Notebook: Georgia Tech’s Wednesday practice

After three weeks of practice, Georgia Tech coach Paul Johnson is ready to play some football. The Yellow Jackets open against Western Carolina next Thursday.

“It seems like it has been forever,” Johnson said about preseason practice. “We didn’t finish [last season] the way we would’ve liked. It just has been a long time [since a game]. Anytime you don’t finish the way you want, you want to go back and play as soon as you can.”

After a promising start to last season, Georgia Tech lost five out of its last six games, including a 14-7 decision to Air Force in the Independence Bowl. “It’s not just the bowl, but the end of the year,” Johnson said. “It didn’t go the way we wanted it to go. It’s not what we’re used to doing.”

The best way to get over a disappointing loss is to play another game. Johnson and his team are ready to play.

“I think so,” Johnson said. “It has been a long time since we played somebody from a different team. We’re tired of playing against each other. I’m sure [the players] are [excited to play]. I’m ready, too. I’m not sure we are particularly ready right now [from a preparation standpoint], but I’m looking forward to playing the game.”

Here’s Georgia Tech’s schedule for the next few days: They will have a intra-squad scrimmage on Thursday, a regular practice on Friday, then take the weekend off. Tech will practice in pads on Monday and in shells on Tuesday.

QB improved

Tevin Washington is far and away Tech’s No. 1 quarterback and has been impressive in camp. He has made big strides since last season, according to his coach.

“I think he’s more comfortable with what he’s doing now,” Johnson said. “He has done a nice job in camp for the most part with taking better care of the ball. Really where I think he’s improved some is with the throwing game. I think he’s worked hard at that, and gotten better at that.”

Johnson was asked if the QB battle would’ve been closer if Synjyn Days hadn’t had ball security problems. “I don’t know; if a frog had wings, it wouldn’t bump its tail on the ground,” Johnson said with a laugh. “Hypotheticals are hard to answer.”

No vote on captains yet

Tech won’t be naming its team captains any time soon. That will come a little later into the season. “We haven’t voted for them yet,” Johnson said. “It’s usually somewhere after two or three games. We usually let all the seniors be game captains and then let them vote.”

Injuries

Georgia Tech is looking mostly healthy for its opener, with the exception of two players – A-Back Marcus Wright and B-Back Preston Lyons. Wright (injury unknown) is a reserve, while Lyons (knee injury) is competing for the starting position.

“I don’t think we have anybody hurt that is going to play, maybe Marcus and Preston,” Johnson said. “We’re holding Preston out. He’s trying to practice, he wants to. Marcus is the only other guy we’re planning on playing that we think has a chance to get back [by Thursday’s opener].”

29 comments Add your comment

Hardvey D. Pooka

August 24th, 2011
7:27 pm

GT should have enough A- and B- backs to get through first 2 games without rushing injured players back too quickly. That’ll gain them each some needed game-day-experience which can only help down the road.

George Stein

August 24th, 2011
7:36 pm

It’s beginning to look a lot like football
Everywhere you go

(Think the Christmas song)

George Stein

August 24th, 2011
7:37 pm

What’s wrong with Marcus Wright? I love me some speed midgets!

Worm

August 24th, 2011
8:01 pm

Vad Lee to A-back.

IHATEUGA1990

August 24th, 2011
8:05 pm

VAD LEE TRANSFER!

Buford T. Pusser

August 24th, 2011
8:32 pm

After reading all the pundit’s comments as well as Ken’s daily blog it appears that 7-5 is probable with an outside chance of 8-4. I still wonder if the leadership issues from last year have been corrected. The O-line is young and inexperienced. However, it appears that the defense will be much improved and allow Tech to not rely solely on their offense.

Unlike our bretheren from Clarke County who are predicting a NC because the Dream Team has hit town, I’m trying to keep it real, i.e. not drunk and delusional. Man, I’m looking forward to next Thursday night.

The Sheriff has spoken.

