Saturday, July 31, 2004

Recruiting - Hoops

Reports from insiders (premium) are that CJ Miles has narrowed his list down to Kansas, GT and Arizona. In another article, Kevin Rogers has indicated that Kansas is in the lead for him and that the same is most likely true of Miles. Both guys have become fast-friends and are looking to play at the same school. Coach Hewitt has been recruiting Miles personally and racking up the frequent flier miles doing so.

But once again, Kansas seems to be at the top of the list.

By the way, all of the info. shared here was found on public discussion boards, not from the premium articles. I wouldn't share it otherwise, out of respect.

New Recruiting Rule in Effect

Starting Monday, FEDEX will start losing a lot of business. No more overnight packages to recruits - only standard mail. The rule was sponsored by the ACC. Story here. Interesting comments on the recruitment of Chris Bosh.

Dean Keener, James Madison University's new men's basketball coach, can attest to that.

As an assistant to Paul Hewitt at Georgia Tech, Keener led the Yellow Jackets' pursuit of Chris Bosh. From the start of Bosh's junior year at Dallas' Lincoln High to the day in November 2001 when he signed a letter of intent to play for the Jackets, he received a piece of express mail from Keener every day of the week but Sunday - more than 375 envelopes in all.

Bosh's was an exceptional case. Still, Keener said, the new rule makes sense.

"It's like a lot of things in college basketball: You do it because you feel like you have to keep up with the Joneses," Keener said.

Where are they now?

Brief mention of Lewis - link here.

Napolean Calzado was hitting .357 through Friday and held a commanding lead in the Class AA league over Richard Lewis, the former Braves prospect out of Georgia Tech, who was hitting .322 for West Tennessee

Nice story on Tony from the AP - link here.
The Rams already like Hargrove's high-energy approach. He's confident, modeling his playing style on a combination of Jevon Kearse and Warren Sapp. "I try to play with Sapp's tenacity and meanness, but also be a skill and finesse player like Kearse, but still with the bull rush, and play the run real well," Hargrove said. Of course, there's plenty of hunger after his airport job. He knows it's easier pushing Grant Williams, the stand-in starter at left tackle until holdout Orlando Pace signs, than a Delta 88. "I knew I wanted to be back on the field," Hargrove said. "I knew that wasn't my life, working a 9-to-5. "And I knew I'd do whatever it took."
Here's another story mentioning Hargrove:
Last year, the Rams also had veteran defensive end Grant Wistrom anchoring the other side of the line. But Wistrom has left for Seattle, so the Rams are looking at replacement candidates to complement Little. One is 6-foot-3, 270-pound rookie Tony Hargrove, the Rams' third-round draft pick out of Georgia Tech.

"He's in a good position," Little said. "He has all the tools to be a great player, and you know (defensive line coach Bill) Kollar's going to keep working with him until he becomes that player. In a matter of time, he will be that player that everyone expects him to be.

"We've got three guys who are real, real good, with Tony the rookie, Bryce (Fisher) and Erik Flowers. We've got to see which one will fit into each situation that they're given, but I'm pretty sure we'll have someone over there to make some plays and do the things that we need to do to make the defense good."

Mention of Nickeas again with Spokane in the minors. He continues to tear it up:
Spokane catcher Mike Nickeas continued to make a case that he should be the league's most valuable player when he opened the evening with a three-run home run in the top of the first inning. Nickeas, a fifth-round draft pick from Georgia Tech, is now tied for fourth in the league with eight home runs and he ranks fifth in the league with a .336 batting average and sixth with 30 RBIs.

From the - link here.
Wild but winning:
Jason Neighborgall's velocity has kept batters off-balance in his short time with the SwampDogs. Through three starts, the hard-throwing Georgia Tech sophomore has given up only two hits in 15 innings and recorded 18 strikeouts. Neighborgall has, however, issued 26 walks, hit six batters and thrown 12 wild pitches.

Despite his control problems, Neighborgall is 1-0 and the SwampDogs have won all three of his starts. Moore said Neighborgall's control will only improve with more experience on the mound. ''He needs some opportunities and that's what I'm trying to give him," Moore said. Moore also said that Neighborgall has been working on flaws in his technique. ''He told me tonight something I couldn't see him doing," Moore said after Fayetteville's 10-5 win over Wilson on Thursday. ''He's been throwing across his body and his arm moves so fast that he overcompensates and throws it down and away a lot. Then when he pulls back a little he's up and in."

Nomar and Murton traded to the Cubs

After a few years of on-again, off-again trade rumors with our man Nomar Garciaparra, it has finally happened. Story here. In a 4-player blockbuster, Nomar heads to the Cubs. Here's the deal:

Cubs get Nomar Garciaparra and Matt Murton (in the minors) from the Red Sox

Red Sox get Orlando Cabrera from the Expos and Doug Mientkiewicz from the Twins

Expos get Alex Gonzalez from the Marlins, pitcher Francis Beltran from the Cubs, and Brendan Harris from the Cubs.

Twins get minor league pitcher Justin Jones

So a big trade to say the least. Sounds like the Cubs got some firepower. Murton, a GT grad, has been pegged one of the RedSox top 10 prospects and is hitting the ball well in the minor leagues.

Football Notes

Notes from the AJC - link here.

- Players report: Wednesday.

• Practice begins: Thursday.

• Fan photo day: Aug. 15, 1 p.m.-3 p.m.

Coaches Poll...

... with a few more comments on each team from ESPN - link here.

Friday, July 30, 2004

ESPN / USAToday Coaches Poll

The 1st pre-season coaches poll is out. GT comes in at #36 with 25 votes. Here are how the ACC teams stacked up:

30...NC ST
36...Georgia Tech
47...Boston College

Here's the full list, along the complete list of coaches who vote (Coach Gailey is not one of them).

Overall, we are probably in the right range. I would peg GT somewhere between 25-40. However, why on earth does everyone continuet to feel NC ST is better when we own them?

Ranking Special Teams

Well, one area the pundits think we are in poor shape is special teams. This guys ranks us dead last in the ACC - link here.

11. Georgia Tech – The Jackets really struggled on special teams last year, especially in the punting game. The Jackets were 105th in the country in net punting, mostly due to failures of the punters. Someone needs to step up here. Jonathan Smith led the ACC in punt return average in 2003, but has since graduated. WR Nate Curry is one of several possible replacements for Smith. Tech was in the bottom third of the league in kick returns, though Kenny Scott is bound to improve his performance from a year ago. The Jackets will also need to find a replacement for departed kicker Dan Burnett. Incoming freshman Kyle Belcher might be the best the Jackets have at both kicking spots.

A little misleading. We struggled with the punting game and kick-off coverage last season. I seriously doubt we will have the worst unit in the ACC. We don't have a poor special teams. What we have is uncertainty. Will someone step up to kick field goals - we always seem to have someone get the job done well. Will someone step up the punting game? Will someone step into J.Smith's shoes on punt returns? Will Kenny Scott up his kick-off return production? Many of these things could happen. There are just not any known quantities right now.. Who knew last season that D.Burnett would be one of the best FG kickers in the ACC, but he was. Just have to give this one time.

Recruiting - Hoops

Stories from a Kansas AAU tourney, with mention of CJ Miles / Kevin Rogers. By the way, it appears that Rogers is leaning towards Kansas right now and is hinting that CJ seems to be also. Coach Hewitt is the only coach recruiting Miles and is not letting up. But what on earth is going on in Kansas? What is Bill Self putting in the "water" during visits? Because everyone seems to want to be there.

A Hot Commodity

The Dallas natives are ranked among the top 40 players in the country by and want to play basketball at the same college. Both list Kansas, Illinois, Arizona, Georgia Tech, North Carolina, Oklahoma and Texas among the schools they are considering. Rogers said Kansas was in his top two right now, while Miles lists Kansas among his top three choices.

Texans Draw Crowd
There are only a select few coaches whose presence matter to Miles, however. Kansas, Texas, Georgia Tech, Arizona and North Carolina are the five schools on his list of college choices. The list is the same for Rogers, and the pair plan to attend the same school. Both are ranked among the top-40 prospects in the nation by

"People agreed to take us as a package deal, so why not go if we like the same school?" Miles said.

Rogers told the Journal-World that Kansas and Arizona are the front-runners to obtain their talent.

Panning for PG Prospects
The importance of employing a capable point guard can be gauged by measuring the gap last season between Georgia Tech and Michigan State. Those schools were the final choices for Jarrett Jack when he was recruited three years ago. Tech got him and two years later surged toward the top of the ACC and into the NCAA championship game. Without him, the Spartans struggled to create a consistent offensive flow, received only a No. 7 NCAA Tournament seed and lost an opening-round game to Nevada.
As mentioned before, the article points out that GT is out of the running for PG Byron Eaton.

