Archive for July, 2009

The calm before the buzz

Alright, you ramblin wrecks.

Four days until the players report on Sunday, and practice begins on Monday.

This will be the last blog until after practice on Monday. Going to try and spend some time with the wife and kids before the 10-month college sports season begins and I become scarce around the old household.

So, I’m apologizing now (now that it’ll matter to some), but this blog will be short.

First, no updates on Kyle Jackson yet. He did go to the doctor in Charlotte, but I haven’t been able to find out anything.

Other than that, the team is healthy heading into camp.

There was a lot of talk at the ACC football kickoff earlier this week about the lack of respect the ACC gets nationally. The prevailing reason seems to be because the ACC hasn’t had a team play for the national championship since 2000. And the league’s record in BCS games since then isn’t to be envied.

Throw in that FSU and Miami just aren’t the teams they once were, and there’s no reason to believe that …

Continue reading The calm before the buzz »

Some answers to your questions

Here are a few answers to the questions you asked three blogs ago. I’m going to paraphrase Johnson’s answers.

Frankly, I’m surprised that Johnson didn’t blow a gasket at the ACC media days for as many times as he was asked if year 2, and lots of game film, would mean his offense would have a harder time this year. Part of it has to do with the format of the interviews. Instead of putting each coach and a player at a podium on a stage, a coach or players are put at a table, and we descend and start asking questions. Because the coaches were broken up into three groups of four, we would go from table to table. Because you can’t be everywhere at once, the coaches would hear the same questions from the migrating reporters over and over. Anyway, you can read more about his answer in the story that’s posted on ajc.com.

For Johnson, it was year 2, how can Dwyer be better, and did the loss to LSU give folks an idea how to stop the defense.

For Bowden, it was when are you going to …

Continue reading Some answers to your questions »

Preseason predictions from the peanut gallery (that’s us)

It’ll be posted on ajc.com soon, but Jonathan Dwyer was voted the ACC’s preseason player of the year by the media here in Greensboro, N.C.

However, Tech was picked to finish behind Virginia Tech in the Coastal Division, with the Hokies going on to win the ACC title.

Here are the predictions:

COASTAL

Virginia Tech 78

Georgia Tech 9

North Carolina

Miami

Virginia Duke

ATLANTIC

FSU 56

Clemson 14

N.C. State 10

Wake Forest 7

Maryland

N.C. State

PLAYER OF THE YEAR

Jonathan Dwyer, Ga. Tech 39

C.J. Spiller, Clemson 28

Russell Wilson, N.C. State 16

Christian Ponder, FSU 1

Vic Hall, Virginia 1

Tyrod Taylor, Va. Tech 1

Riley Skinner, Wake 1

 

I’ll have more after the coaches talk. That begins around 3 p.m. 

Continue reading Preseason predictions from the peanut gallery (that’s us) »

Greetings from Greensboro

Well, it was a fun first day here at the Grandover Resort, on the fringes of G-town, one of my old stomping grounds.

The day started with John Swofford giving his state of the ACC speech, followed by two players from each team sitting through a gauntlet of questions that have been asked and answered many times. But, we gotta ask, and they are gracious to answer.

Of course, leave it to Al Groh to bring two players on offense to the shindig. Vic Hall is listed as a quarterback/corner back, but I doubt Hall ever gets a pass thrown his way this season. 

A few notes from today, a few answers to your questions and another clarification about ajc.com.

Swofford was asked many times about the future of the BCS. He said it’s locked in for now because of TV contracts. The biggest difference between issues that some had with the BCS this year, as opposed to those in the past, is that this year’s protest came from within the member conferences (Mountain West). I guess he forgot about Dr. …

Continue reading Greetings from Greensboro »

Q&As with you

I’ll be heading to the ACC kickoff outside Greensboro, N.C. this weekend. The event is Sunday and Monday, with players on Sunday and coaches on Monday.

So, I thought I’d open up the floor to you.

What questions would you like asked of the coaches. I can’t guarantee I’ll get a chance, but I’ll try to ask the most relevant questions of the coaches that you submit, and then come back with a few answers.

Also, since some of you have emailed asking about the new season-ticket group that Georgia Tech hired, I thought I’d give you some updates.

First, 25,265 season tickets have been sold, compared to 23,900 last season. The new group, which has been up and running for about 10 days, has sold 138 packages that have generated about $51,000 in revenue, according to Wayne Hogan, Tech’s associate ahtletics director.

That’s it for now. I should be back next Wednesday as we hit the home stretch before practice starts on Aug. 3.

Follow me on twitter on …

Continue reading Q&As with you »

Q&A with Sedric Griffin

 

Sedric Griffin is healthy and ready to roll.

Sedric Griffin is healthy and ready to roll.

 

 

Sedric Griffin was one of the pleasant surprises in a season full of pleasant surprises last year.

Then a junior, Griffin had 53 tackles and three sacks last year. 

Hailing from the tiny town of Blair, S.C. Griffin talks about his reputation as a bulldozer on defense, trusting teammates, and his favorite linebackers in the NFL.

AJC: What’s the highlight of your hometown?

