Bucky Hodges, Matt Rolin Updates

Salem quarterback Bucky Hodges and Briar Woods linebacker Matt Rolin are two highly regarded and recruited players in the 2013 cycle. Each hold numerous division I-A offers and the Hokies are in the mix to potential land both. Hodges visited Blacksburg last weekend and it seems like the 'Burg made an impression on him as he visited practice, talked with players, and faculty.

"It was a good visit. It was probably the best visit I've had up there," said Hodges. "I got to meet a whole bunch of the players. I'm starting to know some of them and I like the feel of things up there."

That's a good thing.

Thomas and back up quarterback Mark Leal spent some time with Hodges, reviewing all things related to quarterbacking in Blacksburg.

"We talked a lot. They're real good dudes. They're really down to earth guys," Bucky said. "Logan told me how it is (to be the quarterback there). You can't really go anywhere without people wanting to take pictures with you. You have to stay to yourself. You have to focus on school and football. It's real easy to get into trouble because everyone's watching you."

The quarterbacks also discussed the offensive system at Tech, which is getting an update this offseason.

"Logan told me that he's really liking the new offense. I'm liking the new offense too," Hodges admitted. "They're putting more spread stuff in the offense and going at a real fast pace this year."

Senior wide receiver Marcus Davis (Ocean Lakes) and incoming freshman running back J.C. Coleman (Oscar Smith) also spent some time with Bucky on his visit. Coleman gave Hodges some insight on what it's like to be the new "Big Man on Campus".

"He told me how it was a whole lot different from high school. He loves it. He thinks he's about to get a whole lot of playing time," Hodges explained. Coleman has moved into a battle for the second slot on the depth chart at running back as a true freshman. Getting to campus in time for Spring Camp before his first season with Hokies has been a valuable experience for J.C.

"J.C. was telling me that you have to focus on school a lot," Hodges continued. "Overall, it was a real good visit. It put them up there some more."

That's a lot of good information from Andy Hilton right there. I can't think of better players for him to have visited with, two guys at his position and J.C. Coleman, one of the best recruiters on the roster. Last year we saw Tech incorporate more spread into the overall offensive philosophy. It's the right offense to build around Logan (a kid like Bucky), our current offensive personal and the talent we're bringing in. This quote, "They're putting more spread stuff in the offense and going at a real fast pace this year," is intriguing because of rumors of a no-huddle attack in the fall.

Matt Rolin is one of the top players in Virginia. He's the younger brother of Tech freshman Scott Rolin. His grandfather played at South Carolina, so it's no surprise that Hokies and Cocks are among his favorites. Until a few days ago Rolin had just been offered by South Carolina as a tight end because he wasn't "approved" as a linebacker, now the Cocks have told him he can play either position.

USC impressed him. "It's the best visit I've been on so far," said Rolin, who has also seen Tennessee, Virginia, Boston College, Virginia Tech and Duke. "They told me I can play either linebacker or tight end. That will give me a better opportunity to get on the field early. And they said I could start on all four special teams if I come there. I really liked the campus. They have the best facilities I've seen." Rolin has more visits coming up. Monday he was set to be at Alabama, today at Florida State and Wednesday at Georgia. He is not rushing a decision. "I'll take all my visits and then get a top ten," said Rolin who added he won't make a decision until sometime during his season at the earliest.

His highlights are here.

He's tremendous in coverage/working in space, for the most part takes excellent angles to the ball and has a knack for shooting through the gap on the blitz. He'd be a great fit in Foster's defense.

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Comments

Rolin

is Rolin fast enough to play whip? Rivals has him listed as running a 4.69 40, which seems a bit slow for what we do at that position. Or do the coaches think they can move him inside?

From his film he looks like a Backer more than a Whip to me. However, I don't know which specific position he's being recruited to play. As a reference. Cody Grimm tested at 4.54 in the 40 at the combine, and Rivals has Dew and Vandyke as 4.5 guys. Top speed isn't the only thing to consider either, read-and-react time is important and it looks like he has great acceleration.

Rivals has him as an OLB, not that that means much for where we'd play him. My guess would be backer, as you said, if he'll fill out enough.

rolin

is going to be 240+ when it is said and done.

he is inside for tech's scheme.

The "New" Offense

It makes sense that we're moving towards a spread with Logan being the freak of nature he is. We can still have a good running game with that going on but we'll see what Stiney does.

In Beamer & Co. We Trust #Livefor32 #DecadeofDominance

Feels like

The days of "Run right, run left, throw deep and incomplete, punt" are over. Makes me sad. But I am thrilled to hear how much these guys loved Blacksburg/want to come here.

North Carolina Raised, Hokie Bred

Shocked

Wait, we might actually update our offense?? Awesome. I'd love to see a little spread now and then. Kick Logan out on some plays, are we feeling good about TEs this year? Our offense has been too predictable and the thought of adding to the play book makes me incredibly happy.

just to play devil's advocate

I'm pretty sure the offensive coaches say this every offseason. 2011 was the first season in a long time where I thought we were actually making progress. That said, the offense may be benefiting from the 'Tyrod effect' and LT3 might just be making things look better than they actually are.

