Hokies try to narrow running back rotation

Virginia Tech coach Frank Beamer was asked about his running back rotation several different times in several different ways on Monday’s weekly teleconference, but Beamer didn’t offer any specifics about how the group has been working during the bye week, or how they might be used on Thursday night against Miami.

“We’re working on it,” he said. “We’re practicing with an idea and working that in and hopefully it will be the right combination here.”

Did all four backs split the reps this week?

“We’re working on it,” Beamer said. “We’ll see how it works out Thursday night.”

It should work out pretty good, considering Miami’s rushing defense is No. 119 in the country, allowing 249.25 yards per game. The question is how the Hokies plan on taking advantage of that.

The "other" Beamer gave a few more clues.

Running backs coach Shane Beamer told beat writer Andy Bitter of the Virginian-Pilot that J.C. Coleman and Tony Gregory have taken about 85 percent of the snaps in the past two games, with Michael Holmes and Martin Scales getting about five snaps apiece.

“We’ve looked at our running back situation a lot, and the thing that’s tough is all of them deserve to play,” Frank Beamer said. “You look at the Cincinnati game and Holmes looked like the guy, he made a couple of terrific runs. After Bowling Green, Gregory looked like the guy. He got out there in space. And after Duke, Coleman looked like the guy. That’s the tough part. All of them have had their moments. We’d like to find, week after week, this is what we’re going to get. That’s what we’re trying to get into.”

Odds are all four continue to see playing time against the Hurricanes on Thursday night, with Coleman and Gregory leading the way.