On guy the teajm wants to see run is Virginia Tech's Cam Phillips. He had groin surgery in December, keeping him out of the bowl, making him turn down the Senior Bowl & he was just not yet ready to run in Indy;
Here is some background info;
Scouting report will be in WR feature in 2 weeks;
CAMERON “Cam” DARNELL PHILLIPS
Virginia Polytechnic (Tech) Institute Hokies
DeMatha (Saint John of Matha) Catholic High School
Only six former Hokies wide receiver caught at least one hundred passes during their National Football League careers and the draft was already forty-four years old before the first Tech wide-out was ever drafted, but for a school known for their special teams and swarming defense, one receiver on their current roster is changing the way professional scouts look at future prospects at this position during trips to Blacksburg.
Yes, he might be as quiet as a church mouse off the field, but like Winston Churchill, Cameron “Cam” Darnell Phillips is establishing that new scouts’ vision when they sit down to review game film of the school’s all-time leading pass catcher.
One comment heard from scouts is that Phillips is a “violent” runner. By no means does that incur that he will be screaming at opponents on the field. What that describes is his running style. Few receivers at any level of competition are blessed with that incredible first step that Phillips demonstrates coming off the line. More than a handful of surprised defensive backs can attest to that, as more often than not, the senior is already behind his assigned cover defender before that opponent is even transitioning out of his backpedal.
Playing the slot in 2016 was very beneficial for Phillips “YAC” development. On seventy-one of his non-touchdown catches, he either beat the initial tackle or was taken down by multiple opponents of 40 of those grabs. Do not let that 202-pound full you – there is a lot of upper body stiff-arm power and excellent leg drive to blend with his excellent balance and route running skills to turn a short catch into a long gainer.
Just look at his “hidden” statistics since the start of the 2016 campaign. During those twenty-six contests, Phillips has been targeted 185 times, catching 147 balls (79.46% success rate), as the opposition deflected ten throws (5.41% of the targets) and his quarterback misfired on 31 other chances (16.76% of his targets). Among his 147 catches during the last two campaigns, Phillips recorded 89 first downs via his receptions (60.54% of his catches) and eight more via opposing penalties (seven pass interference call and one face mask charge).
The team registered 302 first downs through the air, with Phillips accounting for 32.12% of those advancements. Of the sixteen opposing penalties recorded, 50% (eight) came on plays where Phillips was the targeted. During his last two seasons, he has accounted for 29.34% of the team’s receptions (147-of-501) and 29.94% of their receiving yards (1,947-of-6,503), as he registered 23.53% of the Hokies’ touchdown catches (12-of-51) since the start of the 2016 campaign.
The speedy receiver has converted 30-of-48 (62.50%) of third-down plays and 3-of-6 fourth-down snaps. Also, he has had 78 of his receptions (53.06%) gain at least ten yards, including 30 (20.41%) for twenty yards or longer. He’s downed 42 of his snatches (28.57%) inside the red zone, including three near the goal line. In addition to his twelve scoring catches, he had key receptions that set up 27 other touch-down drives and during fifteen possessions that resulted in field goals.
A strong open field runner, Phillips has downed 42 of his snatches (28.57%) inside the red zone, including three near the goal line. In addition to his twelve scoring catches from 2016-17, he had key receptions that set up 27 other touchdown drives and during fifteen possessions that resulted in field goals. He also adds to his resume as a threat carrying the ball out of the backfield. On 37 chances, he’s recorded twenty first downs, converting five third-down snaps. He’s also set up six touchdown drives and three possessions that ended with field goals due to his carries.
Prior to joining the Hokies, Phillips was a standout receiver at Maryland’s powerhouse DeMatha High School, where he also lettered in track as a high jumper and on the basketball court. Recruiters started to flock to campus by his junior season, but it was “standing room only” for the slew that showed up during his senior season.
Phillips had placed his name on the recruiting map after he averaged 18.59 yards per reception (34) in 2012 for the Stags. As a senior, he hauled in 68 passes for 1,233 yards (18.13 ypc) and fifteen touchdowns in 2013. That performance saw him earn All-Metropolitan first-team honors from the Washington Post, become a consensus All-State selection and be named the state’s Offensive Player of the Year by the media, along with receiving the Prince George Gazette’s Player of the Year Award. He closed out his prep career as an Offense-Defense All-America Game selection.
Most incoming freshmen are red-shirted after they first arrive on a college campus, but 2014 August camp convinced the Virginia Tech coaches that they might have something special in the recruit wearing jersey #5. They started him once in the slot during the first four games before turning flanker duties over to Phillips for the balance of the schedule. The freshman rewarded the staff by finishing fourth on the team with forty receptions for 498 yards and three touchdowns to earn Freshman All-American recognition.
Technically listed as the team’s flanker in 2015, Phillips also played the slot when the Hokies brought speedy tight end Bucky Hodges on the field to play wide-out. In ten started through thirteen appearances, Phillips finished second on the team with 49 receptions for 582 yards and two touch-downs during legendary head coach Frank Beamer’s final season at the helm.
The 2016 campaign saw Justin Fuente take over as head coach. No longer would the Tech defense be the talk in town – Fuente was going to feature a multiple-receiver aerial attack. In order for that to be a success, Phillips had to sacrifice being a deep threat and turn into a safety valve target in tight areas as the slot receiver. He would become just the second player in school history to reach the seventy reception level, ending up with 76 catches while teammate Isaiah Ford set the school annual mark with 79.
Phillips’ 983 aerial yards as a junior placed third on Tech’s season-record list. What was an interesting side-note was that on 89 passes targeted into his area, none of those balls were deflected by the opposition, as Phillips’ high jumping expertise from his prep days came in handy during jump-ball battles. Serving as a table-setter, rather than a touchdown-maker, he did score five times on his own, but he also had key receptions to set up eighteen more touchdown drives and eight possessions that ended in field goals.
With Jerod Evans leaving school early for the NFL, the 2017 Tech team featured a freshman quarter- back – Josh Jackson – as the starter, marking the first time since 1999 that a Tech coach entrusted his offense to a first-year player. The last one to earn that trust was Michael Vick. Talk with the receivers about Jackson and you will hear, “so far, so good” from that unit.
Phillips currently leads the team with 71 receptions for 964 yards and seven touchdowns during the 2017 regular season schedule. A model of consistency, his school record 236 catches rank second among all active players in the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision ranks while his 3,027 yards rank seventh. Among his 71 receptions as a senior, fifty-eight have produced first downs. He’s also baited his coverage assignments into eight pass interference penalties, tops in the FBS.
The school’s current record-holder with at least one reception in 39 consecutive games, Phillips has appeared in 52 games, and is the team’s current active leader with 44 starting assignments while lining up as a flanker, slot receiver and split end for the Hokies…Currently has caught a school career-record 236 passes for 3,027 yards (12.83 ypc) and seventeen touchdowns…Totaled 239 yards on 37 carries (6.46 ypc) and 34 yards on five punt returns (6.80 avg)…Recorded five tackles (2 solos) with a shared sack for minus eight yards, a stop for a 17-yard loss and a blocked punt that he returned one yard as a member of the special team coverage units…Has amassed 3,300 all-purpose yards on 278 touches, an average gain of 11.87 yards per snap and 63.46 yards per game…Also attempted one pass in 2017.
NCAA Career-Record Results…Among current active NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision performers, Phillips ranks second with ranks second with 236 receptions, surpassed by Richie James of Middle Tennessee State (244)…Also placed seventh among active FBS players with 3,027 career yards, topped by James Washington of Oklahoma State (4,341 yards), Anthony Miller of Memphis (3,535), Richie James (3,261), Devonte Boyd of Nevada-Las Vegas (3,242), Allen Lazard of Iowa State (3,218) and Courtland Sutton of Southern Methodist (3,152)…Both of those receiving numbers by Phillips are school career-records…Phillips also placed 14th among FBS receivers with 3,300 yards in all-purpose yardage.
