Bruce Smith Wishes Y'All a Happy 4th of July Weekend

The only fireworks he needed were the ones he created in the backfield.

Our sincerest well wishes to everyone celebrating freedom and the anniversary of our beautiful America. Don't drink and drive. And come Tuesday if you haven't gained 5 pounds, well, you're doing it wrong.

*I posted this last year. I think it's appropriate to post again this year.

CTC: Chase Minnifield

It seems a bunch of you have been enjoying the create the caption to close out the week. If there's no objection, let's make it a regular feature. Vincent Briedis, UVA's football media contact, Tweeted this picture of preseason All-American corner Chase Minnifield.

Leave your best captions (or Photoshops) in the comments below.

65. Fly the Flag.

"An F/A-18F Super Hornet flying a Virginia Tech flag somewhere over Iraq", via.

Whenever, wherever we go Hokie Nation is always flying the flag. Our loyalty and pride isn't unique among college football's most recognizable fan bases. From my travels I've noticed an abundance of LSU, tOSU and Notre Dame hats, vests and shamrocks standing out from the crowd. However, that doesn't make the feeling of seeing a perfect stranger rocking the orange and maroon any less special. It almost always starts with a "Go Hokies!" and ends up with conversation and new friend that you'll lose touch with immediately, but will meet over and over again.

There are only 65 more days until Hokie football.

Hokie Tracks Have Been AFK for a Week

Apparently, there's a lot of news to catch up on and discuss. I didn't think spending the last week in June unplugged from Interwebs would put me behind the eight-ball. I was wrong.

The Hokies' future schedules got a lot sexier. Some foreplay, the University of Maryland has moved its 2014 game with Tech to M&T Bank Stadium, the home of Baltimore Ravens. I traveled to Byrd in 2009 and enjoyed the trip. I Metro'd there and back, appreciated the character of the stadium, as well as its cheeseburgers and tailgating, even though that just involved a pole and a 24-rack. It's a total speculation, but the ACC could use it as its Labor Day Weekend television obligation for ESPN. Either way based solely on location it will be a higher profile game, which bodes well for attracting elite recruits from Maryland. I know Hokie Nation will fill up M&T, but do consider this, from my experience in '09 Byrd's atmosphere wasn't anything threatening, in fact lifeless would be an accurate description. Even though the game will be played at a neutral site, it may turn out to be a tougher venue, because the buzz and hype will do a better job to attract those Terps who normally spend Saturday on the couch. All things considered, I think it's a positive move for Tech.

Hokie Tracks are only Second Best? rates Bruce Taylor number 72 in their 2011 top 100 players countdown.

THE BUZZ: Taylor capitalized on the opportunity presented when a preseason injury sidelined Barquell Rivers. He recorded a team-high 84 tackles -- 15.5 for loss --- to earn second-team All-ACC honors. Taylor already has earned a reputation as a big-play performer. HIs pass deflection resulted in a pick-six in the ACC title game victory over Florida State, and he recorded two sacks each in wins over Boston College and Georgia Tech.

I will note that Bruce is a massive and imposing human that looks capable of butting up a rhinoceros when you see him up close and in person. However, he is compassionate and doesn't take the opportunity to form-tackle an out-of-shape groom who has a couple of drinks in him just because he "wants to see what it feels like."

Pat yourselves on the back, you helped sellout season tickets in Lane for the 12th consecutive season.

Hokies 2012 Recruiting Class Taking Shape

We are deep in the middle of college football's Dead Zone. For players it's offseason workouts and healing their bodies before the 2011 season starts in three months. For the coaches, it's about cherry picking as much top talent for the 2012 recruiting class. That means summer camps, hosting for visits, reviewing tape and making calls. After a disappointing finish to the 2011 class, Frank Beamer went out of character and made some staff changes, all in the name of better recruiting. It's been a little over three months but the changes look like they have worked. The Hokies have 12 verbals already, with defensive backs on the east coast racing to the phones to pledge their verbal to Frank and his staff. Recruiting is hot in Blacksburg and it's not luck either. Beamer noticed UNC and UVA encroaching on "his" territories and he made hard changes to better position his program. For the last few years the yeoman's work of recruiting fell on Bryan Stinespring, Curt Newsome, Torrian Gray and Jim Cavanaugh, so less than half the staff bringing in 90% of the recruits. By moving Coach Cav to a recruiting coordinator spot and bringing in Shane Beamer and Cornell Brown, the staff now has five big time recruiters, three of them under 40 years of age. Not to be overlooked is Cav overseeing the staff's effort. He is an excellent talent evaluator who has very good rapport with high school coaches in the Commonwealth and region. Enough about what you already know, let's take a look at the current verbals and some of the major targets known to be on the Hokies board.

Programming Notes

For the better part of the next two weeks I'll be out of town.

That's a wedding cake topper. Yes, it's mine. Yes, it's awesome.

