Friday, November 7, 2008
If your quarterbacks are hurt (wink, wink) and your young receiving core isn’t too sure-handed then run the ball and play good D. That approach has worked for the Hokies all during the Beamer era, and it worked well last night. Oddly enough, the VT special teams, normally a staple, continue to be inconsistent.
The Evans powered running game suggests the basic offensive problems are solved while confirming what we already know – you can’t believe what coaches say about injuries (see item below).
Evans ran for a school-record 253 yards and a touchdown and the Hokies played stout defense to continue their Thursday night mastery with a 23-13 victory over No. 23 Maryland.
We knew the Terps were in tough soup when they drove the length of the field on their opening drive only to come away empty-handed. It was all Hokies from there.
ESPN Fast Facts
• The Hokies improved to 3-0 against Maryland since joining the ACC in 2004 and ended their two-game losing streak.
• Virginia Tech tailback Darren Evans rushed for a school-record 253 yards, his first career 100-yard rushing game.
• The Terrapins ran for minus-12 yards on 18 carries. Their previous low this season had been 79 yards against Virginia. Maryland is now 3-0 against ranked teams this season and 3-3 vs. unranked teams.
(AP Photos/Don Petersen)
So, as was clearly documented here and elsewhere,yesterday, TAH picked the Terps to go into Lane Stadium and upset the Hokies on thier favorite night of football. We did so based on the simple fact that we were lead to believe that the top two Hokie QBs were "questionable."
Which brings us to a little something we like to call “Coachspeak.” Simply put, you’d think we would have that figured out by now.
What coach says: “I’m not interested in (fill-in-the-blank) job. What Coach means: “I’m interviewing tomorrow.”
What coach says: “(Fill-in-the-blank) is our starting QB.” What Coach means: “I’m gonna bench him as fast as I can.”
You’ve heard it all before, and so have we. So how did we get snookered this go 'round?
Basically, we failed to properly interpret what Beamer and the VT football folks were saying about their injured QBs and who was/wasn’t likely to play. We would suggest that they weren’t entirely forthcoming, and, for some unknown reason, we weren't clever enought to notice.
It went like this:
MONDAY: From ESPN’s Heather Dinich who speaks directly to the ACC coaches during the week -- Just a quick update. Sean Glennon and Tyrod Taylor have both been limited in practice this week and remain a game-time decision for Thursday night's game against Maryland, a school spokesman said Monday.
Fair enough – game time decision.
TUESDAY: Virginia Tech coach Frank Beamer just said at his weekly press conference that both Tyrod Taylor and Sean Glennon are "getting some work" in practice this week and they'll both be listed as questionable for this week's game. He reiterated that the team and staff have confidence in Cory Holt if they need him. "We'll see how they are at game time," Beamer said.
On that same day Randy King of the Roanoke Times predicted it would be Glennon, and he then confirmed that on his blog at 7 pm last night.
WEDNESDAY: “Seniors Sean Glennon and Cory Holt are the two most likely to start, a source within the program said today.
It is also possible that two quarterbacks will be used against Maryland.”
Which, ultimately, is exactly what happened. However, the Hokies never upgraded either QB to "probable" which now seems rather obvious.
Perhaps, we should have paid a bit more attention to the line…It opened at Tech -3.5, and fell to -2.5…by game time it was back to -3 and that simply would not have made sense with the third and fourth QBs leading them against a ranked opponent…
SITUATION, LESS SMOKE: When all the smoke cleared, the Hokies ran 72 plays. Corey Holt #12 took ZERO snaps. Fourth-string QB Greg Boone #8 (who claims he can throw the ball 80 yards!) got three (maybe four?) snaps in the VT version of the Mustang Offense, and Glennon, who started, took the snap on 68 offensive plays. And he played VERY well.
Not bad for a guy who was “questionable.”