Atlantic Coast Conference Career-Record Results…Among current/active ACC players, Phillips leads the league in receptions with 236. Ervin Phillips of Syracuse ranks fifth nationally and second in the ACC with 213 grabs…Phillips also leads the conference with 3,027 receiving yards, as Steve Ishmael of Syracuse is eighth in the FBS and second in the ACC with 2,891 yards…On the ACC’s overall record chart, Phillips ranks eighth with 236 receptions, surpassed by Conner Vernon of Duke (283 catches; 2009-12), Jamison Crowder of Duke (283; 2011-14), Rashad Greene of Florida State (270; 2011-14), Tyler Boyd of Pittsburgh (254; 2013-15), Artavis Scott of Clemson (245; 2014-16), Ryan Switzer of North Carolina (244; 2013-16) and Sammy Watkins of Clemson (240; 2011-13)…His 3,027 receiving yards rank tenth in league annals behind Greene (3,830), Vernon (3,749), Crowder (3,641), Peter Warrick of Florida State (3,517; 1996-99), Watkins (3,391), Torry Holt of North Carolina State (3,379; 1995-98), Boyd (3,361), Clarkston Hines of Duke (3,318; 1986-89) and Jericho Cotchery of North Carolina State (3,119; 2000-03).
Atlantic Coast Conference Game-Record Results…Phillips school record fourteen receptions vs. East Carolina on September 16th, 2017 is tied with Robert Lavette of Georgia Tech (vs. Notre Dame, 1981), John Henry Mills of Wake Forest (vs. Duke in 1990), Frank Wycheck of Maryland (vs. Virginia Tech, 1990), Russ Weaver of Maryland (vs. Wake Forest, 1993), Jon Jensen of Duke (vs. North Carolina, 1994), Kelly Campbell of Georgia Tech (vs. Clemson, 2000), Torrey Smith of Maryland (vs. North Carolina State, 2010), Sammy Watkins of Clemson (vs. North Carolina State, 2013), Ryan Switzer of North Carolina (vs. Florida State, 2016) and Ervin Philips of Syracuse (vs. Colgate, 2016) for 17th place on the league game-record chart, that total is just two shy of the record of sixteen catches, shared by Watkins (vs. Ohio State, 2013), Michael Campanaro of Wake Forest (vs. Louisiana-Monroe, 2013 and Boston College, 2012), Quinshad Davis of North Carolina (vs. Virginia, 2012), Alvin Pearman of Virginia (vs. Florida State, 2003), Corey Thomas of Duke (vs. Georgia Tech, 1997), Geroy Simon of Maryland (vs. Florida State, 1995), Charlie Carr of North Carolina (vs. Air Force, 1966) and Switzer (vs. Pittsburgh, 2016).
Virginia Tech Career-Record Results…In addition to holding the school record with at least one reception in 39 games, Phillips is the school’s current active leader with 44 starting assignments…
His 236 catches broke the previous record of 210 by Isaiah Ford (2014-16)…His 3,027 receiving yards saw him surpass both Ford (2,967) and Jarrett Boykin (2,884 yards; 2008-11) for the new Tech all-time record…His seventeen touchdown receptions rank seventh on the school career charts, topped by Ford (24), Antonio Freeman (22; 1991-94), Bucky Hodges (20; 2014-16), Boykin (18), Ricky Scales (18; 1972-74) and André Davis (18; 1998-2001).
Virginia Tech Season-Record Results…Phillips is one of two players to catch at least seventy passes in a season for the Hokies, as his 76 catches in 2016 rank second on that chart to Isaiah Ford’s 79 in 2016. Ford also ranks third with 75 receptions in 2015 and Phillips stands in fourth place with his 71 catches in 2017…Phillips’ 983 receiving yards in 2016 rank third on the season list behind Ford (1,164 yards in 2015; 1,094 in 2016). His 964 aerial yards in 2017 is currently fourth on that annual list, as he also joined Ford and Jarrett Boykin (847 in 2010; 835 in 2009) to have multiple 800-yard receiving campaigns for Tech.
Virginia Tech Game-Record Results…On September 16th, 2017, Phillips caught fourteen passes for 189 yards and three touchdowns vs. East Carolina…His fourteen snatches broke the old school record of thirteen, first set by Donald Snell vs. Cincinnati on August 31st, 1985 and later by Nick Cullen vs. Southern Mississippi on October 27th, 1990…Phillips also ranks fourth on that list with twelve catches vs. Clemson on December 3rd, 2016…His ten first down catches vs. East Carolina also broke Snell’s old school mark of nine from the same Cincinnati clash…His three scoring grabs are the most by a Hokie in a game since Bucky Hodges also had three in a triple overtime game vs. Duke on October 24th, 2015. The record by a Tech player is four touchdown catches – set by Ernest Ernest Wilford vs. Syracuse in 2002…Phillips’ 189 yards vs. ECU shattered his previous best of 138 yards vs. West Virginia on September 3rd, 2017 and rank fifth overall on the game chart behind Ernest Wilford (279 yards vs. Syracuse in 2002), Isaiah Ford (227 vs. Tulsa in 2015), Ricky Scales (213 vs. vs. Wake Forest in 1972) and Antonio Freeman (194 vs. Temple in 1993).
Phillips Receiving Statistical Breakdown…During his junior and senior campaigns and through his last twenty-six appearances, Phillips has been targeted 185 times, catching 147 balls (79.46% success rate), as the opposition deflected ten throws (5.41% of the targets) and his quarterback misfired on 31 other chances (17.76% of his targets). His quarterbacks also threw the ball away in his area ten times while being pressured…Among his 147 catches during the last two campaigns, Phillips recorded 89 first downs via his receptions (60.54% of his catches) and eight more via opposing penalties (seven pass interference call and one face mask charge)…The team registered 302 first downs through the air, with Phillips accounting for 32.12% of those advancements…Of the sixteen opposing penalties recorded, 50% (eight) came on plays where Phillips was the target…
Phillips’ Offensive Impact…During his last two seasons, Phillips has accounted for 29.34% of the team’s receptions (147-of-501) and 29.94% of their receiving yards (1,947-of-6,503), as he registered 23.53% of the Hokies’ touchdown catches (12-of-51) since the start of the 2016 campaign…The receiver has converted 30-of-48 (62.50%) of third-down plays and 3-of-6 fourth-down snaps…Has had 78 of his receptions (53.06%) gained at least ten yards, including 30 (20.41%) for twenty yards or longer…Downed 42 of his snatches (28.57%) inside the red zone, including three near the goal line…In addition to his twelve scoring catches, he had key receptions that set up 27 other touch-down drives and during fifteen possessions that resulted in field goals.
Phillips Rushing Statistical Breakdown…On 37 rushing attempts, Phillips recorded twenty first downs, converting five third-down snaps…Set up six touchdown drives and three possessions that ended with field goals due to his carries.
Phillips Special Team Performance Breakdown…On five punt returns, Phillips set up two touchdown drives, as he also blocked a punt that was followed by another Tech touchdown.
A member of The NFL Draft Report’s Super Sleeper All-American Team (awarded to the most under-rated player in college at each position, that scouting information service considers Phillips to be the most explosive runner before-& -after the catch that the organization has analyzed since Hines Ward was excelling at YAC (yards after the catch) for the Georgia Bulldogs from 1994-97…Much like Ward, Phillips has proven to be highly capable of stretching the field, evident by his status among current NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision active receivers, where he ranks second within that group with 236 catches (Richie James of Middle Tennessee leads with 244 catches) and seventh with 3,027 yards receiving…Also 13th among FBS receivers with 3,127 yards in all-purpose yardage…Named as a first-team All-Atlantic Coast Conference selection, Phillips joined Isaiah Ford as the only Hokies to record 70-reception seasons, as Ford delivered that feat in 2015 and 2016 while Phillips reached that level this year and last, hauling in 71 balls for 964 yards (13.58 ypc) and seven touchdowns, adding a 10-yard first down reverse…His 71 grabs rank fourth in the Atlantic Conference for 2017, topped by Steve Ismael of Syracuse (105), Ervin Phillips of Syracuse (89) and Olamide Zaccheaus of Virginia (80)…His 964 yards placed third in the league behind Ishmael (1,347) and Kelvin Harmon of North Carolina State (993)…The only ACC players with more than Phillips’ seven touchdown catches are Greg Dortch of Wake Forest (nine), De Fitzpatrick of Louisville (nine) and Braxton Berrios of Miami (nine)…The team’s active leader with 44 career starts, he also holds the school record by catching at least one pass in 39 consecutive appearances…Part of a unit that placed 45th in the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision in pass efficiency (138.06 rating) as they rank 61st nationally and eighth in the Atlantic Coast Conference with an average of 236.92 aerial yards per game…They are currently 63rd in the FBS and sixth in the ACC in scoring (28.75 points per game), 63rd in the major college ranks in rushing (167.17 ypg) and 61st in the country while falling to seventh in the league in total offense (404.08 ypg).
