Your Orange Bowl Eye in the Sky part I:

As Pittsburgh Stiller De Dwight White once told reporters after Earl Campbell and the Houston Oiler’s trucked the much vaunted  and downright dynastic -not too mention physically tough as they come- Steel Curtain defense way back in 1979:

“It wasn’t one of our better nights.”
-Dwight White-


Bingo that.

As I’ve not seen a Frank Beamer coached football team get physically slapped silly like that since our A.C.C. bad-blood feudal visit to wvu way back in 2003.

Hate to say it, and yet, Stanford did beat us worse than the score showed, and the Miami scoreboard read like an O&M beat-down, no matter how P.A.T.T. (positive all the time) you slice it. Per such, congrats to the 2011 Orange Bowl champion Stanford Cardinal. That praise rightfully bestowed…

Do recall that at the intermission this was only a single point football game. That does not read too too bad in and of itself, as the first-half of play was statistically close to even, even though there was a off-shore So.Beach undercurrent that suggested that VT was about to be swept out to sea. Some rather needy if not necessary calls by VT, a deluge of missed tackles and a totally manhandled interior VT G-C-G oLine later … and suddenly Stanford was dropping more than a few anchors along the line-of-scrimmage (LOS) on both sides of the ball. VT may not have been beat-down at this point in the game, yet VT was indeed starting to get beat-up.

The antithesis of the Miami game earlier this year as VT took numerous Hurricane haymakers right on the O&M chin and lived to tell the tale. In this one Stanford landed a couple of particularly devastating shots right on the O&M button after the midway point in the second quarter which staggered Virginia Tech and from which Virginia Tech never fully recovered. That’s not good and yet far more than just that; such is highly unusual historically speaking when you consider that you can count on less than both hands how many times you seen a Frank Beamer coached football team be the metaphorical nail that gets physically hammered by an opponent. You might even be able to rightfully number that using only one hand in Hall of Fame in-waiting Coach Frank Beamer’s illustrious O&M career.

Oh well … and accordingly, a caveat is now fully in order, this first half is not as lopsided as the second half of the Orange Bowl Eye in the Sky will be. So do try to bear that in mind if this Eye rubs you the wrong O&M way.

1st quarter 14:55 remaining:
Note the opening look from Bud Lite vs. Stanford: no less than an full a 10 men in the box 4-3 defensive Set with Hosely in isolation off-man cover up top on your computer or TV screen. Think Bud Lite was every bit as phobic about stuffing the Stanford run early on; just like someone else was pre-game? Yup, I too – now watch as poor Winslow completely whiffs on the Luck keeper around the Stanford left-End. That’s two plays and already we are at two total Missed Tackles on my first ever O&M rap-sheet. One army missed tackle on the opening kick-off and now Winslow picks up and ends 2011 right where he began 2010 vs. Boise State. </sigh>

Did you gentlemen notice the increase in blitzing vs. the 9 yards per rush Qb otherwise know as Andrew Luck early on in this one? We dealt (blitzed) 5, 6, and 7 men routinely to open the game. Interesting that we felt we could beat an oLine that has only given up 9 total sacks in its 25 games prior to the Orange Bowl. Luck may not be T-mobile as a pure runner goes, though he ain’t half bad and Stanford blocked well enough to hold us to one Sack and only three other TFL (tackles for a loss) on the night. Were any of you surprised by this Blitzburg tactic? How much of this was due to Exum’s suspension?

1st quarter 9:07 remaining:
You gotta get up pretty early in the morning to fool the old ball coach and ST’s Beamerball savant on an obvious 4th and 4 fake-punt situation from the VT 45 yardline. Note the use of nothing other than 2-point stances upfront by our down-linemen in Punt Safe to give them a better line-of-sight on this one pre-snap. Excellent call by Frank and I am surprised that the Stanford P did not recognize this an either call timeout or audible into a punt out of bounds instead of wasting an otherwise perfectly good play. (big PIC link)

1st quarter 8:20 remaining:
Took precisely six minutes and forty seconds for my game-planning peeps to be shown to be correct. Note the early testing of Stanford in one-on-one isolation Fly, Go or Streak patterns down the sideline over and over to being the contest. This is ok once or twice a game, in order to loosen a defense up. Though why do we still tend insist on throwing it up to a well covered Se (yes, it tends to be the Se) even if the Fs gives rolling-help and why do we still tend to insist on throwing it up on the short-side of the field? Is that in any way predictable? Forgive me, I thought you were supposed scheme to get Wr’s open or have Wr’s that can get themselves open and throw the football to open Wr’s accordingly. Not just lob 30-40 yard throws up for grabs and hope a well covered Boykin (or Coale occasionally) somehow manages to make a play. Try as we might,  no matter how many times we try to reinvent the wheel, football still ain’t rocket-surgery folks and how many times can you slice this tomato before you make tomato paste?

