Print and Go Back ESPN.com: Stats & Info [Print without images]

Saturday, August 13, 2011
Virginia Tech struggles in September

By By Chris Fallica

After an ACC title in 2010, it’s another season of expectations for the Virginia Tech Hokies.

But before you put the Hokies down as a national title contender, there's the little task of making it to October undefeated, something they haven't done since 2005.

In fact, they haven't even won their season opener since 2007.

It’s clear the Hokies' schedule maker is aware of this fact too, as their September schedule is infinitely easier than it has been in the past five years.

Twice in the past four years Virginia Tech has faced the eventual national champion away from home in September.

This year in September, the Hokies will face the Appalachian State Mountaineers (10-3 in FCS last season), the East Carolina Pirates (6-7 in 2010), the Arkansas State Red Wolves (4-8 in 2010) and the Marshall Thundering Herd (5-7 in 2010).

The three FBS teams they face in September combined to go 15-22 last season, and those dreaming of an Armanti Edwards-type upset by Appalachian State in the opener should note the Mountaineers lost to the Florida Gators 48-10 last season.

In addition, there will be no short-week hangover, like the Hokies suffered last year when they lost to the James Madison Dukes five days after the loss to the Boise State Broncos.

Should the Hokies reach the ACC Championship Game unbeaten -- a good possibility being they may not face a ranked team all season -- remember this: Virginia Tech is 0-23 all-time away from home against top-five teams, and they could face a top-five Florida State Seminoles team in the ACC championship.

Additionally, a No. 1 versus No. 2 matchup would certainly await the Hokies in the BCS Championship Game.

So it boils down to this for Virginia Tech: Potentially do something which has never been accomplished in school history twice in a two-game span to end the season. No pressure at all.