Advance Auto Parts Hokie Hotline Notes for 9/5/05

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Monday night’s Hokie Hotline featured athletic director Jim Weaver,
whips/rovers coach and recruiting coordinator Jim Cavanaugh, and head coach
Frank Beamer.

Jim Weaver

Jim Weaver was Bill Roth’s first guest on the Hokie Hotline. Weaver first
commented on the NC State game. He said he thought it was an outstanding start
to the season, considering the Hokies had to play on the road with a new
quarterback. He said he thought it went about as well as Tech could have hoped.

Weaver
said he wished they had two extra weeks before the first home game. If the
Hokies didn’t have to play at home until October 1, things would change
drastically. Weaver said there will be a meeting Tuesday to confirm the
contingency plans that were adopted this past Thursday. People who can’t sit
in their suites or club seats will be notified on Wednesday or Thursday. Those
people will have seats in Lane Stadium.

Roth commented that Tech must break in a new expansion, which is exactly what
NC State had to do on Sunday night. Tech fans must be patient because there will
be some first day glitches. Weaver said he thought NC State did a great job and
that it’s a great facility.

Roth commented on the clock operators at Carter-Finley Stadium. He said he
thought they got caught up in the moment of being in such a great a atmosphere
and made some mistakes. Weaver said the officials on the field are still the men
in charge of the clock, and that they did a good job of resetting the clock when
it was needed.

A caller asked if the ACC could step in and appoint a neutral person to run
the clock. Weaver said they could do that. Some people still run the 25 second
clock from the field, but very few.

Weaver said he was proud of the football team in the fourth quarter. He said
that the Hokies played like a very mature football team when they were able to
run over seven minutes off the clock late in the game when it was greatly
needed.

A caller asked about the visiting fan section in Lane Stadium. Weaver said
they put the fans in the last section in the East stands and the upper deck of
the South end zone. The visiting team’s band is in the lower deck of the South
end zone. Opposing team fans will not be directly behind the goal posts (as they
were in 2004) from this point on. Tech offers 4,000 tickets to opposing teams.

A caller commented on the coverage of Marcus Vick’s legal past by ESPN2.
Jim Weaver commented that the real story was how Vick had turned his life
around. He has become a leader of the offense and a model citizen, and Weaver is
very proud of him.

A caller asked Weaver if there was a chance that the lyrics to Tech Triumph
could scroll across the video scoreboard during games. Weaver said he had no
problem with that, and he would communicate that suggestion to the right people.
He said he couldn’t guarantee anything because Tech is installing a new video
scoreboard. This will be a brand new, top of the line jumbotron that will
enhance the fan experience.

Roth asked Weaver about the game time for the Georgia Tech game. Weaver said
that he was told at the ACC Kickoff that if both teams are undefeated the game
will likely be a split national game on ABC at noon. Game time and television
will be announced on Monday, September 12.

Jim Cavanaugh

Roth first asked Cavanaugh about the play of Aaron Rouse at rover. Cavanaugh
said he did a good job, especially for his first start. Rouse is an experienced
player, although he has never been a starter. For his first game as a starter,
he responded very well.



Cavanaugh said Tech helped NC State down the field in their first possession.
He said Aaron Rouse gave up a pass play and there was a questionable pass
interference call on Xavier Adibi. Tech made some bad plays, but at the same
time the Hokies realized that it was a long game. They stayed focused and didn’t
get down on themselves after NC State scored their touchdown.

Cavanaugh said that there were times when the Hokies didn’t use good
fundamentals when tackling. He said some Tech defenders didn’t do a good job
of getting their head across and wrapping up. Some defenders were tackling too
high.

Roth asked Cavanaugh about how to prepare against a former NFL coach like
Marc Trestman, NC State’s offensive coordinator. Cavanaugh said they watched
some Oakland Raider film. They knew it was going to be a short passing game. He
said they just coached their players to do their jobs and not try to do too
much. Aaron Rouse actually made a couple of mistakes when he tried to do too
much.

Cavanaugh said that Sunday night’s game was a very tough atmosphere. The NC
State coaching staff did a great job of communicating to the fans how important
the game was, and they responded.

Roth asked Cavanaugh how recruiting was going, and Cavanaugh said the Hokies
are doing very well right now. Tech is in very good shape with a lot of players
in Virginia and in the surrounding states. He said the staff is doing a good job
and Tech has gotten some early commitments.

Roth brought up the fact that NC State has 31 players from Florida while Tech
only has three. Cavanaugh responded by saying that the NC State coaching staff
had a lot of contacts in Florida. Chuck Amato has a Florida background. They
have had some staff turnover recently, so Cavanaugh expects them to recruit
North Carolina harder now. Landing Toney Baker from the Tar Heel state this past
February shows that they can use that strategy now.

Cavanaugh said that Tech doesn’t recruit Florida much anymore. The ACC has
helped Tech to move in on some really good regional players from the surrounding
states. Only two of the top 13 players from North Carolina stayed in state, and
everyone else left. Tech needs to continue to recruit that state. He mentioned
that Kevin Rogers has done a great job in New Jersey. Cavanaugh went on to say
that joining the ACC really changed Tech’s recruiting focus. Also, when you
sign so many players from the state of Virginia, it is tough to get a lot of
players from out of state.

Frank Beamer

Beamer said that the NC State game was a great win and a great way to start
the season. There were many things to be proud of. The defense held NC State to
a field goal after the fake punt, the offense ran a lot of time off the clock in
the fourth quarter, and team played hard. There are things that need to be
improved, but he was proud of the team for hanging in there.

