Archive for February, 2012

Tech’s Rice suspended

Georgia Tech guard Glen Rice, Jr. has been suspended indefinitely by coach Brian Gregory. Rice, who was also suspended for the first three games of the season, was not at practice Friday and will not travel with the team for its game Saturday against Virginia Tech.

Gregory did not give a reason for the suspension or offer further comment.

Rice leads the Yellow Jackets in scoring and rebounding. With Rice suspended and backup center Nate Hicks out with mononucleosis, Tech will play the Hokies with eight scholarship players, not counting two former walk-ons put on scholarship this season.

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Tech still awaiting NCAA response

When Georgia Tech had its in-person hearing with the NCAA appeals committee in November, school officials were told they should expect to receive the verdict in 60 to 90 days.

The 90-day mark passed last Saturday with no word back yet from the NCAA. Friday, NCAA spokeswoman Stacey Osburn said in an e-mail there was no update on the appeal. Tech associate athletic director Wayne Hogan said in an e-mail that the school has not heard from the NCAA.

Those trying to read into the delay won’t find much affirmation from Michael Buckner, an attorney who has represented schools and coaches in NCAA sanctions cases. Sometimes, he said, a delay is just a delay.

“I’ve been through this several times with the appeals committee,” he said. “They’ve always taken a little bit more time than what they originally have estimated.”

USC had its in-person hearing with the NCAA appeals committee in Jan. 2011 and was given a window of four to eight weeks. The verdict denying the school’s appeal arrived …

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Georgia Tech-Wake Forest live blog

Greetings

Writing to you from Decatur. We didn’t make the trip and I have child-rearing duties until about 8 p.m. and will join you then. The game is on Fox Sports South and other regional sports networks (check here) and espn3.com.

This is obviously a big opportunity for Georgia Tech to get a win against a pretty weak Wake Forest team. Naturally, Wake is looking at Tech and thinking the same thing.

A couple Brian Gregory quotes from Tuesday.

“We’ve had games where we’ve shot the ball well. We know that one of our shortcomings is our ability to consistently make perimeter shots. So what do we need to do? We need to maybe attack the basket a little more and continue to get the ball inside.”

One thing Gregory noted in regards to the poor perimeter shooting was that shooters weren’t always in good position to be ready to catch and shoot. Worth nothing this evening, as is touches and shots for the bigs, Daniel Miller and Kammeon Holsey. Gregory would like 8-10 shots for each.

“Our …

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4 from Tech make All-ACC academic team

Georgia Tech placed four football players on the All-ACC Academic team, three of whom have graduated – guard Will Jackson, B-back Preston Lyons, defensive end Jason Peters and defensive tackle Logan Walls.

To be eligible for consideration, the athlete must earn a 3.0 GPA for the previous semester and maintained a 3.0 average for his academic career.

Walls, who earned his management degree in 2011 and was pursuing a second major in history, technology and science last fall, earned his third all-academic selection.

Jackson, a business administration major, has made the team for two years in a row. It was the first honor for Peters, who earned his management degree last year and began a second degree in biology, and Lyons, a history, science and technology major who graduated in December.

It’s the third time in coach Paul Johnson’s four years that four team members have been honored.

Duke placed 18 team members on the team, followed by Clemson and Wake Forest with five each. …

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UConn and the ACC

Greetings-

I wanted to pass along a link to a story about comments from Connecticut’s new athletic director, Warde Manuel, about his school’s positioning in the Big East. Kind of intriguing.

The Hartford Courant article also reported that sources have a 16-team model in place with its first choices being Notre Dame and UConn, but that there is no rush to add them. I don’t think this exactly ranks as a stunner; this has been suggested previously.

What I found interesting was part of an answer Manuel gave about realignment.

“All in all, looking at this institution it doesn’t matter what conference we are going to be in. We are going to be dominant and continue to strive to represent this institution and this great state.”

