Hendon Hooker, Bud Foster are the Hokies of the Game Against No. 19 Wake Forest

By: Tim Thomas | @TimThomas1996 | Nov 09, 2019

Virginia Tech had their best performance of the season beating No. 19 Wake Forest 36-17 for their first home victory over a ranked team since 2009. The Hokies had plenty of standout performances, but Hendon Hooker was the offensive star while Bud Foster and his defense had their best performance to date.

Offensive Hokie of the Game: Hendon Hooker

Hendon Hooker has continued to impress with this being arguably his best performance to date even with a late first half fumble.

The redshirt sophomore QB showed why the Hokies are 4-0 when he's started this season with 242 yards on 15-23 passing while running for 69 yards and a touchdown, consistently making great read options decisions to keep several times.

Virginia Tech's offense is more effective with a mobile QB in general, but Hooker has taken it to the next level with smart passes and great decision-making along with a knack for making big plays. Additionally, Hooker hasn't forced things that aren't there and shown great composure even when VT's offense has been struggling.

After starting the season as the backup, Hooker has emerged as one of the ACC's best quarterbacks.

Damon Hazelton may not have had a touchdown, but he gave Wake Forest plenty of issues with 7 receptions for 86 yards. Tre Turner may have only had 2 catches for 30 yards, but he was quite effective running the football 4 times for a team-high 73 yards including a 57-yard jet sweep. Deshawn McClease wasn't the most efficient, but he was productive especially in the red zone with 17 carries for 59 yards and 2 touchdowns along with an 8-yard reception.. James Mitchell also continues to be a valuable part of the passing attack with 3 catches for 58 yards while also having a one-yard rushing touchdown.

Defensive Hokie of the Game: Bud Foster

There were plenty of strong performances, but no one deserves the honor more than Bud Foster who has helped a young Hokies' defense become one of the best in the conference.

Against an impressive Wake Forest offense, the Hokies stepped up holding the Demon Deacons to only 301 yards of offense while forcing a pair of Jamie Newman interceptions and getting three sacks. VT also shut down Wake Forest's running game with the Demon Deacons averaging only 2.2 yards per carry. Tech also held Wake Forest below their season average on third down with WF converting only 6 of 15 third downs and failing to convert their lone fourth down attempt.

It's easy for coaches to get distracted or to use their final season as a farewell, but at no time has that been the case for Foster, and it's shown in a defense that has steadily improved to now. Foster's defense also played better as the game went along holding the Demon Deacons to only 7 second half points, and bending but not breaking in big moments.

There have been moments when Foster has received criticism with some being fair and some not, but today was the latest of a million+ examples as to why Foster is arguably the greatest defensive coordinator in college football history and should be the first CFB Hall of Fame defensive coordinator.

There were plenty of strong defensive performances including Divine Deablo who followed up last week's big game with 9 tackles including 0.5 for loss. Dax Hollifield had a big game with 6 tackles, 0.5 tackles for loss, 2 QB hurries, and a late interception while Dashawn Crawford had his first career interception to go with 4 tackles and a QB hurry. TyJuan Garbutt was a force rushing the passer with 4 tackles, 0.5 tackles for loss, and 2 QB hurries.