Where are they now

Jason Varitek and Nomar Garciaparra will be added to the GT Hall-of-Fame. Track stars Derek Mills and Natasha Alleyne-Gibson will also be added.......... By the way, Varitek got a 4-game suspension for his altercation with A-Rod. A-Rod also got cut for 4 games, along with a $2000 fine. I'm sorry... WHAT??? That's like you or I getting a speeding ticket and being fined a nickel.

Daryl Smith signs a 4-year deal with the Jags:

Smith, 22, was the 39th overall selection in the draft. The 6-2, 234-pound linebacker started 44 of his 46 career games at Georgia Tech with 383 tackles (207 solo), 48 tackles for a loss, 15 sacks, three interceptions and three forced fumbles. The Albany, Ga. native earned All-Conference honorable mention honors as a senior and was the second-highest linebacker drafted by the Jaguars.

Jay Payton:
Another name to keep in mind is Padres outfielder Jay Payton (.242, four homers, 38 RBI), who played at Georgia Tech with Garciaparra and Jason Varitek and remains Garciaparra’s best friend in baseball. However, Payton and his .306 on-base percentage aren’t good fits for the Sox’ organizational beliefs

The Fridge:
On the fraternity that is ACC coaching.

Wes Durham:
The voice of the Jackets will be moonlighting int he fall. Wes Durham has accepted the job as the radio play-by-play announcer for the ATL Falcons - link here.

Mike Nickeas:
Catcher Michael Nickeas is trying to hit his way out of the Northwest League, much like Thomas Diamond pitched his way out.

Here's the catch: For now, the Rangers like having Nickeas where he is.

They like that Spokane manager Darryl Kennedy is a former catcher. They think that facing the quality pitching in the Northwest League won't hurt this year's fifth-round draft pick, even if his numbers suggest he's ready to join Diamond at Clinton, Iowa, in the higher Class A Midwest League.

"Right now, we like where he is," said John Lombardo, the Rangers' director of minor league operations. "Mike won't suffer from spending more time there."

His numbers certainly suggest that. Nickeas had a 13-game hitting streak earlier this month. He has hit .336 with seven home runs and 27 RBIs since the Northwest League season started in mid-June.

Nickeas gets a strong endorsement from Rangers first baseman Mark Teixeira, a fellow Georgia Tech product who followed the catcher's college career along with that of outfielder Brandon Boggs, the Rangers' fourth-round draft pick.

Boggs, also from Georgia Tech, has struggled in Spokane, batting .213 in 89 at-bats through Thursday.

Nickeas, who got a $200,000 signing bonus, is considered to be a hitting talent with a good feel for working with pitchers. He was scouted thoroughly by Ron Hopkins, the organization's new director of scouting.

"We had a good feel for this guy," Lombardo said. "Ron and his staff stayed on Mike all the way."

Thursday, July 29, 2004

UConn football

We will play these guys this season, so I thought this article would be worth the read for GT fans.

Recruiting - Hoops

Story on Brandon Costner who has UNC and UConn as front-runners but GT is on the short list.

Here is an article on an AAU tourney in Kansas, where our own Coach Hewitt was there to watch primarily CJ Miles, even though the article tries to make it sound like he was there to watch Tyler Hansbrough.

Some Kansas fans arrived early to check out another intriguing tournament pairing when Team Texas squared off with the Springfield (Mo.) Heat. Team Texas features KU recruits C.J. Miles and Kevin Rogers.

The Dallas natives are ranked among the top 40 players in the country by and want to play basketball at the same college. Both list Kansas, Illinois, Arizona, Georgia Tech, North Carolina, Oklahoma and Texas among the schools they are considering. Rogers said Kansas was in his top two right now, while Miles lists Kansas among his top three choices.

See Jason Collier in person... the Walmart in Lithonia GA Saturday July 31. No kidding - I had a dream that he would be going there to buy toilet paper that Saturday from 12:00 - 1:00. Then I get online and run across this - link here.

Grand-am racing

Story mentioning teams for the Georgia Tech Pontiac/Crawford #39 car - link here.

Also attending the Crawford test was the Silverstone Racing team, with Chris Hall and Larry Huang sorting out their No. 39 Georgia Tech Pontiac/Crawford.

For the Silverstone Racing team, admittedly one of the less well-funded outfits in the Rolex Series, the rapid growth of the series has been more than they expected.

"When we went to Daytona at the start of the season," said Chris Hall, "We were right up there with everybody else in terms of lap times. Now, with all these new cars, the level of competition has increased dramatically and the top teams are doing constant development that we simply cannot afford. For example, the Crawford chassis that we're driving is four or five developmental steps behind the car that Andy Wallace is driving. That's one of the reasons we came here with the Crawford team, to get some help from them in terms of updates. They've been great to work with."
Sounds like they need to start charging more for a parking pass.

Where are they now - Nat Dorsey / Tony Hargrove

Nat reaches terms with the Vikings with a 3-year deal - link here........ Here's mention of Dorsey and his prospects for playing this season:

Dorsey, the team’s fourth-round pick out of Georgia Tech, has the size and athleticism to play left tackle. He needs a year to increase strength. If Rosenthal leaves, look for Dorsey to step in at RT.
Meanwhile, nice mention on Tony Hargrove in this article about the Ram's defense heading into the pre-season.
Perhaps the most intriguing prospect of the group is rookie Anthony Hargrove. Hargrove has been one of the camp’s early standouts, showing a quick burst and enough strength to pound against the run.

After missing his final season at Georgia Tech because of academic problems, Hargrove took a job at Hartsfield Airport as a “plane pusher,” helping Delta move planes in and out and riding alongside the planes to make sure the wings don’t hit anything.

Hargrove said he didn’t like having to wear the uniform Delta gave him because it was too small. That was the least of his worries there, however.

“I was always thinking NFL,” Hargrove said. “Working 9 to 5 behind a desk, I couldn’t do it. I knew this was where I wanted to be and I had to do whatever it took to get here.”

3 Year Program Rankings

Interesting list from, looking at criteria such as wins/losses, grad rates, attendence, players drafted, conference records, and more to rank every div 1A program. GT comes in at #36 using their scoring system. Here is what they said about GT:

36. Georgia Tech ... Score: 52.79
2003 Ranking: 23
Program Analysis: You always know what you're getting with Georgia Tech; a winning season, a decent bowl game, a few great performances, and a middle of the pack ACC finish. Things are going to be more difficult in the new ACC world, but the Yellow Jackets should hold their own. A key will be to avoid the Bad Losses after losing to BYU and Duke last year.

Attendance Score: 4.59 Graduation Score: 5.7
Quality Wins from 2001-2003: 11
Total D-I Wins from 2001-2003: 21
Players Drafted Score from 2001-2003: 3.0
Conference Winning % Score from 2001-2003: 5.0
Elite Win Score: 4.5 Bad Losses: 2

By the way, notice the graduation rates from 2003. GT's team had a 57% grad rate by these numbers, very much in line with the overall student body, unless something has changed in recent years.

Here's how all the ACC teams fared in their overall scores:

1 Miami 94.33
9 Florida St 76.41
13 Maryland 69.40
20 Va Tech 61.17
25 Clemson 56.86
31 NC State 54.37
33 Virginia 53.67
36 Ga Tech 52.79
57 W Forest 40.50
69 No Carolina 33.40
105 Duke 12.19

Time to Play.....

... "Skew the Poll". Go to the bottom left of this page, and vote for the ACC as the best football conference. We are behind, but let's make is closer.

YellowJackets in the NFL

Nice re-cap of all the Jackets in the NFL - link here.

Player, NFL Yr., Current Team
Keith Brooking 7th Atlanta Falcons
Joe Burns 3rd Buffalo Bills
Kelly Campbell 3rd Minnesota Vikings
Felipe Claybrooks 3rd Cleveland Browns
Marco Coleman 13th Denver Broncos
Nick Ferguson 9th Denver Broncos
Lethon Flowers 10th Unsigned
Joe Hamilton 4th Indianapolis Colts
Will Heller 2nd Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Tony Hollings 2nd Houston Texans
Dorsey Levens 11th Unsigned
Charlie Rogers 6th Miami Dolphins
Nick Rogers 3rd Minnesota Vikings
Travares Tillman 5th Carolina Panthers
Dez White 5th Atlanta Falcons
Rodney Williams 3rd Kansas City Chiefs
Chris Young 3rd Denver Broncos

Jonathan Cox (FA) San Diego Chargers
Nat Dorsey Minnesota Vikings
John Paul Foschi (FA) New York Jets
Keyaron Fox Kansas City Chiefs
Tony Hargrove St. Louis Rams
Hugh Reilly (FA) Tennessee Titans
Daryl Smith Jacksonville Jaguars
Jonathan Smith Buffalo Bills

It's official - Josh Holliday joins beesball staff

Story here. Looks like he has some serious baseball background and credentials. We will see how much of a recruiter he is, but on the surface, looks like a good hire by Coach Hall.

