The Hokie Hotline (football and basketball season)
When: every Monday from 7:00-9:00
Click here for a list of radio stations, and to find the link for listening to the show on the Internet (look to the right on the page that loads when you click the link). You can also watch the archive on

Advance Auto Parts Hokie Hotline Notes
, October 18, 2004
by Wayne Clevenger

Feature guests for Monday's Hokie Hotline radio show were offensive coordinator and offensive line coach Bryan Stinespring, athletic director Jim Weaver, running backs coach Billy Hite, and defensive backs coach Lorenzo Ward.

Bill Roth kicked off the broadcast with the news of the day:

· Hokies are now 5-2 on the season and ranked 22nd in the Coaches Poll and 23rd in the AP Poll

· Hokies are #1 in the ACC in scoring defense and 5th in the nation allowing just 11.5 ppg

· Hokies are #7 in the nation in total defense allowing only 265 ypg

· Hokies men’s soccer team faces UNC in Blacksburg on Wednesday night

· Hokies women’s soccer team is on the road Wednesday night against UVA

· ISP broadcast of the VT-GT football game is set to 102.9 FM in Atlanta

· VT has sold 4300 tickets to the VT-GT football game with 700 tickets remaining as of 5pm on Monday – tickets can be ordered by calling 800-VATECH4 or at

· There are 350 season tickets left for VT men’s basketball season and these can be ordered the same way as above if you are a Hokie Club member.

· The ACC unveiled its new logo and official divisions on Monday – they will be call “Atlantic” and “Coastal”

· VT has agreed to play a two game football series with Syracuse - beginning in 2010 in Syracuse and the other game will be in 2011 in Blacksburg

· Friday at 1pm VT’s JV football squad will take on Fork Union Military Academy

Bryan Stinespring – Offensive Coordinator / Offensive Line Coach

After introducing Stinespring, Roth asked for his comments on the FAMU game. Stinespring said that “a win is a win” and that the team and coaches are looking forward to their upcoming matchup with GT. He said that VT’s offense and defense both played well against FAMU and executed the little things well. He especially praised the defense and special teams performances and singled out the outstanding effort of Darryl Tapp early in the game. Roth asked Stinespring about the performance of Cedric Humes against FAMU. Stinespring said that he really thought Humes was enjoying the game and tried to get him a lot of touches. He said that Cedric’s recent problems running the ball are all mental and hopefully this game helped him get past that because the team really needs him.

Chris from Salem in the audience asked if we might be seeing more of Kinzer at fullback. Stinespring said that Kinzer was bothered by a stinger he suffered in practice a few days before the FAMU game so they decided to limit his action a bit on Saturday. He said that Kinzer has been doing an excellent job of adapting to the fullback role, but still is a work in progress.

Jeff in Roanoke called and apologized to Stinespring for some of the calls he received during the Hotline show after the NCSU game. He said that those callers who questioned Stinespring in that manner weren’t true Hokie fans. Jeff went on to point out that GT and NCSU play similar defensive styles with lots of zone blitzing and wondered how the VT might prepare to attack GT. Stinespring agreed that there are a lot of similarities between the two, but that VT should be better prepared to attack it this time around. He said that there are a lot of ways to attack the creases in zone defenses and VT will work hard on preparing for that during the upcoming practices.

Mike in Bristol wrote in and asked about the status of Mike Green. Stinespring said that Green would hopefully be back in Blacksburg in January, but no further information is available at this time.

A youngster name Dillon in Blacksburg called in and asked how Glennon might handle play in the ACC next year if he were to end up the VT starting QB. Stinespring chuckled and asked how old Dillon was. He then noted that it was a very good question and went on to say that Glennon is a smart player who’s showing improvement each week. He also praised Glennon’s play against FAMU this past Saturday.

Tommy in Blacksburg called in and asked if VT might try more screen passes against GT as a way of attacking their aggressive zone blitz schemes. Stinespring agreed that the screen pass is one way to attack such pressure. He noted that VT tried several screens against NCSU, but their quick safety always seemed to have the play covered. He finished by saying that there are many other plays VT will work on to try to attack zone pressure as well.

Frank in Manassas wrote in to ask why VT doesn’t try more quick slant passes. Stinespring said that VT does attempt these types of pass plays, but many times the defense gets them covered or the time is off. He said the offense needs to execute these better down the stretch.

