BLACKSBURG, Va. - Making his first career start, and doing so in a Hokies hornets nest - on an unseasonably warm day, 17 year old Old Dominion quarterback Steven Williams, Jr. kept his cool.
"I was just going out there having fun, for real," Williams explained after his team's 38-0 loss at Virginia Tech Saturday. "I didn't let the pressure or anything get to me. I was just out there having fun."
And the pressure did not get to him. With elusiveness that made him harder to catch than a cold in the Sahara, Bud Foster's Virginia Tech defense manages to sack Stevie just once all game - despite limiting the Monarchs' offense to just 149 total yards.
"It was getting a little aggravating on the sideline," Hokies defensive tackle Rickie Walker admitted. "He (Williams, Jr.) wasn't taking any sacks. He was just running around avoiding it. [Number] 14 did a good job. He has a bright future."
"The poise our quarterback showed - the way he played," ODU head football coach Bobby Wilder said smiling. "He showed escapability against as good of a defensive line as there is in the country."
Plenty of poise to show-off. Zero points to show-off.
"We have to get some guys playing well around [Stevie]," Wilder said adamantly after his team fell to 2-and-2 on the season. "That's the bottom line: he can't do it by himself. We need some guys to play around him, and we have guys that can. We have guys capable of being good football players."
Meantime, Virginia Tech polishes off its first unbeaten non-conference slate since 2011. In the process, the Hokies pitch their second shutout in as many home games.
"We should be good on defense," Virginia Tech head football coach Justin Fuente said when asked about the suffocating effort. "With the guys we have coming back and the staff we have: I'm not taking those things for granted, but we expect to play at a high level."
While ODU has a bye next week, the Hokies say 'hello' to the defending national champions. Tech hosts Clemson Saturday night in a rematch of last year's ACC title game.