Scrimmage Marked by Defense and Offensive Standout
Burnell has big day rushing the football
April 14, 2001

Strong defense and a big offensive play highlighted Virginia Tech's scrimmage Saturday morning in Lane Stadium/Worsham Field.

Redshirt junior Keith Burnell had the top day on offense, as he rushed 11 times for 122 yards and a pair of touchdowns. His second quarter, 85-yard touchdown run was the lone big play surrendered by the Hokie defense on the afternoon.

"I thought the defense got the better of it today," head coach Frank Beamer said. "Offensively, we just weren't hitting. We dropped a couple of balls that could have given us a little momentum."

Defensively, redshirt senior defensive tackle Dan Wilkinson led the Hokies with six total tackles, including five unassisted tackles, three tackles for loss and a pair of quarterback sacks. Redshirt sophomore Cols Colas and sophomore defensive end Jim Davis also recorded two sacks each for the defense.

Aside from Burnell's long touchdown run, the offense only scored on two other possessions. Redshirt junior kicker Jon Mollerup hit a 40-yard field goal and Burnell, scored on a two-yard run on the final play of the scrimmage. Mollerup also caused a stir when his 58-yard field goal attempt in the second quarter hit the cross bar and bounced away.

"I think our offensive line is getting better," Beamer said. "We ran the ball pretty well right there at the end, when we were trying to run out the clock. The first group offensive line is really coming around.

"Keith Burnell has run the ball really hard all spring. He's getting himself in there where he can get some playing time."

Tech's two quarterbacks, redshirt junior Grant Noel and redshirt freshman Jason Davis, each passed for 85 yards in the scrimmage. Redshirt junior wide receiver Terrell Parham caught three passes for 32 yards and redshirt freshman wide receiver Richard Johnson caught four passes for 25 yards.

"The effort's good, we're just not consistent enough on offense right now," Beamer concluded. "And defensively, there are places where you can see we have some work to do."

The Hokies will conclude spring drills on Saturday, April 21, with the annual maroon-white game in Lane Stadium/Worsham Field at 2 p.m.