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  TSLMail #376- April 10, 2009    
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 Tech Sports News

Scrimmages Key for Young Players
by Chris Coleman, TechSideline.com

Virginia Tech will hold a full scrimmage this afternoon in Lane Stadium, and there will be many players fighting for positions on the depth chart. Performances in scrimmages can impact a player's standing a great deal, and certain players will find themselves moving up or sliding down after Friday.

Most of Virginia Tech's starting lineup has already been settled. However, three players are fighting for the starting cornerback position opposite Stephan Virgil. The job could go to Rashad Carmichael, Cris Hill or Eddie Whitley. Whitley has been impressive in practice lately, and if he caps the spring off with good scrimmages, he could end up starting as a true sophomore.

Also in the secondary, the starting rover position is up for grabs. Davon Morgan started the first five games of last season before tearing his ACL. Dorian Porch entered the starting lineup and played very well for the remainder of the season. Porch and Morgan have alternating days with the starting defense this spring. How they perform during scrimmages could determine who will be #1 when August gets here.

Darren Evans is Virginia Tech's starting tailback, while Josh Oglesby and Ryan Williams are battling for the backup job. In Wednesday's mini-scrimmage, Oglesby had the advantage. He had six carries for 27 yards, while Williams had five carries for 12 yards. However, that battle is still early, and it is expected to drag on into camp in August.

On the defensive side of the ball, there are big questions on the defensive line. John Graves must use the scrimmages to prove he's quick enough to play containment on the edge. If he does that successfully, then some young defensive tackles must show they can step in and play, which would allow Graves to move to end full time.

The scrimmages will be big for Kwamaine Battle, Antoine Hopkins and Dwight Tucker. Battle played a little last year as a r-freshman, while Hopkins and Tucker redshirted. All three have a chance to push for heavy playing time, and perhaps even earn a starting position next to Cordarrow Thompson. Whoever shows the most intensity during scrimmages will have a leg up heading into August.

The scrimmages also represent a big opportunity for r-junior defensive end Steven Friday. Friday has a chance to get into the playing rotation this year. If Graves has to move back to defensive tackle, then Friday will be the #3 defensive end by default this coming season. He needs to have good scrimmages so that defensive line coach Charley Wiles can develop some confidence in him.

Barquell Rivers and Jake Johnson appear to be Tech's starting inside linebackers, though Bruce Taylor has shown recent signs of getting better. The Hokies need some depth at that position, and both Taylor and Quillie Odom need to show progress for the remainder of the spring.

2009 TSL Spring Game Tailgate

OK, Hokie Sports Fans...time once again for the VT Spring Game. The team has been busy throughout the winter in the weight room, has endured the dreaded 6 AM workouts, and is busy sharpening their skills in Spring practice. It is just about time for the annual Maroon and White Spring Game. The least we can do, as fans, is come out and cheer them on, and what better way to get in a cheering mood than to do a little tailgating!

The 2009 Edition of the Award Winning TSL Spring Game Tailgate Party. Your hosts this year will be Pops & Co., knucklejunction, hokiebred, HFNVA and F4EHokie. Russian Hokie will be our official photographer.

Here's what will be provided:

  • BBQ Pork!
  • Plates, napkins, cups, and utensils
  • Buns and condiments
  • Ice
  • Grills

Here's what you need to bring:

  • Your favorite beverage, adult or otherwise
  • Hamburger, sausages, hot dogs, or anything else you want to grill
  • Chips, salsa, veggie trays, chicken, side dishes, etc.
  • Cookies, cake, or other baked goods for desert.
  • Whatever else you want to eat (But plan on sharing!)

We will be cooking about 125# of pork, and it will be first come, first served.

Tailgating begins at 10:00 AM. Look for the white tents and the Hokie flag in the east end of lot 2.

This year, since we don't have a sponsor as in the past, we need folks to step up and help us out with the costs. There will be a donation jar at the tailgate. Please chip in and help us pay our expenses!

