Boston College 34, #12 Virginia Tech 27
November 22, 2003
by Will Stewart, TechSideline.com
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Blacksburg, VA - Boston College scored the last ten points of the game to erase a late Hokie lead and rolled up 461 yards of offense, beating Virginia Tech 34-27 in the final Big East Conference football game for both teams. The loss drops the Hokies to 8-3 overall and 4-3 in the Big East, ensuring Tech a fourth-place finish in the conference for the second year in a row.
Kevin Jones put the Hokies up 27-24 with a 13-yard TD run with 6:36 to go, but Boston College quickly responded, scoring when wide receiver Grant Adams beat Tech's Vince Fuller deep and scored on a nicely thrown 64-yard TD pass from Paul Peterson. The score put BC up 31-27 with 4:40 to go, and Boston College tacked on a 29-yard field goal with 1:42 to go after a 60-yard run by tailback Derrick Knight. Tech's Cedric Humes fumbled the ensuing kickoff, Boston College recovered, and the Eagles ran the clock out.
The loss ruined a record-setting night for Jones, who rushed 24 times for 165 yards and 3 TDs. Jones has 1,419 yards on the season, breaking Cyrus Lawrence's season rushing record of 1,403 yards, set in 1981. Jones did it in 11 games, the same number of games Lawrence played to set his record.
But Jones was outshined by BC's Knight, the Big East's leading rusher, who carried 38 times for 197 yards and two touchdowns. Knight repeatedly found big rushing room off-tackle in the game, doing nothing fancy to average 5.2 yards per carry on the evening.
VT had 10 first downs and 238 yards of offense in an explosive first quarter directed by QB Bryan Randall, and the quarter ended in a 10-10 tie. Jones had 7 carries for 102 yards in the first quarter, including a 62-yard TD run, and he opened the second quarter with a one-yard TD run that put Tech up 17-10.
When Tech's Eric Green intercepted Peterson on the BC 48 and returned it to the Eagle 17, Tech appeared to be taking charge, but the game took a turn when Randall was replaced by Marcus Vick. The Hokie offense stalled, narrowly missing a TD when freshman receiver David Clowney failed to get his foot down in the end zone on a pass from Vick, barely stepping out of bounds. The Hokies missed a field goal on a bad snap, and the score remained 17-10, Hokies.
From that point on, with Vick playing the second quarter and Randall playing the third and fourth, the Hokies picked up just two first downs in the second and third quarters, including a stretch of six straight possessions with no first downs.
In the second period, BC scored two straight touchdowns, on a 4-yard rush by Knight and a 16-yard pass from Peterson to Adams, to go up 24-17 at half time.
The third quarter was low-scoring. BC missed a 44-yard field goal attempt, and the Hokies responded with a 35-yard field goal from Carter Warley after recovering a muffed punt by the Eagles.
Trailing 24-20, Tech failed to convert a fourth and 5 from the Eagle 30, but the Hokies finally broke through midway through the fourth quarter with a 3-play, 68-yard drive. Randall hit a 52-yard pass to Wilford that put the ball at the BC 16, and after a 3-yard run by Jones, Jones burst 13 yards up the middle untouched to put the Hokies up 27-24.
But from there, the Hokies fell apart. On BC's next possession, Tech gave up the 64-yard TD reception by Adams, and after the Hokies went three and out, Knight burst up the middle for a 60-yard run that took the ball from deep into VT territory and led to a 29-yard field goal. When VT's Cedric Humes fumbled the ball on the ensuing kickoff, it sealed Tech's fate and sent the Hokies to their first home loss of the season.
RUSHING-Virginia Tech, Jones 24-165, Vick 6-19, Humes 5-15, Randall 4-15, Team 1-(-11). BC, Knight 38-197, Peterson 8-20, Dodd 5-18, Team 3-(-6).
PASSING-Virginia Tech, Randall 12-23-0-176, Vick 1-4-0-11. BC, Peterson 15-28-2-232.
RECEIVING-Virginia Tech, Wilford 3-85, Jones 3-57, Easlick 4-31, Johnson
1-6, Humes 1-4, Imoh 1-4. BC, Adams 4-94, Knight 1-37, Ryan 3-37, Toal 4-34, Lester 1-14, Hazard 1-9, Lilly 1-7.