An Arbitrary Ranking of the Assistant Coaches

And now for something completely different. Virginia Tech made the assistant coaches' 2011 salary information public a couple of days ago, so why not rank them in terms of compensation value, replaceability difficulty, recruiting prowess and by any other subjective criteria you feel is applicable. One is the highest ranking and I'm really only considering what they've done over the ten wins a year era.

Xavier Boyce Arrested Wednesday

Xavier Boyce and his girlfriend Olivia Hutchins, both 20 and of Blacksburg, were arrested on charges related to cruelty and injuries to the girl, Blacksburg police said today.

Police believe the child was injured Jan. 31 at the couple's home in the 1200 block of University City Boulevard, police said. They did not say in what way the child was hurt.

Boyce and Hutchins were released on $5,000 unsecured bonds.


Well it looks like we're back in the Fulmer Cup, and this incident most certainly won't help dispel the public perception produced by the SI/CBS College Football and Crime Report published at the beginning of the month.

We will let you know more as we hear it.

Would the Jaguars be Interested in Tyrod?

With spring practice getting ready to start football is almost here again. Like all of you I will be salivating over every big play and worrying about every player that seems like they are nowhere near where they need to be for opening kickoff. Luckily we have the NFL draft to distract us--with Mel Kiper’s promise that he knows exactly what is best for every team. We can watch as he tells us that anyone who dares choose someone not on his big board will be doomed to the Cleveland Browns fate (see Chicago Cubs for example). Like most Hokies, I will be hoping that Tyrod ends up where he will be used as a true quarterback and not left for some last ditch wild cat package or forced into playing wide out for the Raiders.

Springapalooza 2011: The Offense

It's football season again!

/drives to ABC and buys bourbon
//heads to Giant to replenish charcoal and supply of dead filleted and smoked farm animals
///purchases new 55" LCD television

For the next few weeks at least.


This is the second edition of Springapalooza, our all too comprehensive spring preview. Check back next week to read about the defense. Throughout spring for Kevin will have practice updates. And after the Maroon and White Game the BCO will wrap everything up with a neat bow.

The Offense

Adios Amigos

Ralph Wiggum once stated, "Tyrod Taylor not Hokies quarterback, that's umpossible." It's unfortunate for us that's not accurate. Tyrod's graduating and taking his career 7,017 passing yards, 2,187 rushing yards and 67 touchdowns to the NFL where hopefully he'll get his shot at quarterback and not be slotted into some seven win team's Wildcat package. However, replacing Tyrod will prove umpossible. He did it right both on and off the field and he was all about winning, duh.

Hokies' Season Ends with 79-76 Overtime Loss to Wichita State

In what can easily be described as a microcosm of this season, the short-handed Hokies battled throughout but fell in the waning seconds to Wichita State 79-76 in the second round of the NIT. The loss finishes Tech's season at 22-12 and marks the end of the careers of Malcolm Delaney, Jeff Allen, Terrell Bell, and Paul Debnam. This senior class tied the 1985-86 class for the most victories by a class (87) in school history.

Neither team led by more than six the entire game, but things looked bleak as Jeff Allen fouled out with a little more than six minutes remaining in regulation. WSU went on a brief 4-0 run to open up a six-point lead at 63-57. Victor Davila picked up his fourth foul in the process and Paul Debnam checked in with 4:36 to go. Debnam's appearance during meaningful minutes sparked Tech, who went on a 7-0 run to take a 64-63 lead with 2:37 remaining.

With the game tied at 66, Manny Atkins sank a big time three-pointer, but was countered by J.T. Durley with 47 seconds left. After Terrell Bell missed a three-pointer, Joe Ragland missed a floater as time expired to send the game into overtime.

Wichita State Preview

Who: Virginia Tech Hokies (22-11, 11-8 ACC) vs Wichita State Shockers (25-8, 14-4 MVC)

When: Sunday, March 20 @ 11:00 a.m.


Where: Cassell Coliseum, Blacksburg, VA

The Opponent: After knocking off Bethune-Cookman in the first round of the NIT, the Hokies face an experienced and deep Wichita State squad. The Shockers, out of the Missouri Valley Conference dominated Nebraska 76-49 Wednesday night to advance to the second round in Blacksburg.

The Shockers are 25-8 on the season and don’t have many bad losses. They lost to Connecticut in Maui by four, at San Diego State by 14, twice to Missouri State, and by one to Virginia Commonwealth in the BracketBusters game this year. WSU was shocked (no pun intended) in the MVC Tournament by Indiana State, the eventual tournament champion.

