Virginia Tech took care of business today beating Wofford 27-7 with the Hokies immediately shifting their focus after the game to West Virginia. There were lots of good performances, but two Hokies who did enough to earn our Offensive and Defensive Hokie of the Game honors.
Offensive Hokie of the Game: Jadan Blue
There was some debate among the TLP team for who should get this honor but in the end, Jadan Blue gets the choice.
Blue struggled in the first two games, but finally seemed to find his rhythm today as he had 4 catches for a team-high 61 yards plus his first receiving touchdown as a Hokie. His game included a spectacular, leaping catch on 3rd and 18 that kept the Hokies alive on their way to their first touchdown of the game to make it 13-0.
After a slow start to the season, Blue looked like the guy he was hyped up to be making multiple big plays including a pair of really nice catches and leading the receiving corps. Yes, it was only Wofford but this could be a huge boost of confidence and a sign that he's finding his rhythm after injuries hampered him for much of fall camp, taking away valuable on-field prep time for the season.
Christian Moss made his presence known and likely put himself in position to receive more playing time going forward as he had 5 catches for 50 yards and definitely can be a bigger, physical receiver for the Hokies on the outside. His emergence may be very important in the short term for Tech after Kaleb Smith suffered an injury during the first half and didn't return.
Grant Wells almost got this honor as well as though he had some overthrows and got caught staring at one receiver too long at times, his production was undeniable going 26-35 for 314 yards and 2 touchdowns, production that's hard to complain about on the surface regardless of the opponent.
Nick Gallo added 5 catches for 52 yards while Bryce Duke showed his potential with a 27-yard touchdown catch on a well-executed wheel route plus 6 carries for 25 yards while looking the most explosive of VT's running backs.
Defensive Hokie of the Game: CJ McCray
This was also a difficult choice in part because while Tech's defense played quite well overall, there wasn't one player who clearly stuck out above the rest. However, CJ McCray impressed our team enough to earn this week's honors.
McCray may not have put up big numbers, but he seemed to constantly be getting pressure on the QB or blowing up run plays finishing with a strip sack plus a QB hurry which doesn't include the near second sack he had if not for a falling down throw by the Wofford QB after McCray clipped his ankles.
While much of the talk about the younger DEs focused on Cole Nelson who has been pretty good so far, McCray has been Virginia Tech's second best DE after TyJuan Garbutt. That showed with McCray getting the start opposite Jaylen Griffin with Garbutt out though once Garbutt returns, I think McCray should be the other starting DE or at least get the reps as such.
Chamarri Conner and Jalen Stroman shared the team lead with 6 tackles each with both having productive games. Cole Nelson picked up his second sack of the season while Mario Kendricks was productive on the interior with 2 tackles including 0.5 for loss on a play that you could easily credit solely to Kendricks for how he blew up the offensive guard. Tech rotated guys a whole lot on defense throughout the stint where first team defensive players were playing over the first three quarters as a way to preserve guys for Thursday against WVU.