Cutting Coach K and Duke to SHREDS

Wow, Royce Webb over at ESPN "Page 2" absolutely trashes Duke and their players, and I have to admit........ I LOVED IT!!! Ok, maybe he went over the top a bit, but I would bet you won't see a one-on-one special "Webb / Coach K" interview in the near future.

It makes me wonder, though -- what was Coach K teaching when he schooled the Lakers and his own university? As Jason Whitlock said on Page 2, "[A] little public flirting with the Lakers is the easiest way to modify your 'lifetime' contract, the one Krzyzewski signed in 2001." You mean that wasn't a sincere flirtation with the Lakers?

Whatever Krzyzewski was teaching at Duke, Carlos Boozer was taking notes. He just screwed the Cleveland Cavaliers into the ground so hard they'll need a bulldozer to dig out.

He goes on to trash Jay Williams, Danny Ferry, Christian Laettner and Grant Hill.

If that is not interesting enough, check out this page 2 article on the profession of coaching and how they are controlling, ego-driven puppet-masters. Here's a taste:
Third, fans romanticize managers and coaches because they seem to be the powerful, loving, forgiving dads they never had -- not driven puppet-masters. When I asked Tom Osborne why he kept giving the likes of Lawrence Phillips and Christian Peter chance after chance to return to the Nebraska line-up after sexual assaults, he asked me if I would rather have them running loose in my neighborhood or under his control. That must have been the right answer, because he soon became a congressman.

Craziness in Recruiting

This absolutely pisses me off - story here. Can you believe that some high school kids are actually being advised to fail classes in high school so they can fit through a loophole in the NCAA legislation and get them into college with subpar test scores. Read the article for details, but check this out:

Andrey Jones's mother, Shannon, said she was advised by Boston College assistant coach Keith Willis and the coach at the Connecticut prep school at which Jones eventually would enroll that it would be in her son's best interest not to graduate from high school. Andre Jones said he intentionally failed English during the second semester of his senior year to not meet graduation requirements.

Now here's what ticks me off. Forget that the NCAA is a beauracratic nightmare. Put that aside. I am ticked that there are coaches that would actually advise a kid to fail a class. Think about that for a minute. That is just sleazy and unscrupulous. I don't care if the NCAA is a bunch of dolts with rules that have loopholes. This looks like something that has never been brought to the attention of the NCAA. Look at this quote:
"Given the situation the way it is, it forces people . . . to do some things that I personally don't think are the right things to do, but they may be the right things to do for the kid," said George Washington University Athletic Director Jack Kvancz.
Sorry for this, but that is complete and utter bullshit. The right thing for the kids is to bring this to the attention of the NCAA and lobby for change. Nobody says they have even thought about this option.

You know, I look at my "rap-sheet" for the month of July (I have now added an arrest for Nick-Caner Medley of MD, in case you missed it) and I look at the repeated scandals and I wonder why I have not lost my faith in sports. At the end of the day, it is the draw of the game. The elegance of the game played well is the difference. Everything that surrounds it is noise. That goes for football and baseball as well. That's why baseball will always survive greedy players striking because $20 million / year is not enough. The game itself is the draw. Players come and go but the game itself remains. It's the game I tell you.

Recruiting - Hoops

RSCI has just released their final 2004 player rankings, which are a compilation score using the rankings of the other experts, including:

PS = Prepstars
HS = Hoopscoop
RC = Rivals Hoops
VC = Van Coleman (legend says FS)
DT = Dave Telep

There is a combined score based on the individual rankings in each of these lists. Here are the final spots for our 4 incoming recruits and where they finished:

Ra'Sean Dickey
#51....RSCI (was #47)
#77....Van Coleman
#49....Dave Telep

Jeremis Smith
#74....RSCI (was #76)
#55....Van Coleman
#93....Dave Telep

Zam "Buck" Fredrick
#85....RSCI (was not on the list before)
#95....Van Coleman
#90....Dave Telep

Anthony Morrow
#91....RSCI (was not on the list before)
#60....Van Coleman
#89....Dave Telep

From a team standpoint, Texas gets back to #1 after Lamarcus Aldridge decide to go to college, with UK in at #2, then Kansas, UCLA and Indiana and UConn. All familiar names. GT comes in at #18 as a team. Interesting to note that no ACC team was in the top 10, although UNC, FSU, NCST, Duke, GT are all in 12-18. Of course the ACC has huge numbers of returning players this season.

Now, what do all these rankings mean? Honestly - NOTHING!! Here's what I get from them. GT successfully battled for national top 100 talent and got a group of guys with high potential who will probably contribute for at least 3-4 years each. Is Ra'Sean Dickey the #51 average recruit in the country? Nobody knows nor should really care. The point is that he is recognized to have high potential and Coach Hewitt saw in him the ability to fit into the GT system, saw in him the qualities of a person who can handle the GT lifestyle and saw a guy who can represent the school with class and pride.

In my mind, Coach Hewitt has built a class that should form the foundation for the next number of years, particularly after this season when our mass exodus occurs. With the base solid, he can go after a top 10 guy that would not kill the program if he left early. He's done it already - look what happened after Bosh and Nelson left.

Coach Hewitt is hot on the 2005 class with a lot of big names in play. We already have a committment from Alade Aminu, who is rising rapidly in these rankings. We will learn a lot more about how the rest of this class shapes in the coming months, but there are some huge opportunities for some young players to come in and make an impact after this season is over.

In case you are curious about how our previous classes stacked up, here you go. This only includes players that made the RSCI top 100:

1998 (RSCI)
#56...Tony Akins

none on list

#61...Marvin Lewis

#49...Ed Nelson
#72...Anthony Vasser (A.McHenry)
#74...Isma'il Muhammed
#97...BJ Elder

#5....Chris Bosh
#46...Jarrett Jack

none on list

What it shows is that 2001 was the year that formed the base for building future years. Look at the contributions from those guys and all but Nelson will be a GT for their senior season. I see a similar patter in this class, although how much upside the new class has versus that class is completely up to them.

Interesting stuff.

Interesting TeamRankings

From Mike Greenfield - link here. Lots of interesting stuff here if you check out the links.

Football Practice Schedule

Thanks to Buzzfan at the Hive for posting this:

Preseason Practice Schedule
(Subject to Change)
Thursday, Aug. 5 4:30-6:30 p.m.
Friday, Aug. 6 4:30-6:30 p.m.
Saturday, Aug. 7 4:30-7 p.m.
Sunday, Aug. 8 4:30-7 p.m.
Monday, Aug. 9 4:30-6:30 p.m.
Tuesday, Aug. 10 9:30-11:30 a.m. and 5:30-7:30 p.m.
Wednesday, Aug. 11 4:15-6:30 p.m.
Thursday, Aug. 12 9:30-11:30 a.m. and 5:30-7:30 p.m.
Friday, Aug. 13 4:15-6:30 p.m.
Saturday, Aug. 14 11:30-1:30 p.m.
Sunday, Aug. 15 FAN PHOTO DAY, 1-3 p.m.
Monday, Aug. 16 Classes Begin, Practice 7:45-9:15 p.m.

Future Football Schedule

Interesting site (courtesy of someone at the Hive), with known games in football through 2009. Not shown on here are games with Army (re-uniting us with our old friend Bobby Ross).

Where are they now - Dez White / Keith Brooking

Mention at this site from Falcons Camp and notes on both those guys.
On Keith Brooking:

4. Falcons fans shouldn't lose any sleep over linebacker Keith Brooking's switch from the inside to the weakside slot in Atlanta's move to a 4-3 defensive formation. With Brooking's speed, he's tailor-made for the weakside "chase" position. Brooking played weakside linebacker his first two years in the league before moving inside in 2000. "I love the move, I really do," Brooking said. "It's going to allow me to run to the ball a little more, and I think that's my strength, my speed."

