The Hokie Hotline (football and basketball season)
When: every Monday from 7:00-9:00 during football season, 7:00-8:00 during basketball season.
Click here for a list of radio stations,
and to find the link for listening to the show on the Internet (look to the right on the hokiesports.com page that loads
when you click the link). You can also watch the archive on hokietv.com.
Monday night’s Hokie Hotline featured athletic director Jim Weaver, defensive
coordinator Bud Foster and head coach Frank Beamer. Weaver gave more details
about West side expansion delays, Foster talked about the defensive performance
against Duke, and Beamer discussed a variety of subjects.
Jim Weaver was the first guest on the Hokie Hotline. He said he was happy to be
the athletic director of the fourth ranked team in the country. He said he
thinks Coach Beamer has done a great job of preparing the team to be the hunted
rather than the hunter. Roth noted that VT has been ranked in the top five for
six of the past seven year. Weaver said it was great that there were more Tech
fans in Durham than Duke fans.
said there will be no availability for any suite holders or indoor club seat
holders for the first two games. They will be reseated in other areas in the
stadium. The use of elevators to get to outdoor club seats will not be possible
because VT has only received a partial certificate of occupancy. Weaver went on
the say that the fan response to the construction delays has been “absolutely
wonderful”. They will look at the situation at the end of the season to
Weaver said that certain things have to happen to get certain occupancy permits
from the state. He said there is a distinct possibility that there will be no
availability for the West Side luxury suites and indoor club seats for the 2005
season. He is less optimistic than assistant athletic director Tom Gabbard, who
deals with the situation on a day-to-day basis. Weaver said it is possible that
seating problems could arise later in the season, but he thinks that Tech will
be able to accommodate all fans.
Weaver said that not much progress will be made between Ohio and Georgia Tech.
There is not enough time in between to clean up and start construction all over
again. He said more progress will be made following the Georgia Tech game.
Weaver said that nothing has happened before the first game with regards to
Beamer’s new contract. They do not want the situation to be a distraction to
the season, so it’s possible that the negotiations will be suspended until the
end of the season.
A caller asked about Lot 5, which is being used by Turner Construction. Weaver
said the equipment is being moved this week, and there has been no rain in the
area lately, so the lot should be fine to park in for the Ohio game.
Weaver said there will be student athletes at the Ohio game on Saturday that
will be collecting contributions for the relief fund for the victims of
Hurricane Katrina. The NCAA is now allowing donations to be made to players and
their families that were affected, and that includes VT basketball player Deron
Washington. There will be an announcement of the specific details of this
program next week.
Roth noted that the Virginia Tech defense set a school record by holding Duke to
35 yards of total offense on Saturday. Foster said he was proud of the effort of
the defense. Roth noted that Duke gained a total of 16 yards on 18 first down
plays, which is amazing.
Foster said they expected Duke to play Curt Dukes at quarterback more, but they
didn’t, and that played into Virginia Tech’s hands. Foster said that Tech
missed 15 tackles against NC State, but only three against Duke. There were 17
mental errors against NC State, but only seven against Duke. Vince Hall, Xavier
Adibi and Chris Ellis stepped up their game, as did Kory Robertson. Justin
Hamilton is really improving at safety as well, as is Orion Martin at defensive
Foster said Ohio coach Frank Solich has gotten his players believing that they
can win. Foster says he expects more option from Ohio this weekend in an effort
to spread the Hokies’ defense out. Ohio just beat Pitt, who has beaten VT
three times in a row and went to the Fiesta Bowl last season.
Foster said he saw a lot of Nebraska from Ohio against Pittsburgh, and expects
to see even more this Saturday. The Ohio players aren’t playing with pressure
and are having a lot of fun. Foster is challenging his players to prepare
mentally for a game that could be another letdown game.
Foster says he hopes they have enough mature players to handle the pressure of
rankings. The rankings are for fans and he doesn’t pay any attention to
rankings. They are working hard to focus on the next play and the next game.
Foster said he was very proud of Jimmy Williams. He showed a lot of restraint
during the game because the Duke players were doing some pushing and shoving
after the play. Roth mentioned that Jimmy said he was bored on Saturday and just
spent the time working on his back pedal. Foster said Williams and DeAngelo Hall
are similar in many ways, but different in many ways. Williams has such superior
size, and he can turn his hips well. He can continue to play corner at the NFL
level rather than moving back to safety. Foster said that Williams has been a
great leader for the team and he is very proud of how he has matured throughout
Foster says he believes Macho Harris is getting better all the time. Each day he
is feeling more and more confident in his own abilities. He has great explosion
and natural ability.
Foster went on to say that he is expecting more option during the Ohio game. He
is also expecting a variety of options, including the speed option and fullback
option. Ike Whitaker is the perfect player to simulate this type of offense, as
he runs about a 4.5 40.
Foster said Darryl Tapp looks good and played at full speed on Monday. They are
also hoping to get Carlton Powell back against Ohio. Chris Ellis was held out of
practice with a strained shoulder, but he should be good to go on Saturday.