Roth asked Beamer about tackling, and Beamer first noted that NC State had
excellent tailbacks. He also said that at times Tech used bad fundamentals and
didn’t take good angles, and that will be worked on.

Roth asked about Marcus Vick’s play, and Beamer said he thought he was very
good. He played with great poise and he didn’t flinch. He handled the clock
well and he made the proper checks and reads. Playing with poise in big games
just runs in the family.

Offensively Tech could have done things a lot better. The timing was off on
many plays, and others were very close to being big plays. Duane Brown has made
the offensive line much better, and Jimmy Martin played well. Reggie Butler will
probably get more reps this week. Gore only graded out about 75%, and would be
better if he played less plays. The offensive line has a chance to be a good
group.

Beamer said the instant replay was handled correctly. He said the replay
officials had more angles that they saw on the field. He is confident that the
replay crew had it right. Beamer’s view was that it was a fumble, but he
trusts that the replay officials had a better angle and made the right call.

Roth asked about Eddie Royal, and Beamer said Royal was sick before the game.
Tech will continue to try and get the ball in Royal’s hands because he can be
a big time playmaker.

Beamer said the only true freshman that is playing right now is Macho Harris.
Harris didn’t play defense on Sunday night, but he did play on the kickoff
team. He will continue to get reps in practice and he’ll play more as the
season progresses.

Beamer said that on the fake field goal, “they just got us.” He then
joked that he’s thinking about firing the special teams coach. Beamer said
Amato comes from a background of faking kicks. Beamer said he thought there was
no way that NC State would run the fake after the false start penalty. He also
said the Hokies didn’t play it very well, but Eddie Royal did a great job of
making the tackle.

Roth asked about Tech’s last drive that milked so much time off the clock.
Beamer said the opportunity could have been there to hit a big play, but there
was pressure on Marcus and he went down in the backfield. But the main focus was
just to run time off the clock, which the offense did very well.

Beamer said the defensive ends played well on Sunday night and made some
plays. Orion Martin played well in his first game. Darryl Tapp appears to be in
good shape after a slight groin injury. Carlton Powell has a high ankle sprain,
and Beamer wasn’t sure of his status. He complimented the defensive line for
getting more pressure as the game went on.

Beamer said he was pleased with the fact that the offense didn’t have a
penalty and they didn’t commit a single turnover. He feels very optimistic
about the offense after reviewing the film.

Beamer said he is worried about Duke. Clemson knocked off Miami in the Orange
Bowl last season, but then went to Duke the very next week and got upset. He
said the Hokies hope to get a good crowd in Durham on Saturday.

Beamer said that Nic Schmitt had a great first game. Beamer described him as
“a weapon”. He said he was a very confident punter right now.

Beamer said the players had to be tough minded and physical to stay in the
game on Sunday night. That goes back to Mike Gentry’s training sessions over
the summer. It builds mental and physical toughness.

Beamer said that winning always goes back to the players. Good players step
up and make plays in crucial situations. He also said that it is easy to make
good decisions during the fourth quarter because the coaching staff has been
together for so long. He said there is a good organizational system right now.

Beamer said he appreciated Michael Vick being at the game. He said Michael
didn’t really want a lot of attention on him, because it would take attention
away from Marcus. Beamer said he didn’t have Michael speak to the team because
he didn’t want to make Marcus feel uncomfortable.

Beamer said he believes that Tech will improve in the Duke game. He said NC
State was an extremely tough opener. The Hokies will lose a day of practice this
week, but the coaches have been showing the players film of the NC State game,
and they’ll make great strides throughout the week.

Beamer complimented the NC State facilities. He said they were very
impressive, and are planning another expansion. Beamer said Tech needs to keep
their facility improvements going for recruiting purposes, because NC State is
certainly moving forward.

Beamer said Marcus Vick’s experience from 2003 helped him on Sunday night.
But more than that, it’s just part of their nature to play well with the game
on the line.

Jake Grove’s father called in and complimented Will Montgomery on playing a
great game. He stated that the interior of the offensive line played well.
Beamer agreed, and said those players showed a lot of toughness. He said Will
Montgomery is a lot like Jake Grove. Montgomery is very experienced as a center
and is a great guy to have in front of Vick.

Beamer complimented his players that have graduated and are on track to
receive a degree this year. Those players are wearing special stickers on their
helmets. Tech has made great progress through the years in this matter.

Beamer said the team can’t let the short week affect their preparation for
the Duke game. Their regular Friday practice will not happen and there will be
fewer meetings. The team must be mentally tough throughout the week and prepare
very well.

Beamer said he didn’t like the short week, but that anytime you have a
chance to play on national television, you have to take it. Also, opening with
NC State helped to focus the players over the summer. They knew that it was a
big game and it helped them to prepare in the offseason. Beamer said he is all
for Thursday night games, as long as the team gets the previous Saturday off.

Beamer said the staff started looking at Duke tape on Monday afternoon. He
said he thinks their kicking game is very solid. Roth stated that they returned
a kickoff for a touchdown. Beamer said they have their quarterback returning and
he thinks they’ll be ready to bounce back from their loss to East Carolina.

  • Monday was day 283 of Virginia Tech’s continuous possession of the
    Commonwealth Cup, day 339of Virginia Tech’s continuous possession of the
    Black Diamond Trophy, and day 276 of Virginia Tech’s continuous possession
    of the ACC football championship.


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