(Photos from AP Photo by Phil Coale. HokieSports.com - without permission. Hey, what did you expect? We tried. Doug Benc/Getty Images)
VIRGINIA @ WAKE FOREST (-3.5), 3:30 PM, Winston-Salem, N.C., TV: ESPNU (XM191/Sirius212)
NC STATE @ DUKE (-3.5), 3:30 PM, Durham, N.C., TV: ESPN360 (XM190/Sirius211)
CLEMSON @ FLORIDA STATE (-4), 3:30 PM, Tallahassee, Fla., TV: ABC/ESPN (XM192/Sirius211)
NOTRE DAME @ BOSTON COLLEGE (-3.5), 8:00 PM, Chestnut Hill, Mass., TV: ESPN (XM 191)
Reed was suspended before the Oct. 25 game against Virginia Tech for violating the university's class attendance policy.
"It's a shame," offensive coordinator Jimbo Fisher said. "They're still young. They'll learn and we'll keep teaching them and keep disciplining them."
Reed, a redshirt freshman, has caught 15 passes for 226 yards and three touchdowns this season. Fortson has five catches for 61 yards and a touchdown. Carr has seen limited action this season.
"We like that," Bobby Bowden said. "When Tommy and I play, she can't win. One of us is going to get beat. Plus, I didn't like it either, because I don't like it when he beats me, and when I beat him, I feel for him. I am so happy. It is the first time in 10 years I don't have to worry about Tommy being on the other side whippin' me, or me whippin' him."
Gino Cappelletti: Oh, he got it!
Davis: Did he get it?
Cappelletti: He got it!
Davis: Touchdown! Touchdown! Touchdown! Touchdown! Touchdown, Boston College! He did it! He did it! Flutie did it...He hit Phelan in the end zone...Touchdown!
Cappelletti: I don't believe it!
Davis: Oh, my goodness!
-The transcription of the WRKO-AM broadcast of the 1984 Boston College-Miami game.
Boston College will unveil a life-sized, bronze statue of Doug Flutie outside gate D of Alumni Stadium at 2 p.m. on Friday.
"This statue is a fitting tribute to the man who made Boston College football a household name," BC athletics director Gene DeFilippo said in a statement released by the school. "Doug played a huge role in the history of Boston College athletics. We're thrilled that he will be honored permanently outside Alumni Stadium." The statue depicts Flutie about to release his famous "Hail Mary" pass at Miami in 1984.
The Boston College athletics department commissioned renowned sculptor Harry Weber for the design and construction of the statue. Weber has prominent sculptures at 10 different professional and amateur stadiums as well as the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, NY.
In 1984, Flutie became the first player in Boston College history to win the Heisman Trophy. It capped an unbelievable 9-2 season that included the astounding victory over Miami, a win over Houston in the Cotton Bowl and a No. 5 national ranking. He finished his career as BC's all-time leading passer with 10,579 yards.
(Photos courtesy of Boston College & Getty Images)
Is Div. 1AA #1 JMU really better than either Maryland or Virginia Tech?
According to Jeff Sagarin, they are. Jeff who?
Sagarin is an American sports statistician well-known for his development of a methodology for ranking and rating sports teams in a variety of sports. His ratings have been a regular feature in the USA Today sports sections since 1985, have been used by the Bowl Championship Series since its inception.
Sagarin received a Bachelor of Science degree in mathematics from Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1970 and a Master of Business Administration degree from Indiana University in 1983, so he’s a brainiac.
He offers two rating systems, each of which gives each team a certain number of points. One system, "Elo chess," is presumably based on the Elo rating system used internationally to rank chess players. This system uses only wins and losses, with no reference to the victory margin.
The other system, "Predictor," takes victory margin into account. For that system, the difference in two teams' rating scores is meant to predict the margin of victory for the stronger team at a neutral venue.
For both systems, teams gain higher ratings within the Sagarin system by winning games against stronger opponents, factoring in such things as home-venue advantage. For the Predictor system, margin of victory (or defeat) factors in also, but a law of diminishing returns is applied.
