Archive for July, 2010

A twitter mailbag

Let’s do a mailbag to kick off the start of Georgia Tech’s practice on Thursday. But let’s do it with a twist.

Instead of posting questions on this blog, please post your questions on twitter at @ajcgatech. If you don’t have a twitter account, it only takes a second to sign up and find me. I will answer your questions on the blog here.

In addition to the news I will be putting on the blog throughout practices and the season, I will be tweeting a lot. With the proliferation of smart phones, it’s a quick, efficient way to get your news about all of Georgia Tech’s sports from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

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ACC openers

Georgia Tech will begin practice on Aug. 5. They won’t be the first to hit the fields. Here are the practice dates and season-openers for the rest of the ACC:
School/Practice/Season-Opener
Boston College/Aug. 9/Sept. 4 vs. Weber State
Clemson/Aug. 3/Sept. 4 vs. North Texas
Duke/Aug. 9/Sept. 4 vs. Elon
Florida State/Aug. 5/Sept. 4 vs. Samford
Georgia Tech/Aug. 5/Sept. 4 vs. S.C. State
Maryland/Aug. 10/Sept. 6 vs. Navy in Baltimore
Miami/Aug. 5/Sept. 2 vs. Florida A&M
North Carolina/Aug. 6/Sept. 4 vs. LSU at 8 p.m. at Georgia Dome
NC State/Aug. 3/Sept. 4 vs. Western Carolina
Virginia/Aug. 6/Sept 4. vs. Richmond
Virginia Tech/Aug. 6/Sept. 6 vs. Boise State in Landover, Md.
Wake Forest/Aug. 5/Sept. 2 vs. Presbyterian

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Quotes from Dominique Reese

While the 2009 season ended with an ACC championship, Dominique Reese says it was the hardest season he’s had in four years at Georgia Tech.

Nagging injuries to his shoulder hampered him throughout the season. He would try to hurry back, but couldn’t play like he wanted to. The Vanderbilt game may have been his lowest point, when he was beaten a few times, left laying on the ground, slapping the turf in frustration.

But Reese says he’s healthy and ready to go in this, his fifth and final season at Tech.

He took time on Wednesday to sit down with the media and talk about a few topics. Questions and answers have been paraphrased.

Can you believe this is your last year?

It’s gone by fast.

Seeing the incoming freshmen, I remember when I did that give years ago.

You came as a quarterback, but moved to cornerback and then safety. This year you are back to cornerback. Do you have a preference?

Just being on the field really. I just want to play.

How was the switch with you and …

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Quotes from Anthony Allen

Anthony Allen is one of the most entertaining players on Georgia Tech’s team. One only needs to follow him on twitter at Ant_Allen18 or join him on facebook at AnthonyAllen to get a glimpse of his personality.

Allen sat down with the media on Wednesday and talked about everything from his footwear to the August goals for the team. The questions and answers have been paraphrased in some instances.

On being left off the preseason All-ACC team:

That’s why it’s a preseason All-ACC team. Im not going to worry about it.

Does it bother you that you and the team are being overlooked?

We’re used to being the underdogs, being written off before the season. We’ll use it as motivation. We haven’t gained the respect, we have to go take it.

On moving from A-back to B-back:

Playing in an offense period you have to know all the positions.

Playing A-back last year, this year I know on certain blocks and certain plays where the blocks are coming from.

On what he and quarterback Joshua Nesbitt …

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Georgia Tech’s Bedford named preseason All-ACC

Center Sean Bedford was the only Georgia Tech player to be voted to the All-ACC preseason team by the media, in results released Wednesday.

Bedford, a senior, was voted to the final first-team last season.
He started all 14 games last season, helping the Yellow Jackets lead the conference in rushing offense and total offense to win the school’s first outright ACC title since 1990.

Despite being picked to finish fourth in the Coastal Division, North Carolina led all teams with five selections, all coming from the Tar Heels’ defense. Boston College had four players selected.

2010 Atlantic Coast Conference Preseason Team

Offense

Pos.
Name (Votes)

WR
Donovan Varner, Duke (27)

WR
Torrey Smith, Maryland (19)

TE
George Bryan, NC State (21)

T
Anthony Castonzo, Boston College (43)

T
Chris Hairston, Clemson (21)

G
Rodney Hudson, Florida State (43)

G
Thomas Claiborne, Boston College (21)

C
Sean Bedford, Georgia Tech …

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What can Tech’s offense do in year 3?

GREENSBORO, N.C. — Two years ago, the media asked…and asked…Georgia Tech coach Paul Johnson if his option offense would work in a BCS conference.

