September 1, 1996

The Big East, Week One

The Hokies may not have played this weekend, but a number of other Big East teams certainly did (for better or for worse), and here's the rundown:

  1. Miami 30, Memphis 7: the 'Canes didn't exactly impress in this one, leading only 3-0 at halftime, but you have to remember that this is a Miami team that currently has 157 players suspended for various reasons. Yatil (did I spell that right?) Green, Miami's leading receiver, and Danyell (did I spell that right?) Ferguson, Miami's leading rusher, were both out. They have been suspended indefinitely for shoplifting garlic salt and condoms - no wait, that's a different story. Green and Ferguson were suspended for allegedly taking a ride in a limo paid for by an agent service. But back to the game - in spite of the missing players, I didn't get the impression that Miami is "back."
  2. BC 24, Hawaii 21: I got to stay up late and watch this one. I was in Pennsylvania, stuffing wedding invitations into envelopes (now you know why I haven't been updating Hokie Central much lately). BC struggled all game long against the lightly-regarded Rainbows, but they PDOUMA'd a win at the very end (email me if you want to know what that one means). Word out of Boston is that Dan Henning, uh, isn't the greatest college coach you could ever want, so the Eagles are suffering from chemistry and morale problems. As an example, when sophomore Scott Mutryn was named the starter at QB after a prolonged battle with junior Matt Hasselbeck, Hasselbeck told a reporter that Henning's decision was, and I quote, "the most ridiculous thing I've ever heard."

    After watching this game, I can say that BC's supposed problems were in evidence. Mutryn was terrible, and sure enough, Henning replaced him with Hasselbeck just in time to generate a win. Nice going, Henning. Way to make a decision and then not stick with it. Nothing like a QB controversy to increase your chances of having another 4-win season.

  3. WVU 1,000,000, Pitt 0: WVU's stock certainly rose with me during this game, while Pitt's plummeted. I knew Pitt was going to lose pretty early in the game. WVU's defensive lineup, with 8 returning starters, had been displayed on screen, and then later, the announcers put up Pitt's defensive lineup and said, "Pitt lost 3 of 4 defensive linemen and all of their linebackers to graduation." Zoicks, Scooby! Two plays later, a WVU tailback peeled off a 69-yard TD run, and the rout was on. Pitt looked terrible, and the Mountaineers looked great. I'm not ready to call the Big East a 4-team race yet, but WVU is certainly making their case.
  4. Rutgers and Temple: Rutgers struggled to beat 1-AA Villanova 38-28, despite 4 turnovers by 'Nova. I'm drooling in anticipation of the Hokie's home opener against Rutgers, who are called the Scarlet Knights because their football program is hemorrhaging badly right now. But kudos to Temple for their road win over Eastern Michigan. When you're Temple, every win is treasured, especially a road win. Congrats.

Turkey Bites

  • For those of you who have been asking about Larry Green, word on his status has finally been received. He did not make his grades and will not enroll at Virginia Tech this fall. He will take 1996 as a redshirt year and attempt to return to the field in 1997. Loren Johnson will start in his place, and although Johnson is good, Green will be missed. He had a monster game in the Sugar Bowl, breaking up 4 passes (okay, okay, so he should have picked at least two of them off, but at least he was there, in position).
  • Former Hokies: as near as I can tell from reading the paper, J.C. Price didn't make an NFL roster, but Vaughn Hebron, who was cut by Philadelphia, was picked up by and is hanging on with the Denver Broncos. He had a monster hit on special teams against the Jets Sunday. Ken Brown was cut by the Broncos, and Eugene Chung and Will Furrer didn't survive, either. Bruce Smith is still with Buffalo, of course, and Bryan Still made the Chargers' roster, although he didn't make any catches in San Diego's first game. Antonio Freeman, on the other hand, had a great opening day with Green Bay. He was the Packers' leading receiver on Sunday, with 6 catches for 82 yards.

    The J.C. Price thing was kind of unfortunate. Despite his smallish size (only about 260-270 pounds), he was drafted by a team that runs a 3-4, where the linemen have to be bigger, since there's only three of them. So naturally, he was cut, although he did manage to survive until the final day or so. He was later picked up by another team (I missed who it was, so if you know, email me). But today, when The Roanoke Times ran a list of pro players from the state of Virginia, Price wasn't on it. So a pox on whoever the genius was for the Carolina Panthers who decided to draft him. He probably would have been better off somewhere else.

  • Quote of the week: "And what in the hell kinda name is Tiki anyway? Was his mother watching that 2-part Brady Bunch episode in Hawaii while she was in labor?" - reader Dion Pifer, venting his rage at Tiki Barber's pointless "Tiki for Heisman" campaign.

    More than likely, Dion, she was watching that episode while she was conceiving Tiki and his twin sibling, Toast. In case you missed it, folks, Danny Sheridan listed his Heisman odds in The USA Today, and Tiki wasn't on his list. Jim Druckenmiller and Cornell Brown were.


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