Friday, April 9, 1999

Spring Game Details

It struck me that many of you out there have never been to a Spring Game and really have very little idea of what's involved, so I thought I would answer some of the more frequently asked questions that I've seen on the message board, plus questions I've received via email:

1.)  Does it cost anything?
No.  Admission is free.

2.)  What about parking and seating?  Concessions?
Park wherever you can, and sit wherever you can.  I've been to the last three Spring Games, and I think the maximum attendance has been about 7,000, but that's a rough estimate, since tickets aren't sold.  In recent years, it has rained, keeping the attendance down.  As for concessions, I remember a single concession stand being open in the past, and when I asked the question on the message board, someone else remembered that, as well.

3.)  Is it as long as a regular football game?
No.  The game has quarters, and they're either 12 minutes or 15 minutes long (and Beerman had a memory of 8 minute quarters, but he wasn't sure), but the clock runs pretty much continuously, so it makes for a pretty quick game.  During half time, the players and coaches stay on the field, and the spring football awards (most improved, hustle award, etc.) are handed out.  Pay attention to the awards, because they give you a good idea of who has impressed the coaches.

4.)  Are there refs?
Yes, there's a full complement of refs.  I don't know how good they are, mind you, but they're all there.

5.)  Is it all-out tackling?  What about punts, kickoffs, etc.?   Do they play it like normal?
As far as I can remember, yes on all counts.  I know there's TONS of hitting and woofing, and players get very excited.  They don't hold back.  First team offense plays first team defense, and second team plays second team, and everybody feels like they've got something to prove.  Beamer used to do 1 vs. 2, but that led to boring slaughters.

Last year, due to injury, Al Clark wore a yellow jersey, which meant that he was down when touched.  I can't remember if every QB wore a yellow jersey, or just Al, but it leads to plenty of sacks, because a guy like Corey Moore blows by his man, touches the QB, and gets credit for a "sack."

6.)  Can you meet the players or go down on the field?
That's a good one.  I personally have never gone down on the field after the game, but I know that a number of fans do, and they meet players -- and recruits.  Every year, message board posters are always saying after the game, "I met Jake Houseright," or "I met Corey Moore," etc.  And I believe a number of the 1999 recruits that will be true freshmen next fall also attend the game, so eagle-eyed fans can meet the new guys, too.

7.)  Will there be tailgating before the game?
Say what?  Of course there will!  HokieCentral will be holding its Third Annual Spring Game Tailgate.  Read on for details


Spring Tailgate Details

Yessirree, this is a fun one.  The HokieCentral Spring Game Tailgate is a little different from the fall tailgates that I have.  The Spring Game Tailgate is a BYOE (Bring Your Own Everything) affair, so if you have a favorite food or beverage, bring it with you.  I think Atlee Hokie said he's going to have a grill there, but I'm sure he'll need some help and some additional grills, so if you want, bring a grill, too.

Here are the pertinent details:

The Event:  HokieCentral Spring Game Tailgate '99
The Place:  Lot 5, across Southgate Drive from Lane Stadium (see map below)
The Date:  April 17th, 1999
The Time:  10:30 to 2:00 (game starts at 2:00)
The Cost:  Free!

Other Details:  I'll have a nice 10x10 tent set up, which I just purchased recently (I would have bought two, but they cost $175!  Zowee!).  The tent is white, and it will have my 8-foot "" banner hung on it, so look for it.

I'll have a handful of leftover HokieCentral merchandise from last year there - a few white polo shirts and maroon polo shirts, plus about 6 or 7 Music City Bowl T-shirts, so bring some extra cash or your checkbook, in case you see anything you like that fits.  And please, please, please take a look at the HokieCentral watches I'll have there - when I recently offered them on the Hokie Stuff page, I only sold about 7 of them, and my minimum order was 25, so now I've got eighteen of those suckers sitting around!  Help!  I'll bring the whole box (hint:   they make great gifts!).

