By Chadd Cripe
© 2010 Idaho Statesman
Virginia Tech coach Frank Beamer said Tuesday that he doesn’t see any difference between opening the season against Boise State or Alabama or USC.
“It’s really the same team,” he said in a telephone interview with the Idaho Statesman. “You’re playing a top-five team starting out. … Regardless of what the history of the program (at Boise State) has been, the reality is it’s the same as playing Alabama, it’s the same as playing Southern Cal. They've got a quality football team. They’ve got a lot of experience back. They’ve got a great quarterback who knows exactly what he’s doing.”
The Hokies have made a habit of playing marquee non-conference games early in the season. They lost to USC on a neutral field in 2004, LSU on the road in 2007 and Alabama on a neutral field last year. All three opponents went on to win national titles.
The Broncos and Hokies meet Sept. 6 at FedExField in Landover, Md. Both teams are expected to start the year in the top 10, with ESPN ranking Boise State No. 3 and Virginia Tech No. 5.
The winner solidifies its status as a national championship contender.
“If you can beat a program of that caliber starting out, I think it adds confidence,” Beamer said. “… It would be a major win for either one of us.”
Beamer and senior cornerback Rashad Carmichael say they have had their eyes on the Broncos for years — not just since this game was announced last summer.
“Boise’s gotten everyone’s attention over the last few years,” Beamer said.
Carmichael, like many college football players and coaches, has watched the Broncos play Friday night games while sitting in a hotel the night before his own games.
“I like to watch those guys play,” Carmichael said. “They play with an excitement. They compete. I just know it’s going to be a fun game.”
I’ll have much more on the Hokies, who are loaded on offense but rebuilding their defense this spring, in Wednesday’s edition of the Idaho Statesman.