Friday Q&A: October 14th, 2011

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Virginia Tech played well offensively last week, but there are still major
questions on the defensive line because of so many injuries. We talk about
burning Kris Harley’s redshirt in today’s Q&A, and we also discuss why Miami
didn’t blitz more last weekend. Basketball practice begins today as well, so a
hoops question is mixed in: Will Dorian Finney-Smith start this year?

1) With the lack of depth at defensive tackle right now, would you burn Kris
Harley’s redshirt?

Chris Coleman: I’ve heard good things about Kris Harley recently. He was
a little slow out of the gate, but I thought he made steady progress as the
season went along. He probably could have played this year if needed at the
beginning of the season, but Luther Maddy and Corey Marshall were a little bit
ahead of him at that point. Since then, I’ve heard that Charley Wiles would be
comfortable with Harley in a game right now, if it comes to that.

That being said, I would not pull his redshirt in the second half of the
season. That’s just wasting a redshirt. I’d try to get through it with the guys
already on the depth chart. It would be a disservice to Harley to throw him in
there in the middle of the season.

Let’s revisit the 2003 season, when the Tech defense was struggling up the
middle. Would you have pulled the redshirts off Vince Hall, Xavier Adibi and
Carlton Powell? If Bud Foster had done that, then those guys wouldn’t have been
around for 2007. Would Tech have won the ACC in 2007 without them? Probably not.
As true freshmen, would they really have made 2003 any better? Probably not.

Virginia Tech is successful as a program for many reasons, one of which is
that they redshirt nearly all their players, allowing for maximum development.
There’s no reason to change that now, in the middle of the season, because I
highly doubt Kris Harley or any other true freshman is going to be the
difference in winning an ACC Championship this year.

2) With Jarell Eddie cleared for the basketball team, how good should this
team be and what will the lineup look like?

CC: Great question. Basketball practice does indeed start today, and
Eddie being allowed to play the entire season is a big boost for Virginia Tech.
I’m not exactly sure what the starting lineup will look like at this