On Virginia Tech's first play from scrimmage in last week's game against Boston College the ball was snapped and handed off to running back Darren Evans.
And that was about all the Hokies had time to do before Evans was swallowed up and dropped in the backfield by BC linebacker Mark Herzlich.
The Hokies would get used to this result by the end of the game. Herzlich led Boston College with 13 tackles on the day including two tackles for loss.
It was a performance that caught the eye of the ACC brass who named Herzlich the conference's Defensive Back of the Week.
But it wasn't a performance that was out of the ordinary for the outside linebacker from Wayne Pa.
Herzlich with his mix of size and athleticism has been camping out in opponents' backfields for three years now.
He played in all 13 Boston College games as a true freshman in 2006 and received honorable mention for College Football News' Freshman All-America team.
After stepping in last year as one of the Eagles' leading defenders Herzlich entered this season with lofty expectations.
The junior linebacker was named to the 2008 Lott Trophy and Butkus Award watch lists both of which reward the nation's premier defenders.
And he's lived up to the hype so far establishing himself as one of the leading tacklers in the conference. His 54 tackles are best in the Boston College locker room and his nine tackles per game place him in the top 35 in the nation and the top five in the ACC.
Herzlich's physicality and skill set make him tailor-made to be an elite tackler. At 6-foot-4 238 pounds he's nearly big enough to play at the defensive end position and many scouts expected him to mature into a lineman.
But he has good speed for a player of his size and he gets downhill quickly to plug holes in the run game.
Combine that with good football instincts and a knack for wrapping up rushers and the result is a team-high 37 unassisted tackles.
Herzlich also has demonstrated a nose for the football as he's picked off two passes and forced two fumbles this season for the Eagles.
The Tar Heels might have a tough time moving the ball on Herzlich's side of the field today. But if there is any part of his game to exploit it could be through the air.
Herzlich's footwork and natural instincts are better suited to pursuing ballcarriers.
Still the junior has soft hands and can snatch an ill-advised pass thrown into his zone — a habit that UNC quarterback Cam Sexton can't seem to kick.
Herzlich a big-time recruit out of Conestoga High School earned AP Class 4A All-State First Team honors as a prep senior.
He led the Pioneers to back-to-back Central League titles and he even played both ways in the process lining up at fullback and scoring three offensive touchdowns.
The Tar Heels likely will not see No. 94 join the offensive huddle today but he's sure to make enough appearances in the game plan on just one side of the ball.
The emergence of Shaun Draughn as UNC's feature back and the injuries that have been blitzing the Tar Heels lately have led to more reliance on the running game and a more productive ground attack.
But with Herzlich patrolling the strong side and filling gaps today this will be a tough trend for the Tar Heels to continue.