There are many that were majorly opposed to either the Michigan Wolverines or the Virginia Tech Hokies making it to a BCS bowl game, but this is the game that the Sugar Bowl really wanted, and it will be a great one to try to make NCAA football bowl picks with on January 3rd.
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Sugar Bowl Matchup: Virginia Tech Hokies vs. Michigan Wolverines
Sugar Bowl Date/Time: Tuesday, January 3rd, 8:30 ET
Sugar Bowl Location: Louisiana Superdome, New Orleans, LA
Sugar Bowl Odds: Michigan -2.5
Sugar Bowl Total: 51
Sugar Bowl TV Coverage: ESPN, ESPN3.com
The big allure of Big Blue is bringing in QB Denard Robinson to this game. Head Coach Brady Hoke tempered Robinson just a bit this year, and the offense isn’t quite as fun as it was when Rich Rodriguez was basically letting the youngster do whatever it was that he wanted to in terms of running the ball, but his stats are still there. Robinson threw for 2,056 yards and 18 TDs and rushed for 1,163 yards and 16 TDs on the campaign. He is going to have a tough time going against a Virginia Tech defense that routinely is able to shut down quarterbacks like him, but it should still be an interesting battle to say the least. The junior quarterback does have an underrated back behind him in RB Fitzgerald Toussaint. He rushed for 1,011 yards and nine scores on the year as well, and he’ll be a huge part of this offensive scheme.
Virginia Tech only lost two games this year, but the one team that it couldn’t stick with was the Clemson Tigers. Not only did the Tigers beat the Hokies in the ACC Championship Game, but they did so at Lane Stadium earlier in the year as well, a place where hardly anyone wins games. That being said, a victory and the Hokies will once again finish the year ranked in the Top 10 in the country, another accomplishment that Head Coach Frank Beamer would have to be incredibly proud of.
The Hokies had one of the nation’s top backs this year in RB David Wilson. Wilson had 1,631 yards on the ground and averaged 6.1 yards per carry in a most smash mouth offense. That’s a tremendous accomplishment to say the least. The man that really needs to be contained though, is WR Danny Coale. Coale is going to do just about everything in this game for the Hokies. He has already rushed the ball three times this year, is the team’s leading receiver with 787 yards and three scores, has the best punting average on the team at 44.1 yards per boot, returns some kicks, returns some punts, and might have to do place kicking duties with K Cody Journell suspended for this game.
In the end, we can’t help but forget how badly the Big Ten generally performs in games like this one. The Hokies aren’t the greatest of the BCS teams, and we surely would have rather seen the Kansas State Wildcats or the Boise State Broncos here instead of them, but that doesn’t mean that they can’t win the game. The speed on this defense is just too much to overcome, and though QB Tajh Boyd was able to do it twice to the Hokies this year, Robinson won’t be able to with a month to prepare for the game. Remember that Michigan didn’t have the strongest schedule in the world that it took on, and though some of the team’s close games ended up coming against teams that were really good, few, if any, are as good as V-Tech is. Hoke did a lot of good things with the Wolverines this year, but winning the Sugar Bowl won’t be added to the list.
Free Sugar Bowl Pick: Virginia Tech +2.5
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