He laughed it off nine times: the Yellow Jackets went 9-4 and tied for the Coastal Division lead.

Last year, the media asked…and asked…Johnson if teams would now be able to catch up to his option offense after having seen it the year before.

His response: people have seen it for more than 20 years and it’s worked fine. The Yellow Jackets went on to win the ACC.

This year, the only question Johnson was asked about his offense was what’s going to be the media’s hook.

“”Y’all will have to come up with something else,” Johnson said with a smile.

It would seem hard to top the 11wins, 33.8 points and 422.1 yards per game that Tech averaged last season.

If any of the players or coaches in the conference doubted the spread-based option in the past, they were saying all the right things at the ACC’s media days.

Wake Forest coach Jim Grobe, …

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Georgia Tech ready to defend ACC title

Georgia Tech seems to be the equivalent of a moving target.

Yes, they are the defending ACC champions.

Yes, they led the league in several offensive categories.

Yes, they return 15 starters.

No, they aren’t being picked to win the ACC.

Tech coach Paul Johnson, however, seems to embrace the fact that once again his team is being overlooked, as it was last year and as it was when he first arrived.

“They’re still going to let us play the games aren’t they?” Johnson asked on Monday when asked about two teams being favored over the Jackets to win theACC’s Coastal Division. “That’s all we care about.

“I think we can be competitive.”

The Yellow Jackets will have the bull’s eye on their back, even if they have to remind people that it’s there. With so many close wins, and some controversial plays, Tech seems to have that “yeah, but” stigma. Based upon the questions asked of Johnson at the media days in Greensboro, some of that has to do with the perception of the offense, and some of …

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Paul Johnson quotes from ACC kickoff

Was Al Groh hired because you wanted to go to the 3-4?
“It didn’t have to be a 3-4, it just happened to be his system. Any time you can get a coach like that, with that much experience and success, it’s great for our program.

“Al is a great football coach. He has a lot of energy and I think he’s going to be good for our program. We’re excited about having a guy like that on our staff.

“I think our players are excited about the direction. (Last year) we struggled to stop the run, we struggled in getting the other team off the field.”

What are your thoughts on being picked third in the Coastal Division?
“They had to pick somebody and we lost some key players. I think we can be competitive.”

Do you allow other teams to come visit during the spring to study your offense?
We have a lot of people visit during the spring. I have a commitment to guys who have coached with me. We have a lot of teams visit, but we’re not going to let a team visit that plays Navy or Georgia Southern or …

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Georgia Tech picked third in Coastal Division — updated

Georgia Tech, the ACC champions, were picked to finish third in the Coastal Division by the media at the ACC kickoff in Greensboro.

Virginia Tech (62 first-place votes) was picked to win the division, followed by Miami (20). The Jackets received 11 votes.

Florida State (78) was picked to win the Atlantic, followed by Clemson (16).

Virginia Tech (50) was picked to win the ACC.

FSU’s Christian Ponder was predicted to be the conference player of the year by a landslide vote, 45-16, over Virginia Tech running back Ryan Williams.

Georgia Tech quarterback Joshua Nesbitt finished sixth with four votes.

ACC championship votes

1. Virginia Tech 50

2. Florida State 26

3. Miami 10

4. Georgia Tech 8

5. Boston College (tie) 2

North Carolina 2

Atlantic Division

1. FSU

2. Clemson

3. Boston College

4. N.C. State

5. Wake Forest

6. Maryland

Coastal Division

1. Virginia Tech

2. Miami

3. Georgia Tech

4. North Carolina

5. Duke

6. Virginia

ACC player of the year

1. Christian Ponder, FSU

2. Ryan …

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Quotes from Tech players at ACC media days

Quotes from The ACC Kickoff (Day One) held today at the Grandover Resort in Greensboro, N.C.(Courtesy of the fine folks in Georgia Tech’s sports information department)

Jason Peters

Does the 3-4 defense require bigger, stronger players on the line?
“The 3-4 requires linemen to be strong. At this point, we can only get so much bigger and stronger, but what we can control is how hard we work. I think the work we did in the spring, in the offseason, will really help us.”

And what is your weight?
“My target weight is 280-285 and I’m close to that now.”

What about the depth on the defensive line?
“I think we will surprise a lot of people with our depth on the line. Now that we are in a 3-4 I think you’ll see us rotate guys quite often.”

How close are you to fully understanding the 3-4?
“I think it will take a lot more work by all of us to really get the 3-4. Guys want to win. Guys want to compete. And that’s a big factor in how quickly we want to grasp the 3-4. …

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