Phillips Receiving Statistical Breakdown…The split end has been targeted 96 times, catching 71 balls (73.96% success rate), as the opposition deflected ten throws (10.20% of the targets) and his quarterback misfired on fifteen other chances (15.31% of his targets). Quarterback Josh Jackson also threw the ball away in his area six times while being pressured…Among his 71 catches, Phillips recorded 50 first downs via his receptions and eight more via opposing penalties (seven pass interference calls and one face mask charge)…Of the sixteen opposing penalties recorded, 50% (eight) came on plays where Phillips was the target…Converted sixteen third-down tosses (22.53% of his catches) and two more via fourth-down catches…Had 42 receptions that gained at least ten yards (59.15%), including seventeen for twenty yards or longer (23.94%)…Downed twenty of his receptions inside the red zone, including three near the goal line…In addition to his seven scoring grabs, Phillips had key receptions that set up ten other touchdown drives and on seven possessions that resulted in field goals.
Phillips’ Offensive Impact…The senior accounted for 31.98% of the team’s receptions (71-of-222) and 33.91% of their receiving yards (964-of-2,843), as he registered 35.0% of the Hokies’ touchdown catches (7-of-20)…Recorded 44.62% of the team’s aerial first downs (58-of-130)…Either scored or help set up 40.58% of the offense’s scoring output (140-of-345 points; seven touchdown catches and receptions that set up ten more touchdown drives and seven field goals).
2017 SEASON GAME ANALYSIS
West Virginia…Phillips eased Virginia Tech quarterback Josh Jackson into his role as the team’s starter, as the split end hauled in seven passes for a then career-high 138 yards and a touchdown in a 31-24 victory over 22nd-ranked West Virginia in the season opener Friday evening at FedExField. The two teams renewed a rivalry that had been dormant since 2005, as the Hokies and Mountaineers went back and forth in the second half before Tech scored late to give Tech their eighth win over the Mountaineers in the past eleven meetings…Jackson, the first freshman to start at quarterback for Tech since Michael Vick in 1999, took the first snap for the game and lobbed a 4-yard pass to Phillips to begin the 2017 campaign…He later converted a fourth-& -1 keeper into a 7-yard first down at the WVU 29. On the next play, he located Phillips with a 28-yard pass, as the split end pulled the ball in by making a leaping stab for the sphere while being surrounded by four defenders before he hit the turf at the 1-yard line. The 12-play, 58-yard first quarter drive stalled and Tech settled for a 25-yard field goal…Before the opening frame ended, Phillips again went aerial to snare a 22-yarder near midfield…Phillips’ next big catch came just before halftime, as he beat cornerback Mike Daniels Jr. on an out-route for a 28-yard reception that was downed inside the Mountaineers’ red zone, setting up Jackson’s keeper up the middle for a 5-yard scoring run at the end of an 8-play march…On the first play of the second half, Phillips received the ball from Jackson in the backfield and attempted to complete a toss to flanker Sean Savoy, but the attempt failed to reach its target. That drive would end when cornerback Elijah Battle deflected a third-& -6 Jackson pass attempt intended for Phillips…
Before the third quarter concluded, Phillips got into the scoring act, as Jackson fired a deep pass to the split end for a 32-yard touchdown. Cam simply blew past the defense down the left side of the field. He hauled the ball in just a few feet from the end zone, with both cornerback Hakeem Bailey and strong-side linebacker Xavier Preston making passive attempts to tackle the receiver before he disappeared into the end zone to give Tech a 24-17 lead entering the fourth quarter…With 7:10 left in the game, Phillips was mauled by Daniels trying to secure a first-& -goal lob from Jackson at the WVU 2-yard line. Daniels was called for pass interference and the penalty set up a 3-yard scoring run by tailback Travon McMillian…Virginia Tech’s final possession saw Phillips pull in a 14-yard toss and then see the Mountaineers’ Druw Bowen also be penalized for interfering on a pass targeted for the senior split end.
Record Watch…Phillips’ 138 yards receiving were his then career-best, as he also recorded his fourth 100-yard performance…His seven catches gives him 172 for his career, taking over sole possession of third place on the school career-record list from Danny Coale (165; 2008-11), ranking behind Isaiah Ford (210; 2014-16) and Jarrett Boykin (184; 2008-11)…Became the seventh player in Tech annals to record 2,200 yards receiving (2,001), ranking fifth on the career-record chart behind Ford (2,967), Boykin (2,884), Coale (2,658) and Ricky Scales (2,272; 1972-74), while that group was also joined by Antonio Freeman (2,200; 1991-94).
Head to Head Competition…LCB#24-Hakeem Bailey (6:00-193)-Recorded eight tackles (7 solos) that included two stops for losses of four yards; RCB#4-Mike Daniels (5:11-203)-Posted six tackles (4 solos) with two pass deflections.
Phillips Offensive Impact…The split end caught 7-of-10 targeted passes (70.00%), as the opposition deflected one toss and his quarterback misfired on two others. Phillips recorded six first downs via receptions and two more on WVU pass interference penalties, as six of his catches gained at least ten yards, including four for twenty yards or longer. In addition to his touchdown, he had key grabs that set up two other touchdown drives and one possession that resulted in a field goal. He converted 3-of-4 third-down snaps (75.00%) and had five catches downed inside the red zone, including three near the goal line.
Team Offensive Impact…On fifteen offensive possessions, Virginia Tech completed 15-of-27 passes (55.56%) for 235 yards, eight first downs, one touchdown and no interceptions. The team gained
234 yards, with eleven first downs and three touchdowns on 45 carries (5.20 ypc) to generate a total of 469 yards via 72 plays (6.51 yards per attempt).
Opponent Defensive Impact…West Virginia recorded 73 tackles (41 solos) with one sack for minus three yards, eight stops for losses of 12 yards, three quarterback pressures, no forced fumbles, no fumble recoveries, no interceptions and four pass deflections.
Delaware…For the fifth time during his last six appearances, Phillips recorded a touchdown catch, as he recorded six receptions for 90 yards. Greg Stroman returned a punt for a touchdown, Josh Jackson threw two touchdown passes and the Hokies’ defense recorded a shutout, lifting 18th-ranked Virginia Tech to a 27-0 win in a non-conference game at Lane Stadium on Saturday…The split end pulled in two passes for first downs just before halftime that set up Tavon McMillian’s 4-yard scoring catch that concluded a 6-play, 80-yard series. He first won a jump ball battle with cornerback Malcolm Brown to snare a 22-yard slant pass from Josh Jackson and the quarterback found Phillips with a sideline pass for eight yards two snaps later to get the ball into Blue Hens territory…Brown later exacted some revenge, stripping Phillips of the ball after a 15-yard receptions. The Blue Hens recovered the ball, but failed to convert that turnover into points late during third quarter action…
On the fly, Phillips breezed past second level defenders, where he was picked up by cornerback Nijuel Hill, who had the receiver well covered before inadvertently stepping on the back of Phillips’ left foot, which caused the defender to tumble, as the split end broke free, angled towards the middle of the field, pulling the ball in before stepping into the end zone ahead of a missed tackle by strong safety Ray Jones in the fourth quarter. With a comfortable 24-0 lead, Tech began substituting for the first unit to allow reserves to gain needed playing time during the final 11:50 left on the game clock.
Record Watch…Phillips’ career receiving yards stood at 2,291 after the game, moving him ahead of Ricky Scales (2,272; 1972-74) for fourth place on Tech’s all-time list behind Isaiah Ford (2,967; 2014-16), Jarrett Boykin (2,884; 2008-11) and Danny Coale (2,658; 2008-11)…He also recorded his 12th touchdown reception, tying Eddie Royal (2004-07) for tenth on the Tech all-time chart…His 178 catches tied Calvin Johnson of Georgia Tech (2004-06) for 30th on the Atlantic Coast Conference career-record chart.
