- Virginia Tech is a 2.5-point underdog against West Virginia on Thursday
- West Virginia started 0-2 for the first time since 1979
- Read below for Virginia Tech vs West Virginia odds, analysis, and betting prediction
Virginia Tech (2-1) is a 2.5-point home underdog against West Virginia at 7:30 pm Thursday on ESPN. The Hokies have won their last two under new coach Brent Pry after opening the season with a 20-17 loss to Old Dominion.
West Virginia (1-2) broke a two-game losing streak with a resounding 65-7 victory over FCS Towson last week. Mountaineers’ quarterback JT Daniels is playing for third team in five seasons after spending two apiece at USC and Georgia.
West Virginia vs Virginia Tech Odds
|Wests Virginia Mountaineers||-2.5 (-110)||-141||Over 52.5 (-112)|
|Virginia Tech Hokies||+2.5 (-110)||+112||Under 52.5 (-109)|
Odds from Barstool Sportsbook on Sept. 20. Use this Barstool Sportsbook promo code to bet on the game.
Virginia Tech is 8-4 SU, 7-5 ATS in the 12 previous meetings, but the teams have played only twice since 2005. The favored Mountaineers covered the 2-point number in a 27-21 victory in Morgantown last season. This is the 54th meeting of the former Big East and regional rivals.
The Hokies, who won as a 5-point home favorite in 2017, have never been a home underdog in this series. This game opened with West Virginia as a 3-point favorite. The game went under the 49.5-point total a year ago.
West Virginia Runs It Up
After close losses to Pitt and Kansas in the first two weeks, the Mountaineers took out two weeks of frustration in their 65-7 rout of FCS Towson. It was not a fair fight.
Thru three games, West Virginia’s JT Daniels is tied for the lead among all Power 5 passers in completions of 50-plus yards with three. pic.twitter.com/QlLxobQCj9
— Jed Drenning, Owen Schmitt, Wes Uhler (@InTheGunPodcast) September 18, 2022
How much did the 38-31 loss at No. 24 Pitt in Backyard Brawl in the season opener and the 55-42 overtime loss to Kansas in the home opener sting? The Mountaineers never took their foot off the gas despite playing four quarterbacks while rolling up 626 yards against outclassed Towson, the lightest touch on a slate that ranks high in the NCAAF strength of schedule rankings.
Starting quarterback JT Daniels threw for 174 yards and a touchdown while playing only the first half, and running backs Tony Mathis and freshman CJ Donaldson had 100-yard games in an attack almost perfectly symmetrical attack — 318 yards passing and 308 yards rushing.
— On3 (@On3sports) September 19, 2022
Daniels lost his job at Georgia to Stetson Bennett before transferring. Donaldson was recruited as a tight end but was moved into the backfield.
The Mountaineers, who had given up 803 yards total offense and 93 points in their first two games, limited Towson to 180 yards total offense. The Tigers’ only touchdown came on a 96-yard kickoff return after West Virginia scored on the opening drive.
Virginia Tech Improving
The Hokies were upset by Old Dominion 20-17 in the season opener but have responded with victories over Boston College (27-10) and Wofford (27-7). Neither is in the class of the Mountaineers’ first two opponents, and Virginia Tech remains an ACC longshot in the conference title odds.
Grant Wells to Bryce Duke for the TOUCHDOWN pic.twitter.com/NsG0mSpJgq
— NCAAF Nation (@NCAAFNation247) September 17, 2022
Quarterback Grant Wells, a transfer from Marshall, threw for 314 yards and two touchdowns against Wofford, further distancing himself from a four-interception game in the opener against Old Dominion. He has not thrown a pick in the last two.
Pry, a former defensive coordinator at Penn State, is attempting to rebuild Tech in the Frank Beamer model — solid defense, special speical teams play and no-frills offense.
ESPN’s Football Power Index Rankings of Virginia schools:
— CoachDom (@CoachDominic77) September 19, 2022
The defense is holding up. The Hokies are No. 5 in Division I in total defense at 201 yards per game and third in rushing defense, giving up 42.0 yards per game and one touchdown. At the same time, they are tied for 102nd with a 23.7 scoring average.
Hokies defensive line starters TyJuan Garbutt and Josh Fuga did not play against Wofford and are questionable, as is halfback Jalen Holston, who had 68 yards and a touchdown against Wofford.
West Virginia vs Virginia Tech Prediction
The Mountaineers have played a more challenging schedule and were able to rest many of their regulars in the blowout over Towson last week, a plus in a short week, while Wells and the Hokies’ No.1s were on the field most of the way against Wofford. West Virginia had a 27-7 lead a year ago but needed a goal-line stand to hold on.
Virginia Tech is 4-10 ATS in its last 14 and 2-8 ATS in its last 10 at home, while West Virginia is 3-7 ATS in its last 10 and 3-10 SU on the road in its last 13. Take the points here in this rivalry game.
The pick: Virginia Tech +2.5 (-110)
Last week: 3-0 ATS; Season: 6-4 ATS