But fret not, you won't have to go cold turkey because there'll still be new posts around these parts. BeerControlOffense is working on something special for everyone, and I wrote a couple of posts last week that are scheduled to be published while I'm away. Everyone else is invited to contribute their thoughts too. All you need to is register an account to comment, post in the forums and write blog posts. The site has been updated with a WYSIWYG editor, so now you don't have to worry about HTML formatting when writing blog posts. I'll be keeping an eye out for any user contributions to bump to the frontpage.

Thank you to everyone who spends their time here, you make TKP what it is.

Hokie Tracks are Headed Back to Blacksburg

Is David Wilson ready to be the Hokies' featured running back?

"I think I perform well when pressure is put on me," says Wilson, who gained 619 yards on 113 carries while splitting time with Evans and Williams last season. "When I have to do something, that's when I feel like I perform better."

"It's my time," Wilson says. "I'm the No. 1 running back going into the season. I have to work hard and make sure I lock that down and keep moving forward. I can't be complacent. I have to be consistent."

It would seem so. However, I think it would be unreasonable for anyone to expect Blacksburg's very own sunny blend of Superman and Evel Knievel to make up for Evans' and Williams' production last season. While Wilson banged out 619 yards on his own, the 100 Proof Backfield combined for 1,331 yards. I think it would be a major success if he could carry his own production forward and account for 75% of the losses. That would be 1,617 yards.

In other news, bowling balls are disregarding gravity and taking to the air. Wilson finished 6th at the NCAA Track Championships. He leaped a personal best 53-1.75 in the triple jump and earned All-American honors.

85. Create the Caption.

You can hate me now.

The one game to win. Tyrod went 4-0 against UVa. In four years he threw for 537 yards, completing 60% of his throws, ran for 212 yards and scored 4 touchdowns. As of today we've owned the Commonwealth Cup for 2,387 consecutive days.

Drop a caption for Tyrod waltzing into the end zone in the picture above, below. If you're new around these parts just create an account.

Quillie Odom and Lorenzo Williams leave football team

Editor's Note: This is reported by

Both will stay at VT to finish their degrees.

I feel bad for Odom, who came in as a highly-regarded recruit and just couldn't seem to get things together to contribute.

Williams had a nagging foot injury that certainly didn't help things. But I wonder if this necessitates adding depth at whip with the DP move to running back.

This opens up two scholarships for the 2012 class which, at this rate, we are probably going to need. Linebacker depth is now a MEGA priority, so come on Edmunds and Clarke. With Odom's move to DE, maybe this means that Marshall gets closer to not red-shirting this year.

As the Couch Burns

H/T @dmiller1856 for the title.

In the absence of important Hokie football news, and anything compelling to watch on television, let's take a couple of minutes to review the soap opera being broadcast out of Morgantown.

After 3:00 AM on May 18 offensive coordinator and head coach in waiting Dana Holgorsen was asked to leave the Mardi Gras Casino & Resort .

Police records indicate Metro 911 received a call from the casino at 3:13 a.m. that night. A "white male" was said to be "refusing to cooperate with the casino's management." Casino supervisors had the male detained at the time.


Nitro Police spokesman Patrolman Raymond Blake said Holgorsen cooperated with law enforcement when they arrived at the scene and did not appear to be in violation of any laws.

"We got up there and spoke to the male and said, 'Hey, they want you to leave,'" Blake said. "He complied, walked out, sat out on a bench, waited for the taxi, and when the taxi arrived he got in and left.

Holgorsen could have hit on one too many slots, pulled a chip off a table, smoked in a non-smoking area, drank too much, cursed at a table, done anything really. It doesn't really matter. He didn't get arrested or commit a crime. Still, it's damning to anyone's image to have the fuzz called on them in the early morning.

Hokie Tracks are Outside the Playboy Mansion

David Wilson. David Wilson. David Wilson.

Andrew Jones writes that Wilson is ready to be the main man carrying the rock.

"It's a lot of pressure because I am expected to be the man," Wilson said. "A lot of hard work comes with it. I'm ready to take it on and get ready for the season."


Down to 201 pounds after losing seven during track season, Wilson believes the lost weight will help him get more breakaway runs from scrimmage. His first few steps off the snap have been incredibly explosive, but Wilson thinks the fourth, fifth and sixth, the ones that usually enable a back to break free into the secondary and beyond, will be improved.

If anything I would have thought Wilson would have tried to maintain or increase his weight so he could better take a season full of pops.

David Wilson being awesome at what looks to be Macado's. (via)

Bill Roth also caught up with Wilson.

BR: Favorite song?

DW: Hustle Hard, Ace Hood

DW and Roth also talk extensively about Hokie football. If you're into that sort of thing.

Hokie Tracks are Beating the Heat

Things have been quiet around here. That's a good thing, noise around a college football team at this point in the season is never a good thing. I hope you guys have more to share than I do.