Head to Head Competition…LCB#1-Malcolm Brown (6:00-204)-Recorded four tackles (3 solos) with a forced fumble (on Phillips) and one quarterback pressure; RCB#16-Nijuel Hill (5:10-183)-Posted two tackles with one pass break-up, but allowed the touchdown catch by Phillips.
Phillips Offensive Impact…The split end caught 6-of-9 targeted passes (66.67%), as his quarterback misfired on three tosses. Phillips recorded five first downs via receptions and reached the red zone with two of his catches, including one for a touchdown. He gained at least ten yards on four grabs, including two for twenty yards or longer.
Team Offensive Impact…On fourteen offensive possessions, Virginia Tech completed 16-of-29 passes (55.17%) for 222 yards, nine first downs, two touchdowns and no interceptions. The team gained 81 yards, with four first downs and no touchdowns on 28 carries (2.89 ypc) to generate a total of 303 yards via 57 plays (5.32 yards per attempt).
Opponent Defensive Impact…Delaware recorded 57 tackles (27 solos) with one sack for minus five yards, two stops for losses of six yards, seven quarterback pressures, one forced fumble, one fumble recovery, no interceptions and one pass deflection.
East Carolina…Phillips tied the school game-record with fourteen receptions, good for a career-high 189 yards, as his three touchdowns were one shy of another Tech game mark. Thanks to Phillips’ exploits, quarterback Josh Jackson tied a school record with five touchdown passes to lead the 16th-ranked Hokies to a 64-17 non-conference victory over East Carolina at Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium…A quick stutter-step move by Phillips took Chris Love out of his backpedal too early and as he tried to recover, the split end was already in the end zone. The cornerback made a frantic stab at Jackson’s pass to Phillips in the left corner of the end zone. Draped over the receiver’s shoulders, Phillips pulled the ball in with his right hand and secured it with his left, as free safety Korrin Wiggins came over to try and help Love dislodge the ball from the Tech senior, but Phillips held on for the first of his three touchdowns during the contest…During an early second quarter 11-play, 56-yard drive that ended with a Tech 25-yard field goal, Phillips was the featured attraction, snaring passes that were good for first downs of 10- and 12-yards, along with grabbing a 7-yarder to get the Hokies field position inside the red zone for the successful three-pointer…Phillips again established field position for a 34-yard field goal during Tech’s next series, registering first down of 13- and 14-yards before his 4-yarder placed the ball at the ECU 17…For good measure, Phillips kept the kicking team busy, as the table-setter produced on a third-down catch that god the ball to the Pirates’ 20. With forty-three seconds remaining in the first half, Joey Slye then booted a 37-yarder, as Tech headed to the locker room holding a 23-17 lead…Phillips started the second half where he left the team before halftime – in scoring position. Jackson fired a pass to Phillips on a post route and the receiver pulled in the toss between safety Korrin Wiggins and boundary corner Corey Seargent to increase Tech’s lead to 29-17 two minutes into the third stanza…For the sixth consecutive series, Phillips got Tech into position to score. With him setting up three field goals and scoring twice already, he again pulled in a pass for a touchdown. Late in the third quarter, Phillips’ double move and a play fake by his quarterback saw three defenders baited on the play, freeing the split end to take a post pattern toss into the end zone for 45 yards after kicking into second gear to fly past field cornerback Travis Phillips. With fourteen catches, three touchdowns and setting up nine more points at that point, Phillips was given the rest of the twenty-two minutes left on the game clock to watch the action from the sidelines after a “job well done.”
Record Watch…The fourteen receptions by Phillips broke the previous school game-record of thirteen, first set by Donald Snell vs. Cincinnati on August 31st, 1985 and later by Nick Cullen vs. Southern Mississippi on October 27th, 1990…His ten first down catches also broke Snell’s old school mark of nine from the same Cincinnati clash…This marked the 30th consecutive game that the split end caught at least one pass, tying the school record set by Isaiah Ford (2014-16). That total includes catching at least one pass since the first game of his sophomore year…His three scoring receptions gave his fifteen for his career, tying Sidney Snell (1978-80) for eighth on the school’s all-time list. The record by a Tech player is four touchdown catches – set by Ernest Ernest Wilford vs. Syracuse in 2002. His three scoring grabs are the most by a Hokie in a game since Bucky Hodges also had three in a triple overtime game vs. Duke on October 24th, 2015...This was the fourth time that Phillips gained at least 100 yards receiving in a game and his 189 yards shattered his previous best of 138 yards vs. West Virginia on September 3rd, 2017…His ten receptions in the first half are the most by a Virginia Tech player since the team joined the Atlantic Coast Conference in 2004…
His 192 receptions moved him to second place on the Tech career-record chart behind Isaiah Ford (210; 2014-16), topping Jarrett Boykin (184; 2008-11)…Only Ford (2,967), Boykin (2,884) and Danny Coale (2,658; 2008-11) have gained more yards receiving that Phillips’ 2,480 in school annals…His fourteen catches rank 17th on the ACC game-record list, but the record is just sixteen, held by nine players – most recently by Sammy Watkins of Clemson, vs. Ohio State in 2013.
Head to Head Competition…BCB#35-Chris Love (5:10-183)-Recorded five tackles (4 solos) and deflected two passes, but was beaten by Phillips for two touchdowns; BCB#5-Corey Seargant (5:10-184)-Posted eight tackles (6 solos); FCB#14-Travis Phillips (5:11-178)-Made two solo tackles and was beaten by Phillips for one touchdown.
Phillips Offensive Impact…The split end caught 14-of-14 targeted passes (100%) as his quarterback misfired while under pressure and threw the ball away in the split end’s area. Phillips recorded a school game-record ten first downs, converting 1-of-3 third-down chances. He had eight receptions for at least ten yards, including two for twenty yards or longer, downing five of his catches inside the red zone. In addition to his three touchdown catches, he had key receptions that set up three field goals.
Team Offensive Impact…On fourteen offensive possessions, Virginia Tech completed 25-of-33 passes (75.76%) for 388 yards, sixteen first downs, five touchdowns and no interceptions. The team gained 287 yards, with sixteen first downs and three touchdowns on 62 carries (4.63 ypc) to generate a total of a season-high 675 yards via 95 plays (7.11 yards per attempt).
Opponent Defensive Impact…East Carolina recorded 115 tackles (47 solos) with one sack for minus 11 yards, five stops for losses of 24 yards, three quarterback pressures, no forced fumbles, no fumble recoveries, no interceptions and three pass deflections.
Old Dominion…After recording two 100-yard receiving performances during his first three years in the Tech program, Phillips posted his third such “century mark” effort for the 2017 campaign, as he pulled in seven tosses for 106 yards, as the Hokies’ defense notched its second shutout of the season, winning 38-0 at Lane Stadium…Catching a pass for a school record 31st consecutive game, the split end snared a 29-yarder before he was tackled at the ODU 12, setting up a 31-yard field goal late in the first frame. Phillips caught the pass over the middle, pivoting suddenly to elude two defenders before breaking towards the left sideline on that reception…Running a slant pattern, Phillips turned, caught the ball and took off for a 23-yard sprint midway through second quarter action…On the next series, ODU’s Rob Thompson was penalized for interfering on a pass targeted for the split end, placing the ball at the opponent’s 17-yard line, where tailback Steven Peoples was then located by quarterback Josh Jackson for a 17-yard score that gave Tech a 10-0 lead…Just before the team headed to the locker room during halftime, Phillips was on the receiving end of a third-& -11 screen pass from Jackson that he caught while surrounded by three defenders for a 23-yard gain. On the next snap, Jackson again found his split end for a 19-yard grab that set up a 1-yard scoring plunge by Peoples to cap an 11-play, 79-yard series…On Tech’s first series in the third quarter, you could credit Phillips with an “assist” on another aerial touchdown. Jackson faked a handoff to Peoples, who then broke out of the backfield to trail Phillips, who was racing down the left sidelines. Jackson unleashed a pass directed at his tight end, who was sandwiched between corner Brandon Anderson and nickel back Denzell Williams. As Phillips reached the end zone, he turned around and was crunched by the two defenders. The ball ricocheted off Phillips’ chest, as the receiver and his two opponents crashed to the ground, but the ball popped right into Peoples’ hands as he crossed the goal line for a sensational 43-yard touchdown…
Record Watch…With seven receptions vs. ODU, Phillips has 199 catches for his career, one shy of joining Isaiah Ford (210; 2014-16) as the only Hokies to catch at least 200 passes during a career, as the split end holds the second spot on the school’s all-time list…He increased his receiving yardage total to 2,586 yards, as the fourth player in Tech annals to gain at least 2,500 aerial yards (joined by Ford at 2,967; Jarrett Boykin at 2,884 from 2008-11; and Danny Coale at 2,658 yards from 2008-11), he also became the 31st player in Atlantic Coast Conference history to gain 2,500 receiving yards…
Phillips also recorded his fifth 100-yard receiving performance during his career – his third in four games during the 2017 schedule…He also came into sole possession of the school record by catching at least one pass in 31 consecutive appearances (old record was 30 games by Isaiah Ford).
