After two subpar seasons by Virginia Tech standards, head coach Frank Beamer and the Hokies hope to get things back on track in 2014.
But first, they’ll need a quarterback.
With the defense in the capable hands of defensive coordinator Bud Foster and against expected to be one of the best in the country, all eyes are on the Virginia Tech offense.
Beamer hired Scot Loeffler as offensive coordinator after a dreadful offensive performance in 2012, but the team still finished 103rd in the nation last season in yards per game. If they hope to challenge for the Coastal Division and the conference title, they will need to be much better than that.
When asked about the offense Monday at the ACC Kickoff, Beamer listed off all the improvements he saw.
“I think our offensive line is more experienced,” said Beamer, “...I think our receivers are going to be more explosive as a group. I think we’ve got about three tight ends that can block in there but can move out…I think our running backs are going to be better...And then we’ve got to find a quarterback.”
And therin lies the rub.
Though the Hokies look to be improved in almost every position offensively, the biggest question mark happens to be the important position. Luckily for Beamer, there are plenty of options to choose from.
In addition to Mark Leal and Brenden Motley who have been with the program for several years, the Hokies also will have Texas Tech transfer Michael Brewer and several freshman prospects.
Even with so many options, however, the Hokies will inevitably turn to a quarterback with almost no experience. Of the starting candidates, Brewer has the most career pass attempts with 58, all of which came while at Texas Tech. The starter will also have to learn quickly since Virginia Tech heads to Columbus to face Ohio State in the second game of the season.
“I think you find out a lot about what your football team is all about, where they are when you play a good, good team like that,” said Beamer.
Certainly he will learn a lot about his new quarterback in that second week matchup. Until then, Beamer knows the clock is ticking for him to make a decision.
“We want to get that position settled. We know how important it is to the offense, to the whole team, so we’re going to work like heck to get it nailed down.”
Notes- Beamer told reporters he expects running back Trey Edmunds to be back “full tilt.” Edmunds underwent surgery for a broken right tibia in December.