Later, on Dez White:
You heard it here first: Take a late-round flyer on fifth-year receiver Dez White. Signed as an unrestricted free agent after four years of decent-but-never-great production in Chicago, the former Georgia Tech standout has created some buzz this offseason among Falcons decision makers. Preview - #10 - UNC

Day 2 of the ACC preview, this time focusing on North Carolina. Link here. No doubt they have a high caliber offense. It's going to all come down to defense for UNC. Will they decide to field one? If so, they could rattle some cages.

The Rap Sheet - College Sports (updated)

Not that I like doing this, but I have started a rap sheet for college sports - and the more I started looking for stories, the more disgusted I got. Is college athletics representative of society as a whole? Are these incidents no more common, but just more highly reported? I don't know, but the state of college athletics and ethics is clearly way out of whack. To be able to come up with a list of items in such a short period of time is shameful.

I plan on keeping this list updated and bringing this post back to the top on a regular basis.

8-19-2004, Connecticut assistant men's coach Clyde Vaughan was among more than a dozen people arrested in a prostitution sting run by Hartford police. Story here.

8-19-2004, USC RB Hershal Dennis has been suspended "indefinitely" for "disciplinary reasons". Bigtime potential problems stemming from a late night party and sexual assault charges. No charges have been filed yet. Story here.

8-19-2004, a police detective testifies at the Colorado sex-scandal case. Link here.

8-18-2004, LSU DE Melvin Oliver pleaded not guilty to simple battery charges and theft. Link here.

8-17-2004, British sprinter Dwain Chambers tested positive for THG and was not allowed to compete in the Olympics. But evidently he is ok to play football for Chabot Junior College. Link here.

8-17-2004, a USC player is under investigation for sexual assault. Link here.

8-17-2004, FORMER Colorado football player Damon Dickey was arrested for parole violation. Link here.

8-15-2004, Nicholls State head football coach Daryl Daye was fired due to academic fraud. Story here.

8-13-2004, Ohio State football player Ira Guilford pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor assault charge. He faces up to 6 months in jail and a $1,000 fine. Story here.

8-13-2004, Cleveland State hoops program is under investigation by the NCAA for possible rules violations. Story here.

8-12-2004, the Missouri hoops team had a hearing before the NCAA infractions committee on alleged rules violations. Link here.

8-11-2004, FORMER Nevada football player Rodney Landingham was indicted after he admitted he robbing 2 Reno banks. Story here.

8-10-2004, S.Illinois guard Stetson Hairston was suspended indefinitely after being charged with felony trespassing, mob action and misdemeanor battery. Michael Dale was also suspended for the first 3 games of the season. Story here.

8-8-2004, Nevada coach Chris Ault is shocked over the 9 football players in his program that have been arrested for felony charges in the past 1.5 years. The latest was Rodney Landingham, for robbing 3 Reno banks. Don't forget the July arrests of Brenton Kendrick and Steven Murphy on multiple drug charges. Story here.

8-7-2004, Texas RB Cedric Benson avoids jail time due to prison overcrowding. He was arrested for trespassing after kicking down an apt. door in an attempt to get a TV back he says was stolen. Link here.

8-6-2004, Miss. RB Jamal Pittman was suspended for at least 6 games and LB Ken Bournes was booted from the team. They pleaded guilty to misdemeanors in a gun possesion case. Story here.

8-5-2004, University of Georgia was put on probation for 4 years and loses a scholarship for 3 for major academic and monetary violations. UGA is considered a repeat offender since they were found guilty of major violations within the past 5 years. Story here.

8-4-2004, Colorado sex assault officials are resigning over frustrations in how the sex scandal case has been handled on campus.

8-4-2004, Texas senior hoops player Jason Klotz has been charged with a misdemeanor assault after allegedly striking his girlfriend - story here.

8-4-2004, Marcus Vick was kicked off the team for the 2004 season and has now pleaded guilty to reckless driving and no contest to dope possesion.

8-3-2004, Kent State QB Joshua Cribbs was sentenced to 5 years probation for marajuana possesion - story here.. He was originally charged with trafficking, which was reduced. The grand punishment - he will miss one game. By the way, did I mention that Cribbs is Kent State's record holder for total offense in a season and career?

8-2-2004, UCLA WR Idris Moss was dismissed from the team for undisclosed multiple violations of team policy. Story here.

8-2-2004, Antrel Rolle was reinstated to the team after the assistant state attorney decided not to pursue charges, citing his lack of previous record and "post-arrest contrition", whatever that means. Do you think it mattered that Rolle's dad is chief of police in a neighboring town??? HHHhhhmmmm???

8-2-2004, Matt Sinclair and Ryan Matha, Illinois football players were charged Monday with aggravated battery stemming from a weekend bar fight. Story here.

7-30-2004, AZ St football player Conner Banks pleaded guilty to extreme drunken driving - story here. He was 3 times the legal limit. One word - idiot. Interestingly, he was stripped of his number - 42 - which happens to have been Pat Tillman's number, which they will now retire.

7-30-2004, incoming freshman Virginia recruit Ahmad Bradshaw was cut from the team, for undisclosed reasons. Probably had something to do with his arrest for obstruction of justice and underage drinking. Evidently this may not be all in Bradshaw's past - story here. Hey, Al Groh, where is your giving spirit. Why can't you have more heart, like Larry Coker. I mean he manages to look past 11 arrests in 5 years. Surely this kid hasn't been jailed that much. Where is your giving spirit. Just another example of why Miami is #1 a football school - and don't forget it.

7-29-2004, Marcus Douthit, who the Lakers just drafted from Providence, was charged Thursday with taking part in an identity theft and embezzlement insurance scam. Nice way to throw away a career - just as he was about to sign a deal with the Lakers.

7-29-2004, FSU's Bobby Meeks was reinstated to the team after felony charges were dropped stemming from a scuffle at a nightclub. He ended up with only misdemeanor charges with a year's probation.

7-28-2004, Nick-Caner Medley, a Maryland hoops standout, is arrested in Maine on a misdemeanor count of disorderly conduct in a nightclub........

7-28-2004, on a non-related but related note, FORMER Maryland player Lonnie Baxter could be charged with something like an unlawful discharge of a weapon in his home - story here..... Thank goodness he wasn't partying with Medley that night.

7-27-2004, link here, ex-Lasalle head coach Billy Hahn, while admitting that he took no action when a women approached him with allegations of a sexual assault by one of his players, denies he discouraged her from going to the police. He says she told him she just wanted it to go away, so therefore he did nothing. Hhhhmmm. Do you think she would have TOLD you about if she didn't want it brought up? Maybe she wanted you to take the lead and handle the situation by bringing the truth to light and making your player face the allegations. Naaaah.

7-26-2004, Tenn Vols coach Phillip Fulmer is being accused of conspring with the NCAA to bring down the Alabama football program. As a result, Fulmer decides not to attend the media circus that is the SEC media day for fear of a media circus.

7-26-2004, former Penn St. WR Maurice Humphrey, 20 years old, will not go to jail for assaulting his girlfriend. Luckily fracturing her jaw is only "simple assault".

7-21-2004, Florida LB Taureen Charles remained in jail after he was arrested for aggrevated battery. This is the 2nd time in a year he has been arrested - last time was for simple battery. Evidently he is getting more complex in his felonies. Story here. What is funny to me in the story is that for his first arrest, he served one YEAR probation, had to go to anger management courses, yet he only missed one game. Whatever.

7-20-2004, Florida football playes Channing Crowder and Jarvis Herring will serve a one-game suspension over an off-the-field incident over the summer - story here.

7-20-2004, maybe not fair to include this, but FORMER Nebraska RB Thunder Collins was arrested on warrents stemming from burglary and assault charges. Not in college any longer so maybe not fair to include, but I will anyhow. Link here.

7-20-2004, Tennesse WR James Banks reinstated to the team after a suspension over a verbal altercation with a female at the student center over the summer. Last Fri he was also issued citations for underage alcohal consumption and voilating the city noise ordinance. He will ultimately miss 3 games due to the suspension. Story here........ This article speaks to what local fans and media are saying, which is "how many chances does this guy get?", and that he got a slap on the wrist.

7-19-2004, Miss RB Jamal Pittman and LB Ken Bournes were suspended "indefinitely" from the team following a weekend arrest for something along the lines of "reckless endangerment with a deadly weapon" and "resisting official detention". Story here......... Updated link.

