WVU falls to Virginia Tech 31-24

Posted September 04, 2017

After a unsportsmanlike on a Virginia Tech assistant, the Hokies faced a first and 30 but was able to convert after two straight passes and a pass interference. However, some people seem to forget a neutral site game that is renewing one of college football's oldest and nastiest rivalries.

The Hokies (1-0) came into the game 0-10 all-time in season openers against ranked opponents and 0-3 at FedEx Field. For the first time Holgorsen won't be calling offensive plays - that responsibility goes to first-year offensive coordinator Jake Spavital.

Both teams have some new faces that could impact which team wins ultimately.

Virginia Tech quarterback Josh Jackson led the way with 235 passing yards, 101 rushing yards and two total touchdowns.

Eighteen years later, it was Josh Jackson's turn to win the Hokies opening game Sunday night at FedEx Field, though having to do so against much stiffer competition than Vick endured - longtime rival, No. 22 West Virginia.

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That's the distance a wide-open Cam Phillips traversed to score his go-ahead, 32-yard touchdown reception on a no-chances touch pass from Jackson. WVU kept the ball mostly on the ground for the remainder of the 10-play drive, but used Grier's arm in key spots. They've got everybody coming back. Brothers Terrell and Tremaine Edmunds with also be key cogs in the defense playing safety and linebacker respectively.

The Hokies were held out of the end zone for most of the first half.

The Mountaineers have plenty to prepare for offensively. Clearly, he was getting better as the game wore on, much to the chagrin of Gators fans who watched their former quarterback put up numbers nobody has for their team since Tim Tebow.

Grier played a game of anything you can do, I can do better, finding Gary Jennings for a 43-yard strike on the first play of the ensuing possession, and WVU drove down deep into Hokie territory. ABC (Steve Levy, Brian Griese and Todd McShay) will televise the game nationally, while the Mountaineer Sports Network from IMG's radio coverage (Tony Caridi, Dwight Wallace and Jed Drenning) can be accessed on stations throughout West Virginia, online through WVUsports.com and via the mobile app WVU Gameday, available for download through the Apple and Google Play stores. Although, the Mountaineers will be missing sophomore wide receiver Marcus Simms to suspension as well. West Virginia is going to need all the help they can get from White, he's the only returning starter in the Mountaineer defensive backfield. Senior linebacker Al-Rasheed Benton (80 tackles in 2016) leads the defense along with defensive backs Dravon Askew-Henry and senior Kyzir White. They defense will miss star outside linebacker David Long for this game, who injured his knee earlier in the summer. He's proven to be a leader for the team.

This game is gonna be hard-hitting and gritty early on. WVU converted just 3 of its 10 first-half attempts, while Virginia Tech went 2 for 9 in that same time. From there, Virginia Tech would punch the ball into the end zone to recapture the lead again this time at 31-24. Florida transfer Will Grier, who left Gainesville after being suspended by the NCAA for failing a test for performance-enhancing drugs in 2015, pass for 371 yards and three touchdowns.