Roth noted that football fans love to second guess offensive play calling and asked Stinespring if he ever did the same when he was younger before he got into coaching. Stinespring laughed and admitted that he called many perfect games while watching football as a youngster.

Kenny in Richmond called in and congratulated Stinespring on his play called the past few games. He asked if Stinespring has one favorite play he liked to call (regardless of down and distance) that VT executed particularly well. Stinespring said that there were actually two such plays. He said that both were run plays to the inside, but one called for zone blocking and the other called for power man blocking. He said that VT has executed both very consistently of late.

Jerry in Tazwell called and asked if the coaches are still working with Randall on his timing and read progressions. Jerry noted that Randall seems to hold the ball a second too long on some of his deep throws. Stinespring said that Randall works with the receivers on deep patterns every Tuesday during skeleton drills. He said that Coach Rogers works very closely with Randall on his timing but that sometimes the receivers get held up in their routes and that throws off the play.

In closing Stinespring noted that the VT offense has seen a lot of different defensive looks thus far this season and that should help the players in the remainder of the games this season.

Jim Weaver – Athletic Director

After a break, Roth introduced Weaver, who confirmed the two game series between VT and Syracuse in 2010 and 2011. Roth asked if there will be any other Big East teams showing up on future VT schedules. Weaver said maybe, but there are no plans in the works as of yet. Weaver and Roth both discussed the new ACC logo that’s now more oval than round so as to allow for the larger geographic region from Massachusetts to South Florida. They also discussed the new ACC divisional names, Atlantic and Coastal. Weaver said that all the ACC Athletic Directors were in unison when they voted on these names because they wanted names that reflected the name of the conference. Roth asked Weaver what he thought about the recently released BCS standings that have USC #1, Miami #2, and Oklahoma #3. Weaver said that the current system, while not perfect, may be the best one yet. He said that it should all play out in the end.

Bill in Lynchburg called and asked about the current plans for Lane Stadium seat reallocation. Weaver said that a mailer would go out this week to all current season ticket holders that will thoroughly explain the process. A separate Q&A publication will also be sent out as a follow up. After those mailings have been received, Weaver said that remaining questions can be directed to the regional Hokie Club offices or directly to the VT ticket office.

Jeremy from Christiansburg in the audience asked Weaver if he and former VT Athletic Director (and current GT Athletic Director) Dave Braine have any wagers on the VT-GT game. Weaver stated that NCAA rules prohibit players, coaches and administrators from placing monetary wagers – but that they might make a gentlemen’s handshake-type bet on the game.

Chris in Staunton called in to ask if there were plans to dress up the field paint so it can look even better for VT’s upcoming televised games. Weaver said that the VT athletic department consulted with a public relations firm on this subject before the season began and they determined that the white field paint is sufficient when contrasted against the maroon coloring behind the end zones where both “Virginia Tech” and “Hokies” are displayed as well.

Scott in Waynesboro called and asked about the possibility of VT and WVU playing again in the near future. He also asked for Weaver’s thoughts on the non-BCS conferences having access to play in the BCS Bowls. Weaver said that he and WVU Athletic Director Ed Pastilong have had conversations about continuing the series in the future but the only way it might happen that soon is if the NCAA allows a 12th game. Weaver went on to say that the smaller conference teams do have an outside chance at making it to BCS Bowls and pointed out that there are many teams from these conferences that are currently ranked. Both Roth and Weaver pointed out that Utah has a very good chance at making it to a BCS Bowl game this year as an at-large team.

Jim in Buchanon called and asked why Worsham field looks so barren and brown between the hash marks. Weaver stated that Blacksburg is between climates in that it’s too far south for good Bluegrass growth and too far north for good Bermuda growth. He said that Beamer prefers Bermuda grass because it’s a faster playing surface but unfortunately it goes dormant after September. The field system blows warm air up through the ground in an attempt to compensate for this, but the wear and tear that’s taken between the hash marks causes the Bermuda to go dormant there quicker.

Jim Ryan from Suffolk called and asked about the status of Xavier Adibi for the GT game. Weaver said he was probably the wrong person to answer the question, but that he knew Xavier had been participating in individual drills and there’s tremendous optimism for him to play against GT.

Before going to break, Roth acknowledged the presence of the winningest coach in VT history, Chuck Hartman. He asked Hartman for his analysis of the MLB playoffs and Hartman said that the Yankees probably have the best team, but anything can happen.

