Archive for March, 2012

Tevin Washington talks offseason, 2011

I spoke last week with Georgia Tech quarterback Tevin Washington. Forthwith, a summary of the first half of the interview, including updates on the offseason and a look back at 2011. Fittingly, it’s 13 items.

1. Last Friday, the team completed its last of six coaches runs workouts, in which players do a circuit of conditioning drills, each monitored by one of the coaches.

Toughest drill: Bags with secondary coach Charles Kelly. Seven tackling bags are laid out in a line, and players have to high step over them and then sprint through a cone five yards beyond the bags, then run back after the whole group (12 or 13 players) finishes.

Then they weave through the cones, sprinting forward and backpedaling, and keep going until the three-minute period ends.

“The bag drill, you’re tired because you’ve been running (the entire time). At the other stations, you get a little break in between. You might get 15 seconds or 20 before it’s your turn to go again. But in this one, you’re just …

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Tech women to meet undefeated Baylor in sweet 16

On May 19, 2003, MaChelle Joseph was promoted to head coach of the Georgia Tech women’s basketball team with grand aspirations for a team that had made two NCAA tournament appearances in school history.

“We have everything it takes to be a national power in women’s basketball,” Joseph said. “We’re obviously at the beginning stages, but we have the vision to get there, and we have all the resources.”

It has taken nine years, but Joseph provided the most credible affirmation of her plans Tuesday night. In Chapel Hill, N.C., the No. 4 seed Jackets administered a 76-64 lashing of No. 5 Georgetown in the second round of the NCAA tournament to reach their first-ever regional semifinal. Tech had earned NCAA bids in each of the past five seasons but had fallen short each time.

The Jackets won in typical Joseph fashion, pushing the tempo with pressure defense that netted them seven steals and forced 15 turnovers.

Tech took the lead with 5:48 to play in the first half on a jumper by …

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Cremins retiring from coaching

Former Georgia Tech coach Bobby Cremins announced his retirement Monday at a news conference at the College of Charleston. Cremins had coached at the school for six seasons after retiring from Tech but took a leave of absence in late January due to exhaustion.

“I had nothing,” Cremins told the Associated Press in early February. “I had no gas.”

Cremins, 64, will remain at the school as a fundraiser and consultant.

Cremins coached at Tech for 19 seasons, from 1981 to 2000, and finished his tenure as the school’s all-time winningest coach and nine NCAA tournament berths, including the Jackets’ first Final Four trip in 1990. He also led Tech to three ACC tournament titles and two regular-season titles.

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Tech women in round of 32

Greetings-

An update on the Georgia Tech women’s basketball team with a look at baseball and softball.

1. The Tech women’s basketball team beating Sacred Heart 76-50 in the opening round of the NCAA tournament. The Jackets led by as many as 30 as freshman Sydney Wallace scored a career-high 28 points on 11-of-13 shooting, including 6-for-8 from 3-point range. Wallace’s previous high was 16 and her average was 5.4 points per game.

It was the most decisive tournament win in Tech history. The team also set a school record for single-season wins with 25.

No. 4 seed Tech will play fifth-seeded Georgetown Tuesday night in Chapel Hill, N.C., for a berth in the Des Moines, Iowa, regional semifinals, which are Saturday. The Hoyas beat Fresno State 61-56 in the first round. The two teams played last year in a tournament in St. Thomas, won 67-58 by Georgetown. If you’re into common opponents, Georgetown was 3-1 against Miami, Georgia, Rutgers and Maryland. Tech was 0-6 against those …

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Tech softball takes win over Georgia

1. The Georgia Tech softball team was one-hit by Georgia Wednesday night but procured a 2-0 win over the Bulldogs at Mewborn Field.

After leading off the inning on a walk, Chelsie Thomas scored from first on a throwing error in the bottom of the sixth for Tech’s first run. Ashley Thomas, whose bunt caused the throwing error, advanced to second on the throw to the plate, and came around on two ground-outs.

Pitcher Hope Rush threw a complete-game two-hitter for her 10th win of the season.

Tech broke the No. 8 Bulldogs’ three-game winning streak in the series and earned a potentially momentum-creating win. The Jackets, picked in the preseason to win their fourth consecutive ACC regular-season title, were swept in their first ACC series last weekend by Virginia. Tech is 16-12. The Jackets play Jacksonville State Thursday night at home and has a home series against Boston College Saturday (doubleheader) and Sunday.

