Summary of Hokies Final Tune Up Prior to Maroon-White Game

Here's the recap from Hokie Sports.com, and my thoughts follow after.

Tech quarterback Logan Thomas continued his good spring, throwing for 113 yards and two touchdowns in a football scrimmage on Wednesday night at Lane Stadium.

As was the case last Friday night, the scrimmage was broken into two parts. In the first part, the team worked on special situations – mostly red-zone stuff. The second part consisted of one 12-minute quarter.

Thomas completed 11 of 17 and fired touchdown passes of 12 yards to Danny Coale and 8 yards to Marcus Davis. Davis led all receivers with four catches for 21 yards, while Coale caught three for a scrimmage-high 40 yards. Coale also scored on an 8-yard run

Josh Oglesby led all rushers with 39 yards and scored two touchdowns, reaching the end zone on runs of 6 yards and 1 yard. James Hopper also scored on a 1-yard run. Projected starter David Wilson did not carry the ball in the scrimmage.

The Hokies got an impressive outing from freshman quarterback Mark Leal, who led the offense on a march against the first-team defense on the final drive of the game. With two seconds left, he threw a 17-yard touchdown pass to E.L. Smiling, who made a difficult grab in the back corner of the end zone.

Spring Football is in the Air

The Virginia Tech spring game is kind of a big deal. Last year 41,000 fans were in attendance according to the Collegiate Times. For the casual fan the spring game delivers the opportunity to tailgate with the certainty that everyone will be happy downtown afterward because no matter what we win. Not even considering the fact that this is the only football until September, it is a chance to reunite with people from college, grill out and party on a warm spring afternoon then enjoy ridiculously cheap drink specials downtown during the evening.

Friday Night Lights

Editor's Note: Cody Elliott is a junior Communications student at Virginia Tech and attended Friday night's scrimmage. He put together this summary.

Virginia Tech's second public scrimmage of the spring showcased Logan Thomas' potential, David Wilson's improvements, and a defense that is looking better and better with each practice.

We Are Virginia Tech

We are the Hokies.

We will prevail.
We will prevail.
We will prevail.

We are Virginia Tech.

Beautiful.

Like most of you, I listen to this once a year, today, and my eyes water every time.

Closed Scrimmage Results

HokieSports.com posted this summary of yesterday's closed scrimmage.

Logan Thomas threw for 110 yards and Eddie Whitley intercepted a pass to headline a Virginia Tech spring scrimmage on Wednesday night at Lane Stadium.

Thomas completed 8 of 17 for 110 yards and one interception. Tech’s offense did not score a touchdown, but again, the coaching staff flipped the offense around inside the red zone. The lone score in the scrimmage came on a 32-yard field goal by kicker Cody Journell.

It was not the best of days for Tech’s kickers, as they missed four field goals – from 49, 43 and 43 yards. The fourth was a 44-yard attempt by Journell that was blocked by Jayron Hosley, who finished with three tackles, including one for a loss.

Freshman Adeboye Aromire led the defense standouts with six tackles, while Jeron Gouveia-Winslow added five tackles (two solo). Alonzo Tweedy finished with four, including one for a loss. Tariq Edwards had three tackles and a pass break-up.

Quarterback Ju-Ju Clayton saw his first action in a scrimmage and completed 6 of 10 for 52 yards. Mark Leal completed 2 of 5 for 25 yards and Trey Gresh completed 1 of 3 for 11 yards.

Jarrett Boykin caught six passes for 61 yards, and Marcus Davis hauled in three for 51 yards.

Bud Foster Illustrated: The Whips

Bud Foster is quotable, and pictures are always fun, so I present Bud Foster Illustrated.

ON ALONZO TWEEDY AND JERON GOUVEIA-WINSLOW SHARING FIRST-STRING SNAPS AT WHIP: "Those two kids have practiced very well so far. G-W is like night and day difference. He's really working at it. Tweedy's night and day difference. I'm excited where they're going. Between those two guys, if we can keep going ... Tweedy can run like a dadgum antelope or whatever. I like to use scalded dog. Do antelopes lumber? Cheetah, OK. He runs like a cheetah. He's fast. Put all that in parentheses. But he's playing well. You'd like for him to take that next step right now. (Nick) Dew and (Dominique) Patterson are still kind of feeling their way, but I'm pleased with Tweedy and pleased with G-W."

via: KT

I'm starting to feel more confident about Whip. I'm sure that's a bad sign.

*I didn't think anyone wanted to see a scalded dog so I used Santa's Little Helper instead.
**Actually Tweedy runs 18.89 miles per hour if you extrapolate out his 4.33s 40 time using a linear projection.

Open Scrimmage I Thoughts

Here's the recap from Hokie Sports.com, and my thoughts follow below.

Thomas completed 8 of 14 for 75 yards, with a long of 22 that went to Marcus Davis. Davis led all receivers with four catches for 47 yards. On the rushing side, Josh Oglesby rushed for 32 yards on eight carries and James Hopper finished with 23 yards on eight carries. David Wilson had 15 yards on four carries.

The lone touchdown of the scrimmage came on a Trey Gresh 69-yard scoring pass to tight end Randall Dunn against Tech's third-team defense. Gresh completed 4 of 8 for 96 yards, with the touchdown and an interception, while Mark Leal completed 6 of 11 for 34 yards. Dunn caught two passes for a scrimmage-high 82 yards.

Defensively, Gayle recorded three tackles, including the two sacks. Barquell Rivers and Jayron Hosley led everyone with seven tackles each, and both had sacks. Eddie Whitley, Duan Perez-Means and Nick Acree each had five tackles, and Brian Laiti had the scrimmage’s lone interception.