Billy Hite – Assistant Head Coach / Running Backs Coach
Lorenzo Ward – Defensive Backfield Coach

After a break Roth introduced Billy Hite and Lorenzo Ward and asked them for their thoughts on the season thus far. Hite said that this VT team is very enjoyable to coach. He said he likes what they’re all about and is very pleased with the team chemistry. Ward added that he is excited about how the team is improving going into the season’s home stretch.

Roth again noted that VT has the 7th best defense in the nation, allowing only 265 ypg. Ward said this was a product of better execution and denying opposing offense too many big plays. He added that VT is also getting good pressure on opposing QB’s with their 4 man rush. Roth asked how the Williams/Fuller position switch was coming along. Ward said that both are getting very settled into their respective positions.

Hite noted the improved play of Cedric Humes in the game against FAMU and said that he might be the key to the offensive potential as the season winds down. He said that he thinks Humes is over his mental issues related to his Spring injury. Hite also praised Imoh and Hamilton for their ongoing valuable contributions to the VT offense.

Barek in Blacksburg in the audience asked about the progression of Kent Hicks. Ward said that Hicks didn’t respond (as well as the coaches hoped) to the Rover position. So they moved him to free safety where he seems to be progressing much better. Hite also mentioned how well Ore and Bell are coming along and said they both have future star potential.

Roth asked both Coaches what they thought about the Miami / NCSU matchup this weekend. Both agreed that it should be a tough game for Miami and the performance of Berlin might determine the outcome one way or another.

After a break, Roth went into some football rules clarifications with the coaches. One clarification involved where a punt coverage player’s body can be when downing a punt near the goal line. Hite confirmed that the it doesn’t matter where the coverage player’s body is located, as long as the ball itself doesn’t cross the plane of the goal line. In other words, a player can be standing completely in the end zone and reach back into the field of play to down the ball, as long as the ball never crosses into the end zone.

The other rule clarification involved kickoff rulings. If a kickoff goes into the end zone and falls dead in the end zone without any player touching the ball, then it is ruled a touchback once it crosses the plane of the goal line. However, if a player on the receiving team fumbles the reception, while standing either in or out of the end zone – then that player must recover the ball. Roth brought up the fact that a FAMU player fumbled a kickoff reception in the end zone and VT recovered, but had to kick over. Hite said that was because a referee blew an inadvertent whistle on the play and it had to be done over as a consequence.

Josh in Suffolk called and asked if both Bell and Ore would redshirt this season. Hite confirmed that both would redshirt, but added that both would be very special players for VT in the future.

Joe in Chesapeake called and asked about the status of Chris Clifton. Hite said that Clifton is working very hard and making great contributions on VT’s special teams. Hite also said that we’d most likely see Clifton back on the field at wideout before the season is over with.

Roth asked what the coaches would be up to during the upcoming off week. Hite said that Beamer, Cavanaugh and himself would be in Blacksburg this weekend evaluating VT’s JV game against FUMA, while the rest of the coaches would be out recruiting. Hite said that some Varsity players would play in the JV game, but the red shirt players are not allowed to play.

Greg from Dublin in the audience said that his nephew met Coach Ward and some of his players a few years ago. Greg’s nephew is now playing cornerback for his middle school team and thinks the world of Ward after the impression he made years ago. Greg said his nephew would like to know a brief outline of Ward’s activities during the games while on the sideline. Ward thanked Greg for his nephew’s kind words. Ward says that he gives Foster all the coverage calls from the booth based on field position and situation. When the offense is on the field, he collaborates with the other defense coaches on adjustments that Foster can implement.

Roth noted that VT started in nickel coverage against FAMU with Roland Minor in the game as an extra DB. Ward confirmed this and said that the coaches wanted to negate FAMU’s tendency to use 4 wide receivers to spread the field. Some wrote in to ask if Jimmy Williams might ever play both boundary corner and field corner so that he could cover the taller opposing receivers. Ward said that Williams would stay at boundary corner and that he has the utmost confidence in Eric Green.

J.D. from Pulaski in the audience asked if VT’s defensive backs are lining up further away from the receivers this year. Ward said that it depends on what coverage VT is in. If they are in man coverage, then the defensive backs will be closer to the receivers. If they are in one of their zone coverages, then the defensive backs might give more cushion to the opposing receivers. It all depends on the situation and the coverage that’s called.

