The Hokie Hotline (football and basketball season)
When: every Monday from 7:00-9:00 during football season, 7:00-8:00 during
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 athletics director Jim Weaver, offensive coordinator Bryan Stinespring and head coach Frank Beamer. Topics of conversation ranged from the BCS, to Tech’s redzone offense, to the new uniforms that the Hokies wore against Boston College.
Weaver began the show by saying he thought the Hokies beat Boston College on both sides of the line of scrimmage. It didn’t surprise Weaver, but he didn’t think Tech would play quite that well. Tech had a lot more quickness on both sides of the ball than Boston College.
Weaver went on to say there will be 15 bowl representatives at the Miami game this weekend, including the Rose Bowl, Sugar Bowl, Orange Bowl, Champs Sports Bowl and Gator Bowl. This will be a huge game for the Hokies this weekend.
Weaver said he really doesn’t understand the computer polls, but he does realize that the remaining schedules favor Virginia Tech and USC. Tech and the Trojans play some good teams, while the Longhorns’ remaining schedule is pretty weak. Roth asked Weaver if he was confident that the two best teams will be playing for the national championship, and Weaver responded, “If we’re not in it, I’m not confident.”
Roth asked Weaver about football schedules, and Weaver promised that there would be some huge news to report on next week’s Hokie Hotline.
Roth and Weaver discussed the men’s soccer team, coached by Oliver Weiss. The team has beaten prestigious programs such as Virginia and UNC this year, and will host #1 Maryland on Friday night. The Hokies have all but locked up an NCAA Tournament bid, and will greatly improve their seeding if they can knock off the Terrapins on Friday night.
A caller noted that “Enter Sandman” was played at the perfect time in the fourth quarter on Thursday night. Weaver said they try to have the best college football environment for the players, students and fans. Roth said we would see that again on Saturday at the appropriate time.
Weaver announced that there will be no fireworks for the Miami game. The Blacksburg Fire Marshall requires that all requests for a fireworks permit be made 30 days in advance, and Virginia Tech didn’t find out that the Miami game would be at night until last Monday.
A caller asked Weaver about fan behavior behind the North Endzone while fans were waiting in line to go into Lane Stadium. He responded by saying that Tech has increased security in that corner of the stadium this season. He also encouraged people to get to the game a little earlier, and to stay away from a lot of alcohol while tailgating.
Stinespring began his segment by saying the last two weeks have gone well for the offense. They are moving the ball well, they are running the ball better and Marcus Vick is putting the ball where he needs to be. They are spreading the ball around to a lot of good players, and that kind of variety is helping the offense move the ball. Stinespring said he scripted the first ten plays of the Boston College game, and they didn’t get away from the script. The team executed those plays well and was able to move the ball.
Stinespring mentioned that he was a little disappointed with the redzone offense. They didn’t meet their objectives in the redzone. They had a chance to score 49 points, but the offense could only muster 23. You can’t fumble inside the five yard line, and you must be able to kick short field goals. The offense has to be more crisp in the redzone from now on.
Stinespring went on to say that executing in the redzone is more difficult that it looks. Sometimes those first and tens from the 11 can be very difficult. The offense has basically no room to get a first down, but it is very difficult to score a touchdown because the defense is guarding a very small area.
Stinespring said Miami is a great football team, as usual. They have athletes at every position, and they return nine starters from last year. They have as much or more speed than they have ever had. The Miami players know what it is like to play in Blacksburg, and they are well coached, so they will be prepared for the atmosphere. It will be a big time football game in big time atmosphere.
Roth mentioned that Miami is doing more things with their defense now. Stinespring agreed that their defense is more complicated and tougher to figure out. They blitz a lot more than they used to. They aren’t afraid to bring any of their linebackers. They will also bring safeties and cornerbacks at times. Overall, it is a more complex defensive scheme.
Stinespring mentioned that Marcus Vick has played against Miami before and he understands the speed at which they play. He will be the coolest player on the field on Saturday.
The team is in good shape injury wise. Mike Imoh’s ankle is still bothering him a bit after he tweaked it again against Boston College. Other than that injury, the Hokies are in very good shape.
Stinespring said he was very excited to see Josh Hyman have a good game on Thursday night. He was one of the best receivers on the team last season, but he has been quiet this year. Despite not catching a lot of passes, he has continued to work hard in practice and he finally had some passes thrown his way against Boston College. He responded very well with five catches.
Roth complimented the wide receivers as a group, saying they do a good job of catching the ball with their hands. They are a very fundamentally sound group. Stinespring agreed and mentioned that Tony Ball does an outstanding job with his receivers. He helps them in the passing game and in the running game.
Stinespring said Boston College did a good job of defending Marcus Vick in the running game because they left their linebackers around the line of scrimmage. Because of this, Vick was able to have a lot of success in the passing game.