7-16-2004, update, police testify in the CU case that athletes were treated better than regular students, duhh. The steriod abusers at Air Force will be court-marshalled......Miami suspends stud Antrel Rolle "indefinitely after battery charges filed. We have yet to find out if "suspended" means he'll miss the opener against FSU....... BYU players appear in court over assualt and robbery charges...... This guy who shot a MidWestern St. U football player turned himself in...... Ok.ST. OL Adam Gourley was suspended "indefinitely" from the team for assualt charges.

7-16-2004, U Louisiana Lafayette head coach Glynn Cyprien was fired for lying on his resume. Poor George O'Leary can't get through one of these stories without mention.

7-15-2004, a judge delays the trial of a former Baylor U hoops player charged with murder of his ex-teammate. Story on Carlton Dotson here.

7-15-2004, Bob Huggins re-instated as coach after drunken driving charges - link here.

7-13-2004, BYU players Marcus Whalen and Breyon Jones appear in court on charges alleging they assaulted and robbed an acquaintance. Link here. Starting junior middle linebacker Devon Davis and freshmen defensive linemen Curtis Chance and Dorrean James were arrested in Ybor City, Fla.

7-12-2004, 3 USF players arrested for possesion of marajuana. link here.

7-12-2004, Maimi CB Antrel Rolle charged with felony count of battery on a police officer with 2 misdemeanors, including resisting an officer without violence and disorderly conduct. This from a guy who would have probably been a 1st round pick in the NFL had he left school. Link here.

7-12-2004, Clemson DL Chris McDuffie gets arrested on drug charges. story here.

7-11-2004, FSU starting OL Bobby Meeks, charged with battery, resisting arrest w/violence. Had to use pepper spray and stun guns outside a night club. Link here.

7-10-2004 UVA's leading WR will be out for the season. Some academic problems combined with a little assualt-and-battery is not a good combination. Story here

7-9-2004, Oklahoma OL Adam Gourley suspended indefinitely after an arrest for assault with a dangerous weapon. Link here. Update here.

7-9-2004, LaSalle hoops player Gary Neal and Michael Cleaves arrested for an alleged sexual assault against a member of the women's team. Coaches for both the mens and womens teams have been suspended. Link here.

7-8-2004, Cincinatte head coach Bob Huggins arrested for drunken driving. Link here.

7-8-2004, Villinova men's hoops team placed on 2-year probation for violations. Link here.

7-8-2004, Air Force players Matt Ward and Overton Spence charged with using steroids and suspended from the team. Link here.

7-8-2004, Florida A&M stripped of 2 football titles and 9 other championships for 196 NCAA rule voilations. Link here.

7-6-2004, Miami's highly touted recruit Willie Williams placed on probation for 3 years for what - violating probation!! What a concept. This is a kid who has been arrested 10 times in 5 years. The new charges stem from multiple incidents on his official visit to UofFL, where he set off fire extinguishers, fondled a co-ed and punched out a guy at a nightclub. Miami is trying to play the role of saint by trying to convince everyone that they are just trying to give a kid a chance to have a better life. No doubt if he wasn't the #2 ranked high school player IN THE COUNTRY he probably wouldn't get this consideration. The only difference now is that they are not waiting until players cause trouble while they are students - they are recruiting the ones that are already hardened criminals..... What the judges say. By the way... the judge is a U of Miami graduate - no kidding.

7-6-2004, Memphis football players Derron Parquet, 22, and LaVale Washington, 21 were charged with arson for burning a sport utility vehicle - link here.

7-6-2004, FIU player Everett Baker pistol-whipped another student during an on-campus robbery attempt, then shot at them when they tried to get away. Baker is being charged with attempted murder, 2 counts of armed robbery, possesion of a weapon on school grounds, and 2 counts of aggrevated assault with a deadly weapon. Two other players, Randy Arnold and Daimos DeMerritt were also charged with 6 felonies. Link here.

7-2-2004, VaTech's Marcus Vick arrested for reckless driving and possesion of marajuana, then suspended from the team. This is the same guy who was arrested 6 months ago for 3 misdemeanors revolving around a drinking party with three underage girls.... Story on poor way the school handled the situation....... How about this quote from - "The Hokies have put Vick on "indefinite suspension," which is big-time program code for "he's out until we have a big conference game."

7-2-2004, Florida A&M player Paul Johnson arrested for DUI after police found him passed out in a car. Link here

7-2-2004, More than half a dozen Colorado football players appear in court in front of a grand jury investigating a major recruiting scandal that includes trips to strip clubs, allegations of rape, financial impropriety, illegal recruiting tactics and so much more. Link here.

7-2-2004, LSU DT Melvin Oliver placed under a restraining order after being charged for attacking his former girlfriend. Link here.

Wednesday, July 28, 2004 Preview - #11 - Duke

Day 1 of and their team football previews. They are counting down from #11. Here is the first preview - Duke.

Enough Bowls to go around?

I've said it before, I'll say it again. Seven wins will not guarantee a bowl this year. It might be enough, but 8 or more is probably the lock. Story here.

Tuesday, July 27, 2004

ACC Lobbies for 5 years of eligibility

The ACC lobbies for a 5th year of eligibility. This is a VERY interesting idea that would have some far-reaching impacts with things like school and individual records. We are talking about players playing 5 years, not 5 to play 4. There would be no red-shirting. Since the scholarship limits would not be increased it wouldn't cost the schools any more money.

However, it should have an interesting effect on high school kids. In effect a whole class of kids will all-of-the-sudden get to play another year, killing a whole round of 'ships that could have been taken by high school kids. If a team is allowed 80 'ships, under the current system, if every kid stayed 4 years, you would need to replace 20/year on average. Under the new proposed system, if all the kids stayed 5 years, there would only be 16/year to replace. So the opportunities for high school kids would actually go down. There would be fewer 'ships to go 'round.

Now the issue for colleges is graduation rates. Schools like GT were embarrased due to misquoted grad rates when the system to measure them is flawed. Is this a real effort to help kids get an education or an effort to make grad rates APPEAR better and actually strengthen certain programs?

What would the impact be in terms of football team quality? Well, if you are Miami, my guess is that the impact would be lower than say Georgia Tech. At Miami, who had 6 first round draft picks, those top players are not going to hang around 5 years. So the Miami's of the world will have to replace those guys with younger ones.

But what about the Georgia Tech's and NC ST's of the world? Would the overall strength and depth of our team increase faster than the best programs? It might if we have more players play the entire 5 years. Of course that assumes that experience is a big part of the equation to go with talent. Can GT having an experienced team close the gap with a Miami that has 1st round picks to replace the 1st round picks?

Ok, am I rambling?

James Butler and the Thorpe Watch List

Add James Butler to the pre-season watch list for the 2004 Jim Thorpe award, given to the nation's best defensive back each year..... Butler and E.Henderson were also named to's pre-season all-american 1st team list. Here's the link. Here is their ACC review.......Also note that they have GT at #32 in the nation.......... Also interesting is looking at the attendence figures of all the 117 div I-A schools over the past 5 years. GT comes in at 47, although this does not include 2003, where out stadium was expanded......... Here's one more on the ACC strength.

Where are they now - Anthony Hargrove

Tony H signs a 3-year deal with the Rams - congrats for him.

Recruiting - Hoops

From the Fayetteville Online....... On the Vegas tour stop.

Are you ready for some football???

Well, I'm about to hop on a plane to Cincinnati, but I am getting pumped about football season. You can feel the excitement building. Yesterday you saw the links to the Sunday press conference with the players. Monday the coaches had their turn to speak. Here are some links for your reading pleasure.

Macon Telegraph - Curry leading by example
Just an outstanding article, including this:

"Nate has overcome so much to get to where he is now. He is an unbelievable worker, an unselfish guy," Tech head coach Chan Gailey said. "He commands so much respect because of that."

Said All-ACC safety James Butler, "He's a leader. We all look up to Nate."

Curry wasn't about to walk away from that. So after a summer of working for a general contractor and helping lead the team's workouts, Curry is back to school for a second degree.

"Football is temporary, you're not going to have it all of your life. If I have a chance to go to school for free, then I'm going to do it, take advantage of the situation," Curry said. "Go ahead and get the most out of the situation, it's a win-win situation.

Macon Telegraph - ACC Notebook. More nice comments on Calvin Johnson, from James Butler.
"Calvin is going to be good, he's going to be real good," senior All-ACC safety James Butler said.

Johnson bested Butler in the team's vertical jump competition, jumping 43 inches to Butler's 41.

"It's not his athletic ability, but his persona that stands out to me," Butler said. "He's humble. If you're going to be good, you have to be humble. You have to be able to listen to what coaches tell you." - The ACC's Family Tree is Growing.

