Boise State coach Chris Petersen said it was rolling by the time the Hokies finished 10-3 and averaged 31.8 points last year. Taylor threw for 13 touchdowns and only five interceptions, and Williams, a redshirt freshman, ran for 1,655 yards and 21 touchdowns.
This year, Williams will give up some carries to Darren Evans, who set Atlantic Coast Conference freshman records with 1,265 yards and 11 touchdowns in 2008 before Williams shattered them.
Evans is returning from left knee surgery, but said he’s back to 100 percent.
“They are so physical to start with,” Petersen said. “A big physical offensive line, then you put the two running backs back there. And so that’s a tremendous concern for anyone, anytime, anyhow. When you worry about the running game and can’t stop the running game, that’s a problem. Now you throw in a fifth-year senior (quarterback) with a couple of big, good receivers, that’s another element now that we’ve got to concern ourselves with.”
Taylor also can run, or scramble behind the line to buy time, and Petersen recalled his 9-second escape act last year that led to him throwing a winning TD pass against Nebraska. The 11-yard strike came with 21 seconds to go, lifting the Hokies to a 16-15 victory.
“You’ve got a fifth year senior who knows the offense inside and out. He can throw very well and he’s got this God-given athleticism that makes it really, really scary,” he said.
Scarier still, the Hokies used the offensive game plan they drew up for Monday night’s game in Landover, Md., in their final scrimmage. Taylor said he thinks his unit is ready.
“I believe so,” he said. “I believe this offense is prepared to play a game.”