UVA Football played NC State today… and not everything went great….
Produced by Robb Denhey
Select Pictures via NC State, Virginia Sports
Music by Golden Ducken Orchestra
— Script —
The Hoos entered NC State’s Carter-Finley Stadium feeling good about their chances versus the Wolfpack. 60 minutes of clock time later, the Cavs emerged battered and bruised, losing this one by a final score of 35 to 21 at the hands, and fangs, of the NC State Wolfpack.
The Cavaliers dominated Louisville last Saturday, but this time around, things didn’t go quite so smoothly. A defense that allowed just 3 points to the Cardinals gave up 35 before the clock hit triple zeroes. Our potent offense mustered just 21 points. How about special teams you ask? Well at least this week they were able to show growth.
The Wahoo defensive unit allowed 257 yards through the air and another 176 yards on the ground, amounting to 433 yards of total offense for NC State. Wolfpack quarterback Ryan Finley had a day, picking apart the defense and stuffing the stat sheet. The outcome is almost never favorable when the opposing quarterback throws for 257 yards and tosses 3 touchdowns. If Bronco Mendenhall’s squad expects to have a shot against Miami and Duke in coming weeks, the defense can’t afford to look like Swiss cheese, soft and full of holes.
Offensively though we did see some positives as Olamide Zaccheaus once again had an incredible game, notching 2 touchdowns and 109 receiving yards on 9 receptions. Big shout out to Olamide who is now the owner of the fifth most receiving yards in UVA history. Running back Jordan Ellis was bottled up but scored a garbage time touchdown. Additionally, the Wolfpack defense severely limited quarterback Bryce Perkins’ ability to run, dropping him four times and pressuring him throughout. Despite an ugly interception right before the half and a pass blocked and intercepted at the line of scrimmage, Perkins put together a solid stat line, finishing this one with 20 completions on 25attempts for 258 yards and 2 touchdowns.
As I mentioned last week, assuming the defense would hold teams to three points a week would have been foolish and unrealistic. NC State is undefeated for a reason and hasn’t scored less than 24 points all season. The sloppiness that we saw today needs to be cleaned up, and fortunately it can be. Offensively, we saw Perkins play effectively, especially given the tremendous amount of pressure exerted by the Wolfpack, as he was flushed out of the pocket frequently and still remained committed to ensuring an effective passing game. He favored his top target Olamide Zaccheaus, as the connection between quarterback and top receiver appears stronger than ever. As we push deeper into this 2018 season, we continue to see signs of a bright future for the UVA football team, even in brutal losses like this one.