FL SunSentinel - ACC shows its muscle as nations best conference - Quotes from Chan Gailey
Nice to hear this about the WR core:
[Wide receivers] "We did lose a very good receiver in Freddie (Jonathan) Smith, but Nate Curry is back and Levon Thomas is back, and we have a couple of very talented freshman coming in. And I think the guy who is really going to surprise people this year is Damarius Bilbo. He made the transition physically last year, and now he's made the transition mentally.

Virginia Sports - Inbounds - around the ACC. This on GT:
Georgia Tech was picked 8th and remains a mystery. Chan Gailey, the Yellowjackets head coach, is a 30-year veteran who has placed Tech in two bowl games the past two years. He is also 4-0 against UNC and NC State, 2-2 versus Maryland and Virginia.

NCST Site - pictures of the headcoaches (with an error on Gailey). - Tigers/Seminoles Rivalry a Family affair
This on the GT/FSU game from B.Bowden:
"I don't know the exact moment that I knew (Clemson had won)," Bobby said. "I thought we could still win in the fourth quarter. Georgia Tech had us down 13-0 late, and we won that game. I don't know how, but I thought it could happen again." - ACC Teams to Miami: Don't take us lightly. - Something's Gotta give in beefed up ACC - Friedgen finds a way

St.Petersburg Times - New blood, Challenges excite ACC Stalwarts

Baltimore Sun - Maryland ranked 5th in fortified ACC

Rocky Mount Telegram - Expansion continues to be the buzz
Check out the funny story on Bill Dooley recruiting J.Bunting, UNC's head coach:
North Carolina coach John Bunting remembers a few things about his recruitment from then-Tar Heel coach Bill Dooley.

Mainly, Bunting recalls how Dooley promised to turn the current UNC coach into a formidable fullback.

"He said he promised me I was going to be a great fullback," Bunting said. "But after two days he said, 'You're the slowest back to ever come here. I'm moving you to defense, son."

PilotOnline - With Elton Brown, UVA ready to make a run

Herald Sun - Bowden - No time like the present
A lot of good notes in this article, including the fact that Marion Jones's ex-husband who is accusing her of steriod usage, is the current assistant strength / conditioning coach. Also mentions Marcus Vick.

Herald Sun - Noles and Devils in familiar spots in polls

Washington Times - Statham gets edge for Terrapins QB

AJC - ACC Coaches bask in post-expansion profile

AJC - Winning brings changes for Terps

Monday, July 26, 2004 to Preview all 11 teams

Starting from the 11th pick all the way to the first. They will profile one team a day with highlights, video clips, etc. Link here. Stay tuned.

New beesball coach #2 ?????

Over at this discussion board, someone is reporting that our new hitting coach and recruiting coordinator is Josh Holliday - although I have seen no confirmation. Here is his bio. Notice he helped his alma mater Ok.St. defeat GT back in 1998......... It was also reported here that he was at a GT hitting camp Saturday and was "waiting for his resume to clear the O'Leary hurdle" A bit of humor over at the Hive.

If I can confirm this I'll let you know.

FSU picked to win it all by the media

Link here. And of course we know the media is all-knowing. Evidently an 88-member panel had the foresight to pick FSU to win it all, for the 13th year in a row, even with Miami. Here's how they voted (first place votes in parenthesis):

Place,Points,Team,1st place votes
1...925...FSU (49)
2...913...Miami (36)
3...697...UVA (2)
4...664...Clemson (1)
7...509...NC ST
8...365...Georgia Tech
9...273...Wake Forest

Folks, looking at the points, the media clearly sees 3 tiers:

Tier 1: FSU/Miami
Tierr 2: UVA/Clemson/MD/VT/NCST
Tier 3: GT/WF/UNC/Duke

That's my interpretation - no respect. Seven bowls in a row, a more experienced QB and one of the top defenses in the league apparently don't mean much. Here's the rub - we finished last year beating expectations and ended the year on a positive note. The expectations this season are almost WORSE than they were last year.

So will we be happy beating expectations or will we be happy beating last year's record? Obviously the league is very different so schedule is no longer a direct comparison.

In my book, here's how I see it:
1-4 wins.......ticked off
5-6 wins.......disappointed
7-8 wins.......a solid year in the new league
9-11 wins......outstanding

USC recognizes their 1928 National Championship

... even though GT was the clear champion. Ok, I'm biased. Check it out here:

USC has long claimed its first national championship in football in 1928, when-like in 1939-it was named only by the Dickinson System (Georgia Tech and Detroit were picked No. 1 by that season's eight other selectors). Yet for some undetermined reason, USC never acknowledged 1939 among its national titlists...until now.
Also interesting ending to the story, which of course is the root cause of years of controversy on true "champions":
The NCAA does not conduct a national championship in Division I football and is not involved in the selection process. Over the years, there have been nearly 30 selectors of national champions using polls, historical research and mathematical rating systems. It is up to individual schools to determine whether a No. 1 selection in any of these systems merits a national championship claim. It is not unusual for more than one school to claim a football national championship in the same year (as USC and LSU did in 2003).

Heisman Trophy to make an appearance...

... at the GT / UNC game in the fall - link here. That should be when PJ is just getting warmed up and finding his name among candidates.

Where are they now - EJ Kuale

If you remember this guy, he played at GT, but left after struggling academically. Well now EJ is on the roster at LSU, after a year of community college. Good for him for keeping at it. Not sure if he has really changed his focus and applied himself, but if so, great. Of course, not sure if LSU is just more "do-able" for someone. Not trying to downgrade LSU's academics at all. Just an interesting story - link here. Thanks to someone over at the Hive for the link.

Around the ACC

More from Sunday's ACC Football Kickoff in Greensboro NC....... From this article, this quote from Coach Gailey:

Georgia Tech hosts both Miami and Virginia Tech, while dropping Florida State - a rival in recent years - and Wake Forest from its schedule. Both games, Miami (Oct. 4) and Virginia Tech (Oct. 28), have generated a buzz around Atlanta.

"There's anticipation just because they're new and they're both at home this year," Georgia Tech head coach Chan Gailey said. "There's a sense of excitement and newness to them. I think people sometimes like change."
Personally, I am disappointed with dropping FSU for Miami, purely due to GT needing to break through and get a win. We've come so close so many times - I hate to drop that series for a year.
Here's a look at the QB situation in the ACC, where there is much uncertainty. Even established guys like Rix and Berlin will be under the microscope.

Here's a look at how the new ACC additions are viewed by other teams around the league.

This story on the excitement players have with the new season close to starting. This from WR Nate Curry:
Georgia Tech wide receiver Nate Curry feels as though his body tells him it’s time for football when the entire student body arrives on campus, which is a short time following two-a-days.

“I think it’s when it’s the end of camp and school starts and all the students come back around and they start advertising for all the games, that’s when I start feeling it,” he said. “Nobody’s excited about camp. But when camp’s over and school starts, that’s when you know it’s time to get into that season-type practice mentality and game-time mentality. You want to get out of class and go watch films and stuff like that.”

From the NCST website, here is James Butler, commenting a TA McLendon:
Georgia Tech Safety James Butler: ”I think T.A.’s one of the toughest running backs that I’ve ever and played will ever play. I look forward to playing him this year because I know we’re going to have to be ready to play against them.”

Here is Butler on the loss of Philip Rivers for NCST:
Georgia Tech Safety James Butler: "I think it’s going to hurt them a little bit because he did so much for their team. But, I know the head coach does such a great job in recruiting that I know he has someone in the background that’s ready to step up and make plays for them.”

Here is Nate Curry commenting on the NCST defense:
Georgia Tech Wide Receiver Nate Curry: “They have great defensive backs. Our game plan was real good for that game and we knew what they were going to do on defense so we came out on top.”

”Anytime you can bring back players who have played it’s great. They were already a good team so now they’ll be that much better because all those young guys will have the experience you need.”

For pictures of the various players in attendence, click here.......... Here's more on the addition of Miami, and if you ask me, FSU is intimidated since losing 5 in-a-row to the Hurricanes. FSU hopes they can beat Miami. Miami KNOWS they will beat FSU. It's going to take a couple of W's to change that attitude.............. Here's a story on Charlie Whitehurst, indicating that agents are contacting him and his family and that if he has a good season, he will probably head to the NFL, although that is not his plan now. Funny story in there also about opposing fans giving him a standing ovation at a Waffle House and his mom's quote:
“That story still kind of gives me chills,” Beth Whitehurst said. “Not all Gamecocks are bad.”

