Monday, December 27, 2004
by Will Stewart, TechSideline.com
Hokies Depart for New Orleans Tuesday
After a short Christmas break, the Hokie football team is back in Blacksburg
today and preparing to leave for New Orleans on Tuesday. The team practiced from
Dec. 18th to Dec. 22nd in Blacksburg, then departed for their homes for the
holidays, where they were able to spend Christmas with their families, but it's
down to business now that the holidays are over.
Once the Hokies arrive in New Orleans, they will treat the rest of the week
as a regular game week with regards to how they spend their practice time.
Meanwhile, most Hokie fans will start arriving in New Orleans on Saturday,
January 1st. That will give the fans at least two full days to tour the city and
experience New Orleans before the game starts at 7:00 local time Monday night,
Yours truly has a brutal travel schedule, with check in time at Richmond
International Airport on Saturday morning at -- gulp -- 5 a.m. That's the bad
news. The good news is that arrival in New Orleans is 8:35 a.m. local time, and
the first of three full days in the Big Easy starts then.
(Editorial Note: when I first typed that last sentence, I typed "Big
East" -- shudder. Old habits die hard. Let's see: three days
in the Big East, or three days in the Big Easy? No contest.)
On the way back, it's even worse: I have to report to my hotel lobby at 4:15
a.m. the morning after the game. Obviously, I won't be sleeping after the game
-- I'm worried about having enough time to write it up!
How you decide to spend your time in New Orleans is up to you, of course, but
if you want to plan your time around college football in general and Hokie
football in particular (of course), here are some items of interest that have
come across our desk
Friday, Dec. 31st:
- Hokie Hotline Radio Show, 4-6 pm local (5-7 pm Eastern). From the lobby of
the Marriott Hotel on Canal Street. No charge for admission.
- The Peach Bowl (7:30 ESPN): Miami versus Florida from Atlanta. Get to a
bar with a TV if you want to watch it.
Saturday, Jan. 1st:
Nokia Sugar Bowl Festival (noon-6 pm): Jax
Brewery located on the Mississippi River in the French Quarter at 600 Decatur
St. The action will include pep rallies for both Sugar Bowl teams, live music,
cold drinks and the chance to sample Nokia's coolest new products! There will
also be fan interactive games, contests and even the chance to win tickets to
the Big Game on January 3. Admission is free.
- The Gator Bowl (12:30, NBC): FSU vs. WVU.
Hokie Hotline Radio Show, 4-6 pm local (5-7 pm Eastern). From the lobby of
the Marriott Hotel on Canal Street. No charge for admission.
The Rose Bowl (5:00, ABC): Michigan vs. Texas.
The Fiesta Bowl (8:30, ABC): Utah vs. Pittsburgh.
Sunday, Jan. 2nd:
Fighting Gravity at Howlin' Wolf (9 pm): Join
Fighting Gravity for a special Virginia Tech Hokie Pride Pep Rally. They've
got super secret special guests, prizes, enough beads to fill Lane Stadium,
and a ton of musical tricks up their maroon and orange sleeves. The Howlin'
Wolf is adjacent to the French Quarter and a short walk from wherever you're
staying. Doors open at 9 pm. Advance
tickets are $10.00 (available at www.ticketstobuy.com,
), $12 at the door.
- Nokia Sugar Bowl Festival (noon-7 pm): Jax Brewery located on the
Mississippi River in the French Quarter at 600 Decatur St. The action will
include pep rallies for both Sugar Bowl teams, live music, cold drinks and
the chance to sample Nokia's coolest new products! There will also be fan
interactive games, contests and even the chance to win tickets to the Big
Game on January 3. Admission is free.
Monday, Jan. 3rd (Game Day!):
- Fan Jam (4 pm to kickoff): The Nokia Sugar
Bowl Fan Jam is a first-rate tailgate party for fans of all ages and is
located on the breezeway between the Superdome and the New Orleans Centre.
The party starts at 4 p.m. and runs until kickoff. It will include
interactive games, contests, sports memorabilia, hot food, cold drinks,
give-a-ways and so much more! Cheerleaders from both Sugar Bowl teams teams
will be there to help you get your "game face on."
- The Sugar Bowl (7 pm local time, 8 pm
Eastern): There's a football game going on. Check it out.
That's not a complete list, and forgive us if we
left something out, but there's a little something there every day.
Hokies the Road Team, and Other Fun Facts
VT will be the road team at the Sugar Bowl, which
means they'll be wearing their white jerseys and maroon pants. You can expect to
see Auburn in blue jerseys and white pants.
The Hokies expect to be completely healthy for
the game. The big injuries are Mike Imoh's hamstring and Jimmy Martin's high
ankle sprain, and publicly, they're putting on the "I'll be a hundred
percent" face. With Cedric Humes back to form, Imoh's injury isn't as
critical, though it would obviously be nice to have him full speed. Martin is
the bigger concern, though the Hokies covered for his absence well against
Virginia and Miami.
The other injuries of note were the fractures and
broken bones suffered by Kevin and Jonathan Lewis. Jonathan had a pinky broken
in three places against UVa, and Kevin suffered a broken hand. Both players were
very effective in the Miami game, playing 42 plays (Jonathan) and 16 plays
(Kevin, more than any other backup DL played).
For those of you staying at home to watch the
game, we have good news and bad news. The good news -- really good news
-- is that Brent Musberger won't be doing the play by play on the game. Mike
Tirico, one of our favorites, will. The bad news? Tim Brant and Terry Bowden
will be in the booth with him. Suzy Shuster will be the sideline reporter.
Lastly, Doug Doughty released his Top
25 recruits in the state of Virginia on Christmas Day, as is customary,
along with an
accompanying article. The Hokies currently have commitments from 8 of
Doughty's top 20, including 3 of the top 4 (Victor Harris, Elan Lewis, and
Deveon Simmons), with a shot at #5 (Greg Boone). We have folded the Top 40
(Doughty goes all the way up to #50 and beyond) into our recruiting database. By
the way, we are aware that the links to Doughty's Top 25 from 1998-2001 on our
football recruiting page are dead links, and we are taking steps to correct that
this week by entering those lists right here on TSL (instead of relying on
roanoke.com to leave them in one place).
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