We're looking forward to it, and hope you are as well!!!

 

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   TechSideline.com Updates From the Past Week
Friday Q&A: April 10, 2009
April 10, 2009
Today, Raleigh Hokie is our guest on Friday Q&A. He answers questions ranging from John Graves at defensive end, to whether or not Jaymes Brooks is an upgrade to Nick Marshman at offensive guard.
more

Wilson Ready to Compete for Playing Time
April 10, 2009
George Washington High School (Danville, VA) product David Wilson, one of Virginia Tech's top recruits in the 2009 recruiting class, is not opposed to red-shirting this upcoming season, but that is far from what he wants to do. The 5-11 running back has his sights set on significant playing time as a true freshman.
more

Collegiate Star Seeks First Offer
April 10, 2009
Former Collegiate (Richmond, VA) star quarterback Russell Wilson, a 2007 class recruit, certainly has impressed with his performance at N.C. State. The Cougars now boast yet another standout quarterback in 6-5, 210-pound junior Jake McGee, a terrific athlete who excels in football and basketball.
more

TSL Audio: The Jerry Miller Show, 4/7/09
April 9, 2009

On Tuesday, Chris Coleman joined Jerry Miller to discuss Tyler Hansbrough's future legacy. Miller and Coleman also talked about Tyrod Taylor's development as a quarterback, as well as Virginia Tech's young but talented wide receivers.
The Jerry Miller Show appears on The Sports Addict Radio Network every afternoon from 1:00-3:00 pm in Blacksburg (1430 AM), Charlottesville (840 AM), and Bluefield (1050 AM), and from 2:00-4:00 in Martinsville (1160 AM).
more

Five Questions: Erick Green and Ben Boggs
April 9, 2009
In Part 1 of "Five Questions," TechSideline.com catches up with incoming backcourt recruits Ben Boggs and Erick Green. Boggs, a 6-4 two-guard out of Hidden Valley (Roanoke, VA), and Green, a 6-2 point guard out of Winchester, each answer five questions ranging from the recruiting process to their futures at Virginia Tech. Good friends, the two backcourt prospects have known each other since middle school. They expect to arrive at Virginia Tech on July 5th.
more

Stable Staff More Important than Recruiting Stars
April 8, 2009
Frank Beamer puts a premium on keeping his coaching staff intact, and that method has been very successful throughout the years. At other ACC schools, there seems to be a lot more turnover. Today, we'll examine each current coaching staff in the ACC to get a feel for their experience at their current school. When we're done, you'll better understand why the Hokies have won so many games.
more

Dew Selected for All-American Game
April 8, 2009
First Colonial (Virginia Beach, VA) safety prospect Nick Dew didn't believe it when he heard the news. Last week, the 6-2, 195-pound junior learned that he had been selected to play in the Under Armour All-American game set for next January. Dew was cautious at first, but caution quickly turned to excitement.
more

Farris Earns Two Offers
April 7, 2009
When we last checked in with Rockbridge County (Lexington, VA) offensive lineman Caleb Farris, he was anxiously awaiting his first scholarship offer. A month has passed since our last update and things have changed for the better for the 6-4, 300-pound junior.
more

2009 Spring Practice Report: Scrimmages Will be Key
April 7, 2009
Information about what has gone on in Virginia Tech's first four spring football practices is hard to find. The media has limited access, and the players haven't even gone through any scrimmage situations yet. However, we've come across a little bit of football info that should help satisfy your cravings.
more

Ocean Lakes' Talented Tandem
April 6, 2009
By now, high school football fans in the state of Virginia should already know quite a bit about 6-4, 180-pound rising senior wide receiver Justin Hunter. One of the top wide receiver prospects in the 2010 class, the Ocean Lakes (Virginia Beach, VA) star has accumulated official scholarship offers from programs throughout the nation. The player passing the ball to Hunter - sophomore Lafonte Thoroughgood - is gaining recognition as well and could also be high on Division 1A wish lists should he continue to progress.
more
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