1st quarter 7:11 remaining:
I do not work for the Cardinal, nor am I a fan of their libby-left-of-left politics, nor of their burning up so much tree, however; even Nadia Komenich had to be impressed by this mega off the charts high wire balancing act along the VT sideline by #33 Taylor of Stanford on this screen pass. This was some Cirque du Soleil freaky ass (S) right here folks. Incredible balance and core-strength alike as you watch the inflection in #33’s midriff as he somehow overpowers gravity for three bonus yards on this one. A-may-zing! (big PIC link)

1st quarter 4:58 remaining:
Boy-oh-boy, I’ll tell you what, big B.DeChris is lucky he still has his knees after this one as #44 the left-De-Lb hybrid steals him right over top of the pile at the end of this R.Williams carry. Just take a cringing look at how DeChris’ right-knee accidentally gets hi-lowed and then sammwiched between a prone #98 for Stanford and our very own B.Warren. Yikes!

1st quarter 3:11 remaining:
Check out the red blood dripping down Tyrod’s otherwise white upper-teeth after this sizzling septa (or seven) broken tackles on this ad-lib run after his pocket collapses yet again as his jersey retiring O&M career draws to a close. Damn. This is objectively the first of two times  in basically twelve minutes of play that #48 –the two-way throwback yesteryear baller- chopped Tyrod right in the mouth. I guess that’s now a perfectly legal hit as it went uncalled both times. (see: PIC below)

1st quarter 2:33 remaining:
Watch as J.Graves beats not one, two all-PAC-10 Stanford blocks on this beautiful 1-technique A-gap play. J.Graves came to play on this night and in view of such merits a departing senior shout-out for such. Good luck in the game of life John, we all recognize that you Sir are already a winner.

2nd quarter 10:22 remaining:
You’ve all seen this epic replay of one of the most fantastic dual individual efforts (Tyrod’s pitch – Wilson’s catch) of the 2010-2011 Bowl season on ESPN SportsCenter a thousand times by now. So I’ll just let three pics do my talking… (left-click: “Save Image As” after you open each one up if you want some more commentary…

  1. (big PIC#1 link)
  2. (big PIC#2 link)
  3. (big PIC#3 link)

2nd quarter 9:11 remaining:
“Listen up. Cluster-right, Fullback-left, 300-Jet, Y and Z stick, Halfback through, on one.” </break!>
-#12 Andrew Luck-

Now, watch the Stanford play-call right after the time-out. VERY same freaking play people! Think JimBo saw something that he wanted to try to take advantage of? Yup, bingo that!

2nd quarter 8:02 remaining:
“Oh! My! God!”
-Jonathan Quayle Higgins III- of Magnum P.I. fame

Count ‘em … seven Hokies flat out pancaked and or suffering so-called “knock-down blocks” at the line of scrimmage, as only a friendly blade of grass trips #34 up and saves six points in the process. Watch what #52 did to Whitley; you do this out in public and you will get 5 to 10 in the penitentiary for your troubles. This is the best blocked play I’ve seen run against Virginia Tech since the aforementioned A.C.C. bad-blood visit up to wvu back in 2003. This is also the precise point where Stanford began landing their aforementioned series of staggering physical haymakers that left VT reeling and for the first time all year our Hokies were physically unable to recover.

2nd quarter 6:32 remaining:
Somebody pull J.Graves off of Stanford! For the love of God this kid came to play on this night. Don’t believe me? Look how deep Big-John already is into the Stanford P.A.T. backfield and the Cardinal kicker’s foot has not even touched the ball yet?!? WAR John Graves!!! (big PIC link)

2nd quarter 6:26 remaining:
Watch poor #24 J.Oglesby get absolutely pwned (i.e. owned) by the blitzing Stanford Ss one #26 who goes 5`10“ and 194 lbs. The physical tide was starting to turn indeed.

