Know the Foe: Virginia Tech football’s 2023 home opponents

In less than a week, the ACC will reveal its highly-anticipated 2023 football schedule, which will introduce the 3-3-5 model and eliminate the Atlantic and Coastal divisions.
Fans can tune in to ACC Network on Monday, Jan. 30 at 7 p.m. ET to watch the unveiling, which will include dates for all of Virginia Tech football’s 12-game slate. Join the interest list to be the first to know when the Hokies’ schedule is finalized.
New season tickets are available now starting at $350. You can pick your preferred seat location and enjoy a number of exclusive benefits while maximizing value when compared to single game ticket prices.
Current season ticket holders must renew their tickets and Hokie Scholarship Fund gift by March 1, 2023, in order to take part in the annual seat improvement process this spring.
Let’s take a look at which teams will be making the trek to Blacksburg this upcoming football season.

NC State
Though the Wolfpack (8-5, 4-4 ACC) welcome in a new quarterback, he is no stranger to Tech fans, as former Virginia gunslinger Brennan Armstrong has taken his talents to Raleigh. Head coach Dave Doeren, with Armstrong in the fold, has a new offensive coordinator in Robert Anae, who used to be Armstrong’s OC before going to Syracuse last year as its OC. Known for its strong defense, the Wolfpack return all-ACC performer Payton Wilson at linebacker and cornerback Aydan White, who had four interceptions last season, and are coming off of a year of ranking No. 11 nationally in rush defense (100.7 ypg).

Old Dominion
Beginning its season with the Monarchs for the second year in a row, Virginia Tech will play host to ODU this time around at Lane Stadium in its season opener. Former coordinators together at Penn State, ODU head coach Ricky Rahne and Tech head coach Brent Pry will face off for the second time, following last year’s game in Norfolk. The Monarchs, who went 3-9 (2-6 Sun Belt) last season and ranked No. 12 nationally in red zone defense, return their leading tackler in linebacker Jason Henderson, an All-American who tallied a nation-leading 186 tackles.

 Conversely, the Hokies welcome former All-Sun Belt wide receiver Ali Jennings from ODU.

Know the Foe: Virginia Tech football’s 2023 home opponents

Following a 37-35 bowl win in the Sun Bowl over then-No. 18 UCLA, Pitt (9-4, 5-3 ACC) enters 2023 on a five-game winning streak and welcomes another fellow ACC quarterback to its roster, like NC State, in Boston College transfer Phil Jurkovec. But it loses a bevy of All-ACC picks, including running back Israel Abanikanda (1,805 all-purpose yards, 21 TDs). Pat Narduzzi, who will coach his ninth season at Pitt this fall, is one of the ACC’s longest-tenured head coaches and faced Pry when he was the defensive coordinator at Penn State. With Abanikanda off to the NFL, the Panthers will lean on Rodney Hammond Jr. (460 yds, 5 TDs) to be the go-to guy at running back.
The Boilermakers (8-6, 6-3 B1G) enter their first season with Ryan Walters, formerly the defensive coordinator at Illinois, as their head coach. He was named the 247Sports Defensive Coordinator of the Year last month and hired Graham Harrell (offensive coordinator; formerly West Virginia’s OC) and Kevin Kane (defensive coordinator; formerly Illinois’ LB Coach). Purdue is coming off a Big Ten West division championship and Big Ten title game appearance, but loses its starting quarterback, No. 1 wide receiver and first-string tight end. Its new play-caller Harrell will look to build around Texas transfer Hudson Card at quarterback, while Walters and Kane will expect safety Sanoussi Kane, the team’s top tackler in 2022 (72), to carry the torch defensively.

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It was a fascinating tale of two halves for the Orange (7-6, 4-4 ACC) last season, winning their first six games and then falling in six of their last seven. Head coach Dino Babers, who enters his eighth season with ‘Cuse, welcomes two new coordinators while losing his star running back in Sean Tucker. Tucker finished his career as Syracuse’s third all-time leading rusher (3,182 yards) and will be big shoes to fill heading into 2023, but the Orange do return their quarterback in Garrett Shrader (2,640 passing yards, 26 TDs). Defensively, the Orange have new defensive coordinator Rocky Long, a respected coach who has 20 years of head coaching experience at the FBS level, and he will look to maintain the 3-3-5 defense ‘Cuse has executed recently and will lean heavily on star linebacker Marlowe Wax (team-high 91 tackles) to lead the defense.

Wake Forest

The Demon Deacons (8-5, 3-5 ACC) picked up eight wins last year and had three losses that were one-possession games, including ACC champion Clemson in overtime. The group, led by head coach Dave Clawson (10th season), loses its quarterback in Sam Hartman (transferred to Notre Dame), but is expected to go to Mitch Griffis under center, who had a nice outing versus VMI last fall. Griffis will have plenty of options on the outside to get the rock to, with the Deacs returning two wide receivers who each had nine touchdowns in 2022 – Taylor Morin and Jahmal Banks. Meanwhile, Wake will have two of its top three tacklers back, including linebacker Chase Jones (74 tackles, 6 TFLs) and defensive back Chelen Garnes (71 tackles, 1 INT).

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