It’s that time of year.
Collegiate football training camps have opened up for almost a full week now, and each team is seeking to ready itself for the grueling season that awaits. Position battles have only begun to develop, new faces are attempting to prove themselves, and above all: every team has (at least some) belief that they will contend for a championship.
In reality, only a handful of select teams across the country have the ability to capture truly remarkable achievements in the upcoming season.
The Virginia Tech Hokies are one of those teams.
It has nothing to do with an FBS-most eight consecutive ten-win seasons. Never mind the fact that the Hokies are 21-3 in conference play over the past three seasons, including an ACC title. Throw out the stat that shows a perfect 10-0 in road contests over the past two years.
Instead, let’s focus on the future.
A Hokie defense that was tied for seventh-best in terms of points allowed (17.2) in 2011 lost two starters in Eddie Whitley and current New York Giant Jayron Hosley. That same defense ranked 20th in terms of rushing yards despite losing three front-seven starters in Antoine Hopkins (ACL), Bruce Taylor (Lisfranc), and Jeron Gouveia-Winslow (Lisfranc) for the season. (we’ll go more in-depth previewing the D in a separate article)
Perhaps the most anticipated aspect of the Hokie team is dual-threat quarterback Logan Thomas.
The dark-horse Heisman candidate (titled by me) is in line to put up seriously-ridiculous numbers in 2012. He’s surely expected to throw even more given the fact that Tech is unlikely to have a back where you say, ‘We have to give this guy the ball 20-25 times a game.’
Last season, Thomas broke the school-record by completing 234 passes with David Wilson in the backfield. The second-team All-ACC performer passed for 3,013 yards, by far the best aerial show by a Virginia Tech signal-caller in the 21st century.
Dan Strock currently holds Tech’s record for most passing yards in a season with 3,243 way back in 1972. I’m gonna go out on a limb and say that Thomas surpasses that mark this year before moving on to play on Sunday’s.
It will be especially exciting to see the 6-6, 260-pound junior (updated from Monday’s weigh-in) bulldoze through defenders being one year older. However, the rate in which “LT” passes and runs will likely be driven by an unproven offensive line. (another aspect we’ll get into another time)
Head coach Frank Beamer is still looking for that elusive first National Championship Trophy. This is one of those years in which the Hokies have a chance to seize something special with a relatively difficult schedule.
A source has mentioned to me that the Hokies’ team motto this year is “Complete Control”.
If the Hokies are able to reach that status, we could be in for one hell of a ride this fall.
Photo courtesy of bleacherreport.com