2nd quarter 5:52 remaining:
What is this? If this is not Pass Interference I do not know what is. Watch as #11 (who did have a great game for Stanford – to be fair) completely levels A.Fuller before the ball even enters the replay screen. (big PIC link)

2nd quarter 0:55 remaining:
This one really bothered me. Stanford False-Start’s as they got a little bit jumpy when facing our Pride & Joy punt-block max alignment pre-snap with NObody deep for the O&M punt return team with 4th and 4 to go where any penalty gives the dangerous Stanford offense a automatic first down. Off-sides, roughing-the-kicker, any flag on us and Stanford maintains possession with all three timeouts in their pocket. So the Official marches off the 5-yard penalty and Stanford must still punt on what was now 4th and 9 to go. So what do we do with the football just shy of mid-field and after having already shown our best punt-block-max look on the Stanford penalty on the play before? The very same punt-block max call you say? Yup you bettcha – am I the only one who caught a whiff of O&M desperation on this one? This was only a 4 point game at this stage of the contest and yet it was as if the ole ball coach intrinsically knew he just did not have enough straight up football in this O&M team to win this one conventionally speaking on this particular night.

Note as well, if Stanford had caught us with our 11 man rush pants down, they are suddenly up 20-9, as they had already attempted a fake-punt from virtually the same spot on the field on their second offensive possession of the game. If we had Stanford backed-up all the way against the wall, with their Punter’s back to his own endzone, or at least with the ball spotted inside the Cardinal 20, I could stomach this double punt-block a whole lot more. Even if they audible into a Punt-Fake –which I doubt very much JimBo would hazard with that kinda horrific field position working against them- they would still need an 80+ yard pitch-n-catch to take textbook advantage of our outcome anxiety. At midfield however the Stanford risk threshold is much lower should they have felt froggy enough to audible into a fake-punt. (big PIC link)

#7 Davis got sorta close to the Stanford P, though that only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades last time I checked.   (note: that #28 was completely uncovered for what would have been an easy fake-punt pitch-n-catch with 53 yards of wide open Hokie real estate out in front of him on the 4th and 4 play if Stanford had recognized this one and audibles into a hot-route as we still had nobody deep with an 11 man rush on upfront)

Praise be to VTMONEY94 for bringing his very own Eye A-game. As he was the one who finally found Exum who finally escaped Bud Foster’s doghouse. Although Exum logged a goose egg for his tardy Miami Vice stop-squad night down on So.Beach with zero tackles, and zero assists. He was out there at the 2:10 mark in the 2nd Quarter.

Cost of Attendance fine(s) by the Virginia Tech football staff of the Hokie football player's is what?

View Results

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Longfield Management (Lo.FM)
Virginia Tech: (Total=42!)
positive= |||| |||| |||| | (2 Stanford flags, 1 TD)
negative= |||| |||| |||| |||| (3 VT flag’s, 1 INT)
neutral= |||

Stanford: (Total=17)
positive= |||| || (3 Stanford TD’s)
negative= |||| | (1 Safety, 1 intentional Stanford flag — delay of game)
neutral= ||||

Lo.FM analysis:
40-12 on the scoreboard and a nearly perfectly linear 17-42 against in Lo.FM’s?!?

Goodness gracious O&M sakes alive!

Yah; that’s pretty much what happens when your Qb gets sacked no less than a backbreaking eight times and you get lassoed and hogtied in your own backfield for eleven TFL (tackles for a loss). Damn. To put it bluntly, it is very very tough -or no less than next of kin to impossible- to win a football game like that folks. To be direct, that is the worst ass whoopin’ VT has ever taken in the 39 game history of the Lo.FM down-n-distance barometer as a major cardinal colored low-pressure system blew right on in and sat right on down on poor little ole Virginia Tech. I realized after the second go round of breaking down game-tape that this would be one lopsided Lo.FM metric when I finally got around to it. However, it did not occur to me that this would be a record breaking or a downright terminal vital (statistic) in pure outcome terms. As I said in the lead-in, Stanford did indeed beat us worse than the score showed and once again; congrats to the JimBo and the Cardinal crew. They did not steal this one, the Ref’s did not blow this one, Stanford simply went out and seized this one.

