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No. 19 Hokies looking to run over Wake Forest on the road

No. 19 Virginia Tech (3-1, 3-1 ACC) at Wake Forest (2-2, 1-2), Saturday at 3:30 p.m. ET (ACC Network).

Line: Virginia Tech by 8 1/2.

Series record: Virginia Tech leads 25-12-2.

WHAT’S AT STAKE?

It’s a ways away, but if the Hokies can keep winning, their Dec. 5 game at home against top-ranked Clemson could be for ACC supremacy. The Demon Deacons are coming off a victory against Virginia that was only their second game in four weeks. After this weekend, Wake Forest faces three straight road games.

KEY MATCHUP

Wake Forest’s defense against the Hokies’ running game. With FBS rushing leader Khalil Herbert (148 ypg) now joined by QB Hendon Hooker as running threats, the Hokies have only enhanced a ground game averaging an ACC-best 312 yards. The Demon Deacons are next-to-last in the ACC at stopping the run, allowing 198.2 yards per game.

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PLAYERS TO WATCH

Virginia Tech: Hooker. After missing the early part of the season while in quarantine, Hooker has been playing himself into shape, and very efficiently. He was 11-for-15 passing last week for 111 yards and ran 18 times for 164 yards and three TDs.

Wake Forest: RB Kenneth Walker III. He ran for 128 yards and three touchdowns last week, providing some balance to an offense that also gained 309 yards through the air. His ability to be productive makes it harder for teams to focus on the passing game.

FACTS & FIGURES

The Hokies’ 312-yard rushing average ranks second nationally, and their 42-point scoring average ranks ninth. … Virginia Tech has already scored 40 or more points in three games, the same number of times it reached 40 all of last season. … The Hokies have been without 38 different players and eight different coaches for at least one game this season for coronavirus and injury issues. … Wake Forest has committed only one turnover and has a plus-8 turnover margin off six interceptions and three fumble recoveries. … The Deacons’ Carlos “Boogie” Basham, a Roanoke, Virginia, native, has a sack in all four games this season and at least one in 11 of his last 13 games. … Wake Forest hasn’t hosted Virginia Tech since beating them 6-3 in two overtimes in 2014.

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More AP college football: http://apnews.com/Collegefootball and http://www.twitter.com/AP_Top25

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