The 2012-2013 Bowl Blitz Invitational presented by STAT BOX STORIES continues today with the Russell Athletic Bowl featuring two teams that were in very different places at the beginning of the year. Virginia Tech (6-6, 4-4 ACC) entered the year with a top 15 ranking and dreams of a BCS bowl while Rutgers (9-3, 5-2 Big East) was not on the preseason radar. While Virginia Tech is the better team on paper in NCAA 13, Eric Veneziano of The Gaming Tailgate community decided to take the Hokies and try and get them a bowl win after a disappointing season.
Hokies Roll behind Defense and Running Game in Russell Athletic Bowl Victory
Orlando, F.L. – While both Virginia Tech and Rutgers took different paths to the Russell Athletic Bowl, both ended up having disappointing seasons. Rutgers ended the year with 2 straight losses, eliminating them from a BCS bowl while Virginia Tech rattled off 2 straight wins to end the year to salvage its worst season since 1992.
Both teams entered the game with something to prove and both showed signs of life early. Virginia Tech took the opening kickoff and marched right down the field to take a 7-0 lead on a beautiful play-action pass from QB #3 and continued to move the ball throughout the first quarter but was unable to find the end zone again.
Rutgers was able to tie the game early in the 2nd quarter with a pass to a wide open fullback in the flat but that was the closest the game ever got. Virginia Tech responded with a touchdown and then a late touchdown with 0:09 left in the half to take a 21-7 half time lead.
Virginia Tech’s defense stepped up in the 2nd half only allowing a field goal in the 3rd quarter and stuffed a Rutgers long drive with an interception that could have brought the game to within 4.
The Hokie defense played well all game laying hard hits on the Scarlet Knights whenever they got the chance and held Rutgers to a season low in rushing yards.
Player of the Game: Virginia Tech HB #20, who gained 128 yards on 21 rushing attempts and scored two touchdowns. He also had a long run of 42 yards for the game.
It was over when… After an interception deep in Virginia Tech territory that ended a Rutgers chance to pull within 4 late in the 3rd quarter, VT drove 78 yards in a little over four and half minutes to score a touchdown to take the lead to 28-10.
Game Ball goes to… VT FS #8 whose interception at the Virginia Tech 10-yard-line stopped a Rutgers drive that would have pulled them to within 4.
Stat of the Game: 8 – The total rushing yards allowed by the Hokie defense.
Statistical Tidbits: The Scarlet Knights were held to 147 yards of total offense; 8 rushing on 13 attempts and 139 passing on 14 completions. … Virginia Tech rushed the ball 32 times, compared to only 12 passing attempts. The Hokies managed 172 yards through the air and 161 on the ground. … Rutgers attempted two fourth downs and succeeded on neither one. … Both starting quarterbacks completed over 70% of their passes. … Virginia Tech WR #7 caught 7 of the 9 completions by QB #3 for a total of 150 yards and two touchdowns.