Note that despite the fact that senior Qb Tyrod Taylor did somehow manage to smoke and mirror his way to 16 positive Lo.FM plays; even our very own O&M Atlas himself just could not carry this VT football team any further. As the weight of the Law of Diminish Returns began to burden poor T-mobile’s figurative lumbar spine, with not so much as a single O&M Doans’s backache pill in sight  or even a Dentist in the Hokie house. You simply just can not invest yourself in 42 Lo.FM’s and hope that even a highly matriculated A.C.C. Player of the Year at Pivot (Qb) -like a T-mobile- can bail you out that often over the course of 60 minutes worth of scrumming vs. the #4 ranked team in  the country. Nobody can budget for that this side of MV1 and frankly I am not even sure if the original Vick could have beaten Stanford after what I’ve seen on film. It is extremely tough to subsidy things when you are left chasing the sticks 42 times in a night, while simultaneously only forcing Stanford to compete vs. the chain-gain 17 times down in Miami. Also note that the likely #1 N.F.L. Draft Pick overall in 2012 managed to nail an insane 43% Touchdown ratio on his “positive” Lo.FM plays! I can only assure you that nobody in the history of the Lo.FM has ever come close to touching that mark, not even with ten 10` poles. Gotta give the Orange Bowl M.V.P. some love, I knew Luck was pretty good, maybe even outright great. I did not know that he is already better than at least the bottom-10 starting N.F.L. Qb’s … right now! Finally, do recognize that Bud Foster threw the O&M kitchen sink at Mr. Luck and Mr. Luck did more than just stand the proverbial heat. He stood his ground and deftly threaded several brilliant first-half needles before he took us out behind our very own “woodshed” and humiliated our manhood off of play-action to his Te in the second-half. All Mr. Luck need do now is to go ahead and decide how he feels about living in Charlotte, NC. The Panthers have no other choice. (readers note: Luck has decided to return to school)

Wish I did know somebody at Avon, as right about now would be a delightful time to try to put some TSL morale boosting lipstick on  this dirty Orange Bowl pig. Best I can do is to say that Tyrod did everything he could for the first ~48 minutes of play. After that, that hissing noise you heard was poor T-mobile (finally) experiencing a Lo.FM flat tire with about 12 minutes left in the 2011 Orange Bowl.  JimBo rang Frank’s bell for 27 unanswered points while scoring on every single second half possession except for the final one which was merely an improvised attempt to run out the fourth quarter game-clock. Been a long time since I’ve seen a Frank Beamer football team get punked like that; and as of right now all of this has conspired to leave me wondering where this returning football team is in terms of opening up Springball in early April? Minus so much senior leadership, with even a handsome a rookie at Qb, and with two 2010 early-entry Rb’s in the N.F.L.  … which leaves Virginia Tech precariously thin at Tb at the moment.

However, that kind of future-tense musing is another article for another day.

Or at least my first (football) article come late March.



Turkey Tracks Turkey Tracksb’street

6 Responses You are logged in as Test

  1. Goodness?
    What is ‘rong with the chronometer?
    Always an hour slow or on Maine Atlantic time-zone time around here.

    Oh well……

    Yes Sir.
    It was not pretty.
    It only gets worse.
    Makes me wonder what Frank is gonna do/change this Spring???


  2. I’m anxious to see as well. Should be another spirited season of anticipation and “What-If”. Things really ramp up now that BOTH DE and RW are “Histoi”. Wow? !

    “……. For Christ’s sake Joe, you’re guessing!
    We like to call it “analysis”.

  3. IMO it is not about toughness. At least not as I would define toughness. It’s like Joe Frazier and Ali and Holmes. Joe and Ali provided the greatest fights ever of course IMO. Joe’s defense was stickout your head and while the other fighter consentrated on hitting his head he got inside and land his punches. But against Holmes who was bigger and slower but could hit a lick the out come was different. Tech too landed their punches early but they were not as damaging and the harder punches took their toll. IMO sometimes you just don’t matchup well. In this case we did not match-up where big games are won; at the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball. One exception J. Graves. To say Joe Frazier was not tough because he lost to Holmes sure would be untrue. His skills size and strength just did not match–up with this opponent.
    I would like to say thank you to all the seniors and Darren Evans and Ryan Williams for all they have been to Tech. A special thanks to TT who leaves me wondering how great you could have been behind a consistently good O’line.

  4. A pensive “smoking” analogy.
    +3 for that historical comparison.

    I am still stewing on this “toughness” thingy that C2 and Will have published. VT is tough in A.C.C. terms; albeit even if the A.C.C. is soft itself. Does that qualify as being tough in D-1 B.C.S. terms all around is another matter.

    I am also (halfway) through regrading the Orange Bowl film to look for missed tackles and missed blocks. Right now I have 17 missed tackles and 24 missed or beaten blocks in the first-half alone!

    I also have the Official standards for how coaches grade all of this.

    So I wanna quantify my take before I pronounce it and that means finishing film-study in the next week or so.

    As of now; I am inclined however to say that VT did not take the more physical punch of Stanford very well. Is that toughness or lack of fundamentals? In boxing fundamentals would say you get on the proverbial bicycle and use your legs to beat the heavier hitting opponent (Stanford) by darting in and out and making them chase which wears on the heavier guys legs all the more. We did not do that. That may suggest coaching as much as anything else. Though I need to break tape one final time to coagulate all of this as there was an abundance of O&M hemorrhaging on that nite. And yes, at least a little of that could indeed have been “toughness” masking itself as inexperience on defense.


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