Therefore, a football team that wins a game by a margin of 7-6 is rewarded less than a team that defeats the same opponent under the same circumstances 21-7, but a team that wins a game by a margin of 35-0 receives similar ratings to a team that defeats the same opponent 70-0.
So, with that in mind here’s how the ACC stacks up this week. The top 10 is pretty obvious: Penn State, Texas, Florida, Alabama, Texas Tech, USC, Oklahoma, OK State, Boise State and Georgia. The first ACC team is UNC at #16…
Here’s the rest of the field: Miami (19), Georgia Tech (23), Florida State (24), Duke (26) – huh?, Wake Forest (28), Virginia (33), JMU (40), Virginia Tech (41), Boston College (51), Clemson (54), Maryland (55) and N.C. State (95).
Talk about a biting critique of the press. It seems President Bush's dog Barney wasn't much in the mood for chit chat during his walk outside the White House on Thursday. So when Reuters reporter Jon Decker reached down to pet the Scottish terrier, the Barnster snapped at him and bit Decker's right index finger. Reporter April Ryan of American Urban Radio Networks happened to capture the moment on video.
Thursday, November 6, 2008
Here are this week’s games and TAH’s picks as well as the link:
MARYLAND @ VIRGINIA TECH (-3) – While the Hokies are tough at home and TAH loves Beamer, the QB situation is too problematic to defeat a Terp team that loves to win games they aren't supposed to win. PICK: Terps
GEORGIA TECH @ NORTH CAROLINA (-4) – Call me a homer. Call me an optimist. Call me both…PICK: Heels
N.C. STATE @ DUKE – The Pack will summon some season-saving pride and upset(?) the Blue Devils. Besides, we can't pick Duke to win an ACC game just yet. Maybe next year. PICK: Wolfpack
VIRGINIA @ WAKE FOREST (-4.5) – The Deacons have to win this game, so they will. This will get the Groh Must Go crowd all revved up again, and here in Old Dominion, while the sentiment is insanely illogical, it is entertaining…Well, not so much if you're Coach Groh, but you get the point. PICK: Wake
ALABAMA (-3) @ LSU – The Saban Bowl will be a nasty affair, but the Tide has too many weapons, right Frankee? PICK: BAMA
OKLAHOMA STATE @ TEXAS TECH (-3) – While raised on Texas Longhorn football and somewhat displeased with recent events down Lubbock way last weekend, as an ACC aficionado we know bad offense when we see it…and Texas Tech does not qualify in any way shape or form. PICK: Texas Tech
(Line courtesy of Americasline.com and purely for recreational purposes only)
And the reigning Olympic champ isn’t peeved at his boys, he’s mad at the fans. Oh well, you gotta start somewhere.
Evidently, the Dookies took on Lenoir-Rhyne University last night. And let’s be clear, it’s not a college, it’s a university – already been corrected on that one. Needless to say, Lenoir-Rhyne (Bears, 1,600 students, Hickory, NC) was no match for K’s boys losing 95-42.
But it wasn’t the game that upset Krzcufhvnd5ski. While Cameron seats 9,314 (more than the population of Wasilla, Alaska), several hundred seats were empty against the Bears. And K was not happy about his season ticket holders taking a night off in November, during football season for an EXHIBITION game.
"We played well, but there was something a little bit missing," Krzyzewski said. "The same thing with the crowd. We should remind all our Duke fans that we start our season on Monday and every game counts, and if you're not going to come, let us know and we'll sell the seats."
Krznmkg4wski called out the Duke students several years ago for not showing up. He thanked the student Wednesday for being there.
"We should not have an empty seat in Cameron," Krzfgkmx6ski said. "That's the way it is. I know I can sell them. I'll go sell them. If you're not coming, I'll go sell them."
Joining Hansbrough on the team Monday were UCLA guard Darren Collison, also a repeat from last year's preseason team, Davidson guard Stephen Curry, Notre Dame forward Luke Harangody and Oklahoma forward Blake Griffin.