Jim Tressel resigned as head coach of The Ohio State Buckeyes on Memorial Day morning. His brilliant coaching career was ended the minute he withheld information about his players receiving improper benefits. Good people make mistakes too, and I hope he gets the opportunity to redeem himself. Tressel (241) had been second only to Joe Paterno (401) in wins among active coaches. The Frankinator (240) now has the distinction of riding shotgun to JoePa. The HokieMD is thankful for everything Coach Beamer has done.

Eleven Hokies on Phil Steele's Preseason All-ACC Team

Phil Steele released his Preseason All-ACC Team Friday afternoon. Eleven Hokies were among the 112 players selected by Steele.

  • Jarrett Boykin 1st Team WR
  • Blake DeChristopher 1st Team OT
  • David Wilson 1st Team KR, 2nd Team RB
  • Bruce Taylor 1st Team LB
  • Jayron Hosley 1st Team CB, 2nd Team PR
  • Jaymes Brooks 2nd Team OG
  • Eddie Whitley 2nd Team S
  • Logan Thomas 3rd Team QB
  • Marcus Davis 3rd Team WR
  • Danny Coale 4th Team WR
  • Dyrell Roberts 4th Team KR

As far as the Hokies are concerned, I don't have any major gripes with his picks. I think you could argue David Wilson as first team running back over Miami's Lamar Miller. They have similar rushing statistics, however Wilson was more effective catching balls out of the backfield.

I'm more bullish on Marcus Davis than Steele. There's no doubt Boykin's past performance (2,123 yards 13 TDs in 3 seasons) earned him a spot on the first team, and it's well deserved. Tyrod had a great rapport with Boykin, and from what I saw and read during spring Logan is building a similar on-the-field relationship with Davis. I think more balls are going to end up going Marcus' way and he'll end up having a statistically better season. I do believe all four of our top receivers are truly some of the best to ever play at Tech, and each could steal the spotlight if given the opportunity, but there's only one ball.

Hokie Tracks are Counting Down the Next 100 Days

Their facial expressions are priceless.


*I mean this in the most literal sense. If we win the toss we're going to defer, and if App State wins they'll take the ball.

Preseason rankings mean very little, but they make for good conversation to obsess, gripe and swoon over. Bill Roth says preseason preview magazines Athlon and Lindy's have the Hokies ranked 7th and 12th respectively. I think both are too high. I rate a team based on how good I think they are, not how well I think they can manage their schedule. I can't see the ceiling for this team, but the offensive line and LT3 really need to convince me they can ball before I look up.

More importantly Roth reports (pun intended?) the STRAIGHT BURNER and Nosal will be 100% healthy for camp.

INJURY UPDATE: Good news on the injury front for the Hokies. Per Assistant Director of Athletics for Athletic Training Mike Goforth, Tech receiver Dyrell Roberts is "100 percent and back over 200 pounds for the first time." Goforth said he’s never seen anyone so excited to get back on the field as Roberts, who endured a painful injury and rehab from his compartment syndrome incident in last year's Georgia Tech game. Goforth says that lineman Greg Nosal, who had shoulder surgery, will be at 100 percent by the start of the second summer session and should be ready to for the opening of preseason practice. Safety Theron Norman, who also had shoulder surgery, could return by the end of September or early October, per Goforth.

Lane Stadium Wedding Cake

The Twitter search for #Hokies was flooded with links this afternoon to Market Salamander's Facebook page. They're the apparent creator of this all too realistic looking Lane Stadium cake. It is complete with working lights, you know for night eating. Take in all of its glory.

A magnificent job to those individuals responsible for its creation.

Our Rivals: A Current Introspection

Merriam-Webster defines the word rival as:

a : one of two or more striving to reach or obtain something that only one can possess
b : one striving for competitive advantage

Specific to college football, rivals, and rivalries are constantly evolving, growing and shrinking in terms of importance and relevance. What makes an opponent a rival, and what makes a rivalry intense? I think in most cases it goes without saying that teams who play annually, and are in close proximity stand a better chance of developing a rivalry. There are plenty of other qualifiers, both general and distinct, but above all, in my opinion rivals give as good as they take, and the most bitter rivalries develop when the stakes are the highest.

Who are our rivals and how do they rank in terms of current relevance, all-time relevance, loatheability, and must win?

Hokie Tracks are trying to Follow David Wilson but are Blinded by his Bling

The mainstream media has used the following outline to guide their thesis, or supporting argument for any piece on Virginia Tech football this offseason.

  1. Write an article about the Hokies.
  2. Compare Logan Thomas to Cam Newton.
  3. ????
  4. PROFIT!!!

If Thomas does do something magical like guide us to a national championship, I agree with Furrer4Heisman, he'd be more like our own Tee Martin.

Roc Carmichael's career may be on hold at the moment, but his journey leading to being drafted by 127th overall by the Texans is respectable. Through Roc, Rick Maese gives us a glimpse through the keyhole into what it takes to become a professional athlete.