124. The Offseason Begins.

♫ The Hokiebird makes it his biz to make sure all the cheerleaders swoon. ♫

via @vtnews: The 1962 edition of the Hokiebird.

The real offseason began immediately after the conclusion of the Maroon-White game two Saturdays ago. Sure, there was no Hokie football going on between the end of the Orange Bowl and start of spring practice, but it was a manageable break, one that's often appreciated by my body, but never welcomed by my heart. It's almost summer, and soon we'll all pass the time by doing summery things: grilling, yard work, vacationing, going to the beach, etc... If any of you are like me you'll take the beautiful weather and fun in the sun a little bit for granted because you'll still be looking ahead to the upcoming season.

Ryan Williams Drafted by the Cardinals

The Arizona Cardinals selected Ryan Williams with the 6th pick of the second round (38th overall).

I'm going to miss RMFW dragging corpses into the end zone.

Currently, the Cardinals already have two proven NFL backs on their roster, Beanie Wells and Tim Hightower. However, they struggled mightily to run the ball and finished last in total rushing in 2010 (1,388 yards). The Cardinals are obviously looking to improve their running game, so look for Williams to get a shot to earn a significant amount of carries.

I'll be drafting him for my fantasy team.

Congratulations Ru, Lil' Sweetness, Ryan Mother Fucking Williams and 1/2 of the 100 Proof Backfield!

Film Study: Maroon-White Game

I promised more detailed analysis after I watched the tape of the Maroon-White Game. I deliver thoughts in varying lengths and in no particular order.

Mike O'Cain's passing game showed its teeth. There were a lot of three-step drops paired with aggressive routes that pushed the field vertically. If LT3 can make the reads quick enough, which he did against a base defense, we can really start using our off-the-blocks speed at receiver to our advantagee. On the 55-yard Maroon scoring drive set up by Jayron Hosley's return, Maroon called 4 straight passes (Logan took off and ran up a soft middle for 6-ish yards on one) until Logan pumped and threw to Marcus Davis for six.

Four Verts: Randall Dunn makes the reception and Boykin is not pictured, but was indeed running down the field.

There were screens too. Screens, those plays we used to run a ton of, then stopped calling altogether. Hopefully we'll use them with moderation, when appropriate.

Logan Thomas Hype-O-Meter [4/26/2011]

HokiESQ did all the work here.

This needed to be updated. The hairs on my neck are still standing up after Logan's 37-yard scamper and everyone in Blacksburg is swooning. A single Logan pump fake makes everyone feel good inside.

Just remember, the '11 offensive line production chart is a negative correlation to the LT3 Hype-O-Meter.

Observations from the Spring Game

In returning to Blacksburg for the first time since the ECU game last year, one question kept coming to mind: Why the hell do I not come back more often? I made the bookstore rounds, watched the sun go down at the pylons, visited the April 16th memorial, ran into Macho Harris walking downtown, got my picture with Bruce Smith, demolished a Kabuki dinner in Christiansburg, and got to see some sloppy, but promising, spring football.

Maroon 27 - White 0 - Atmosphere Amazing

The stands in Lane Stadium were painted orange and maroon Saturday afternoon. In the spring those two colors are foreign there, almost always reversed for the fall, but as usual Hokie Nation came out in droves to support their team. From what my eyes saw, the only Hokie not wearing generous amounts of maroon and orange was Frank Beamer.

The Frankinator wore a black suit with a delicately checkered orange shirt on a day sunny enough to burn unprotected skin, and hot enough to make a cold beer taste that much better. As per his style, he smiled, shook hands, and observed the game more than he coached it. On Saturday he chose to be the CEO of Beamer Co., tucked away in the back of the boardroom, to not only oversee the first steps towards defending our ACC Championship, but maybe to relax and appreciate what he's built over the last 24 years. He didn't break a sweat.

J.C. Coleman VERBALS?

Rumor in Blacksburg is that Oscar Smith H.S. running back J.C. Coleman verballed to the Hokies today before the spring game. Just five weeks ago he was a strong UVA lean.

Protected tweet by incoming freshman Dewayne Alford let the info drop and Kyle Tucker let was quick to put it out after here.

Incoming #Hokies freshman Dwayne Alford tweeting that Oscar Smith High RB J.C. Coleman committed to VT on visit today. Big news.

Though J.C. has scat back size at 5'7" 170 lbs he runs with balance, vision and more power than one would expect. Last season he rushed for 1,402 yards and 21 touchdowns.

Springapalooza Tailgate Companion

Click the thumb to make it grow, then print it off to be enjoyed by everyone while consuming bourbon at your tailgate. It's best viewed in color.

*I wanted to include the actual game rosters, but I'll be DT by the time they are released tomorrow.

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.


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.


♫ 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