Hansbrough, a 6-foot-9 senior and the reigning national player of the year, was placed on all 72 ballots by the same media panel that selects the weekly Top 25. Hansbrough missed being a unanimous pick last season by one vote, and he fell seven votes short as a sophomore.
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
MARYLAND @ VIRGINIA TECH (-2.5), 7:30 PM, Blacksburg, Va., TV: ESPN (XM 190/191) – while the Hokies may well be without their two top players at QB, the Terps injury report is lengthy:
Here is what they had to say:
Yesterday, Duke coach David Cutcliffe quashed any speculation about him returning to Knoxville to replace his good friend and former boss, while ex-Miami and Cleveland Browns coach Butch Davis said he's staying at North Carolina.
"I'm at Duke, staying at Duke," Cutcliffe said Tuesday.
Cutcliffe twice served on Tennessee's staff and spent eight years as the Volunteers' offensive coordinator. He came to Duke last December after a two-year stint in Knoxville and has called Fulmer "the best football coach I've ever been associated with."
Cutcliffe said he was being proactive because he spoke to recruits who said other coaches had told them that he was headed to the Volunteers.
Davis said he is committed to building No. 19 North Carolina's program, even though his name has come up as a possible candidate for the opening at Tennessee.
Asked directly about the Tennessee job after practice Tuesday, Davis said, "The long and short of it is, the administration and I are completely and firmly committed to building a championship football program at North Carolina. My family and I are very happy in Chapel Hill."
Davis has guided the Tar Heels (6-2, 2-2 Atlantic Coast Conference) into the national rankings for the second time this season, and they are bowl-eligible for the first time since 2004.
(Photos from AP Photo by Gerry Broome and Getty Images)
Julio Grondona, the president of the Argentinian Football Association, made the much-anticipated announcement in Buenos Aires on Tuesday.
Maradona's first match in charge wil be a friendly against Scotland in Glasgow on November 19.
He then faces a tougher task in making sure Argentina qualify for the 2010 World Cup finals from the South American group.
"It's an honor," Maradona said.
(Photo by Getty Images)
(Photo by Nancy Katz/YES Network)
Tuesday, November 4, 2008
Not only did the Skins PUKE all over their shoes in last night’s loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers, they also failed to keep pace with the division leading New York Giants and virtually assured Barack Obama the presidency.
Politics aside, what did we learn? The Steelers may be the second best team in the AFC after the undefeated Titans, and, like it or not, the Giants (who beat said Steelers last week) are pretty DAMN GOOD by comparison.
The Redskins are a much improved team under Jay-Z, but they need to play well to beat GOOD teams. They aren’t Brady Patriotesque – they can’t play badly and win. Penalties, sacks and turnovers will doom them every time.
Last night Rogers dropped another interception that should have been caught and returned for a touchdown. With nine games played, we’ve LOST COUNT of how many he’s muffed.
Ever notice how when most folks tell you a story they will point out that there are two sides to every story and the truth usually lies somewhere between the two?
Ever notice how that never happens in partisan politics?
Every four years, the citizens of our great nation suffer from the “suspension of disbelief.” If it’s party rhetoric, we embrace it. We don’t care what either candidate really says, we just care about what our party’s version of the “truth” really is.
Hard core Republicans say Obama is a friend of terrorists and the most liberal member of Congress who will no doubt doom our great nation.
Card carrying Democrats say John McCain will do nothing but continue the failing policies of President Bush, and if something happens to him a crazy right-wing woman with a $150,000 wardrobe who used to be the major of a town (Wasilla, Alaska, 2000 census count population 5,469) smaller than Cameron Indoor Stadium (population 9,314) will be president and that will, no doubt…anybody? Yep, you got it -- doom our great nation.
