Tech survives major scare by Owls
By Jimmy Robertson
November 15, 2003

Post Game Notes #12 Virginia Tech Hokies
at Temple Owls
Saturday, Nov. 15, 2003
Lincoln Financial Field - Philadelpha, Pa.
  • Virginia Tech defeated Temple, 24-23 in overtime to run its record to 8-2 overall, 4-2 in the BIG EAST Conference. Tech now holds a 14-3 lead in the series thanks to five straight wins in the series. Tech is now 28-9 against teams from the state of Pennsylvania, going 1-1 this year.

  • Virginia Tech is now 2-1 all-time in overtimes. The Hokies won at Miami in 1998 and lost last year in triple overtime at Syracuse. All three overtime games have come on the road.

  • The 39-yard run by Temple quarterback Walter Washington on the first play of the game was the longest run allowed by the Tech defense this season.

  • Washington became the first opposing quarterback to rush for over 100 yards and pass for over 100 yards in a game against Tech since Donovan McNabb did it for Syracuse in 1996.

  • Vinnie Burns' punt downed at the 1-yard line by Jimmy Williams in the second quarter marked the seventh punt of the season downed inside the 10-yard line and fourth punt downed inside the 5-yard line.

  • Ernest Wilford caught his 11th-career touchdown pass in the fourth quarter to put the Hokies up 17-0. The 11 touchdowns move him into a tie for sixth place all-time at Tech for career touchdown receptions. He is tied with Bryan Still (1992-95) and Ricky Hall (1998-99).

  • Kevin Jones went over the century mark for the seventh time in the last eight games, rushing for 150 yards. The seven 100-yard games this season set a new school record for 100-yard games in a season. Roscoe Coles set the record of six in 1976 and it was equaled by Cyrus Lawrence in 1980 and 1981, as well as Lee Suggs in 2000. Jones now has 13 career 100-yard games, third all-time at Tech behind Lawrence (16) and Coles (14).

  • Jones now has 3,082 rushing yards for his career. He passed Maurice Williams (2,981 yds.; 1983-86) and now sits in third place all-time at Tech for career rushing yards. Up next in second place is Roscoe Coles (3,459 yds.; 1974-77).

  • With 150 yards rushing, Jones now has 1,254 yards for the season, placing him just 149 yards behind Cyrus Lawrence's school-record 1,403 yards in 1982. Jones passed Roscoe Coles and Shyrone Stith (1,119 yds.) and Dwayne Thomas (1,130 yds.; 1993) in the first half and then passed Lee Suggs (1,207 yds.; 2000) and Cyrus Lawrence (1,221 yds; 1981) in the second half to move into third place.

  • Jones' 15 rushing touchdowns this season rank third in Virginia Tech single-season history. Lee Suggs scored an NCAA-high 27 touchdowns in 2000 and scored 22 in 2002.

  • With 173 yards of total offense, Bryan Randall passed Michael Vick (4,276 yds.; 1999-01) on the Tech all-time total offense list and now sits in sixth place with 4,418 total yards. Up next in fifth place is Jim Druckenmiller (4,634 yds.; 1993-96).

  • The win marked the narrowest margin of victory since a 24-23 win at East Carolina in 1990.

  • Virginia Tech failed to force a turnover, breaking a streak of 28 straight games in which the Hokies had forced one.

  • The Hokies were outrushed by the Owls, 237-209, but still won the game. That marks the first time since the beginning of the 1999 season in a regular season game that Tech has been outrushed and still won. Tech was 0-9 previous to Saturday's win. The Hokies were outrushed by Air Force in the San Francisco Bowl, but won that game.

  • Wilford needs just two more receptions to become just the second player in Tech history to post two 40-catch seasons in a career. The other was Sidney Snell in 1979 and 1980.

  • Virginia Tech (8-2, 4-2 BIG EAST) will return home to host Boston College (6-5, 2-4 BIG EAST) on Saturday. Game time is to be determined. Tech defeated Boston College last season, 28-23, at Chestnut Hill. Tech leads the overall series, 8-2, after winning the last seven games.
     
  • Philadelphia - Virginia Tech saw a 17-point lead evaporate, but the Hokies somehow managed to survive, knocking off the Temple Owls 24-23 in overtime in a BIG EAST game in front of 27,425 fans at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia.

    With the win, Tech improved to 8-2 on the season, 4-2 in the BIG EAST. Temple fell to 1-9, 0-5 and lost to the Hokies for the fifth straight time.

    Tech took a 24-17 lead in overtime after a 23-yard touchdown run by quarterback Bryan Randall. But Temple answered when quarterback Walter Washington threw a quick pass to Zamir Cobb, who sprinted 22 yards for a touchdown.

    But on the ensuing extra point, Temple kicker Jared Davis hooked the ball left and missed it, and the Hokies got out of Philly with a one-point win.

    "I worried about this game all week," Tech head coach Frank Beamer said. "You just look at the video and see how hard Temple plays. And that quarterback [Washington] can make you miss. He's a bulky guy and he's hard to bring down.

    "I give Temple credit. They didn't play like a team that had won just one game."

    Tech led 17-0 in the fourth quarter after Randall found Ernest Wilford on a post pattern for a 28-yard touchdown pass with 14:23 left in the game. But Temple scored touchdowns to finish off two 80-plus yard drives and then tied the game with 40 seconds in regulation on a 37-yard field goal by Davis.

    The Owls had a chance to win it in regulation. On Tech's next possession, Randall was picked off by Johnathan McPhee, who returned it 29 yards to the Tech 33 with nine seconds left in the game. After a Washington incompletion, Davis came on the field to attempt a 50-yard field goal for the win, but he pushed it right, sending the game into overtime.

    Kevin Jones sparked the Hokies offensively, recording his seventh game of 100 yards or more rushing - a Tech single-season record. Jones, who grew up just down the interstate from Philly in Chester, Pa., finished with 150 yards on 28 carries, with one touchdown.

    Randall and Marcus Vick split time at quarterback for the Hokies, with Randall starting the game. Randall enjoyed the better game, completing 11-of-19 for 127 yards, with one touchdown and one interception. Vick completed 4-of-6 for 61 yards, with one interception. Tech, as an offense, finished with 397 yards of total offense.

    Washington played a marvelous game for the Owls, rushing for 151 yards on 26 carries. He also completed 15-of-30 for 156 yards, with two touchdowns. As a team, Temple did not turn the ball over and committed just one penalty.

    Tech now prepares for its final game as a BIG EAST member before heading into the ACC for the 2004 season. The Hokies will take on BC next Saturday at Lane Stadium in the final home game of the season. Kickoff time has yet to be determined.