Rutgers football hosts Virginia Tech on Saturday at 3:30 p.m. ET at SHI Stadium airing live on the Big Ten Network. Here are four things that we predict will happen on Saturday.
Rutgers will gain more than 200 yards on the ground
With Sam Brown expected to garner more carries along with Kyle Monangai and Ja’shon Benjamin, the Scarlet Knights will be even more dangerous on the ground. Whether Aaron Young returns remains to be seen, but a three headed monster, all with different skill sets, is not what Virginia Tech wants. They’ve struggled against the run this season and I think this is the key matchup in this game. Rutgers should wear down the Hokies defense and I think as a unit will have a really big day.
The defense will force 3 or more turnovers
While the RU defense has forced four turnovers so far, it could have been a lot more. They’ve forced four fumbles but haven’t recovered any. They also recovered a fifth fumble that the officials mistakenly ruled dead in the win over Temple. It feels like this defense is close to having a big takeaway day with the way they’re swarming to the ball. With an injured starting quarterback Grant Wells, he’ll likely be less than 100% if he plays. And with his inexperienced backup Kyron Drones, it could be a big day for the Rutgers defense in forcing multiple turnovers.
Virginia Tech will lead at some point
After two games in a row of Rutgers jumping out to big leads, I have a feeling this game will go a little different. I expect backup quarterback Kyron Drones to start and his ability to make plays on the ground bring a different dynamic to the Virginia Tech offense. It wouldn’t be surprising if the unpredictability leads to VT capitalizing in the early going. I do expect the Rutgers to adjust and eventually get the upper hand. However, this is the toughest opponent RU will face so far and some adversity along the way should be expected. How this team responds is the most important factor.
The final score will be…..
I think this is going to be a hard fought game and close. I have a hunch this one could be different for Rutgers and Virginia Tech could jump out to an early lead. Brent Pry knows Kirk Ciarrocca and Greg Schiano well which I think will have his team well prepared. I think especially if Drones starts, he could provide a boost and it could take a bit for the Rutgers defense to adjust. However, I think the power run game of Rutgers is their strength and has been an issue for the Hokies defense this season. Ultimately, I think RU wears down VT and scores a fourth quarter touchdown to put the game away.
Rutgers 27 Virginia Tech 16
2023 Prediction Record
2-0 overall; 1-0-1 ATS
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