Yes whether it’s friends, family, co-workers, bosses, kids, newscasters, celebrities or sports stars -- across the board we tend not to believe EVERY WORD that comes out of their mouths. But, when it comes to politicians – our politicians (whichever side you’re on) – we drink the propaganda Kool-Aid with unbridled enthusiasm to get them into office. Once their there, a healthy dose of skepticism seems to reappear. Does John McCain really love ABBA?
How can everything we encounter every day lead to some skepticism on the part of almost everybody with exception being hard-core partisan politics where we are told by the party leadership and mouthpieces what we are to believe? And, amazingly enough, millions do. People you know. Smart people. Go figure.
In this election cycle, almost everyone in the nation seems to believe both candidates will cut taxes while spending zillions on two wars and solving any number of other problems. While the GOP condemns all Democrats as “tax and spend” liberals, it appears that that their counter strategy has been “borrow and spend.” We all know, you can’t cut taxes and spend more. Yet, every election cycle we buy in. It so popular that now the Democrats are even promising to do it! That's crazy talk.
The bottom line is this…Dems will vote for change and for the first time in a very long time they have a viable candidate. Republicans will cling to the status quo claiming as bad as it is, Obama will make things worse.
And yet, partisan Republicans don’t seem to think all of that is bad for their wallets?
On the other side of the aisle, Democrats have been out of power for so long they hardly get blamed for anything anymore. Who doesn't miss making fun of Bill Clinton? Many of them think the 10% of the population that pays 60% of our nation’s taxes should pay more and that government can fix everything by throwing money at it. Of course, many of them also think George Bush went to war in Iraq to enrich his wealthy Republican friends who own Halliburton…
No wonder foreigners think we’re crazy.
Now, if you haven’t yet done so, go vote.
Sho’nuff! We wuz right!
Here’s the opening salvo of info from Devil Ball Golf’s Jay Busbee:
REALLY, WHY CAN’T JOHN DALY TAKE A 2 A.M. NAP AT HOOTERS?
According to a police report, Daly "appeared extremely intoxicated and uncooperative." He apparently refused to go to a hospital, and was later asked to hit the bricks by the restaurant. The police stuck him in the Forsyth County Law Enforcement Detention Center for a 24-hour dryout.
No, it’s not Al "Must Go" Groh, and there isn’t a Zima joke buried in there…
This one comes straight from the Sports Department at Wahoo U.
...and if that's not enough, check out the absolute proof that college kids still smoke pot:
The University of Maryland is, of course, a state school supported by state tax dollars. Last Friday night, head football coach Ralph Friedgen decided to travel 40 miles from College Park to Baltimore Polytechnic Institute where #3 Dunbar was taking on #15 Edmonson to visit some prime recruits.
But Ralph decided to forego the usual gas guzzling SUV and decided to show the kids on both teams just how serious Fridge & Co. are about recruiting a few of them.
He arrived in a helicopter. (...and somehow nobody got a photo!)
Friedgen said it was a perfect night for football. “Cold and crisp. Under the lights.”
Viewed gave legendary Australian trainer Bart Cummings his 12th Melbourne Cup with a thrilling photo finish victory in the 3200-metre (two miles) race at Flemington to win the $3.3 million first prize.
(Photo by Marwan Naamani/AFP/Getty Images)
Phil Mickelson of the US writes his name using Chinese characters at a press event before the HSBC Champions golf tournament in Shanghai.
Mickelson said Tuesday he was not yet ready to join the European Tour but expected he eventually would as he reshaped his career with a focus on more international tournaments (and, no doubt, to duck President Obama’s tax increases).
Monday, November 3, 2008
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11/02 - 11/09
- VIRGINIA TECH 23, #23 MARYLAND 13
- WHEN QUESTIONABLE REALLY MEANS PROBABLE
- SATURDAY FOOTBALL
- THREE SEMINOLES SUSPENDED FOR CLEMSON GAME
- QUOTE OF THE WEEK
- DOUG FLUTIE STATUE UNVEILED TODAY
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- AND YOU THOUGHT YOUR NIGHT WAS BAD
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- YOUR TAX DOLLARS AT WORK
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