The offense did not run any red-zone plays, as the coaching staff flipped things around any time the offense reached the red zone.

I think this is going to be the best way to summarize Logan's progress and our expectations of him from now until the fall.

150


♫ the boss boss boss da boss boss boss da boss boss boss da boss
the boss boss boss da boss boss boss da boss boss boss da boss ♫

There are only 150 more days until kickoff against Appalachian State. That calls for an Ashley Schaeffer, "Woo!" I wrote only like it somehow won't be an excruciatingly slow crawl though summer until the start of the season. It will be, but at least now we have spring ball to tide us over. Right?

Including the two scrimmages and the Maroon and White game there are 15 spring practices in total. The former three events are the only ones open to the public. Those are our only opportunities between now and August to use our eyes to evaluate, scrutinize and analyze the team. Everything else that goes on will happen behind closed doors, with peaks through window granted to a precious few media members, some of which the average Hokie cannot stand because they don't hold the team as near and dear to the heart as the rest of us do. (That's neither fair or rational, but it's true.)

Wild Thing

This Photoshop was inevitable.

"I was really bad when I first got here," Thomas said. "I was throwing high, low, skipping it across the ground. Now they're a little bit more in the strike zone."

O'Cain said Thomas has made "tremendous improvement in all areas" since his first week at the position and the end of this past season.

"He was just wild," O'Cain said, "like a fastball pitcher that sails into the upper backstop every now and then. He's really improved that. He'll still miss one occasionally, but they're close misses. Three yards, or four yards ... you just say to yourself, where in the heck did that come from?"

via: HD

The Logan Thomas to Cam Newton comparisons are premature, but the Logan Thomas to Rick Vaughn comparisons are reasonable and timely.

Germond Oatneal to Leave the Football Program

According to Mark Giannotto of the Washington Post Germond Oatneal has decided to leave the football team. Last fall and spring Oatneal worked as a demon at cornerback on the scout team, and before that at flanker. Even though we're a bit thin in the secondary he wasn't expected to see any significant playing time. However, he was penciled in as the number one name after Nubian Shabazz-Zoser Peak transfered to Texas Tech last summer. It's unclear who will replace him. I'd say the favorites are:

  • George George
  • Jonathan Halfhide
  • Ju-Ju Clayton
  • Adeboye Aromire
  • E.L. Smiling

Best of luck to Germond in whatever he peruses next.

H/T James at Inside the Cassell

Festivus 2011

I decided to watch UVa's Festivus this afternoon. Why? It was on ESPN3 and sometimes you just do things because they're convenient and easy. It looked like you might expect.

What I learned from watching the Blue-Orange Game:

  1. Scott Stadium's grass field that earlier in the day took abuse from rain, sleet and a lacrosse game looked less sloppy than the football team. A missed field goal, interceptions, fumbles, missed blocks, missed tackles essentially dwarfed most positives.
  2. UVa is one quarterback away from competing against Duke.
  3. Watford is green, but you know, #newhoos.
  4. If UVa is going to televise Festivus next year, do away with the kickoffs and punts. The crowd shots were embarrassing.

Final Score: Blue 17 - Orange 7 - Humanity 0

You Too Can Follow VT Women's Soccer Recruiting

Joe and I are excited to share our passion for Virginia Tech women's soccer recruiting and we know you're all interested in how the Class of 2011 is doing. If you live in Northern Virginia, the excitement of the Hokies' future is just outside your doorstep. Several players that are either committed to Tech or on its radar right in the talent-rich 703.

With state soccer playoffs right around the corner, now is the time to get out there and check out what the future of Hokie women's soccer looks like.

Class of 2011

Welcome to The Key Gobbler

Today starts a new chapter for both Joe and I as we move on from our former blogs and dive head-first into our new endeavor. We know that many of you, like us, clamor for Virginia Tech women's soccer recruiting news. Our goal is to make this site your ultimate destination for that news.

However, because this site will be offering content that will be unique and comprehensive, a majority of it will only be available if you subscribe to The Key Gobbler. All posts here will be free for the first month, but we will be switching to a subscription-based model beginning May 1.

There are many ways you can choose to subscribe:

Springapalooza 2011: The Defense

The second part of my spring preview. If you missed my take on the offense, check it out here. Please enjoy.

The Defense

The defensive personal and scheme are anything but cut and dry this season. Right now I'd only feel comfortable penning in Bruce Taylor, Eddie Whitley, Jaryon Hosley and Kyle Fuller as starters. Usually when there's so much up in the air and unsettled it's a bad thing. However, the defensive side of the ball features a lot of talent and depth, most of it just happens to be at linebacker. The depth along the defensive line is great, but there are no studs, yet; the potential is there though. I like the look of the secondary, how can't you really? Jayron is a legit All-American and Kyle Fuller just balls. I think Antone Exum has a lot of potential and he played well in the Nickel, but he's going to have to prove himself at Rover.

Luckily we have the best defensive coordinator in the country putting the pieces of the puzzle together. I'm sure Bud would be the first to say the defense underperformed against elite opponents last season (see: Boise State and Stanford), albeit in a rebuilding year. The reason why Foster is the master of his craft is because he's not afraid to tweak what he's got. Running a heavy dose of Nickel and 3-3-5 might not have been outside of his comfort zone, but it was something pretty foreign for us as fans to watch. I think Bud's willingness in the past to change schemes (the abandonment of the 4-4, etc) is what's led to all the speculation that the defensive philosophy will be going under another makeover. Clearly the Whip backer and Rover are two of the main keys to a defense noted for its adaptability and versatility. Those positions require a unique athlete with the skills of more than just a linebacker or safety respectively.

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.

via: http://www.roanoke.com/news/nrv/breaking/wb/281071

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.

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