Head to Head Competition…BCB#1-Brandon Addison (6:01-179)-Recorded six tackles (4 solos) that included one for a 2-yard loss; FCB#5-Jamez Brickhouse (5:10-183)-Posted three tackles and broke up one pass attempt.
Phillips Offensive Impact…The split end caught 7-of-8 targeted passes (87.50%) as his quarterback misfired while under pressure and threw the ball away in the split end’s area. Phillips recorded five first downs from receptions and another from an ODU pass interference penalty, converting both of his third-down chances, as one of his grabs was downed inside the red zone…Had four receptions for at least ten yards, including three for twenty yards or longer…Came up with key catches that set up two touchdown drives and one series that resulted in a field goal, as he also tipped a pass in the end zone that was caught by a teammate for another touchdown.
Team Offensive Impact…On thirteen offensive possessions, Virginia Tech completed 21-of-32 passes (65.63%) for 311 yards, sixteen first downs, three touchdowns and one interception. The team gained 271 yards, with fourteen first downs and two touchdowns on 57 carries (4.75 ypc) to generate a total of 582 yards via 89 plays (6.54 yards per attempt).
Opponent Defensive Impact…Old Dominion recorded 107 tackles (41 solos) with one sack for minus three yards, five stops for losses of 10 yards, two quarterback pressures, no forced fumbles, no fumble recoveries, one interception and three pass deflections.
Clemson…Virginia Tech suffered its first loss for the season, dropping a 31-17 decision to Clemson, as Phillips extended his streak of catching at least one pass to a school-record 32 straight games, finishing the contest with seven receptions for 74 yards…He set that new mark midway through the opening quarter, converting a third-& -4 grab into a 6-yard first down…Just before halftime, the split end gave Tech a grand scoring opportunity after he hauled in a sideline pass for 13 yards and then picked up 21 yards on a slant pass, but Tech’s 45-yard field goal attempt was wide-right with two seconds remaining in the second quarter…In the fourth quarter, Phillips converted a third-& -9 Josh Jackson pass into a 10-yard first down, but on the next snap, the quarterback was intercepted, ending a nine-play possession…Jackson’s struggles were uncharacteristic, but one has to remember, he is a freshman. Still, he threw the ball away while under pressure into Phillips’ area that was simply impossible for anyone to catch four times and on three other attempts, the opposition batted the ball away before it could reach the senior receiver.
Record Watch…Phillips improved to 2,660 yards receiving, tying Donovan Varner of Duke (2008-11) for 26th place on the ACC all-time record chart…He became the 18th player in league history to catch at least 200 passes (206) in a career and the second Hokie to reach that level…His 206 receptions tied DeAndre Hopkins of Clemson (2010-12) for 15th place on the Atlantic Coast Conference career-record list.
Head to Head Competition…BCB#31-Ryan Carter (5:09-182)-Recorded two tackles and broke up two of the three passes deflected away from Phillips.
Phillips Offensive Impact…The split end caught 7-of-12 targeted passes (58.33%) as his opponent deflected three of those tosses and his quarterback misfired twice and also threw the ball away four times into the split end’s area while under pressure. Phillips recorded four first downs, but converted just 1-of-5 third-down throws. He gained at least ten yards on four of his grabs, including one for twenty yards or longer…For the first time this season, he did not come up with any key catches that would have set up touchdown drives, nor were any of his receptions downed inside the red zone.
Team Offensive Impact…On fourteen offensive possessions, Virginia Tech completed 30-of-45 passes (66.67%) for 252 yards, eleven first downs, one touchdown and two interceptions. The team gained 90 yards, with six first downs and one touchdown on 28 carries (3.21 ypc) to generate a total of 342 yards via 73 plays (4.68 yards per attempt).
Opponent Defensive Impact…Clemson recorded 90 tackles (34 solos) with two sacks for minus 14 yards, eight stops for losses of 32 yards, six quarterback pressures, one forced fumble, one fumble recovery, two interceptions for 22 yards in returns and four pass deflections.
Boston College…Phillips suffered a sprained right foot early in the game and did not return. He did catch a pass for an 11-yard gain, extending his own school record streak of catching at least one pass to 32 straight games…His one reception sparked a 77-yard drive that featured flanker Sean Savoy scoring on a deep toss from Josh Jackson.
Record Watch…With his 207th catch as a Hokie, Phillips is four shy of breaking Isaiah Ford’s school career-record of 210 catches (2014-16)…His 207 receptions tied Peter Warrick of Florida State (1996-99) and Donovan Varner of Duke (2008-11) for 13th place on the Atlantic Coast Conference all-time record chart…His 2,671 receiving yards surpassed Varner’s 2,660 for 26th on the ACC record list.
North Carolina…Phillips used the bye week to help his right foot sprain heal, but he was still limited in practices and managed to catch just four balls for 49 yards vs. the Tar Heels, but he recorded his 16th touchdown catch in the process during a 59-7 rout of UNC…Tech looked rested and focused coming off a bye week and played that way, scoring in all three phases of the game in the first half and bolting out to a 35-0 halftime lead. Tech scored twice on defense, getting the first score of the game on a 12-yard fumble return for a touchdown from defensive tackle Ricky Walker in what served as a foreshadowing of things to come for the Tar Heels…Phillips’ first catch for the day was a familiar scene – pulling in the ball while being mauled by multiple defenders. It took three Tar Heels to bring the split end down after he converted a third-& -9 reception into a 14-yard first down early in the opening stanza…Phillips helped set up a 12-play, 55-yard touchdown drive in the second quarter, as he pulled down a 12-yard slant pass after battling J.K. Britt for the ball and later turned a short third-& -8 toss from Josh Jackson into a 9-yard gain before Britt brought him down at the UNC 17. Two plays later, tailback Travon McMillian scored on a 4-yard snatch…With 1:20 left in the first half, the senior again set the table for another Tech touchdown march. He scooped up a screen pass for six yards at midfield and then saw cornerback K.J. Sails get charged with a pass interference call on a pass intended for Phillips, placing the ball at the UNC 8, where Jackson then lobbed an 8-yard scoring toss to Eric Kumah for a 35-0 lead heading into the locker room…Coming back from the break, Tech needed only three plays to score after they picked off a pass from UNC quarterback Brandon Harris. On third-& -3, Jackson located Phillips on a post pattern for an 8-yard touchdown. The split end, known for his incredible initial step off the snap, was already pulling the ball in and angling into the end zone as Tar Heels free safety Myles Dorn looked on in amazement, knowing he had blown his coverage assignment. It was the sixteenth touchdown recorded by Phillips as a Hokie…The first unit then gave was to the Tech reserves for the remaining 27:40 left on the game clock, holding a 42-0 lead after the Phillips score.
Record Watch…Phillips’ five receptions increased his Tech total to 212, breaking the old school career-record of 210 catches by Isaiah Ford (2014-16)…That total also topped Ford and Billy McMullen of Virginia (210; 1999-2002) for 11th place on the ACC all-time record chart and improved his school record total to 34 consecutive games with at least one reception…He also produced his 16th touchdown catch, tying Josh Morgan (2004-07) for seventh on the school career-record chart behind Ford (24), Antonio Freeman (22; 1991-94), Bucky Hodges (20; 2014-16), Jarrett Boykin (18; 2008-11), Ricky Scales (18; 1972-74) and André Davis (18; 1998-2001)…His 2,720 receiving yards rank third on the school chart and 25th on the ACC all-time list, surpassing Kerry Watkins of Georgia Tech (2,680 yards; 1999-2002).
