Virginia Tech Football: 5 plays that defined the 2023 season

The Virginia Tech football team had a big turnaround once ACC play began. Here are five plays that defined their 2023 season and helped them become bowl-eligible.
Military Bowl presented by - Virginia Tech v Tulane
Military Bowl presented by - Virginia Tech v Tulane / G Fiume/GettyImages
2 of 5

4. Jaylin Lane Touchdown vs. Wake Forest

If the Hokies were going to become bowl-eligible, they needed to win their home conference games. They were able to beat Pittsburgh, Wake Forest, and Syracuse in Lane Stadium, but came up short against NC State. There were plays in all games that were big, but there might not have been a bigger answer all season than the one the Hokies got against Wake Forest.

Leading 10-0 in the second quarter, the Demon Deacons got a 96-yard kickoff return for a touchdown from Demond Clairborne. On the very next Virginia Tech possession, actually, the very next play for the Hokies from scrimmage, Drones connected with Jaylin Lane over the middle, and the Middle Tennessee State transfer raced 75 yards for a touchdown to regain a 10-point lead late in the first half. That ended up being a play in the game that gave the Hokies a cushion, but it wasn’t the only defining play in that game.