- The Washington Times - Sunday, September 17, 2006

BLACKSBURG, Va. — Virginia Tech’s offense was a little late arriving this fall, but yesterday’s 36-0 win over Duke proved that the Hokies are here now.

The Blue Devils are still arguably the weakest team in the ACC, but it was the first time Virginia Tech (3-0, 2-0) had put up legitimate offensive numbers against a Division I-A opponent this season. Quarterback Sean Glennon completed 15 of 25 passes for 301 yards, two touchdowns and one interception. With its run-centric defense, Duke (0-3, 0-2) provided the perfect opposition for the sophomore to try out his much vaunted receivers.

“We had the thought that with the Georgia Tech game, Boston College, we need to, you know, open up the play book so in those games, it’s not our first time running them,” he said. “We did that today and hopefully we’ll continue to do it.”

On the first play from scrimmage, Glennon was flushed out of the pocket before completing a 60-yard post pass to senior flanker David Clowney. The quarterback, who routinely faces questions about both his elusiveness and his ability to throw deep, knew Friday morning that the long pass out of the two-tight end set was offensive coordinator Bryan Stinespring’s opening play.

“I kind of thought about that for a while before I went to bed last night,” said Glennon, who left in the fourth quarter with his team up 30-0. “Like, ‘I’ve got to make that throw.’ So it was nice to complete it.”

While the opening play was the longest throw of the afternoon, the Hokies all but abandoned the short screen passes that have had receivers and fans grumbling through the first two games.

“Sean made some great throws,” Tech coach Frank Beamer said. “He had some receivers that gave him a chance. He made a couple throws, a couple were dropped, but I thought our pass protection, for the most part, held up out there.”

Junior flanker Eddie Royal tore off a cross-field punt return 58 yards for a touchdown late in the first quarter, Virginia Tech’s best special teams play of the day. The Hokies allowed two blocked extra points — the third and fourth misses of fifth-year senior Brandon Pace’s career.

The offensive line, with starting left tackle Brandon Frye back from a dislocated elbow that sidelined him for most of the first two games, did not allow a sack for the first time this season as the Glennon led-offense totaled its highest total yardage to date.

The Tech defense, despite holding on to a second shutout, earned three roughing the passer penalties in the first half. Two of those came from top NFL prospect Aaron Rouse, including a vicious second quarter helmet-to-jaw late hit that forced Blue Devils starting quarterback Thaddeus Lewis to leave the game. Rouse promptly apologized to Duke coach Ted Roof and said he accepts whatever punishment coaches or league officials may deem necessary.

“I feel like there was no malicious intent … we don’t want to pride ourselves on being a dirty team or anything like that,” Hokies outside linebacker Brenden Hill said. “Over all, as a defense I felt like we had a great day and yeah, that [hit] might overshadow it a little bit.”

Duke backup quarterback Marcus Jones, who was 6-for-8 passing for 71 yards, didn’t consider the hit a blatant personal foul either.

“It was a rough one, but he’d been taking them the whole game from the get go,” he said.

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