2016 Virginia Tech Football Midseason Offensive and Defensive MVPs

The Virginia Tech Hokies are at the halfway point ahead of tonight’s huge ACC Coastal showdown between the Hokies and Miami Hurricanes. So far, the Hokies have gotten off to a solid 4-2 start with a big win at North Carolina two weeks ago followed by a surprise upset at Syracuse last Saturday that caused the Hokies to crash out of the top 25.

The Hokies have had plenty of talented players step up and make some big plays so far but only two could be chosen for midseason MVP honors so here are The Tech Lunch Pail’s Midseason MVPs.

Midseason Offensive MVP: Jerod Evans

While Isaiah Ford is the Hokies’ most talented offensive player, there is doubt that the Hokies’ offensive MVP should belong to QB Jerod Evans who has already tied the single-game touchdown record and is well on his way to setting a new Virginia Tech single-season passing touchdown record.

So far, Jerod Evans has 1,346 passing yards, 17 passing touchdowns, a 62.7 completion percentage, a 170.7 passing efficiency rating, and only 2 interceptions while also having 319 rushing yards, 2 rushing touchdowns, and an average of 4.4 yards per carry. Evans has found ways to make plays through the air and with his legs in what has been an impressive start for the JUCO transfer.

Expectations were lowered a lot for Evans after he didn’t win the starting QB job till a couple weeks before the season opener against Liberty but Evans has been better than most thought he would be. Evans has been critical to putting the Hokies in great position to win the ACC Coastal and lead the Hokies to their first ACC Championship game since 2011.

Isaiah Ford also received consideration as he has played quite well with 32 receptions for 459 receiving yards and 5 touchdowns that has Ford tied with Antonio Freeman for the Hokies’ career receiving touchdown record. Ford’s numbers should be better in the second half as the Hokies play more four quarter games unlike the first half of the season where the Hokies only played in two true four quarter games.

Midseason Defensive MVP: DE Ken Ekanem

This was a very tough choice with all of us divided but the final choice is to go with senior DE Ken Ekanem who has been quite a force as a pass rusher and run-stuffing DE and while his numbers aren’t necessarily as big, his play and productivity stand out.

So far, Ekanem has 19 tackles, 5.5 tackles for loss, 4.5 sacks, 6 QB hurries, and 2 pass breakups as Ekanem has found a multitude of ways to put pressure on opposing quarterbacks, shut down running backs, and break up passes. Ekanem has played quite well and seems poised to end up around double-digit sacks by the end of this season while also improving his draft stock for next spring’s NFL Draft.

Greg Stroman gained some consideration after a solid start to the season in which he had 8 tackles, 3 interceptions, and 6 pass breakups which also earned him a spot on the ESPN Midseason All-ACC Team while fellow cornerback Brandon Facyson has 19 tackles, 1.5 tackles for loss, 1 forced fumble, and 7 pass deflections.

Meanwhile, both Andrew Motuapuaka and Tremaine Edmunds have played well with Motuapuaka having 57 tackles, 3 tackles for loss, 1 sack, 1 interception, 4 QB hurries, 2 pass breakups, and 1 fumble recovery while Edmunds has had 44 tackles, 9 tackles for loss, 2.5 sacks, 4 QB hurries, 1 pass breakup, and 1 fumble recovery on what has been Virginia Tech’s best defense in years.

Congrats to Jerod Evans and Ken Ekanem on receiving our Midseason Offensive and Defensive MVP honors.

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