This game goes down on the ESPN network and it features the Stanford University Cardinal taking on Virginia Tech Hokies in the 77th annual Discover Orange Bowl at Sun Life Stadium in Miami Gardens, Florida.
Stanford, 11-1, 8-1 Pac-10, Cardinal established new school records for wins on the seasons and within conference as well as making their first trip to the Orange Bowl. Head coach Jim Harbaugh has a well balanced team but a stud under center in junior quarterback Andrew Luck. The Stanford offense he controls has been unstoppable tallying 40 points per game as he completes 70.2 percent of his throws for 3,051 yards and 28 touchdowns and 7 interceptions. Luck also tucked the ball at times and rushed for 438 yards with 3 touchdowns. Luck’s favorite target is Doug Baldwin, who caught 56 passes for 824 yards and 9 touchdowns.
Luck is not the only one to benefit in Harbaugh’s pro style offense as tailback Stepfan Taylor has eclipsed the 1,000-yard mark this year, averaging almost 5 ypc, while scoring 15 touchdowns. In college football it’s hard press to find a better offensive line week-in-week-out than Stanford’s which is headlined by First-Team All-American center Chase Beeler.
Virginia Tech, 11-2, 8-0 ACC, Hokies are making their fourth trip to the Orange Bowl, but it didn’t look remotely possible early on in the season when the team dropped its first two games of the 2010 season, falling to Boise State and then to Division II opponent James Madison. Head coach Frank Beamer rallied the team as Tech went on to win 11 straight games, closing out with a win over Florida State in the ACC Championship Game.
The Hokies are balanced offensively like Stanford and have a quarterback who deserves shine just like Luck in Tyrod Taylor, who completed 60.6 percent of his throws for 2,521 yards with 23 touchdowns and 4 interceptions. He too is a dual threat to run the ball as he has rushed for 637 yards and 5 touchdowns.
The Hokies backfield is stocked with talented runners that contributed this year, led by Darren Evans 817 yards and 11 touchdowns followed by David Wilson 616 yards 5 touchdowns. Ryan Williams added 473 yards on the season but also crossed the end zone 9 times.
Wideouts to keep on eye in the Hokies offense is Jarrett Boykin, 763 yards 6 touchdowns and Danny Coale, 640 yards 3 touchdowns.
This marks the first ever meeting between these two schools.
PICK: Stanford University Cardinal