Head to Head Competition…BCB#9-K.J. Sails (5:11-177)-Recorded Two tackles with three pass deflections, including one that was targeted for Phillips; SS#1-Myles Dorn-Posted nine tackles (5 solos) and assisted in a tackle-for-loss, but was beaten by Phillips for a touchdown.
Phillips Offensive Impact…The split end caught 4-of-7 targeted passes (57.14%) as his opponent deflected one of those tosses and his quarterback misfired twice. Phillips recorded four first downs via receptions and another via the opponent’s pass interference, converting both of his third-down catches, as three of his grabs were downed inside the red zone. In addition to his touchdown catch, he had key receptions to set up two more touchdown drives.
Team Offensive Impact…On sixteen offensive possessions, Virginia Tech completed 15-of-27 passes (55.56%) for 202 yards, eleven first downs, four touchdowns and no interceptions. The team gained 181 yards, with seven first downs and one touchdown on 46 carries (3.93 ypc) to generate a total of 383 yards via 73 plays (5.25 yards per attempt).
Opponent Defensive Impact…North Carolina recorded 76 tackles (38 solos) with one sack for minus three yards, six stops for losses of 12 yards, two quarterback pressures, no forced fumbles, no fumble recoveries, no interceptions and four pass deflections.
Duke…Phillips added four more receptions to his school career-record total of 216 grabs, as he gained 35 yards and Tech’s defense kept Duke out of the end zone to headline their 24-3 victory in an ACC game played in the pouring rain at Lane Stadium…Also extending his school record to 35 consecutive games with at least one reception, Phillips somehow managed to pull down a 12-yard screen pass with two defenders draped over his body early in the first frame, but that drive would end when Josh Jackson poorly threw a fourth-& -5 pass targeted for the split end…Phillips gave Tech fans and teammates a scare later in the first quarter. Trying to prevent an interception on Jackson’s pass over the middle, Phillips collided with cornerback Bryon Fields and safety Jordan Hayes, as all three hit the ground hard. Fields got up to check on Hayes, as the safety and s0plit end remained motionless. On the play, trying to break up the pass, Phillips clobbered Hayes in the stomach. The receiver returned to the bench – just shaken up from the impact of the hit. Hayes remained on the field until trainers finally assisted him to the locker room with a stomach contusion. He returned to action later in the contest, but after the game, it was revealed that he played the rest of the way with what was later diagnosed as a fractured rib.
Record Watch…Phillips increased his school record string to 35 consecutive games with at least one catch and his Tech career-record to 216 receptions...His 216 catches tied Desmond Clark of Wake Forest (1995-98) for tenth place on the Atlantic Coast Conference all-time record chart, and his 2,755 yards receiving – third best by a Tech player – saw him surpass Clemson’s Aaron Kelly (2,733 yards; 2005-08) for 23rd place in ACC annals.
Head to Head Competition…LCB#14-Bryon Fields (5:11-188)-Recorded six tackles (3 solos) while deflecting a pass targeted for Phillips.
Phillips Offensive Impact…The split end caught 4-of-7 targeted passes (57.14%) as his opponent deflected two of those tosses and his quarterback misfired once. Phillips recorded two first downs via receptions, but failed to convert on a third-down play and a fourth-down snap. He had two catches that gained at least ten yards.
Team Offensive Impact…On thirteen offensive possessions, Virginia Tech completed 13-of-28 passes (46.43%) for 200 yards, nine first downs, one touchdown and no interceptions. The team gained 187 yards, with eleven first downs and two touchdowns on 48 carries (3.90 ypc) to generate a total of 387 yards via 76 plays (5.09 yards per attempt).
Opponent Defensive Impact…Duke recorded 81 tackles (37 solos) with one sack for minus five yards, two stops for losses of six yards, two quarterback pressures, no forced fumbles, no fumble recoveries, no interceptions and six pass deflections.
Miami…Phillips registered the six 100-yard receiving performance during his career – four coming during a nine-game stretch this season, as he collected seven passes for 101 yards in a 28-10 loss to the ninth-ranked Hurricanes. The victory was the 13th-straight for Miami, as they remained the only unbeaten team in the Atlantic Coast Conference and just one of four teams in the major college ranks not to suffer a loss this season (others are Alabama, Central Florida and Wisconsin)…The split end made a stabbing grab to pull in a 27-yard pass before being leveled at the Miami 18 with 0:53 left in the first half, setting the team up for a possible score, but fellow receiver Sean Savoy turned the ball over when he fumbled it after making a 6-yard catch on the next snap and Miami recovered… Late in the third quarter, Phillips gave the Hokies another opportunity after he broke free from two tackles for a 19-yard gain after the catch, but quarterback Josh Jackson was intercepted four plays later and the Hurricanes converted that turnover into a touchdown drive for a 28-10 lead…With 8:46 left in the contest, Phillips raced by a trio of defenders before cornerback stopped the split end after a 32-yard reception, but like the two previous possessions, Jackson turned the ball over after he fumbled it while getting sacked for a 7-yard loss and Miami recovered, crushing the third golden opportunity to score that Phillips had generated for the Hokies…Phillips also aided the Hokies’ chances for scoring on their last possession, but like the others, it would only end with a Tech turnover. Miami’s defense started to play sloppy and it cost them, as Young was flagged for pass interference on a fourth-& -2 toss to Phillips, giving Virginia Tech a first down at their own 35. He then caught a pass for seven yards to get to the VT 42. On fourth-& -17, the split end gained six yards after the catch, but Young was again flagged, this time, for grabbing the receiver’s face mask and Tech now had the ball at Miami’s 37-yard line. In another assault on the receiver, a third pass interference was called during this drive. Now at the Miami 14, Jackson threw into the end zone, but the ball was intercepted by safety Sheldrick Redwine, who ran the ball out to the Miami 45. With eight seconds left, the Hurricanes took a knee and ended the contest.
Record Watch…The game marked the 36th consecutive contest that Phillips caught a pass, a school record…He improved his Tech all-time record to 223 receptions, taking over sole possession of tenth place on the Atlantic Coast Conference record charts from Desmond Clark of Wake Forest (216 catches; 1995-98)….His 2,856 yards receiving leave him 29 yards shy of passing Jarrett Boykin (2,884; 2008-11) for second on the Tech record list and that figured inched him ahead of Hakeem Nicks of North Carolina (2,840 yards; 2006-08) for 20th place on the ACC record chart…His 58 grabs this season rank sixth on the school season-record list, moving past Isaiah Ford (56 in 2014)…His 793 yards receiving leave him seven yards shy of recording the 11th 800-yard season by a Tech receiver.
Head to Head Competition…LCB#12-Malik Young (5:09-183)-Recorded seven tackles (5 solos), but was charged with two pass interference calls and one face mask penalty while covering Phillips; Nickel CB#28-Michael Jackson (6:01-203)-Posted six tackles (5 solos) with a stop for a 2-yard loss and one pass deflection.
Phillips Offensive Impact…The split end caught 7-of-7 targeted passes (100.0%), as Phillips recorded four first downs via receptions and three others via penalties (two pass interference calls, one face mask), as he was also charged with interfering on one pass attempt. He did not convert a third-down attempt, but did convert two fourth-down snaps on penalties. Three of his receptions gained at least ten yards, including two for twenty yards or longer, as one of his catches was downed inside the red zone.
Team Offensive Impact…On thirteen offensive possessions, Virginia Tech completed 20-of-32 passes (62.50%) for 197 yards, eleven first downs, no touchdowns and two interceptions. The team gained 102 yards, with eight first downs and one touchdown on 43 carries (2.37 ypc) to generate a total of 299 yards via 75 plays (3.99 yards per attempt).
Opponent Defensive Impact…Miami recorded 74 tackles (52 solos) with four sacks for minus 25 yards, eight stops for losses of 37 yards, four quarterback pressures, two forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries for 37 yards, two interceptions for 65 yards in returns and one pass deflection.