Typically, the stock answer is “We love being a part of Conference X and plan to be here for a long time,” even if the school has one foot out the door. Saying that it doesn’t matter what conference UConn is in isn’t necessarily a tacit admission that it’s …

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Georgia Tech-BYU date set

Greetings

Not exactly earth-shattering news, but BYU released its 2012 schedule, which includes its date with Georgia Tech, which gives us one more piece of the puzzle. That makes … two pieces. Well, three, assuming we also know the date of the Georgia game (Nov. 24), as well as the Virginia Tech Labor Day game.

BYU will play at Bobby Dodd Stadium Oct. 27. The game will be the ninth in a row for the Cougars; they’ll have their bye after the Tech game.

The ACC should be releasing the entire league schedule soon. Florida State’s search for an opponent to replace West Virginia likely slowed the process.

A couple thoughts:

1. I suspect Tech will play an FCS game five days after the Sept. 3 Labor Day game against Virginia Tech. There’s two ways to go about it, either have the bye week Sept. 8 or try to play on a short week (coming off a road game, no less) and take the bye later. Tech was contracted to play Middle Tennessee State Sept. 8, but I think will push it back to find …

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Rules changes could help Tech special teams

Georgia Tech’s kickoff coverage may improve without the addition of a single player. The NCAA football rules committee proposed moving the kickoff to the 35-yard line from the 30. The Jackets recorded eight touchbacks on 80 kickoffs last season and allowed 21.6 yards per return. Tech’s kickoff net was 41.9 yards, meaning opponents had an average starting spot on its 28-yard line. The Jackets’ return net was 45.4, or an average start on the 24. Tech opponents had 16 touchbacks on 61 kickoffs.

There’s a few other proposed tweaks with player safety on kickoffs in mind. A touchback would give the return team the ball on the 25-yard line, not the 20, as an incentive to take the touchback.

Given the difficulties Tech had with both the return and cover teams last season, I’m guessing this would be a proposal coach Paul Johnson would favor. It would, however, hinder the Jackets’ attempts at their first kickoff return for a touchdown since 1998 (Dez White vs. Maryland).

Also, the …

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Georgia Tech-N.C. State wrap

Greetings

Three thoughts from Thursday night’s Georgia Tech loss to N.C. State at Philips Arena.

1. Tech gave a good account of itself in the loss and gave a particularly noteworthy display in the first nine minutes. The Jackets had more energy and tenacity, attacking the offensive glass and opening up leads of 17-9 and 19-11. Tech hadn’t led by eight points at any point of any game since beating the Wolfpack Jan. 11. The Jackets moved the ball quickly and ran a couple of successful pick-and-rolls, which I haven’t seen a lot of.

It says something, though, that the Jackets had shot 6-for-16 when center Daniel Miller put down a dunk for the 17-9 lead, kind of a good news/bad news situation. The Jackets were playing with so much force that they took that large a lead despite not being able to shoot very well. By the end of the half, N.C. State had taken the game back and led 26-24. The Jackets had 13 offensive rebounds in the first half and had managed to turn that into six …

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Georgia Tech-N.C. State live blog

Sorry for the delay. Real quick – Nate Hicks is out, which trims coach Brian Gregory’s options at center basically in half. I assume he’ll give more minutes to Daniel Miller and hope forwards Kammeon Holsey and Julian Royal can help out.

Hicks has mono and will probably be out for a couple weeks.

Game is on ESPNU.

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Stephen Hill invited to NFL combine

Former Georgia Tech wide receiver Stephen Hill is one of 47 wide receivers who has received an invitation to the NFL scouting combine, to take place Feb. 22-28 in Indianapolis.

The NFL released the list Tuesday. Hill, the only former Tech player to make the 327-player invite list, declared himself an early-entry candidate for the draft Jan. 5. His invitation to the combine is hardly a guarantee that he’ll get drafted; annually, players who aren’t invited to the combine get drafted and players who do get invited get passed up in the draft. However, it is certainly an indication that NFL scouts see him as a draftable player.

The draft website nfldraftscout.com ranks Hill as the No. 7 wide receiver in the draft and projects him as a second-round selection. ESPN draft expert Mel Kiper Jr. said that Hill would have to impress at the combine to get into the third round.

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