Monday, September 30, 2013
Player of the week: ACC
By Andrea Adelson
His stats were not the best among ACC quarterbacks in Week 5, but Logan Thomas did not need to put up record-setting numbers to lead Virginia Tech to a crucial Coastal Division win over Georgia Tech last week.
Logan Thomas completed his first nine passes against Georgia Tech and also rushed for 58 yards and a touchdown.
He simply needed to be consistent and make the plays in front of him. Thomas did that, turning in his best game since 2011. The importance of his effort, combined with his final stat line, earned him ESPN.com ACC Player of the Week honors. Thomas accounted for 279 total yards and two touchdowns in the 17-10 win. Those are not exactly eye-popping numbers when you look at what Jameis Winston or Brandon Connette did this past weekend. But for Thomas, the entirety of his night was simply jaw-dropping when you consider where he has been.
Criticism has been heaped on him since last season, when he appeared to take a step back in his development. The start to this season was supposed to be better with a new offensive coordinator in charge. But we saw the same old sluggish Hokies offense in the first four games, muddling through drives while relying on the defense time and again to pull out victories. Against Georgia Tech, though, something seemed to click for Thomas.
He completed his first nine pass attempts. He led the longest drive of the season, at 91 yards. He got some help from his receivers, too, who did a much better job hanging on to the football. And he ran, picking up tough yards when Virginia Tech needed them. Perhaps most impressive of all, Thomas had his best game of the season despite playing through an abdominal strain and a sprained foot, which he injured in the first quarter.
"He's a quality, quality quarterback, and he's tough," Virginia Tech coach Frank Beamer said after the win. "He's mentally tough, and he's physically tough the way he runs the football and bangs around people. I'm proud of that guy."
Thomas ended up completing 76 percent of his passes, his highest completion percentage since a 38-35 win over Miami in 2011 (92 percent). Consider that he completed 60 percent of his passes against FBS teams just once all of last season (against Duke). What's more, he did not have a turnover. In fact, this was the first time since the Virginia game at the end of the 2012 regular season when he did not throw an interception.
Now what the Hokies need are efforts just like this one week in and week out.