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October 1, 2013

VT's Injuries, Defense

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Senior quarterback Logan Thomas had already disclosed with reporters following Virginia Tech's 17-10 win at Georgia Tech Thursday that he'd played through the game with an abdominal strain.

But at the Hokies' weekly press conference yesterday, Thomas was gimp while walking on stage. His right foot was in a walking boot.

Thomas, who said he sprained a bone in his foot during the first quarter, insists his injuries won't deter him. But he's clearly taken a beating just five games into the season. After three games in 12 days, Thomas and Virginia Tech got a much-needed extra few days of rest. The Hokies will need it with three straight games against ACC divisional foes, beginning at home Saturday against North Carolina.

"Everything I've done has been to myself," Thomas said of his injuries. "It hasn't been anybody doing anything to me. I just planted funny on my foot, which made it kinda pop. But with my ab, I think I just kinda overstretched or something. Maybe I'm just getting old."

Even with the abdominal strain, Thomas completed his first nine passes against the Yellow Jackets, throwing for 221 yards and a touchdown overall, on 19 of 25 passing. He also ran the ball 16 times for 58 yards and a touchdown.

Of course, it's helped Thomas to have what at times has been an electric defense holding off the opponent as well. Virginia Tech held Georgia Tech, entering last game averaging 354.3 yards rushing per game, to 129 yards. The Hokies fell slightly among the nation's leaders in total defense, now sitting fourth, allowing 241.2 yards per game.

And a big part of that has gone to freshman cornerback Brandon Facyson, who's now tied for the FBS interceptions lead, at four, after an interception at Georgia Tech.

"I wanted to come in here and just make an impact from the get-go and so far, I've done that," Facyson said. "Any way I can help my team, I'll do that. My personal goal is just to help out the team as much as possible. Having the four interceptions and tied for the most in freshmen history, that's a great thing, but it's not all about me. As long as we come out with the win, that's a great feeling."

Faycson's role could change a bit with the return of all-ACC cornerback Antone Exum from injury. Exum missed all of spring practice, fall camp and the first five games of the season with a torn right ACL and meniscus he suffered while playing pick-up basketball in January.

Exum might be playing through a little discomfort at first, as Thomas certainly knows well. But with both players on the mend, Thomas said it'll take more than his minor injuries to keep him out.

"That's really my first time having to do something in that effect," Thomas said. "Ever time I threw the ball, it just kinda hurt. But I think I was just locked in. I didn't get many physical reps. I had everything beat mentally during practice. When I got out there, I was able to see everything. I've kinda now have a new approach to do everything mentally, but hopefully, physically as well."



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