If something could go wrong for the Hokies on Saturday night, it almost always did, as the football team fell to Alabama 35-10 in Atlanta.
Whether it was special teams blunders, uninspired route running or poorly timed injuries, the team suffered through a series of embarrassments over the course of its disheartening loss to the Crimson Tide.
“They’re a little bit of a different breed than anything we’ve seen,” said quarterback Logan Thomas. “I’m proud of how our guys played against them.”
Although the final score might indicate otherwise, Tech started off the game competitively with the nation’s top ranked team.
The Tide began the half looking dominant.
Christion Jones ran A.J. Hughes’ first punt back for a 72-yard score and the Tide offense followed that up with a methodical drive that ended in a T.J. Yeldon touchdown run.
But then redshirt freshman Trey Edmunds broke free for a 77-yard touchdown run on the very first play of the ensuing drive, electrifying Hokie fans in the Georgia Dome.
“I saw a crease and I took it,” Edmunds said. “I was just hoping I wouldn’t be tackled.
The defense then followed that up with two tackles for loss and a sack to close out the first quarter, making the Tide’s 14-7 lead seem very surmountable.
“We really prepped and trained hard throughout the preseason and I think it showed tonight,” said cornerback Kendall Fuller.
However, the offense quickly squandered whatever advantage it had.
Thomas threw an interception to defensive back Vinnie Sunseri that he returned for a 38-yard touchdown that essentially ended the game for the Hokies.
Bud Foster’s defense was likely the lone bright spot in the game for Tech.
Although Alabama put 35 points up on the board, the Hokies held the Tide to just 206 yards and sacked quarterback A.J. McCarron four times.
“We definitely played well tonight,” said cornerback Kyle Fuller. “The score didn’t reflect our play.”
Edmunds also excited Tech fans with combination of power and speed.
The Tide struggled to even touch the freshman on his long touchdown run, and even in the face of Alabama’s daunting defense, he was able to grit out 6.6 yards per rush.
Yet, for as good as Edmunds and the defense looked, the special teams could be politely described as a disaster.
“We know how to cover, we just need to get it done,” said head coach Frank Beamer.