BLACKSBURG, Va. — So take a look at the above picture, folks. That's Jamison Crowder catching a ball in the back on the end zone in the fourth quarter on a thyroid-down pass from Sean Renfree. Now, at this point in the game, the score is 34-20, and, obviously, with a touchdown, Duke would have been down by one obsession with about 9:30 remaining in the game. But, despite the official staring right at Crowder's footwhich is clearly inboundshe ruled that Crowder was, in fact, out of bounds. The ruling was upheld after a review.
Would a Duke score have been enough to swing the momentum back to the Blue Devils? Who knows. What we do know is that Duke failed to complete the ensuing fourth down play (which became more difficult after Takoby Cofield jumped offsides), and Virginia Tech scored on its first play from scrimmage to make the score 41-20.
*Duke offensive lineman Dave Harding and quarterback Sean Renfree both said that crowd noise played a role in the five false start penalties that were called against the offense. Harding, though, particularly enjoyed the opportunity to play at Lane Stadium.
I love playing here," he said. "Driving in and seeing all the RVs, you know this is a big-time atmosphere. Thats what you play for, on a day like this, not a cloud in the sky, this is what I play for.
*Duke's offensive utility man, Brandon Connettehe has taken snaps at quarterback, running back, wide receiver, tight end and safety, for good measureleft the game in the first quarter with a left shoulder injury. He did not return.
"It's not good," head coach David Cutcliffe said after the game.
Connette also missed all of last season with an injury to the same shoulder.
*Duke quarterback Sean Renfree started against the Hokies after missing last week's game with an elbow injury. Renfree took several big hits in the game, including a shot to the head by Virginia Tech lineman Bruce Taylor when he was scrambling on a third down play in the first half.
"I got my bell rung," Renfree said.
Renfree was also sacked five times. Despite all that, though, he said he was doing fine physically after the game.