Here’s a look at their starting lineup:

You're Le-Pre-Chan to the Choir

"We're all so pissed about missing the tournament," Deege told me. "Four years in a row. We've been overlooked four years in a row. It's been tough, getting First Four Out four years in a row when teams like VCU and UAB get in with no right whatsoever."

via D.C. Sports Bog

Hokies Cruise Past Bethune-Cookman 79-54

If you missed Wednesday night's NIT game against Bethune-Cookman, all you need to know is that Paul Debnam played...with more than nine minutes to the first half. The Hokies had no problem with the lowly Wildcats of the MEAC, coasting to a 79-54 victory in front of 2,982 at Cassell Coliseum. With the victory, Tech advanced to the second round of the NIT for the fourth consecutive year and will face Wichita State Sunday at 11 a.m. The Shockers dominated Nebraska 76-49 yesterday.

The Hokies hit 10 of their first 11 shots to jump out to a 23-9 lead seven minutes in. Tech would push that lead out to as many as 23 in the first half at 42-19. In all honesty, it wasn't even a fair fight and due to the lack of bench players the Hokies never could really take their starters out. Tech shot 61.3 percent from the field (19 of 31) in the first half.

The second half was much of the same as the Wildcats never got closer than 19 points. Tech eventually expanded its advantage to 32 at 69-37 halfway through the half and coasted down the stretch for the 25-point victory.

Tech ended up shooting 56 percent from the field, with eight of the nine players scoring. Five Hokies registered double figures with Jeff Allen leading the way with 19 points. Malcolm Delaney had 13, Manny Atkins recorded 12, while Erick Green and Terrell Bell accounted for 11 and 10, respectively.

The Chronicles of David Wilson: Winter Break

If one wants to prove that chaos has a schedule, then my winter break routine could be used to attempt to make the argument. After my last exam I'd go hard and blow it out in Blacksburg. The venue was dependent on the year: dorm, apartment party or downtown, but the result was all the same. What looked like a long night would be cut short from overindulgence, libations and greasy-ass food, beers and whatever was cheap followed up usually by a 20-inch Gumby's pizza slathered in ranch dressing. I only rolled on twenties yo. The next morning I'd sell all my books, hop in the car, use the cash to finance my trip home, and haul it north. Once there it was a continuous rotation of eat, sleep, watch football and party. Rinse and repeat until I felt dirty. I'm sure the vast majority of undergrads did and do something similar.

David Wilson does not.

However, after the Orange Bowl David Wilson embarked on a well deserved break, some of which is documented here.

He first decided to visit France for a couple of days, because that's just what intelligent cultured people do. He traveled across Alsace, heard Emmanuel toll at Cathédrale Notre Dame and made his way to Paris.

Of course he just had to climb the Eiffel Tower. I mean, it was there and all. From the top he was able to get as good of a look at the world as the world had of him.

Bethune-Cookman Preview

Who: Virginia Tech Hokies (21-11, 11-8 ACC) vs Bethune-Cookman Wildcats (21-12, 13-3 MEAC)

When: Wednesday, March 16 @ 8:00 p.m.


Where: Cassell Coliseum, Blacksburg, VA

The Opponent: After a fourth straight year of disappointment on Selection Sunday, the Hokies start their NIT slate against the Bethune-Cookman Wildcats of the Mid Eastern Athletic Conference. Woo.

So, you may be asking just who the hell Bethune-Cookman is. Well, the Wildcats are from Daytona Beach, FL and won the regular season MEAC title, but lost to Morgan State in the semifinals of the MEAC tournament. All regular season champions who don’t win their tournament get an automatic bid, so that’s why B-CU is coming to Blacksburg Sunday.

The Wildcats challenged themselves in the out of conference slate by travelling to Arizona, Central Florida, and Baylor. They lost 33, 17, and 44, respectively. B-CU also played the likes of Edward Waters, Florida Christian College, Webber International, Carver Bible, and North Carolina Central. That accounted for six of their wins (they played NC Central twice).

Here’s a look at their starting lineup:

A Belated Happy Birthday to Us

This is a little late, but yesterday we turned one.

I think over the past year The Key Play accomplished everything it initially set out to do, and more.

  • Provide an in depth (un)-biased analysis of Hokie Football.
  • Make jokes, mostly at our own expense.
  • Overreact to every single Bryan Stinespring decision.
  • Overload you with statistics.
  • Have fun.
  • Needle UVA.
  • Breakdown film.

We broke a little bit of news, here, there and there and there and there.

Hokies Set to Send 7 Wrestlers to NCAAs in Philadelphia

*I'm writing this from my phone while sitting in class, so forgive any accidental informational errors or typos.

The Virginia Tech Wrestling team's performance at ACCs was dreadful to say the least. We only came out of the tournament with 3 ACC champs and 4 automatic bids in a conference that we dominated throughout the regular season. Part of this reason is the difference in competition style, during the year we met our ACC foes in a dual meet format and the ACC tournament is an individual tournament format. Nonetheless, the Hokies under performed at ACCs.