In summation, who knows? We'll see in August.

I'm pretty sure the offensive

I'm pretty sure the offensive coaches say this every offseason.

Agree, but in their defense we've only had all the pieces at RB, WR, QB and OL over the last two (maybe three) seasons. Marcus being thrown out of school, plus a whole bunch of recruiting misses on the o-line put us behind the 8-ball for 2005-08/09. We've been a top-half or better offense the last three seasons. It goes without saying they're ones responsible for replacing talent, so I'm not trying to give them a pass in the least.

Present day, I think it's a little bit of the opposite, they aren't asking Logan to work within a fixed system, rather they're trying to tailor the offense and play calls around him. LT3 is tailor-made for a spread: he's a terrific passing QB and has the size to contribute in the run game and that's why I believe we'll continue to see more of it in 2012. We didn't see a whole lot (any?) no-huddle outside of a two-minute drill, but we did see an uptempo pace of play towards the end of the year with those quick WR screens and hot-routes called at the line of scrimmage. More than anything, I hope to see more offensive synergy in 2012. Zone-reads, QB powers, etc are more effective when they're not a package, but part of the base offense. Whatever it is we're going to do, I want us to own it 100%.

One thing we still struggle with is moving the ball, or scoring when it really matters; that important first down to keep a drive alive and swing momentum, or six points instead of three. I think having a straightforward offensive identity, something that we're comfortable with because of repetition, will help us execute better in those situations.

Oh snap!

Joe is using buzzwords!

I too look forward to a synergistic, multi-faceted, crowdsourced approach to the offense. This is the time to think outside the box and break the glass ceiling!

That wasn't my intent.

I was trying to give a rational response to your statement.

Just busting chops, mate

For the record, I'm thinking the team has turned a corner with regard to the whole "square peg vs. round hole" offense that we've had the past 8 or 9 years. I think it's easy to pass the buck on to personnel, it's hard for the coaches to accept that they've been mentally bested. (as it is for anyone at work)

I think we all want consistency. I know none of us expected the offensive derp-a-thon we saw in the ACCCG after witnessing the UVa beatdown-of-the-decade two weeks prior.

What Buzzwords?

I'm not sure listing packages qualifies as that. Spread offenses are characterized as uptempo and multi-faceted. Would you have rather read, "The big guy'll move his arse up the field all willy nilly like strikin a few fellers ere-n-ere"?

thought Joe's response was great, but I would have loved to have heard him say what you said... :)

halfway between Joe and Box

I obviously don't think we'll suddenly kick over to a spread offense. But rounding out our play style with some of it would make a huge difference in our game. I hate seeing us move the ball and then stumble after crossing the 50 and punting it into the endzone (or shanking the crap out of it). Spicing up the offense and using LT3's abilities is a must if we are to be a top-10 team. If our coaching staff (cough-Steinspring-cough) can't flex the offense even slightly as the players change, hello college football where change is constantly happening, then it's time to upgrade. But that's a whole other topic of course.

I'd love to see what Joe was talking about, but not sure how much we'll see. Can you imagine if we came out and shocked everyone with a much more spread oriented offense? Teams would hardly have much time to prepare for it as well.

I'm with Box on this one

You can't teach old people new tricks. If you want a new offense, you gotta get new people in charge. Beamer and O'stinecain would be out of their elements in a modern spread offense. Will they use glimpses of a spread offense? Probably, but expect the bread and butter to be the same stale offense, but perhaps a little more pass-happy and 3-WR sets become the norm.

I'd really be surprised if they remove the TE and go 4-wide, but we'll see.

What I actually want to see the offense develop:
1. A no huddle offense in NON-2minute drill situations
2. RB SCREENS (especially with JC) and RB quick outs

VT's mantra has always been the RB has to be able to pick up blitzes. While true, you could also mix in a RB screen or quick pass to defeat the LB blitz. Burn them a couple times with the RB in the passing game and the blitzes are nullified.

Somewhere

Paul Johnson's palms are getting a little sweaty. Al Groh's mouth is probably a little dry, too.

Take the shortest route to the ball and arrive in bad humor.

Game Planning

If you don't have a spread offense with multiple options from the same formations, which makes you less predictable, then you have to have superior individual match ups to have success. In other words, if your offense is predictable, you need better talent than the defense or put in a few wrinkles to run from time to time to catch the D out of position or with a bad match-up. Finding the weaknesses on a defense can be tough, especially when the defense is exploiting your weaknesses. Game time situational awareness from the players and coaches is needed to recognize and exploit weaknesses and adjust to the D. Running a spread and all the options requires talent and experience. Same goes for situational awareness.

I think the last minute drive against Miami last year was really great. I hope it can be a model for what to do right on our offense.

#Hokies

Rolin

He hits like a truck, so I don't understand why he runs out of bounds after his interceptions.