IHATEUGA1990

August 24th, 2011
8:44 pm

CPJ WILL BE FIRED AFTER THE SEASON FOR LOSING TO UGA FOR HIS THIRD STRAIGHT SEASON! EVERYBODY ENJOY CPJ LAST YEAR RUNNING HIS BS OFFENSE!! SAY GOODBYE

Buford T. Pusser

August 24th, 2011
9:03 pm

@ IHATEUGA1990-In the future, please put the top on my trash can after your pickup. Thanks!

The Sheriff has spoken.

Lee Purdy

August 24th, 2011
9:04 pm

Ken

Who is/are the long snapper(s) this year? What kind of battle is that? Who coaches them?

Lee Purdy

IHATEUGA1990

August 24th, 2011
9:06 pm

its the truth my friend CPJ doesnt have what it takes..ALL IM SAYING IS IF WE LOSE TO UGA THEN CPJ NEEDS TO BE FIRED..IM NOT GOING TO SIT BACK AND WATCH THIS LOSING STREAK FOR ANOTHER 6 YEARS GO ON..IF HE LOSES IT WILL BE HIS 3 STRAIGHT YEAR AND THATS ENOUGH TO FIRE HIM

GT GRAD

August 24th, 2011
9:07 pm

Richt will be gone long before PJ is fired from GT!

Mark Wright is fast, but he struggles catching the ball out of the A-Back position and he needs to KNOW his assignments as well as block better!

Vad Lee is a smart and very talented young man……..I am fairly certain he realizes he will be a MUCH bettter player as a 5th year Senior than a true Freshman! He will develop into a superb QB and I predict he will be the very first QB ever drafted out of Coach PJ’s offense to play QB in the NFL (IF he redshirts and plays as a 5th year senior of course!). I know Nesbit was signed as a free agent and he got a few snaps at QB for the Buffalo Bills, but his NFL future is at safety if he is given enough time to develop.

I think GT will have a 8 or 9 win season because our defense and special teams will be much much better AND our offense will be more balanced (we will still run the ball alot more than we throw; but we will have some success in the air which will help the running game). With a few good bounces and/or some luck, we might even end the season with 10 wins!

Old White and Gold

August 24th, 2011
9:17 pm

Hey Ken,
What will Vad’s role be this season. Looking at him at the last scrimmage he looked very solid, except for a few freshman errors. Are TW and Synjyn going to split snaps at QB?
Thanks

IHATEUGA1990

August 24th, 2011
9:19 pm

I hope your right GT GRAD but the time is now not 2016!!! IF vad lee RS then there is two years wasted..he needs to play as much this season as he can..again i will say the TIME IS NOW..CPJ job is on the line and if the teams performs like they did last year he is gone.Vad lee needs to play so next year he can be the guy NOT 2013!

Brian

August 24th, 2011
9:20 pm

IHATEUGA1990, it’s not that hard. If you ask me whether or not I want ketchup at the drive-thru speaker, you’ve got to actually put it in the bag. Thanks.

IHATEUGA1990

August 24th, 2011
9:20 pm

CPJ WILL BE FIRED IF HE DOESN’T BEAT UGA..

IHATEUGA1990

August 24th, 2011
9:20 pm

hey brian make sense with your post “thanks”

Buford T. Pusser

August 24th, 2011
9:25 pm

@GT GRAD-While I appreciate your enthusiasim, I think 10 wins with the lack of a passing game, unproven skill players, young offensive line, no kicking game, and untested secondary is beyond optimistic.

The defense will keep Tech in games and with a few breaks they should win 8 games. Just don’t see 10 games happening, even with the easier schedule.

