New additions have major impact in win over Tribe

New additions have major impact in win over Tribe
August 30, 2014, 11:30 pm
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(Peter Casey-USA TODAY Sports)

The Hokies have their quarterback: Michael Brewer looked great in his debut, completing 23 of 30 passes for 251 yards and two touchdowns. Two of his incompletions were thrown away and his interception was tipped at the line. He also showed his ability to pull the ball down and run. He’s not going to outrun many defenders, but he also showed he’s no statue.

Brewer appears to be the antithesis to Logan Thomas. Thomas had all the ability in the world, but made horrendous decisions and tried to force far too many passes. Brewer doesn’t have the arm or the mobility of Thomas, but he plays much smarter and looked just as effective.

It was only one game and it was against William & Mary, but it was as good a debut as you could hope for from the Texas Tech transfer.

The cupboard is no longer bare: New players had a major impact in this game.

A major reason for the Hokies’ struggles the past two season was the lack of playmakers on offense. Fans have been pulling their hair out watching Thomas try to force plays, but with no David Wilson, Ryan Williams, Darren Evans, Jarrett Boykin, Eddie Royal, etc. to go to, there really weren’t many options.

This season, the Hokies are going to get a lot of contributions from players who didn’t play for them last season.

Brewer, a transfer, had two touchdown passes, freshman Shai McKenzie stole the show on the ground with 106 yards and a touchdown, freshman Marshawn Williams had 41 rushing yards of his own, freshman receiver Isaiah Ford had four catches and a touchdown and freshman tight end had six catches and a touchdown.

[RELATED: Transfer QB leads Hokies to 34-9 win over William & Mary]

Patience is a virtue: As great as it is to get contributions from freshmen, it also means that Virginia Tech is probably one or two years away from returning to the level of success fans are accustomed to. These guys are just getting started.

The offense is also still a work in progress as evidenced by the penalties. Four false starts, two illegal formation calls and one holding reflect that this squad is still hashing things out. Remember that Brewer was only named the starter a week ago, hopefully another week practicing as a unit will cut down on the penalties next week.

Reloading on defense: The defense played great…again. Are people still surprised by this? 

William & Mary managed only 193 total yards and Virginia Tech forced two turnovers, including a pivotal fumble recovery when the game was still close. 

The Hokies had to replace several starters leaving some to question how good they would be this season, but at this point you should assume this defense is going to be good if not great every season.

Bring on the Buckeyes: Virginia Tech played very well and earned an impressive win, but Ohio State is a much taller task.

Navy put up a tough fight Saturday and actually lead 14-13 in the third quarter before Ohio State finally put the Midshipmen away. Quarterback J.T. Barrett looked good in his debut, but clearly Urban Meyer didn’t want to ask too much from his redshirt freshman quarterback as the Bucks attempted only 15 passes.

You can't take away too much from this game for Virginia Tech, but based on what they showed the defense looks up to the task of slowing down Barrett. The offense, however, needs to be better. Facing the hostile crowd of the Horseshoe presents a much more difficult task than the friendly confines of Lane Stadium.

[MORE CONTENT: Three defensive touchdowns spoil UVa's upset bid]