RB Branden Ore

2006 Statistics

Coach: Frank Beamer
156-82-2, 20 years
2006 Record: 10-3
at North Carolina WON 35-10
at Boston College LOST 3-22
at Miami FL WON 17-10
at Wake Forest WON 27-6
Georgia LOST 24-31

2006 Final Rankings
AP-19, Coaches-18, BCS-15

2007 Outlook

Not much really changes this year for head coach Frank Beamer, now in his 21st season at the Hokie helm. Most of the talent on offense remains steady; only the young, reshuffled line might require time to gel for Tech to reestablish the superior running game that usually defines Beamer’s ball moving machines. The defense has only a few spots to fill before it likely returns to its top form from ’06. Again, they will be able to carry the offense if needed. Both kicking jobs turn over, and Beamer’s superior special teams have some work to do if they want to stay that way. Otherwise, bouncing back from last year’s bowl loss to a struggling Georgia offense is all this Tech team needs to do to keep their momentum going. The key difference this year is that the Hokies don’t start with three or four easy opponents like they have of late – going to Baton Rouge in week two means Tech finally earns its early rankings. Last year saw Tech, like usual, start great against some cakewalk opponents only to then go down hill once the (tougher part of the) conference slate hit. Getting his team going for an early-season showdown with another elite program will allow Beamer to kick-start the ‘can do’ attitude in Blacksburg much sooner than usual. To their favor, three of their toughest five foes come to Lane Stadium from late October through the regular season finale. Tech has the wares and the schedule to make a serious run at the BCS and a spot in the title game, but until the struggles of both their still-maturing QB and a developing running game are sorted out, this will be another year of coulda-woulda-shoulda in western VA due to at least one or two poignant losses.

Special Note: In the wake of the school’s tragedy, Virginia Tech canceled its spring football game to focus on matters directly pertaining to the situation. Frank Beamer, who was born and raised an hour from his alma mater, was direct but sensitive in the wake of the events. "What I'd like to see now is all people, all people associated with Virginia Tech, come together and become stronger than ever as a university, with more caring, loving and respect for one another than ever before. And that's what I think we'll do."

In times like these, the best step forward and make something this negative into a personal learning experience so all can be stronger for having dealt with it…and that is what we expect Beamer and the school to resolve from a forced situation. When dealing with life changing situations like this, shock may affect the immediate proceedings, but when led by the fortitude of upstanding men and leaders like Beamer, the longterm affect is just what coach said…to become even more loving and caring toward each other through a reflection of strength.

We have no doubt that Beamer and his staff will lead the school into the fall with football as its usual compass, but this time with the cheers of an entire nation supporting the abundant humanity that already comes together to create the ‘lunch pail toting’ Hokies. The upcoming season will hopefully redefine the greatness of this school’s legacy through its involved community and their evident courage, as well as through its excellence in sports.

Projected 2007 record: 10-2
QB - 3 DL - 4
RB - 3.5 LB - 4.5
WR - 4 DB - 4.5
OL - 3.5 ..

Passing: Sean Glennon, 170-302-11, 2191 yds., 11 TD

Rushing: Branden Ore, 241 att., 1137 yds., 16 TD

Receiving: Josh Morgan, 33 rec., 448 yds., 4 TD

Scoring: Branden Ore, 17 TD, 102 pts.

Punting: None

Kicking: None

Tackles: Vince Hall, 128 tot., 61 solo

Sacks: Chris Ellis, 4.5 sacks

Interceptions: Victor Harris, 4 for 75 yds., 1 TD

Kickoff Returns:
Eddie Royal, 19 ret., 22.7 avg., 0 TD

Punt Returns: Eddie Royal, 23 ret., 13.2 avg., 1 TD


LB Xavier Adibi
OFFENSE: Jesse Allen-FB, David Clowney-WR, Brandon Frye-OT, Brandon Gore-OG, Danny McGrath-C, Brandon Pace-K
DEFENSE: Noland Burchette-DE, Brenden Hill-WHIP, Aaron Rouse-ROV, Cary Wade-ROV, Nic Schmitt-P

The maturation of a young line has to equal a better running attack if coach Beamer wants to reclaim a spot atop the league. Beamer Ball needs a steady ground game that can average more than the 3.2 yards per try it did in ’06. Hey, junior All-ACC TB Brandon Ore did his job as the workhorse – he finished 25th in the nation for rushing. That means this line, with three returning starters and reserves ready for their first starts, has what it takes to succeed…they just need to make sure all of Tech’s backs produce like Ore before the running game can be considered in full health (ranked an un-Hokie-like 90th). Ryan Shuman moving back to center means the junior can command the blocking schemes with his vocal approach, and the left side sees hard-working tackle Duane Brown bring his all-conference ability over here for blindside protection. Huge soph Nick Marshman will be found on the inside left after playing tackle due to need there. Factor in Freshman All-American RG Sergio Render back in time from knee surgery for fall and ex-TE Ed Wang at RT, and you will see why this young group can likely come together quickly to help in resurrecting this offense. The main cog, of course, is junior drop-back QB Sean Glennon, who proved some worth but will have to play better if he to avoid getting the hook in favor of either Cory Holt or this year’s top dual-threat hurler in Tyrod Taylor. Taylor looks to be the future here, so we expect he will see some real game reps, regardless. Either little speedster Eddie Royal or senior classmate Josh Morgan will likely find himself the new ‘go to’ guy. Two huge TEs who are both viable targets down the deep middle, along with the improved running results, mean that the entire offense should be able to rank much better than their 99th total effort from last campaign.


