November 6, 2009
East Carolina Notes and Quotes
By Jimmy Robertson
(22) Virginia Tech (6-3) 670316
East Carolina (5-4) 03003
  • Dowdy-Ficklen - 43,569
  • Passing: Tyrod Taylor 137 yds
  • Rushing: Ryan Williams 179 yds
  • Receiving: Danny Coale 60 yds

Williams sets career high, makes history: Tech tailback Ryan Williams enjoyed a career evening in Greenville, N.C., when he rushed for a career-high 179 yards on 26 carries, surpassing his previous career high of 164 yards against Marshall earlier this season. The game marked his sixth 100-yard rushing performance of the season and put him over the 1,100-yard mark for the season.

His career evening came on the heels of a game in which his fourth-quarter fumble led to North Carolina’s game-winning field goal in the Hokies’ 20-17 loss to the Tar Heels.

“Even now, just thinking about it, it still makes me sick to my stomach because I hate turning the ball over,” Williams said after the game. “I hate turning it over in video games. But things happen. I can’t be perfect – but I’m going to try and be as close to it as I can.”

Williams’ season total enabled Virginia Tech to become just the third school in FBS history to produce back-to-back 1,000-yard freshman rushers. Nevada’s Chance Kretschmer and Matt Milton accomplished the feat in 2001 and 2002, while TCU’s Lonta Hobbs and Robert Merrill did so in 2002 and 2003

The redshirt freshman from Manassas, Va., also moved into second place for the most rushing yards by a Tech freshman in a season. Williams came into the game needing just 28 yards to move past Kevin Jones (957 in 2001) and he passed that with a 46-yard burst in the second quarter.

Williams now has 1,109 yards rushing on the season. Darren Evans holds the record for most rushing yards by a Tech freshman in a season with 1,265 yards last year.

Taylor score puts him in second: Tech quarterback Tyrod Taylor scored on a 13-yard run for the Hokies’ only touchdown of the first half. The rushing touchdown marked Taylor’s fourth of the season and the 17th of his career, which puts him in second place among career rushing touchdowns by a Tech quarterback. He went into the game tied with Michael Vick, who rushed for 16 touchdowns in his career.

Bob Schweikert holds the Tech record for rushing touchdowns by a Tech quarterback with 22.

Carmichael with another pick: Tech cornerback Rashad Carmichael intercepted his team-high fifth pass of the season in the fourth quarter of the Hokies’ win over the Pirates. His interception set up a short field goal by Matt Waldron that accounted for the Hokies’ final score.

As a defense, Tech forced three turnovers – Carmichael’s interception and two fumbles.

“We played together and put the pieces together,” Carmichael said. “We didn’t change anything. The Virginia Tech defense didn’t go anywhere. We stuck to the plan and executed it. That’s the difference.”

Carmichael’s five interceptions rank second in the ACC.

Via gets the nod: Michael Via, the 6-foot-7, 284-pound redshirt freshman center from McCleansville, N.C., made his first career start in place in Beau Warren, who suffered an MCL sprain in his knee in the North Carolina game. Warren was listed as doubtful heading into the game, but did not make the trip to Greenville, N.C.

Also, redshirt freshman Lyndell Gibson made his first career start. The coaches made the decision earlier in the week to start Gibson over Jake Johnson at the backer spot.

Waldron with a career long: Tech kicker matt Waldron continued his stellar kicking, booting field goals of 41, 22 and 31 yards. The 41-yarder marked a career long – he had booted 40-yarders on two previous occasions (Duke and BC).

For the season, the redshirt senior from Oakfield, N.Y. is 13-of-15.

Grimm continues outstanding season: Tech whip linebacker Cody Grimm has enjoyed a fine season so far and that continued with a great game against ECU.

The redshirt senior from Fairfax, Va., recorded 12 tackles and he also had a sack, forced a fumble and recovered a fumble. In the second quarter, ECU quarterback Patrick Pinckney completed a pass to Rob Kass at the Tech 25, but Grimm stripped Kass and then fell on the loose ball.

The forced fumble marked Grimm’s team-leading fourth of the season – a number that also leads the ACC. The fumble recovery was his first this season.

“I forced a lot in high school, but I think that’s because my arms are short,” Grimm said. “I’m short and my arms are always around the ball. I can’t really fit them around a ball carrier all the way.”

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