Duke takes down No. 16 Virginia Tech to reach bowl eligibility for second straight season
Take a look at the stat sheet from Duke’s game against No. 16 Virginia Tech on Saturday and it’s hard to imagine the Blue Devils escaping Blacksburg with a victory. But that’s exactly what coach David Cutcliffe and his team did. Cutcliffe became the first coach to lead Duke to bowl eligibility in back-to-back seasons.
The Blue Devils failed to convert a third down (0-for-11). They were outgained 387 yards to 198. They held the ball for just over 20 minutes, whereas the Hokies held it for 39:27. And Duke quarterback Anthony Boone completed just 7-of-25 passes, and threw four interceptions.
None of it mattered. The Blue Devils won 13-10, their first victory over a ranked team since 1994, and their first road victory over a ranked foe since 1971.
Duke prevailed in large part because the Blue Devils were able to keep pressure on Virginia Tech quarterback Logan Thomas. The fifth-year senior uncorked four interceptions, including a backbreaking pick with 4:55 remaining that allowed Duke to run out the clock. Thomas completed just 21-of-38 attempts, as the Hokies lost for the first time since Week 1, when they fell 35-10 to top-ranked Alabama.
Virginia Tech is now a game behind Miami in the ACC Coastal Division — the Hurricanes narrowly avoided an upset earlier on Saturday by squeaking past Wake Forest. The Hokies will visit Boston College next weekend before traveling to Miami on Nov. 9.