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Virginia Tech head coach Frank Beamer reacts to his team's play against Duke on Saturday in Blacksburg. Duke won 13-10.
MATT GENTRY | The Roanoke Times
Virginia Tech kicker Cody Journell missed two field goal attempts Saturday against Duke and is only 8 for 14 this season.
Monday, October 28, 2013
BLACKSBURG - As he stepped off the stage at his weekly news conference, Virginia Tech coach Frank Beamer was asked if he had anything planned for Halloween on Thursday.
"I don't know if we're going to celebrate Halloween this year," he said, half-joking.
After Saturday's historic 13-10 loss to Duke, nobody was in a celebrating mood at Virginia Tech (6-2, 3-1 ACC), which dropped out of both Top 25 polls Sunday.
The Hokies, who travel to Boston College this week, didn't drop out of the Coastal Division race, just a game back in the loss column to Miami, which they'll play in two weeks. The Hurricanes could suffer their first loss this weekend, as three-touchdown underdogs at Florida State.
It's why Beamer is trying keep his team looking forward.
"Disappointment's going to happen to all of us," Beamer said. "But the real secret, or the real key thing, is how you react to disappointment. And that kind of determines who you are, in my opinion."
Players described the mood at Sunday's practice, which is usually reserved for review of the previous day's game, as down.
"I'd be disappointed if they weren't down," Beamer said. "It's a disappointing loss. But yeah, the other side of it is let's find out what went wrong, figure that out and get it right, and let's try to play better this week."
Although the mood wasn't great, the Hokies said things picked up as practice progressed.
"It was probably the best Sunday practice that we've had," quarterback Logan Thomas said. "I took it upon myself to set the tempo and make sure that nobody was going through the motions, that we're all going full speed."
Boston College (3-4, 1-3 ACC) doesn't have a resume that jumps off the page, although the Eagles played Florida State tough in a 48-34 loss at home last month and didn't wilt at Clemson in a 24-14 loss.
Under first-year head coach Steve Addazio, BC appears to know what it is: a hard-nosed, physical team in the mold of good Eagles teams of the past. Tailback Andre Williams is averaging an ACC-best 144.3 rushing yards per game and has already gone over the 1,000-yard mark this year, with 183 carries for 1,010 yards and eight touchdowns.
"This Boston College group will absolutely hammer you," Beamer said. "They're physical, they're tough."
Sticking by Journell
Beamer continued to stand behind kicker Cody Journell, despite the senior's struggles.
Journell is 8 for 14 this year and missed kicks from 40 and 45 yards Saturday that proved costly. He's missed at least one field goal in each of the past four games he's attempted one.
"I've still got confidence in him," Beamer said. "I've seen him kick too many good balls for me not to have confidence in him."
Beamer said Journell's struggles haven't changed how the Hokies approach their decisions when on the edge of his field goal range. When they went for it on fourth-and-11 from the Duke 31 in the first quarter Saturday, it was because of the conditions, even though the Blue Devils' kicker made two field goals from 50-plus yards into that end of the stadium.
"I was concerned about the wind," Beamer said. "It was really changing up."
Miami game time TBA
ESPN has requested a six-day hold before deciding kickoff times for three Nov. 9 games, including Virginia Tech's contest at Miami. That means the Hokies won't find out the starting time for that game until noon on Sunday at the latest.
The game will be on ABC or ESPN. The two other games being looked at for television consideration are Florida State at Wake Forest and Notre Dame at Pittsburgh.
Freshman Fuller honored
Cornerback Kendall Fuller was named the ACC's Co-Defensive Back of the Week after his three-interception performance against Duke.
The true freshman is tied for the national lead with five picks, joining four others: Tulane's Lorenzo Doss, Virginia's Anthony Harris, Oregon State's Steven Nelson and Northern Illinois' Jimmie Ward.
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