8/29/2022 10:51:00 a.m.
the brent lever The era officially begins this week when the Virginia Tech football team travels to Norfolk for a clash with Old Dominion on Friday night, September 2. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 pm ET.
TV: Friday’s game will be televised on ESPNU with Kevin Brown (play-by-play) and Hutson Mason (analyst) on the teleconference.
Radio: the Virginia Tech Sports Network Affiliatesincluding its flagship station 105.3 FM, “The Bear,” in Blacksburg, will broadcast Friday’s game over the airwaves. billroth will handle play-by-play duties while mike burnop provides color feedback and zack mackey reports from the sidelines.
Transmission: Watch the game online at ESPN.com and on the ESPN mobile app.
live sound: Listen to live audio coverage of Friday’s game at HokieSports.com/Watch and on the HokieSports mobile app.
Live statistics: Monitor the game through live statistics on HokieSports.comincluding play-by-play updates and individual and full team stats.
Social networks: Stay connected with the Hokies on Twitter (@HokiesFB), Instagram (@hokiesfb) and Facebook (@VirginiaTechFB).
Three things you should know
1. When Pry takes the field for his first game as Hokies head coach, he’ll see a familiar face across the field in Old Dominion head coach Ricky Rahne. Rahne, in his junior year at Norfolk, previously served on the Penn State coaching staff with Pry from 2014 to 2019. While Pry was the defensive coordinator for the Nittany Lions, Rahne served as quarterbacks coach, tight ends and eventual offensive coordinator for Penn State during his last two seasons at State College. The duo combined to win 57 games during their six years on the Penn State staff together and remain close friends.
2. Tech will open its season away from home for the first time since 2019. In what has been a rare occurrence over the past four decades, the Hokies will play a true road game to start the season for the first time in four years and only the eighth time since 1988. While opening a season away from Blacksburg may not be the norm, Tech is no stranger to Norfolk, having played 40 games in the 757 in its history, racking up 22 wins.
3. The Hokies have a lot of experience under Friday Night Lights. Tech is credited with helping pioneer Thursday night games, but the Hokies have also played their fair share of Friday night contests. Tech played the first of all-time 42 Friday games on October 21, 1892, a 14-10 victory over St. Albans. The Hokies are 6-4 in their last 10 Friday games, including a 17-10 win over then-No. 10 North Carolina in last year’s season opener.
players to watch
defensive back jacket conner: Conner, one of the most experienced veterans and the undisputed defensive leader on the Hokies team, is coming off a season in which he finished third on the team with 85.0 tackles, securing 5.5 tackles for loss, 2.0 sacks, five interrupted passes, two fumbles forced loose. and an interception en route to earning All-ACC honorable mention accolades. He will be carrying the Lunch Pail on Friday night when the team takes the field and will be watched to set the tone for Tech’s defense throughout the night.
attacking player grant wells: A transfer from Marshall, Wells was named Tech’s starting quarterback after a breakout performance in fall camp. While at Marshall, he completed 460 of 715 passes (64.3%) for 5,623 yards with 34 TDs while also rushing the ball 115 times for 237 yards with nine touchdowns. Wells became the first freshman quarterback to earn All-Conference USA first-team honors before receiving all-conference honorable mentions in 2021 after ranking 15th in the nation with 3,532 passing yards.
wide receiver kaleb blacksmith: With the departure of the offense’s top two targets a season ago, Smith stepped into the leadership role as the elder statesman. He represented the Hokies at the ACC Kickoff over the summer after a successful winter and spring for Smith in which Pry described him as one of the best workers on the team. The product of Bumpass, Virginia, totaled 20 receptions for 260 yards and two touchdowns a season ago and will be poised for a big season after a pair of standout starts in 2021.