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:
- 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."
- 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."
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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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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