2. Those filling out their brackets Thursday morning might heed …

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Calvin Johnson’s payday

Detroit Lions wide receiver and former Georgia Tech star Calvin Johnson put his signature on the largest contract in NFL history, an eight-year deal potentially worth $132 million. $60 million of the deal is guaranteed. That is a lot of cheese.

Johnson had the right answer when Detroit media asked him how he’ll spend it.

“I’m smart,” he said. “I’m going to invest it.

A couple unsolicited suggestions of what Johnson can do with $60 million.

- 2,495 pounds of gold at market price. Could be melted down for an awesome weightlifting set.

- Real estate is always a solid investment play. For instance, an eight-bedroom, 9.5-bathroom, beachfront home in Maui with pool and Jacuzzi. He could buy 2 1/2 of those. Good schools, too.

- Given that his mother is an educator, Johnson must know that a sound mind is perhaps the greatest investment of all. He could endow 40 faculty chairs at Tech, provide full tuition for 6,216 in-state undergrads or endow 120 athletic scholarships.

But, if he’d …

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Charge against Rice ‘unusual’

You may have seen this in the story about Glen Rice Jr.‘’s dismissal from the basketball team, but there were some questions about the “permitting unlawful operation” charge that he received.

The charge is what it sounds like, permitting a driver to unlawfully operate a vehicle. From the Georgia Code: “It is unlawful for the owner or any other person employing or otherwise directing the driver of any vehicle to require or knowingly permit the operation of such vehicle upon a highway in any manner contrary to law.”

I spoke with Noah Pines, an Atlanta criminal defense attorney, about it. He called it “unusual” and said that in 10 years as a prosecutor and eight years as a defense attorney, he’d never come across that charge and seemed to think it will be difficult to win a conviction.

“You’d have to have some sort of proof that [Rice] knew that the driver was intoxicated and he knowingly permitted him to drive anyway,” Pines said. “If you’re not intoxicated, why would you ever …

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Tech’s Hall wins 999th and other notes

Greetings-

1. Georgia Tech baseball coach Danny Hall earned his 999th career win Tuesday night, a 15-4 victory over Wagner at Russ Chandler Stadium. Jake Davies, Sam Dove and Paul Kronenfeld hit back-to-back-to-back home runs in the first inning, the first time Tech has done that since a March 27, 2010 game against North Carolina.

In Division I history, 46 baseball coaches have won 1,000 games. Hall began the season in the top 20 among active coaches in wins.

Tech, ranked 20th in the country, will have the opportunity to give Hall his 1,000th win at home this weekend with a three-game series against Virginia Tech, starting with a Friday 6 p.m. game. The Jackets play Georgia in Athens next Tuesday.

2. Speaking of which, the softball team plays Georgia Wednesday evening at Mewborn Field at 7 p.m.

The season has not started well for the Jackets (15-12 overall). They were swept by Virginia last weekend in their opener, the first time that’s happened to the Jackets since 2008. Tech …

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Roddy Jones nominated for Wooden Cup

Former Georgia Tech football player Roddy Jones has been nominated for an award recognizing leadership, character and contribution to sport and society. Jones is one of five collegiate finalists for the Coach Wooden Citizenship Cup, named after UCLA coaching legend John Wooden. The cup will be awarded April 25 at the Fox Theatre. The other finalists are Notre Dame baseball player Tommy Chase, Yale ice hockey player Aleca Hughes, Kentucky distance runner Josh Nadzam and Miami (Ohio) ice hockey player Cody Reichard. Tennessee women’s basketball coach Pat Summitt will be the professional recipient of the Wooden Cup, given by the non-profit Athletes for a Better World, which is based in Atlanta.

The selection committee is chaired by former Georgia coach Vince Dooley.

Past winners include Dikembe Mutombo, Cal Ripken Jr., Tim Tebow, Peyton Manning and John Smoltz.

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Glen Rice Jr. dismissed from Tech

Glen Rice Jr‘.s often stormy basketball career at Georgia Tech is over. Coach Brian Gregory dismissed him from the team less than a week after the season ended and a day after a report of a criminal charge against him surfaced.

”There are certain standards that have to be met both on and off the court, and there has to be accountability when those standards aren’t met,” Gregory said in a statement. ”I’m disappointed that we have to take this action.”

The action does not come as a surprise. Rice began the season, Gregory’s first, suspended for the first three games and then finished the season suspended for the final six games. Rice can complete the semester at Tech and may transfer after that. He has one year of eligibility remaining, but would have to sit out a year if he were to transfer to another Division I school.

Rice came to Tech from Walton High, part of a highly-regarded signing class that also included Derrick Favors, Mfon Udofia, Kammeon Holsey, Daniel Miller

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