Sunday, July 25, 2004

Victor Menocal - the real deal

Thanks to buzzfan over at the Hive for this - I went to the archives and dug this up - link here.

Read that story and tell me it doesn't make you feel good. Just a great story that highlights what makes the game of baseball so great.

"Big Play" Nate

Looks like Nate is getting prepared to be the #1 guy at WR. Story here.I like the attitude. And you can see more positive comments about Calvin Johnson, who will no doubt fight for the other starting spot.

Here is an article with quotes from many ACC players (2 from each team), who met with the media on Saturday. Link here. James Butler and Nate Curry represented the Jackets.

And here is more from around the ACC.

Where are they now - George O'Leary

A story on O'Leary, his coaching philosophy and 2nd chance at UCF. Check out the O'Leary intimidation factor at work:

O'Leary, who has succeeded at every level in coaching, has brought an aura to UCF. It turns out he has brought an intimidation factor as well, something he found out during spring practice when he noticed one of his special-teams players shanking every punt.

O'Leary inquired about this -- well, he asked the poor soul if he was actually on scholarship -- and the player told him that he got nervous in his new coach's presence.

"Well, son," O'Leary told him, "I intend on being at all of the games."

Now, this article tries to claim that O'Leary's resume flap is long-forgotten. As much I as want to believe it, it just ain't true. Everything something comes up about a resume discrepancy, O'Leary gets top billing. Link here.
FORGOTTEN RESUME: First-year Central Florida coach George O'Leary said he believes most people have forgotten the artificially beefed-up resume that forced him to resign in December 2001 after one week as Notre Dame's coach.

``The only time I've ever heard it brought up is in the media,'' O'Leary said. ``I'm sure some people might point when I walk by, but I've gotten over it.''

O'Leary's resume claimed he had earned a master's in education and played three years of college football, but background checks showed neither was true, sparking a scandal that resulted in his resignation.

Meanwhile, the UCF media guide omits that week of employment at Notre Dame. In O'Leary's biography, the UCF guide skips from his tenure as Georgia Tech's head coach to his time on the Minnesota Vikings' staff.

Video Game Simulation

This site looks at video game possibilities in the world of college football and the simulations produce this result:

Georgia quarterback David Greene will win the Heisman by passing for 3,190 yards and 39 touchdowns, but the Bulldogs will crack under the weight of national championship expectations. A seventh consecutive loss to Florida (does art imitate life, or what?) and a 66-14 thrashing by Auburn (Greene sustains a concussion early) lead to a 9-3 season that ends with an Outback Bowl win over Northwestern.

Georgia Tech beats a pair of ranked teams and cracks the top-20, on the way to a 5-1 start, but loses its last five after tailback P.J. Daniels injures his knee.

Ok, I don't condone violence but....

.... our man Jason Varitek TOOK IT to A-Rod over the weekend. Check out this action shot below. I think that comes from the "school of curly". Yuk yuk whoopa whoopa.

Everything you wanted to know about GT...

... except that IT'S NOT GEORGIA TECH UNIVERSITY !!! Wow, right in the title. Link here.

Where are they now - Bobby Cremins

Teaching hoops in Hilton Head - that's where - link here.

Masters of the Mic

Who are the best college hoops announcers. Grant Wahl over at thinks this is the list - link here.

New Softball assist. coach

Story on Brandon Duncan, a new assistant coach with the lady Jackets softball team - link here.

Saturday, July 24, 2004

Where are they now - Mark Teixeira (Updated)

Nice story on the former Jacket. He has been on quite the tear recently, homering in 5 straight games tying a Texas record. There have been a few trade rumors in the back rooms, but it looks like Mark is solid in Texas.

Over 54 games since mid-May, two weeks after he returned from the disabled list, Teixeira is hitting .308 with 18 homers, 50 RBIs with 47 runs scored. He has raised his average, which dipped to .185 soon after his return, to .279.

Here's another recent story on MT - link here.
Teixeira's hitting heroics have helped the Rangers hold onto first place in the American League West. The switch hitter had home runs from both sides of the plate, one a grand slam, in an 18-3 win over the Houston Astros on July 4. And his biggest delivery came Sunday, when his eighth-inning grand slam capped a six-run inning and gave the Rangers a 7-5 win over the Toronto Blue Jays.

"I think that's the biggest night of my Rangers career," Teixeira said. "It was a huge adrenaline rush. I didn't sleep until probably 3 o'clock [Sunday] night because the adrenaline was still running through me. When that happens, and you have a big win like that ... It's the most exciting time I've ever had in pro baseball. Hopefully, we can make the playoffs and have more."

Teixeira's power outburst has moved him into an elite club. He averages a home run every 14.8 plate appearances, best in the American League and second best in baseball.

Here's a minor league update, tying together Teixeira and Mike Nickeas - link here.
Class A Spokane
Mark Teixeira isn't the only hot-hitting Georgia Tech product. Catcher Mike Nickeas, this year's fifth-round pick, is batting .333 with a .408 on-base average and a .600 slugging percentage.

Beesball and the pro's

Here's a list of our 13 GT players / recruits and their signing status. Basically on E.Patterson, J.Slayden and M.Owings remain unsigned.

Recruiting - Hoops

Story here on Las Vegas summer hoops event, with mention of Coach Hewitt and some prospects we are scouting.

Trent Johnson of Stanford, Tom Amaker of Michigan, Paul Hewitt of Georgia Tech, Bo Ryan of Wisconsin and Bruce Weber of Illinois are among the 100 or so on hand to watch the Ontario (Canada) Cyclones take on the Arizona Magic Blue.

Lawrence Hill, a 6-7 forward from Glendale (Ariz.) Deer Valley, who announced last month that he would sign with Stanford in November, does his best to impress his future coach.

But Johnson, Amaker, Hewitt, Ryan and Weber also have to be impressed by the 6-8 Ryan Wright, who is one of the hottest names of the last month of camp and tournament action and has scored 1,000-plus on the Scholastic Aptitude Test. Wright doesn't have nearly the polish and savvy of Hill yet but is bigger, stronger and quicker off his feet. Drop Wright into a Southern California high school for the coming season and he'd be considered one of the top five seniors in the state.

The team from Delaware has a 6-9 kid from London, Eric Boateng. Duke is recruiting Boateng and so is Georgia Tech and Saint Joseph's, which is why Mike Krzyzewski, Paul Hewitt and Phil Martelli are in the gym with yours truly. I wonder if Krzyzewski, Hewitt and Martelli want quality sack time immediately after a cheeseburger and fries, too.

After watching him during an Easter tournament in Las Vegas, during the Pangos All-America Camp in Cypress in early June, during the USA Youth Festival in Colorado Springs a couple of weeks later, the Nike All-America Camp in Indianapolis two weeks ago, and now in the Nike Main Event, I almost feel like a member of Dallas Skyline High senior-to-be Calvin "C.J." Miles' family.

The 6-5 left-hander, who will try to sort out scholarship offers from Georgia Tech, Arizona, Kansas, North Carolina and Illinois and maybe a zillion other schools, is once again the best player on the court while helping Texas Team Elite cruise past Northern California Elite.

On another note, Byron Eaton has eliminated GT - he is down to Ok.St and Cincinati.

Friday, July 23, 2004

Interview with Coach Hewitt

From the Gainsville Times - link here.

Involvement in the community

Nice update from one of the new GT beat writers from the AJC. This story on some of the summer community service work done by student-athletes.

Around the ACC: Clemson Football

Some stories on Clemson and Tommy Bowden in particular. Amazing how a guy can go from the outhouse to the penthouse in less than a month. They want to hire the guy for president down here is SC (or so it seems).

Tommy's happy ending - the State.

Bowden made two important statements in those four wins. First, he proved in his fifth season that his teams can win big games. Also, he proved he can coach against the best. Those wins came against two highly regarded former NFL coaches - Virginia's Al Groh and Georgia Tech's Chan Gailey - and two of the college game's coaching legends - FSU's Bowden and USC's Lou Holtz. In all but the Virginia win, Bowden's teams were clearly better coached than his opponent.

Q&A with Bowden on the team and the upcoming season - insiders.
How has the momentum from last year affected your program and how do you think your team will respond this year?
Bowden: I'm anxious to see how it effects our two-a-days and the early part of our schedule and the toughness of our schedule. The way we finished last year we did some things that's never been done at Clemson. With the Georgia Tech margin of victory being the most in a 100 years, the Florida State victory was the highest ranked opponent ever, the Tennessee was the second highest ever, the South Carolina victory the most points ever scored. Those have never been accomplished by me or by this school so I don't know. I don't know how the team will respond. I think that's one of the challenges as to how they respond to a bigger bulls eye on their chest. And that's where you want to get to, and we aren't there just yet, but I'm anxious to see how much closer we are to getting there.