Lastly, I'll probably have at least one real-live game-worn Virginia Tech football jersey there.  Last year, I, eh, "sold" my 1995 Torrian Gray jersey to Atlee Hokie, and this year, I think I'll bring my 1995 Al Clark and Marcus Parker jerseys with me.  They're road jerseys, so they're white.  I'm thinking about auctioning them off, so if you've always wanted a jersey, come ready to bid (unless it's illegal for me to auction stuff off, which I'm sure I'll hear about if it is).

It should be a great time, and maybe the weather will actually cooperate this year!  For the location, see the map below.  Lot 5 is shown in red, and the words "RIGHT HERE!" are also a dead giveaway:

tailgate2.gif (28958 bytes)


Spring Scrimmage Details

There have been two scrimmages since my last scrimmage report.   On Monday, I posted Stretch's scrimmage report, and it was for Wednesday, March 31st, not Saturday, April 3rd.

In the last two scrimmages, the offense has acquitted itself a little better.  Here are direct links to the scrimmage reports for both scrimmages:

April 3rd Scrimmage: Tech offense, special teams shine
April 8th Scrimmage: Tech offense impressive in scrimmage

The April 8 scrimmage was a situational scrimmage that tested red zone and goal line offense and defense.  The best eyewitness account I read of the scrimmage was posted by Wandering Hokie, who says don't be fooled by the short-yardage situations - the offense did well, and the defense wasn't happy about.   Click here to see Wandering Hokie's report.


Sweet 16 T-shirt Update

I'm still waiting for licensing approval on my women's Sweet Sixteen T-shirts, but I can tell you that progress has been made.  The NCAA rejected my original design, and my vendor has submitted a new, slightly modified design.

We're currently waiting on approval, and when it's approved, I'll post the new design.  Those of you who have already ordered can look the new design over, and if you want to cancel, let me know, and I will take care of it.   I doubt you'll want to cancel, because the new design is VERY similar to the old one.

That will also give those of you who didn't get a chance to order another shot at it.

Please stay tuned, and I apologize for the ridiculous delay.  Both my T-shirt vendor and I are embarrassed by the whole sequence of events.   We learned that trying to get a design past the NCAA is infinitely more time-consuming and difficult than getting licensing approval from Tech or a bowl game.


Members Only Storefront is Finally Open

Speaking of merchandise, the Members Only Storefront is now open (finally!).  So, if you're a HokieCentral member, you can now order any piece of HC merchandise that you want.  Go ahead and poke around the storefront, tell me what you think, and please be sure to carefully read the information on the front page about pricing, shipping, and delivery times.


Druck Under Siege

It appears that Jim Druckenmiller is toast in San Francisco.  The 49ers power structure has rolled over since Druck was drafted, and the new king doesn't like the previous king's draft choice of Druck.  A slew of articles have appeared on-line that have alternately vilified, defended, and insulted Druck.

None of this surprises me, because the Niners want Druck to be Steve Young, and he ain't Steve Young.  Nothing like trying to cram a square peg into a round hole, and Druck is the loser in all this (although he did get a sweet contract and hefty signing bonus, so at least he's getting paid well).

I don't follow pro football very closely, and I don't understand the machinations of personnel management, but it appears that Druck may be waived or cut after the draft, which is coming up some time this month, if I'm not mistaken.  When that happens, I fully expect Druck to get picked up by another team, although I don't know enough to speculate who will nab him.

One thing is mystifying me.  Namely, why do the Niners continue to hang Druck out in the wind and admit that he's a failure (for them, anyway), thus lowering his value?  They've put themselves in a situation where they can't trade for him, and they'll just have to cut him.  Instead of saying, "Hey, here's a good QB that doesn't fit our system.  Wanna trade?" they're running around saying, "This guy's not very good, and we're looking for someone else."

If you've got used car, do you drive it down to the junk yard and drop it off, badmouthing it the whole time, or do you talk it up and try to sell it to someone else?

Anyway, here are some recent articles that either cover Druck in full or mention him in part.  They paint a bleak picture for one of our favorite Hokies:

ESPN Draft Rumor Mill - Druck is mentioned near the bottom.
Dallas Cowboys "Inside Valley Ranch" - Druck is insulted about 2/3 of the way down.
Walsh Feels a Draft - Bill Walsh just can't shut up about how bad he thinks Druck is.


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