IHATEUGA1990

August 24th, 2011
9:32 pm

I HATE OUR FANS!!!! OUR COACH !!!!!!!!! BUT I LOVE SOME GT

Flowery Branch Yellow Jacket

August 24th, 2011
10:25 pm

I’m sure the Jackets are capable of winning 13 games this season, but I’m equally sure that it’s not very likely. The toughest games are likely to be Virginia Tech, UGA, NC State and a bowl opponent. (I think there are too many distractions for UNC and the “U” to be successful this season.) If GA Tech wins even one of these games, and wins out through the rest of the season, then they would end up with a 10-win season. Challenging, yes … but certainly within the realm of possibility.

jack ey

August 24th, 2011
11:15 pm

VAD LEE FOR QUARTERBACK, DAVID SIMS AT B BACK, I DO HOPE MARCUS (NOT MARK) WILL HEAL AND COME BACK SOON, LOVED MARCUS ON THE BOTTOM OF THE PILE IN 08 WHEN HE CAME UP WITH THE FUMBLE AS GT BEAT UGA..ALSO MARCUS SCORED AGAINST BOTH FSU AND VT IN 09.

Supersize that order, mutt

August 25th, 2011
12:00 am

Some of you guys have been directing questions at Ken, but Ken didn’t post this blog…..Michael Carvell did. Wonder where Ken is today

230gr Full Metal Jacket

August 25th, 2011
2:07 am

Tech could easily go 12-0……………….Or just as easily go 0-12. There are so many “X-Factors” with this years team that almost anything is possible, especially if they can catch a few lucky breaks/good calls that always seemed to elude them last season. I think 8-4 or 9-3 is most likely, but given the situations at UNC and Miami (one of the only teams on the schedule that really concerned me) a 10-win season is very much within the realm of possibility.

GO JACKETS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Burdell

August 25th, 2011
7:35 am

I just hope this team shows the passion and the will to win that the ‘08 and ‘09 teams showed. That was definitely lacking last season. Play hard-nosed, accountable football for 60 minutes…that is why I am a season ticket holder. If they do these things the wins will follow.

One week from tonight….sweet.

GO JACKETS!!

CHOP BLOCK U!!!!

August 25th, 2011
7:49 am

Western Carolina!!! Woohoo!!!!! At least Johnson is smart enough to realize he needs to play programs of his equal caliber!!!

albanyfan

August 25th, 2011
8:58 am

Enjoy your 0-2 start, mutts.

RamblinWreck93

August 25th, 2011
12:45 pm

I think GT will have a surprisingly great year for several reasons:

1. David Sims will dominate at BB. He’ll put up huge numbers and be in conversations as the best back in the country.
2. Nesbitt’s injury will serve as a blessing in disguise as TW will be ready to take the helm after gaining experience as the starter last year. He’ll put up descent rushing yards, but he’ll be able to turn the passing game from worst in the counrty to borderline average.
3. The D won’t be great, but it’ll be good enough to keep us in games, which is all it needs to do.
4. Have you seen this year’s schedule? Wow. Talk about a walk in the park.
5. The last but definitely most important, CPJ is mad. Last year’s team was lazy and unmotivated from the get go. They made their bed, so Paul Johnson let them lie in it. However, he won’t allow this to be a reoccurring theme. He’s far too fierce of a competitor.

In short, if the Yellow Jackets can knock of VT in Bobby Dodd, don’t be surprised to see them in the ACC Championship. Worst case scenario, we win 8 games this year. Best case scenario, we go 13-0 but aren’t even considered for the National Championship because we had one of the easiest schedules in the country. Either way, I don’t see how this year couldn’t be a success if all you’re looking for is an improvement over last season.

justpassingthru

August 25th, 2011
5:30 pm

I gotta tell you IHATEUGA1990,if nothing else you’re entertaining!!

GT Alum

August 25th, 2011
7:23 pm

Michael, I have to dispute promising start. We beat 3 teams that we obviously outclassed on the field and a UNC team that was decimated, and edged out Wake. At the same time, we lost to a KS team that only won 3 games all season and got picked apart by NC State. It wasn’t a promising start – it was an easy start to the schedule that we didn’t even take full advantage of. This team didn’t fall apart halfway through the season. The schedule just got harder, and we weren’t able to turn it around.

FormerGt 1990player

August 26th, 2011
10:11 am

If we don’t improve in the passing game, look for another disappointing year. TW is not a D1 QB. If we lose to UGA and lose another lack luster bowl, Rad will have no choice but to let PJ go. The new coach will time to bring in D1 athletes. I think we lack size and speed and a real QB.