Georgia Tech…Quarterback Josh Jackson misfired on five pass attempts targeted for his split end, as Phillips closed out the day with just two receptions for eight yards. Georgia Tech’s TaQuon Marshall threw an 80-yard touchdown pass to Ricky Jeune with 6:30 remaining to lift the Yellow Jackets to a 28-22 victory over the 17th-ranked Hokies…Phillips did help Tech score, in a round-about way. Josh Jackson fired a slant pass to the split end inside the GT red zone, but cornerback Lance Austin was called for pass interference, putting the ball at the Yellow Jackets’ 14-yard line. On the next snap, slot receiver Sean Savoy ran 14 yards on a reverse for a touchdown with 3:43 left in the first half…Tech’s final drive saw Phillips stopped a yard short after catching a third-& -2 pass and then see a fourth-& -1 toss from Jackson to the split end broken up by cornerback Ajani Kerr, as Georgia Tech then ran out the final 1:03 remaining on the game clock.
Record Watch…The game marked the 37th consecutive contest that Phillips caught a pass, a school record…He needs 21 yards (2,864) to top Jarrett Boykin (2,884; 2008-11) for second on the Tech record list and 19th on the Atlantic Coast Conference record books…With 225 receptions, he needs five more to top Michael Campanaro of Wake Forest (229; 2010-13) for ninth place in ACC annals…
He recorded the sixth 60-reception season by a player in Tech history, as his sixty catches, to date, ties Danny Coale (2011) for fifth on the school season-record chart behind Isaiah Ford (79 in 2016), Phillips’ 76 snatches in 2016, Ford’s 75 grabs in 2015 and Jarrett Boykin (61 in 2011).
Head to Head Competition…BCB#17-Lance Austin (5:10-188)-Recorded two solo tackles and broke up a pass targeted for Phillips.
Phillips Offensive Impact…The split end caught 2-of-6 targeted passes (33.33%), as the opponent deflected one toss and his quarterback misfired on two others. Phillips recorded a first down via a pass interference call that set up a Virginia Tech touchdown drive.
Team Offensive Impact…On twelve offensive possessions, Virginia Tech completed 14-of-26 passes (53.85%) for 153 yards, seven first downs, no touchdowns and no interceptions. The team gained 105 yards, with six first downs and two touchdowns on 36 carries (2.92 ypc) to generate a total of 258 yards via 62 plays (4.16 yards per attempt).
Opponent Defensive Impact…Georgia Tech recorded 58 tackles (42 solos) with two sacks for minus 16 yards, six stops for losses of 22 yards, three quarterback pressures, no forced fumbles, no fumble recoveries, no interceptions in returns and three pass deflections.
Pittsburgh…Phillips hauled in the game-winning touchdown and the defense had a goal-line stand in the final seconds to carry the Hokies to a 20-14 victory over Pittsburgh at Lane Stadium. The senior also broke the school record for career receiving yardage when he hauled in a 23-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Josh Jackson with 6:23 remaining. The Hokies went for two points and converted, but a penalty wiped it out, and the subsequent extra point gave them the 20-14 lead…
Phillips paced the Hokies with eight catches for 117 yards and the score, marking the fifth time this season and the sixth time during his career that the receiver gained at least 100 yards in a game…A short sideline catch for four yards, followed by an 18-yarder on a post pattern gave the Hokies the field position needed to kick a 30-yard field goal when their 12-play, 61-yard drive stalled in the second quarter…Jackson had a case of the “yips” during a third quarter possession, misfiring on four of his five targets to Phillips, including one on fourth down, but the quarterback got back on track after he was briefly pulled from the game…Jackson returned to connect with Phillips on a 36-yard slant pass that placed the ball inside Pitt territory before the Hokies capped that 10-play, 65-yard march with a 27-yard field goal to spark a fourth quarter rally…With 6:23 remaining in the game and Virginia Tech trailing by a 14-13 score, Jackson decided it was time to go to his favorite target. With a quick burst off the snap, Phillips raced down the left sideline and just before the plane of the end zone, he was met by cornerback Avonte Maddox, and safeties Dennis Briggs and Jerome Whitehead. The high toss from Jackson was pulled in by the leaping receiver, who stepped around a fallen Maddox and between the two safeties for the game-winning 23-yard touchdown that again placed his name into the school record books.
Record Watch…Phillips increased his receiving figures to 233 receptions for 2,981 yards and seventeen touchdowns, becoming the school’s career-record holder for yardage, topping Jarrett Boykin (2,884 yards; 2008-11) and Isaiah Ford (2,967 yards, 2014-16)…This also marked his 38th consecutive game with at least one catch and his fifth 100-yard receiving performance for the campaign, giving him seven total as a Hokie, tying Danny Coale and Marcus Davis for fourth in program history…His 233 receptions topped Aaron Kelly of Clemson (232; 2005-08) for eighth place on the Atlantic Coast Conference career-record list and his 2,981 receiving yards usurped Ford for 12th on the ACC all-time chart.
Head to Head Competition…BCB#14-Avonte Maddox (5:09-181)-Recorded three solo tackles, three pass deflections and one interception; but allowed the 23-yard touchdown catch by Phillips; SS#9-Jerome Whitehead (5:11-199)-Recorded ten tackles (6 solos).
Phillips Offensive Impact…The split end caught 8-of-11 targeted passes (72.73%), as the opponent deflected one toss and his quarterback misfired on two others. Phillips recorded six first downs, converting all four third-down attempts, but did not convert a fourth-down toss. He had five catches for at least ten yards, including two for twenty yards or longer and in addition to his touchdown catch, he had key receptions that led to a pair of field goals.
Team Offensive Impact…On thirteen offensive possessions, Virginia Tech completed 17-of-37 passes (45.95%) for 218 yards, eleven first downs, one touchdown and one interception. The team gained 157 yards, with seven first downs and one touchdown on 40 carries (3.93 ypc) to generate a total of 375 yards via 77 plays (4.87 yards per attempt).
Opponent Defensive Impact…Pittsburgh recorded 71 tackles (37 solos) with two sacks for minus seven yards, two stops for losses of seven yards, three quarterback pressures, no forced fumbles, no fumble recoveries, one interception and five pass deflections.
Virginia…Quarterback Josh Jackson threw a third-quarter touchdown pass to Chris Cunningham, and the Hokies’ defense made it stand, as Tech shut out in-state rival Virginia 10-0 in the annual Commonwealth Clash game…Even though Phillips was not involved in the scoring drive, he earned his 44th start – most on the team – as all three of his receptions for a total of 46 yards converted third-down plays…He hauled in a 23-yard reception on third-& -7 toward the end of the first quarter, and that catch extended his school-record streak of catching at least one pass in a game to 39 consecutive games…Prior to the reception, he recorded a first down on a reverse…In the third frame, Jackson located Phillips with a third-& -4 sideline toss for 12 yards and a first down…He added an 11-yard catch on a third-& -4 play to begin fourth quarter action.
Record Watch…Phillips closed out the regular season with 71 receptions for 964 yards and seven touchdowns…His 71 grabs rank fourth in the Atlantic Conference for 2017, topped by Steve Ismael of Syracuse (105), Ervin Phillips of Syracuse (89) and Olamide Zaccheaus of Virginia (80)…His 964 yards placed third in the league behind Ishmael (1,347) and Kelvin Harmon of North Carolina State (993)…The only ACC players with more than Phillips’ seven touchdown catches are Greg Dortch of Wake Forest (nine), De Fitzpatrick of Louisville (nine) and Braxton Berrios of Miami (nine)…His 71 receptions saw him join Isaiah Ford among the school’s top four season performances, as Phillips also made 76 catches in 2016 (second on the list) while Ford tallied 75 snatches in 2015 and a Tech annual record 79 in 2016…Phillips’ 964 yards marked the eighth 900-yard season by a Hokie player, ranking fourth on the list behind his 983 yards in 2016 and Ford’s total of 1,164 yards in 2015 and 1,094 yards in 2016…Among current active NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision performers, Phillips ranks second with 236 receptions, surpassed by Richie James of Middle Tennessee State (244)…
Also placed seventh among active FBS players with 3,027 career yards…Both of those receiving numbers by Phillips are school career-records…His 236 catches rank eighth on the Atlantic Coast Conference career-record list and his 3,027 receiving yards are good for tenth all-time, as his 46 yards vs. Virginia moved him ahead of DeAndre Hopkins of Clemson (3,020; 2010-12) and Billy McMullen of Virginia (2,978; 1999-2002).