Roth asked the coaches to single out the most accurate opposing passer they’ve ever coached against, along with the best defensive player they have ever coached against. Ward said that Byron Leftwich of Marshall was by the far the best passer he’d ever had to defend against because of his ability to go short or long accurately – depending on the coverage. Hite said the best defender he’d ever coached against was Warren Sapp of Miami – hands down.

Roth asked the coaches what a realistic expectation for this VT team would be as they enter the final 5 games of the season. Hite said that the most important thing from both the coaches and the team was to focus only on the task at hand, which is always the next game. He said the team is very focused on GT right now, and are really coming together as a cohesive coachable unit. Roth asked Ward what things the team can improve on. Ward said that there’s always room for executional improvement and stated that the team strives to get better every day in practice and with every game.

After a break, Kevin in Lynchburg called and asked about the status of Stevie Ray Lloyd. Ward said that Lloyd has excelled in run coverage, but still needs work in his pass coverage skills. He said that Beamer really likes Lloyd’s play on special teams and predicted that he’ll be a great player for VT in the future.

Roth noted the recent contributions by the versatile backup Mike Daniels and noted how he made the game-saving play at the end of the WFU game. Coaches both agreed that Daniels is a valuable contributor for the team. Roth noted that VT will lose some valuable players in its defensive backfield after this season. Ward agreed that losing the likes of Fuller, Green and Griffin will make things tough, but added that there are some very good athletes waiting to take over and battle for those jobs next spring.

Doug from Blacksburg in the audience asked Ward for analysis of GT and their wide receivers. He also asked Hite if VT would run any two tailback formations this season. Ward responded first by saying that GT does indeed have talented wide receivers who are tall and like to go up and get the ball. He also said that GT does a good job of using the run to set up the pass. He compared them to WVU in these aspects. Hite responded to his question by saying that VT does use a two back set that’s called the Pony Set. He said it’s designed to get a lopsided defense to commit a linebacker to the weak side and get a mismatch.

Roth asked Hite about GT’s defense. Hite said that they are outstanding. He likened GT’s defense to NCSU’s defense. He said that they really don’t have a discernable weakness and VT must play a near mistake-free offensive game to have a chance at winning. He said it may well come down to the last few minutes, just like the WVU and NCSU games. He also added that if VT could eliminate offensive mistakes and really get on a roll, then the sky’s the limit with the talent they have.

After a break, Mike in Blacksburg called and asked for the coaches to comment on the offensive and defensive recruits this year. Hite apologized and said that they aren’t allowed to talk about high school players on air, per NCAA rules. Roth interjected by saying that in his opinion, Virginia has a very talented pool of recruits this year.

Will in Chesapeake called and noted that the VT defense appeared to be caught off-guard a few times on quick snaps by FAMU while they were still looking to the sideline for the defensive call. Ward said that FAMU runs a no huddle offense and they often change the play at the line based on the perceived defensive coverage. As a result, VT tries to show them one coverage initially, then change at the last second to cause confusion. He said that sometimes this becomes such a chess match that the defense can get caught slightly unprepared for the snap, but that’s a chance you take when you play against the no huddle. Note: WFU and WVU also play no huddle, but GT does not.

Roth asked for Ward’s opinion on how this VT team must improve down the stretch. He said that the team must continue to improve execution and exhibit great leadership and unity. He said that if VT’s defense can continue to prevent the big play, then they should be fine as the season wears on. Roth asked Hite for similar comments regarding the offense. Hite said that Hamilton, Imoh and Humes must continue to improve VT’s running game and get the tough yards to open up the passing game. He also said that Kinzer and Allen must keep improving at the fullback position because this is a critical part of VT’s offensive execution.

Roth asked if this year’s VT team is more prepared “between the ears” for a better stretch run than last year’s team. Hite said that team chemistry will win out over team talent any day – and this team has excellent unity and chemistry. He said that the team has great leadership and is really staying together through the wins and the losses. Ward agreed with Hite, but also asserted that the coaches must continue to get better and promote that unity. Both noted the fact that the offensive and defensive players room together during road trips and really get along great as a group.

Roth thanked Weaver and all the coaches for their time and signed off.

Monday was day 16 of Virginia Tech’s continuous possession of the Black Diamond Trophy.

-- Wayne


Hokie Hotline Note Archives

TSL Home