Selection Sunday Fallout

I made sure to wear orange and maroon yesterday. Lot's of it. I rocked my 2004 orange effect tee, nearest and dearest to my heart, covered up by a maroon Nike hoodie with a big "VT" embroidered across the chest, and I had my team united wristband on for good measure. I'd be on the train most of the day and I wanted everyone and anyone who passed by to know how proud I was to be a Hokie, proud I was of our team to overcome more than their fair share of adversity and finally break through the stigma of the NIT and into NCAA Tournament. We knew we were going dancing, the invite was just a formality. We're all the lone elementary-schooler left off the list of the cool kid's party, and man, he had a bouncy castle too.

Snubbed, screwed, no, it's more like duped. We believed the "bracketologists" like Joe Lunardi and Jerry Palm that we'd be invited, after all they just don't hand bracketology degrees out to anybody, it's like a 6 year graduate program. We believed that a marvelous win over top-ranked Duke would cover the stench of being swept by UVa. We scheduled tough outside the conference, but didn't win big. We thought we clinched by a finger tip.

Hokies Run Out of Gas, Fall to Duke 77-63 in ACC Semis

The Hokies put on a great run in the 2011 ACC Tournament, but fell short in Saturday’s semifinal against second-seeded Duke 77-63. Tech showed signs of fatigue playing its third game in three days and never really challenged the Blue Devils down the stretch.

With the loss, Tech now finds itself at 21-11 and awaits a potential NCAA Tournament berth on Sunday night.

The two teams battled back and forth in the game’s opening minutes before Duke opened up a 10-point advantage thanks to a 12-2 run to make it 26-16 with a little over seven minutes remaining. Duke then held the Hokies at arms length the rest of the half, which was capped off by a Seth Curry three-pointer on the Devils last possession to give Duke a 39-28 lead at the break.

Tech tried to make a run to start the second half, cutting the deficit to 41-35 on an Erick Green jumper with a tad over 17 minutes remaining. Duke immediately responded with a Kyle Singler bucket, and after a Malcolm Delaney turnover, Seth Curry was fouled and hit two free throws to push the lead back up to 10.

Duke played tremendous defense down the stretch, allowing the Hokies to get within single digits just once in the game’s final 16 minutes. Tech’s frustration boiled over late, as Jeff Allen was charged with a dead-ball technical foul and eventually fouled out, scoring just two points.

Hokies Beat Seminoles by a Fingertip 52-51, Advance to Semifinals vs Duke

WOW. There’s not much more you can say to describe what happened late Friday night in Greensboro. Erick Green, who hit just one of his first 12 shots, made a jumper with 4.7 seconds remaining, and Derwin Kitchen’s potential buzzer-beater, originally called good, was waved off, giving Virginia Tech a dramatic 52-51 over Florida State in the quarterfinals of the ACC Tournament.

Tech trailed by five at the last media timeout, but Victor Davila made two free throws (yes, really) to bring Tech within three. After an FSU travel, Manny Atkins, who had perhaps his best game of the season, nailed a three-pointer to tie the game at 49 with 3:04 remaining.

After a nearly two-minute scoring drought, Florida State’s Terrance Shannon knocked home a tip-in to give the Seminoles a 51-49 lead with 1:08 to go. Tech’s Malcolm Delaney was fouled on the ensuing possession, but made just one of the two free throws.

With just a six-second differential between the play clock and the shot clock, the Hokies didn’t know whether or not to foul, but FSU coach Leonard Hamilton inexplicably called timeout with 25 seconds remaining to allow the Hokies time to set up their defense. On the ensuing inbounds play, the ‘Noles got the ball to Michael Snaer, but Jeff Allen ripped the ball out of his hands, forcing FSU’s 20th turnover, to set the Hokies up for the potential game-winner.

Hokies Beat FSU, Clock 52-51 Will Face Duke Tomorrow

JLM-Hokie summed this game up perfectly with one statistic, "Most amazing stat of the night... Victor Davila was 100% from the foul line." With these Hokies expect the unexpected. I'm damn proud of this team tonight. I've been critical (but I think fair) during their struggles, and tonight with 5:01 left they sacked up. Allen, Delaney and Davila all had four fouls, all had to stay in and finish. And they did, they played with poise and heart, and became leaders on the floor. It was fitting that Erick Green who only made one other bucket the entire night hit would we be the game winner. Expect the unexpected.

Even though I hope he's out until all hours enjoying the victory in Greensboro and sleeps in until tip against Duke I'm sure Kevin will have a complete summary tomorrow. Until then, I offer up these pictures, please caption them as you see fit.