Foster said the defense has a good mix of experience and youth. The youthful
players are very hungry and the experienced players do a great job of providing
guidance and leadership. He is really having a good time coaching this group of
Beamer opened the show by thanking Hokie fans for turning out for the Duke game
on Saturday. He then went on to say that ESPN’s “The Season” is back in
Blacksburg for the second consecutive season. Instead of spending just one week
at Tech, they will be spending two weeks, which is a great compliment to the
Beamer said the team did things very well for the most part on Saturday. At
times they needed to show better effort, but he was pleased that they were able
to play so many young players. Beamer said he thinks Vick is doing very well,
but he wishes he would have taken off and run a little more. He really threw
some great passes in the Duke game, and had a great day of practice on Monday.
Beamer said the defense played exceptionally well. He thought they got the Duke
players flustered. The tackling was much better and there weren’t as many
mental errors. Coach Foster and his coaches did a great job of preparing his
players for the game. Despite the lofty national rankings, the players need to
continue to focus on Ohio.
Beamer said Sean Glennon asked Kevin Rogers to put Cory Holt in the game if it
came down to mop up duty. Glennon is still the backup and will play if needed.
Beamer said Glennon is probably thinking about the possibility of a redshirt.
Beamer said the offensive line is developing well. The Duane Brown experiment is
really working out well. He is athletic and relentless. They had a lot of
players play very well against Duke. They need to continue to get Brandon Frye
some reps, and he needs to keep coming along. It’s not where it needs to be,
but they have very good potential.
Beamer was asked about the technique of his kickers. He said he thought Pace was
kicking very well and that this technique was good. The field goal he missed on
Saturday was against the wind, which was tough. Beamer then brought up Nic
Schmitt, who is doing an excellent job in the kicking game. He can boom punts
and he can pin opponents deep. Jared Develli is also kicking off very well, and
Jud Dunlevy is very capable as well.
Beamer was asked about the different replay systems for each conference. Beamer
said he thinks there will be a national standard policy next season, and that‘s
the way it should be. He said that all the conferences should be under the
original Big Ten plan, which worked well last season. They are using this season
as an experiment to test for future seasons.
Beamer was asked about recruiting, and he said they are in on some really good
players. There is a recruiting meeting among the coaches on Thursday and they
will evaluate where they stand with many prospects.
Beamer said last Wednesday that they didn’t think Josh Morgan would be playing
against Duke, but instead he played and had a big game. He said he thinks they
might alternate Josh Morgan and Eddie Royal on punt returns. Royal shows great
burst and speed, while Morgan has burst and the ability to break tackles.
Beamer said the offense did a pretty good job on Saturday, but they need to
improve. He was pleased that Vick and the receivers were able to hit some big
plays in the passing game. Vick has a nice touch and can hit receivers on a dead
run. He can make the ball fit between defenders.
Beamer commented on Dion Byrum, a cornerback for Ohio who has scored three
touchdowns on interceptions in just two games. Beamer said he is very fast,
running a 4.3 40. They are a well-coached, legit football team. He said the
crowd needs to come out and make Lane Stadium loud.
Beamer said the Ohio quarterback can run the ball, but he can also throw it. He
fits in perfectly with what Frank Solich likes to do with his offense. Beamer
said he is on the ethics committee with Solich, and that he’s a good coach. He
is 59-20 as a head coach. He did a great job at Nebraska, despite the fact that
he got fired. He will bring a well-coached football team to Blacksburg on
A caller asked about the third down conversions for the Duke game, and Beamer
said he is a little concerned about the statistic (4-11). He said they have to
be better at it and become more efficient. They were good on third downs last
season and hope to get back to that point this season.
Beamer said Bryan Stinespring talked to Rickey Bustle this past week, and the
Bustle family came out of Hurricane Katrina well. Beamer said he couldn’t
imagine what it was like for coaches in the area. Every coach for Tulane has
lost his house, and it’s amazing that they can carry on.
In a rare prediction session with Bill Roth, Beamer said he thought Maryland
would beat West Virginia and Virginia would beat Syracuse. He wasn’t sure
Miami would win at Clemson. He said he thought Boston College had a legit shot
to beat Florida State.
Beamer said he talked to former Hokies in the NFL occasionally, and the
assistant coaches talk to them often. He said they love to get former Hokies to
come back and see Virginia Tech play. He’s proud of them, and it helps the
current recruiting situation and it’s a good overall thing when they come back
Beamer said George Bell has worked hard to play and is as good a person as you
will find. He had his first collegiate touchdown against Duke and he had a
couple of nice runs. Branden Ore is very talented as well and has a chance to be
a great player. It’s great to have so many good running backs because there is
such a big risk for injuries.
Beamer said Jeff King made some great catches. He’s really a guy you can count
on. Beamer said you know what to expect from Jeff King every week. Beamer said
John Kinzer is also doing well. There is a lot of carry over from what he did at
Roth pointed out that Tech will play their 25th game as at Top Five team this
Saturday. He commented that the team seems really mature as far as the rankings
go. Beamer said he is very proud that people consider Tech a Top Five team, but
the team must continue to focus on the little things.
Monday was day 290 of Virginia Tech’s continuous possession of the
Commonwealth Cup, day 346 of Virginia Tech’s continuous possession of the
Black Diamond Trophy, and day 283 of Virginia Tech’s continuous possession
of the ACC football championship.