MIAMI GARDENS — Nothing could stop Virginia Tech linebacker Alan Tisdale from helping keep Miami out of the end zone midway through the second quarter.
Not even puking right before the snap on third down.
Tisdale acted as if nothing happened when he dropped back in coverage to help cover tight end Brevin Jordan. The linebacker didn’t get a chance to catch his breath with Miami quickly lining up for a fourth down attempt.
On fourth down, Tisdale lined up on the left side of the defensive line to help contain Hurricanes quarterback N’Kosi Perry.
While ESPN’s announcers didn’t point the moment out in Tech's 42-35 win, the cameras caught the whole thing. It wasn’t the kind of viral moment a player hopes for, but Tisdale’s effort drew widespread praise from Tech fans on social media.
Tisdale’s teammates were quick to praise his entire performance on Saturday.
“Tizzy is a big time player,” Virginia Tech defensive back Caleb Farley said. “A big time athlete.”
Tisdale finished the game with nine tackles (four solo) and a tackle for loss. He also broke up Miami’s final pass attempt in the end zone with no time left on the clock. The linebacker came into the game with 13 tackles on the season.
After getting the most playing time of his career last week against Duke — he only played on special teams against Old Dominion or Furman — he was an even bigger part of Tech’s game plan on Saturday when Miami switched quarterbacks to N’Kosi Perry.
“Alan’s earned a right to play,” Foster said. ”Not that I’m disappointed in Dax [Hollifield], but Alan, in certain situations, like we get into our 30 package, he’s been going in that just because of his ability to cover. And it got into a passing game a little bit more, made it more of a space game. And really that’s kind of more of the reason I played Alan as much as anything.”
Perry, who didn’t come into the game until the end of the first quarter, dropped back 47 times (32 attempts in the second half). Tech needed Tisdale’s skill set, which Foster described earlier in the week.
“The guy can run, he plays with good vision,” Foster said on Tuesday. “...He’s got good quickness, he’s got good play-making skills, he’s good in coverage.”
Foster was pleased his faith in Tisdale paid off.
“I know he was around the football, made a couple nice plays in space, obviously had a big-time knockdown there at the end of the game, but I really like his body of work and where he’s going as a football player,” Foster said.