Head to Head Competition…BCB#34-Bryce Hall (6:01-202)-Recorded two assisted tackles; Sabre#28-Brenton Nelson (5:11-183)-Recorded five tackles (2 solos) with one pass deflection.
Phillips Offensive Impact…The split end caught 3-of-4 targeted passes (75.00%), as the opponent deflected one toss. Phillips recorded three first downs, converting all three third-down attempts, as he had three catches for at least ten yards, including one for twenty yards or longer.
Team Offensive Impact…On twelve offensive possessions, Virginia Tech completed 14-of-21 passes (66.67%) for 143 yards, seven first downs, one touchdown and one interception. The team gained 202 yards, with twelve first downs and no touchdowns on 53 carries (3.81 ypc) to generate a total of 345 yards via 74 plays (4.66 yards per attempt).
Opponent Defensive Impact…Virginia recorded 92 tackles (26 solos) with no sacks, four stops for losses of seven yards, no quarterback pressures, no forced fumbles, no fumble recoveries, one interception and no pass deflections.
An All-Atlantic Coast Conference first-team selection and All-American honorable mention by The NFL Draft Report, the junior split end/slot receiver received All-ACC second-team accolades from Pro Football Focus…The Most Valuable Player of the Belk Bowl, Phillips ranked second on the team with 76 receptions for 983 yards (12.93 ypc) and five touchdowns, adding 140 yards on thirty rushing attempts (4.67 ypc) and 34 yards on five punt returns (6.80 avg)…Starting thirteen of the fourteen contests that he appeared in (came off the bench in the regular season finale vs. Virginia), he scored thirty points and led the Hokies with 1,157 all-purpose yards…His 76 reception s rank second on the school season-record list, joining Isaiah Ford (79 in 2016; 75 in 2015) as the only Tech players to register at least seventy receptions in a season…One of six Hokies to gain over 900 yards receiving during a campaign, his 983 yards places third on the school annual record chart behind Ford (1,164 in 2015; 1,094 in 2016)…Ranked 48th in the nation and seventh in the conference with an average of 5.43 receptions per game and 39th nationally while placing fifth in the league in receiving yards… Also excelled on special teams, as he recorded three tackles and blocked a punt that he returned one yard in the East Carolina clash…Part of a unit that averaged 444.5 yards per game in total offense – 39th-best in the nation while finishing fifth in the ACC…The aerial attack amassed 3,660 yards (261.43 ypg), ranking 35th in the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision and seventh in the ACC… They finished with a pass efficiency rating of 149.94, ranking 23rd in the country…Averaged 35.0 points per game, 33rd-best in the FBS…Recorded 330 first downs on offense (ninth in the nation, second in the ACC), including 172 from their receivers.
Phillips Receiving Statistical Breakdown…The junior was targeted 89 times, catching 76 for an incredible success percentage of .8539, as his quarterbacks misfired on sixteen chances along with throwing the ball away four times under pressure…Dropped one of those targets, but turned 41 of his catches (53.95%) into first downs, converting 14-of-22 third-down chances (63.64%) and his lone fourth-down opportunity…Gained at least ten yards on 36 receptions (47.36%), including thirteen that gained twenty yards or more (17.11%)…Downed 22 of his catches (28.95%) inside the red zone… In addition to his five scoring grabs, he had key receptions that led to seventeen more touchdown drives and on eight possessions that resulted in field goals from his aerial exploits.
Phillips Rushing Statistical Breakdown…On thirty rushing attempts, Phillips recorded thirteen first downs, converting three third-down snaps…Set up four touchdown drives and two possessions that ended with field goals due to his carries.
Phillips Special Team Performance Breakdown…On five punt returns, Phillips set up two touchdown drives, as he also blocked a punt that was followed by another Tech touchdown.
Phillips played in all thirteen games, earning ten starting assignments as the sophomore came off the bench vs. Furman, Purdue and East Carolina (first three contests) before joining the first unit…
He went on to log action on 783 offensive snaps that included 766 on offense and seventeen more on special teams…Finished second on the team with 49 receptions for 582 yards (11.88 ypc) and a pair of touchdowns, as he registered multiple catches in every game...Also posted a first down on a 24-yard rushing attempt…Caught 21.97% of the receptions recorded by Tech (49-of-223), gaining 18.56% of the Hokies’ aerial yards (545-of-2,936)…Part of a unit that averaged 31.0 points and 385.08 yards in total offense per game, picking up 2,936 yards through the air (225.85 ypg) and 2,070 yards on the ground (159.23 ypg).
Phillips was a Freshman All-American third-team and Freshman All-Atlantic Coast Conference first-team selection by The NFL Draft Report…Appeared in thirteen games, starting nine contests…Came off the bench during Tech’s first three meetings vs. William & Mary, Ohio State and East Carolina before starting in the slot vs. Georgia Tech…Played in reserve vs. Western Michigan before starting the final nine games at flanker, logging action in 717 snaps – 681 on offense and 36 more with the special team units…Finished fourth on the team with forty receptions for 498 yards (12.45 ypc) and three touchdowns, adding 65 yards on five rushing attempts (13.0 ypc), in addition to recording one solo tackle…Helped the Hokies average 217.38 yards per game passing and an average of 365.31 yards in total offense…Accounted for 14.76% of the team’s receptions (40-of-271) and 17.62% of their receiving yardage (498-of-2,826).
4.44 in the 40-yard dash…1.57 10-yard dash…2.56 20-yard dash…4.20 20-yard shuttle…11.66 60-yard shuttle…6.88 three-cone drill…32 ½-inch vertical jump…9’-08” broad jump…Bench pressed 225 pounds 17 times…32 ¼-inch arm length…9 ¼-inch hands…77 3/8-inch wingspan.
PHILLIPS COLLEGE CAREER STATISTICS
RECEIVING STATISTICS…R/PG indicates receptions per game...GM/AVG indicate average yards gained per game.
STATS GP GS NO YARDS AVG TD LONG R/PG GM/AVG
2014 13 09 040 0498 12.45 03 36 03.08 038.31
2015 13 10 049 0582 11.88 02 60 03.77 044.77
2016 14 13 076 0983 12.93 05 55 05.43 070.21
2017 12 12 071 0964 13.58 07 45 05.92 080.33
TOTAL 52 44 236 3027 12.83 17 60 04.54 058.21
RUSHING STATISTICS PUNT RETURNS
STATS NO YARDS AVG TD LONG NO YARDS AVG TD LONG
2014 005 0065 13.00 00 29 00 0000 00.00 00 00
2015 001 0024 24.00 00 24 00 0000 00.00 00 00
2016 030 0140 04.67 00 29 05 0034 06.80 00 15
2017 001 0010 10.00 00 10 00 0000 00.00 00 00
TOTAL 036 0229 06.36 00 29 05 0034 06.80 00 15
SPECIAL TEAM/DEFENSIVE STATISTICS
STATS TK SO AS FR FC TFL SACK BK
2014 01 01 00 00 00 0.0-00 0.0-00 00
2015 01 01 00 00 00 0.0-00 0.0-00 00
2016 03 00 03 00 00 1.0-17 0.5-08 01
2017 00 00 00 00 00 0.0-00 0.0-00 00
TOTAL 05 02 03 00 00 1.0-17 05.-08 01
STATS GM PLAYS CATCH RUSH K/RET P/RET YARDS TDR P/AVG GM/AVG
2014 13 045 0498 0065 0000 0000 0563 03 12.51 043.31
2015 13 050 0582 0024 0000 0000 0606 02 12.12 046.62
2016 14 111 0983 0140 0000 0034 1157 05 10.42 082.64
2017 12 072 0964 0010 0000 0000 0974 07 13.53 081.17
TOTAL 52 278 3027 0239 0000 0034 3300 17 11.87 063.46
NOTE…Also attempted one pass in 2017.