WR/KR/PR Eddie Royal


Returning Starters/
Key Players
QB Sean Glennon-Jr (6-3, 215) Cory Holt-Jr (6-4, 216)
Ike Whitaker-So (6-4, 200)
FB Carlton Weatherford-Sr (5-9, 226) Kenny Jefferson-So (5-10, 230)
TB Branden Ore-Jr (5-11, 207) Kenny Lewis-So (5-9, 195)
WR Eddie Royal-Sr (5-10, 174) Josh Hyman-Sr (5-11, 188)
WR Josh Morgan-Sr (6-1, 210) Justin Harper-Sr (6-3, 206)
TE Sam Wheeler-So (6-3, 240) Greg Boone-So (6-4, 240)
OT Ed Wang-So (6-5, 260) Richard Graham-Jr (6-6, 255)
OG Brandon Holland-So (6-4, 325) Eric Davis-So (6-7, 315)
C Ryan Shuman-Jr (6-3, 290) Beau Warren-Fr (6-3, 252)
OG Nick Marshman-Jr (6-5, 346) Sergio Render-So (6-3, 320)
OT Duane Brown-Sr (6-5, 280) Aaron Brown-Fr (6-6, 300)
K Jud Dunleavy-Sr (5-10, 183) Jared Develli-Sr (6-1, 230)



With five of their front seven being senior returning starters and three of their four starters at DB also back, Tech’s top defense (pass defense, scoring and total) can remain one of, if not ‘the’ top stopping force in all the land. It all begins with disruption in the middle up front – starters Booker and Powell offer the athleticism to penetrate while the oft-seen reserves here provide needed girth and consistent results. We expect to see proven junior Orion Martin earn the start at end opposite Chris Ellis once Ellis is back from spring shoulder surgery. Martin as the other DE means no drop off will be seen with the departure of Burchette, and three new four-star recruits mean plenty of healthy competition that could equal even better results. The same logic applies to having the tandem of All-American Vince Hall and All-ACC Xavier Adibi at inside linebacker. For his size, Hall plays in coverage as well as he busts through double-teams, and these two form one of the best tandems in the nation. Corey Gordon can fill the hole at WHIP, but his recognition of how a play unfolds needs to be sharper, leaving room for special teams maven Cody Grimm to pass him on the dept chart. Both play a lot early until one of them distinguishes himself. Junior Brandon Flowers, first team All-ACC as a sophomore, is as tough in run support as any corner and suffocates his mark at will. Fellow junior Victor “Macho” Harris is sure to again see lots of action due to foes avoiding Flowers, but little developed depth behind them means any health issues could be costly. Senior safety D.J. Parker truly plays the deep middle, but he also finds himself surrounded by mostly new faces who will likely need time to adjust to the superior schemes run by Bud Foster. The ability of Foster to perennially find a way to make his defense’s efforts equal more than the sum of their parts is a huge reason Tech prospectively finds itself amongst the nation’s best once again.


LB Vince Hall


Returning Starters/
Key Players
DE Chris Ellis-Sr (6-4, 255) Nekos Brown-So (6-2, 236)
DT Barry Booker-Sr (6-4, 294) Cordarrow Thompson-So (6-2, 318)
DT Carlton Powell-Sr (6-2, 285) Kory Robertson-Sr (6-2, 331)
DE Orion Martin-Jr (6-1, 243) Demetrius Taylor-So (6-1, 220)
ILB Vince Hall-Sr (6-0, 246) Brett Warren-Sr (6-1, 224)
ILB Xavier Adibi-Sr (6-2, 224) Purnell Sturdivant-Jr (5-10, 209)
WHIP Corey Gordon-Sr (6-2, 220) Cam Martin-So (6-1, 180)
CB Brandon Flowers-Jr (5-10, 186) Stephan Virgil-So (5-11, 185)
CB Victor Harris-Jr (6-0, 180) Roland Minor-Sr (6-0, 203)
ROV Dorian Porch-So (5-11, 180) Kam Chancellor-So (6-4, 217)
FS D.J. Parker-Sr (5-11, 181) Mario Edwards-Fr (6-2, 200)
P Brent Bowden-So (6-2, 180) ..




The placekicking job is open until someone decisively takes it for his own, but Brett Bowden, the No.2 for two years now, looks like the chosen one at punter. Receivers Royal and Morgan handle the return jobs well enough, but Harris is in the mix since spring of last year, so hearing his name on returns wouldn’t surprise us, either.