Back helps Hokies snap losing streak

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GREENVILLE, N.C. --- Freshman Ryan Williams ran for a season-high 179 yards and No. 22 Virginia Tech avoided its first three-game losing streak in six years, holding off East Carolina 16-3 on Thursday night.

Tyrod Taylor had a 13-yard touchdown run, Matt Waldron kicked three field goals and Williams atoned for his critical miscue last week against North Carolina by cracking the 1,000-yard mark for the Hokies (6-3).

They held a 379-277 advantage in total yardage, forced three turnovers and made just enough plays to bounce back from losses to No. 10 Georgia Tech and the Tar Heels.

OKLAHOMA STATE: The NCAA rejected a final appeal to reinstate Dez Bryant and Oklahoma State has probably seen the last of its All-America receiver.

The rejected appeal means the junior won't be back this season. He is considered a top NFL prospect and few expect him to come back for another season.

GEORGIA: The Bulldogs have stuck with fifth-year senior Bryan Evans as a starting safety even with the emergence of redshirt freshman Bacarri Rambo, who is tied for the team lead with two interceptions.

"He's playing more," defensive coordinator Willie Martinez said of Rambo. "Bryan's been solid when he's been in there. Bacarri is learning the position as we're going here. He's going to continue to keep playing."

"I don't know if he'll move into the starting lineup, but he's earned playing time," Georgia coach Mark Richt added.

VIRGINIA: Athletic director Craig Littlepage told The Associated Press that coach Al Groh will be evaluated at the end of the season on his "full body of work," and he cast an ominous cloud on that process considering the steady decline in fan support for the struggling Cavaliers.

SUSPENDED: The Western Athletic Conference suspended a replay official for one game after he failed to overturn a call in a game last weekend between San Jose State and Boise State.

Official Michael Goshima's one-game suspension will go into effect this weekend.

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