolls here. I’ve seen better D-1aa teams on film than this, and Fu’ has a history of curb stomping’s and R.U.T.S. whenever, and as far as he can.
Not that this preview means much beyond W&M+40 vs. VT-40; as this Tribe is pretty well scalped on tape. Westworld tourist safe or rather tamed Indians from what I saw on Wednesday night breaking tape here.
Did like the old-school Dr. Will and Dr. Tetske (epic teacher) EF 1005 so-called orthographic numerals on the Tribe jersey’s here, and well, beyond their pretty well elite Wr and a pretty solid Dt… not a lot was left to like, at least not when you view them through the lens of scuffling in what is now a full D-1 power-conference crucible.
Nonetheless, W&M does burn a lotta clock, stall-ball or four-corners to mix my sporting metaphor and that might just artificially narrow this final margin more than you D-1aa vs. D-1 thinks. Ditto, any kind of elemental day outside down in a possibly soggy New River Valley, tritto the possibility of a very Sleepy Hollow Ichy Crane kinda enervated or energy ghouled Hokie football club.
May St.James bless, as I hope coach Laycock has an enjoyable, fun, loving, long life. He sure has done his bid for historical/colonial Williamsburg, Va., king, and country. Kinda their mini-me version of our Frank.
Yawn… other than that, and other than #11, there’s not such much to see here gents… spread the P.T. (playing time) around and get a real-time full-speed looksee/Eval’ in on the 2’s and 3’s who will not warrant a r-shirt this year and go on and get onto game no.3, quickly, healthily and sportingly… coach God willing.
upset Index=3% (or less)
Virginia Tech=48, William & Mary=7