BLACKSBURG, Va. – Missing three weeks with a left shoulder injury didn't seem to bother Wake Forest quarterback Jamie Newman in the least. The junior accounted for three touchdowns in the first quarter of a 44-10 rout over North Carolina State last week and looks to continue the 20th-ranked Demon Deacons' magical season when they visit Virginia Tech on Saturday in an Atlantic Coast Conference matchup.
TV: 3:30 pm ET, ACC Network. LINE: Wake Forest -2.
Newman completed 25-of-38 passes for 287 yards and three touchdowns and ran for two more in becoming the first Deacons quarterback to surpass 2,000 yards passing in the first seven games of his career. "It honestly didn't feel different because I am always mentally prepared to help even when you're not there physically," Newman said afterward. "Like the Florida State game (a 22-20 win), I still felt prepared like I was going to play that Saturday." Wake Forest is 7-1 for the third time in school history and the first time since the team won a school-record 11 games and went to the Orange Bowl in 2006. Virginia Tech allowed an 87-yard, 18-play touchdown drive in the fourth quarter and fell to No. 15 Notre Dame 21-20 last weekend, snapping its three-game winning streak.
ABOUT WAKE FOREST (7-1, 3-1 ACC)
Tight end Jack Freudenthal caught all three of Newman’s touchdown passes, finishing with four catches for 16 yards while Kendall Hinton recorded 93 yards receiving on six receptions. Cornerback Amari Henderson snagged two interceptions, led the team with six tackles, had four pass breakups and a tackle for loss. The 34-point win marked the largest margin of victory against an ACC opponent in BB&T Field; the previous record was set in a 31-0 victory against North Carolina on October 26, 2002.
ABOUT VIRGINIA TECH (5-3, 2-2)
Making the first start of his career in place of injured Hendon Hooker, redshirt freshman Quincy Patterson completed just 9-of-28 passes for 139 yards with a touchdown and an interception; he rushed for 77 yards on 19 carries for an offense that amassed just 240 yards. “I thought he handled the environment well," Hokies coach Justin Fuente said. “I’m going to have to look at (the tape), but we didn’t make a lot of plays in the passing game, and we didn’t create a lot of separation out there either. We tried to hang in there and give ourselves a chance.” Linebacker Rayshard Ashby had 13 tackles to lead the team in stops for the sixth time this season and forced a fumble, while safety Divine Deablo scored on a 98-yard fumble return with nine seconds left in the first half and added an interception in the third quarter.
1. Virginia Tech is 4-1 against Wake Forest since joining the ACC but lost the last meeting between the two programs - a 6-3 double-overtime affair in Winston-Salem in 2014.
2. Patterson threw an 8-yard touchdown pass to Damon Hazelton, his sixth TD catch of the season and third straight game with a score.
3. Virginia Tech has used three starting QBs this season for the first time since 1998 (Al Clark, Dave Meyer, Nick Sorensen). Ryan Willis and Hooker have also started games this season.
PREDICTION: Wake Forest 31, Virginia Tech 23