Beamer said the Boston College game was a big win. The Hokies did some good things. They wanted to get some more points, but overall they played really well against a good Boston College team. Now it’s time for Miami.
Roth pointed out that BC has gotten faster, but the Hokies are still way ahead. Beamer agreed, saying the Eagles were bigger but Tech was faster. Overall BC is a very good football team that is well coached.
Beamer said Miami doesn’t change. He looks at the video and wonders where they got all these players. The defense is as good as any defense in the country. They have a lot of playmakers on the both sides of the ball, and Devin Hester makes you hold your breath on kick returns. They also block a lot of kicks.
Beamer said it is amazing how Miami can recruit such good players. He said the Tech players and coaches have a lot of respect for the Miami players and coaches. But at the same time, they really bring out the best in Virginia Tech. But the Hokies will bring out the best in Miami as well.
Roth asked Beamer about the BCS. Beamer said he will talk about it one last time, and that would be the last time he speaks about the BCS. He said if the Hokies can somehow beat the teams that are remaining on their schedule, and the computers and voters don’t give Virginia Tech credit, then there is something wrong with the system. The Hokies must continue to take care of their business on the field.
A caller told Beamer that he wanted to see some results inside the redzone. He went on to tell Beamer that the playcalling was too predictable and the Hokies need to stop running the ball up the middle. Beamer disagreed, and pointed out that Tech scored a touchdown on a passing play from the shotgun formation from the three yard line. They scored a touchdown on a reverse to Eddie Royal. Tech also attempted other passes in the redzone, and fumbled inside the five yard line. The playcalling was fine, but the execution needs to get better.
A caller asked Beamer about walkons. Beamer said they generally invite players with Division 1-AA offers to walkon. Past walkons include John Engelberger and Jarrett Ferguson. Jesse Allen and Will Montgomery are two players on the current team who are former walkons.
Roth brought up all the media attention that the Hokies are currently receiving, and will be receiving as the week goes on. Beamer said it is a compliment to the program, but everyone must remember that there is still a football game to be played on Saturday night. There is a lot riding on this game, and the players and fans must be ready.
A caller asked about Jimmy Williams in coverage and why he has struggled at times this year. Beamer said he thinks Williams is having a good year. He said Williams had good coverage on Blackmon Thursday night, but the ball was thrown behind him while he was moving inside. He is having a tremendous season and will be earning quite a bit of money at this point next season.
Roth asked Beamer about the JV game on Friday, which the Hokies won 17-16 on a Jud Dunlevy 52 yard field goal as time expired. Beamer said that was the best postgraduate team that Virginia Tech has ever played. The coaches spent some time reviewing the film of the game to evaluate Hargrave players as well as Tech JV players.
Beamer said he liked Tech’s new uniforms that they wore on Thursday night. Only four schools in the country were chosen to wear the new type of uniform, and Virginia Tech was one of them. Beamer said Nike has always been the frontrunner in athletic equipment and uniforms. He said he is very loyal to Nike, and Nike makes a big difference in recruiting.
Beamer was asked about blocking punts. He said they rushed the first Boston College punt, but didn’t block it. Because of the pressure put on the punter, the kick only went 25 yards. Just because you don’t actually block the kick doesn’t mean that special teams isn’t a big part of the game.
Roth asked Beamer about Kyle Wright. Beamer said he was taller and more mobile than Brock Berlin. He is exactly what Miami is looking for when they look for a quarterback. He is a pocket passer who can avoid the rush when he has to.
Roth then brought up Miami tailback Tyrone Moss. Beamer said Tech recruited Moss and Miami fullback Quadtrine Hill. He visited both of their homes when they were in high school. He said Moss is doing a great job this year after dropping some weight in the offseason. He is running with a good forward lean and is punishing people. The Miami offense is really dependant upon Moss at this point of the season.
A caller complimented Beamer on the new uniforms that the Hokies wore on Thursday night. Beamer said he liked them too, and then dropped the hint that Tech fans may see them again on Saturday night. He said the team loved the uniforms and several recruits he talked to loved them as well. Beamer went on to say that there are so many recruits coming into town for the Miami game that the athletic department had a lot of trouble finding hotel rooms for all of them.
Someone asked Beamer about the oft-rumored game with Tennessee at the Bristol Motor Speedway. Beamer said he would be very surprised if that game ever actually takes place. He isn’t sure how everyone in the speedway would actually see the game. It would be a big undertaking and it probably will never happen.
Beamer said Miami has good players everywhere. They are good up front on both sides of the ball, they have good linebackers and they have great defensive backs. They have a lot of athletic wide receivers who can go up and get the ball. They are dangerous everywhere on the field and it will be a tremendous challenge for the Hokies.
- Monday was day 339 of Virginia Tech’s continuous possession of the Commonwealth Cup, day 395 of Virginia Tech’s continuous possession of the Black Diamond Trophy, and day 332 of Virginia Tech’s continuous possession of the ACC football championship.