for this game

James Madison-Virginia Tech Preview

Sep 7, 2010 - 9:23 PM By SANTOSH VENKATARAMAN STATS Senior Writer

James Madison (1-0) at No. 11 Virginia Tech (0-1), 1:30 p.m. EDT

Virginia Tech doesn't enjoy the trend, but the Hokies have gotten used to bouncing back from season-opening losses.

The 13th-ranked Hokies look to recover from a high-profile defeat when they take on FCS opponent James Madison in their home opener Saturday.

Virginia Tech (0-1) dropped its first game for the third straight year Monday, 33-30 to No. 3 Boise State at Landover, Md. It marked the fourth consecutive year that the Hokies have dropped a September game.

"It's a frustrating loss knowing that we haven't been successful in the first game all these seasons, but I think we have a good team to go out there and bounce back from this," quarterback Tyrod Taylor said.

The Hokies have rebounded to win their next game after each of those defeats, and will be heavily favored to do so again Saturday as they look to win their 15th straight home opener.

Virginia Tech is 6-0 against James Madison (1-0), winning the last two meetings by a combined 90-0.

While the opposition isn't formidable this weekend, there are several areas the Hokies want to work on. They got off to a slow start Monday, falling behind 17-0 after one quarter.

In addition, Virginia Tech's usually formidable special teams under coach Frank Beamer faltered. The Hokies had a punt blocked that led to one touchdown for the Broncos, along with a running into the kicker penalty and a missed field goal.

"I firmly believe we're going to be a good football team," Beamer told the Hokies' official website. "We weren't a great football team tonight. We made too many critical mistakes, but I firmly believe we're going to be a good football team."

Taylor passed for 186 yards and two touchdowns and ran for 73 yards, but the rest of Virginia Tech's running attack faltered. Ryan Williams carried 21 times for 44 yards, although he had two short TD runs and caught a TD pass from Taylor.

"We've got to look at the film and figure out what was going on," Williams said of the rushing attack. "All I know was there were a lot of times when I got the ball and there were defenders in my face. I don't know who let who by or what type of scheme they ran, but there were people in my face."

Last year, Williams ran for 1,655 yards to break the ACC freshman record. That's the kind of production the Dukes, ranked 11th in the FCS poll, are expecting.

"He is a heckuva football player," James Madison coach Mickey Matthews said. "I know he's their star, he's supposed to win the Heisman Trophy. I'd vote for him."

James Madison opened with a 48-7 rout of Morehead State on Saturday. Quarterback Drew Dudzik rushed for two first-quarter touchdowns and threw for two scores to Kerby Long.

Virginia Tech gave up 383 yards of offense Monday while blending in several new starters, but Matthews believes the unit will be solid.

"They're not going to change on defense," Matthews said. "They've been so dominant on defense, they're going to do the same things they've been doing."

James Madison is 3-15 against FBS opponents, losing 10 straight. This is the fourth straight year the Dukes have played an ACC foe.