SG: One thing is we have a nuclear plant. As I recall from history lessons It might have been one of the first hydro-electric ones built in the United States. That’s one of the highlights. And the four-way stop.

 AJC: Everybody gather at the four-way stop and stare at each other?

 

SG: Yeah. And the corner store at the four-way stop. Everybody gathers there. That’s one of the highlights of my illustrious community.

 AJC: You go back home often?

 

SG: I try to. I love my family. We are a close-knit family. So, I try to go home.

 AJC: Other players have talked …

Continue reading Q&A with Sedric Griffin »

More on Cink’s win

I hope you got to watch the Open Championship yesterday, otherwise known as the British Open to us in Los Estados Unidos.

In talking with Cink’s parents, friends, former coaches, it was interesting how they all said they were surprised that he hadn’t yet won a major. But how they knew that he was going to win Sunday because he looked different than he has during the other tournaments:

“He had a look about him today that I don’t think we’ve seen in a while. Very confident in the way he walked and presented himself. Everybody knew he was  agreat player but to perform like that under pressure and win a major is just awesome.”

— Chad Parker, head pro at East Lake Golf Club, who grew up with Cink in Florence, Ala.

“I saw how charged up he was and I thought he’d make it [ the first birdie putt on 18]. I was surprised on the two putts he missed, one on 14 and one on 17.”

— Chris Burns, who taught Cink the game in Florence, S.C.

The birdie putt on 18 was outstanding, but it was …

Continue reading More on Cink’s win »

Gladiator talks about etching

He’s known as “Gladiator” because of his strength. But Georgia Tech middle linebacker Brad Jefferson could be knows as “The Barber of the Flats.”

Jefferson sat down with me for a few minutes to talk about the defense, leadership and cutting hair. Look for more on the defense and leadership in a story in next week’s paper. 

For now, here’s our abbreviated Q&A:

 

AJC: I’ve heard you are a good barber is that right?

BJ: [Laughter]

 

AJC: Have you cut anybody’s hair on the team?

BJ: I cut like five people. Joshua Nesbitt, TJ, Martin Frierson. Morgan Burnett.

 

AJC: Burnett let you near his hair?

BJ: I etched him up. I etched him up. Too Tall. We call him Too Tall. Emmanuel. Who else? Did a couple other people.

 

AJC:Where did you learn that skill?

BJ: Learned it by myself, messing up on my own head. I had the money to get a haircut but didn’t really want to spend the money to get a haircut. So I worked on myself.

I messed up plenty of times on myself. When I got it downpat that’s …

Continue reading Gladiator talks about etching »

Q&A with Dwyer

Tim Tebow at Florida, Colt McCoy at Texas, Sam Bradford at Oklahoma and … Jonathan Dwyer at Georgia Tech.

The first three players are on most folk’s watch lists for the Heisman Trophy. Dwyer has popped up on some lists as a darkhorse candidate.

I got to sit down with Dwyer, last season’s ACC player of the year, for a few minutes last week for an abbreviated version of the Q&A’s we’ve been running this summer.

AJC: Which running backs do you like to watch?

JD: Growing up, as a kid, Walter Payton. But now, in this new era, Adrian Peterson of the Vikings and LaDainian Tomlinson.

AJC: What about those guys do you like watching?

JD: Adrian Peterson has a lot of style like Walter Payton. He’s powerful and once he touches the ball he’s going full speed at you the whole time. If youre in his way he’s going to run you over. If he can’t run you over he’s going to run around you and make somebody make a big play.

AJC: You are being mentioned as potential Heisman candidate this year. …

Continue reading Q&A with Dwyer »

The new three-deeps are here! The new three-deeps are here!

While not as exciting as getting a new phone book, (for you younger readers, review Steve Martin’s filmography on imdb.com) the three-deeps are out. These are very preliminary and I would caution you to not read too much into any of this. But, here they are:

QB

Josh Nesbitt

Jaybo Shaw

Tevin Washington

 

B-back

Jonathan Dwyer

Richard Watson or Preston Lyons

 

A-back

Roddy Jones

Embry Peeples

Paul Reese

 

A-back

Anthony Allen or Lucas Cox or Marcus Wright

 

WR

Demaryius Thomas

Zach Fisher

Quentin Sims

 

WR

Tyler Melton

Kevin Cone

Daniel McKayhan

 

T

Nick Claytor or Brad Sellers

Phil Smith

 

G

Joseph Gilbert

Omoregie Uzzi

 

C

Dan Voss or Sean Bedford

Zach Fraysier

 

G

Cord Howard

Zach Krish

Nick McRae

 

T

Austin Barrick

Clyde Yandell

Mike Johnson

 

DE

Derrick Morgan

Emmanuel Dieke

Osahon Tongo

 

DT

Jason Peters

Logan Walls

Albert Rocker

 

DT

Ben Anderson

T.J. Barnes

Jason Hill

 

DE

Robert Hall

Anthony Egbuniwe

Antonio Wilson

 

Wolf

Cooper Taylor or Mario Edwards

Anthony Barnes

Continue reading The new three-deeps are here! The new three-deeps are here! »