Happy Days here again for Bowden - the State.
The key to Clemson’s turnaround last season came on defense, Bowden said. When asked his goals for this season, Bowden focused on continuing the defense’s momentum. Clemson held its last four opponents, including Florida State and Tennessee, to 12 points and 79.8 yards rushing per game. During the first nine games, teams averaged 22.4 points and 154.8 rushing yards against the Tigers.

“I thought the defense elevated their level of play, and I thought the offense caught fire from how the defense performed,” Bowden said. “I’d like to start out against Wake Forest and Georgia Tech with the same kind of statistics that we carried over to those four games.”

Recruiting - L.Williams / M.Mercer

Don't count these guys as UGAg signees quite yet on the hardwood. First of all, L.Williams has a legit shot at the NBA. Secondly, they are both still going to visit 4 schools this year. Third, the whole J.Herrick mess is not over, so that could impact their decision...... Story here.

Recruiting War Stories

Those who follow the recruiting game know that Al Harrington was so close to committing to GT under Bobby Cremins. This AJC article has an interview with him as he was traded to the Hawks to return to the ATL:

Harrington said his decision to go pro out of St. Patrick's High in Elizabeth, N.J., helped him avoid choosing between then-Georgia Tech coach Bobby Cremins and then-Seton Hall coach Tommy Amaker.
"I was really torn," Harrington said. "I had such a great relationship with both coaches. It would've been too much to break one of those guys' hearts — so I broke both of them."

Old Interview with Coach Hewitt

Coach Hewitt was a guest on "The Opening Drive", a Greenville SC sports morning radio show. I never caught the interview, but ran across the download. It's about 2.3 meg

Right-click this link and click "save as" to download.

For a link to other interviews on this site, click here.

Per Ronney (one of my GT buds here in Greenville - if that's the Ronney I know), it looks like Coach Gailey will be a guest next week sometime. I'll post what I can if I catch the interview.

Interesting Recruiting Story

Phillip Thompson claims to have had interest from GT. Here is an interesting story about his recruitment. It looks like GT backed off along with a number of other schools. Obviously it looks like there is more to this story - a good Paul Harvey moment.

ACC Construction Gal Penny VanHorn Dennis

The same gal who worked on the BDS rebuild is now working on upgrading NC State's stadium - link here.

Duke Recruiting

From someone over at the Hive, this link on Duke's new success at recruiting with basically a GT staff of people. No doubt we will end up competing for many of the same players.


Quick mention of Tony Hargrove in these two articles. The first one mentions he might provide some relief on defense. link here.

Kollar also indicated that newcomer Anthony Hargrove, a third-round draft selection from Georgia Tech, could figure into the mix. Hargrove stood out at the team's rookie minicamp and was solid in the full-squad minicamp that followed.

"We're hoping he can give us a little boost also this year," Kollar said. "Really, all four of those guys are trying to get playing time and seeing who can wrestle away the starting position."

This article mentions that he has yet to sign a deal - link here.
In addition to Jackson, a running back from Oregon State, defensive end Anthony Hargrove of Georgia Tech (third round) and quarterback Jeff Smoker of Michigan State (sixth round) haven't agreed to terms.

Pre-Season NIT

Want to know the line-up for the upcoming pre-season NIT? Here it is.Link here. GT is not on the docket by the way.

New Beesball Coach - Victor Menocal

I even scooped - nee-ner, nee-ner, neeeee-ner. Is that how you would spell that?

Got the scoop on one of the new beesball coaches - Victor Menacol - link here:

South Atlantic League
Announced the resignation of RHP Victor Menocal to take coaching position at Georgia Tech.

More at this link:
The Phillies also announced the retirement of pitcher Victor Menocal, who will begin his coaching career at his alma mater, Georgia Tech.

Menocal had appeared in 30 games in relief for Lakewood, compiling a record of 1-3 and two saves. The right-hander had been trying to make the conversion to the mound after playing shortstop in college. Menocal will join the Georgia Tech staff as a volunteer assistant coach under head coach Danny Hall, for whom he played between 1999-2002.

“I will miss playing and I will definitely miss the guys on this team but this an offer that is just too good to pass up, “ said Menocal. ”I have always wanted to get into coaching and now Coach Hall will give me the opportunity to get that phase of my career started and I am really excited about it.”

For a story on his background and "unique Cuban heritage" - check out this link.

His entire biography can be found here......... Here is his ramblinwreck profile.

Here's a story from Baseball America after the 2002 season.......... Here's a random picture.

Here's a story about the GT draftees and mentions his not getting drafted high after his junior season and decideing to return - link here.
Despite the vast number of players that did leave Tech to pursue careers on the major league, there are standouts such as Victor Menocal. Menocal was contacted by several teams that wanted to draft him. However once the tenth round ended, when the Houston Astros, St. Louis Cardinals, and Arizona Diamondbacks called, he informed them of his decision to stay with the Yellow Jacket another season. This past season as shortstop Menocal led the Jackets in hits and doubles and was second behind Teixeira in homeruns and runs. He hopes to be able to improve upon this already great performance.

Here's a diary entry in a local paper after finishing his first minor league season.

Thursday, July 22, 2004

YellowJackets who served the country with honor

Nice mention here (link here):

One former Brewton resident, Shelton Beverly “Slim” Sutton, Jr., a former star Georgia Tech lineman, was killed while serving aboard the U.S.S. Juneau in 1942. The ship was sunk and most of its crew perished, including the five famous “Fighting Sullivan Brothers,” were killed. Two years later, the U.S. Navy honored the heroism of Lt. Sutton by naming one of its new destroyers, the U.S.S. Sutton.

Coach Hewitt article

Similar to one published a week or so ago, but slightly different as he returns to his hometown for "Paul Hewitt Day". Link here.

Wes Durham could become "voice of the Falcons"

Looks like our own Wes Durham has become a leading candidate for the Falcons radio job to replace Jeff Hullinger. It does appear it would be a "moonlighting" job and that he could do both. Let's hope so - I like Wes and he IS the voice of the Jackets. Wouldn't want that any other way. Story here.

Big Names in Big Games

ESPN looks at some key football games in the upcoming season and Terry Bowden looks at GT / Clemson:

Georgia Tech at Clemson, Sept. 18 -- A key early game for both teams. After ending last year with a four-game winning streak and earning a contract extension, the eyes of Clemson fans will be on coach Tommy Bowden to see if he can get his team to exceed expectations. On the other side, Chan Gailey has done a good job but has yet to prove he can get Georgia Tech to the lofty levels George O'Leary's Yellowjacket teams were at. Call this one a "program direction" game that could give the winning team a big boost.

Around the ACC

The Maryland Twerp hoops team gets to tour Italy to play 5 games at the beginning on this season. Story here. When in Rome.....

Meanwhile, the funny folks at now bring us ..... watch hilarity ensure. Crazy kids.

Staying on the hoops theme, the Deamon Deacons and the Tarheels are trying to actually play as a team, at least some are as they try out for TeamUSA. It looks like Rashad "Group Hug" McCants has been cut, surprising many. Why. Sounds like the coach is trying to field a TEAM, not a group of highly talented individuals not interested in playing on a team. The funniest quote in the article is when McCants was asked about Chris Paul. Check it out:

Gray was guarding Paul at times, something he's used to in practice. McCants has been running the wing next to Paul plenty, too.

"He's the best point guard I've played with by far, by far," McCants said.

Better than North Carolina's Raymond Felton?

"He's a better point guard," McCants said. "Raymond is more talented. But taking nothing away from Ray, Chris Paul is really talented, too."

"BY FAR" the best PG he has played with. Welcome back to the Tarheels Benedict Arnold. This guy has some serious talent, but if ever a guy had a stranger (or at least more mis-understood) personality, I don't know who it is. The discussion boards are filled with talk about McCants getting cut and stories about him pouting and being extremely upset about the whole thing. Many people are citing an incident against GT as an example of why he is a different type of guy. The incident in question was when he and BJ Elder were lighting up the scoreboard last season, trading 3-pt blows, and they ended up giving a high-fives in mutual admiration. Not many people could name another incident where two opposing players slapped hands during the battle.

Outside the ACC, ESPN looks at the pro's and who are the 5 toughest players in each sport - link here.

More ACC Football Prognosticators

Well, the "experts" are out in force, with more picking of GT in the bottom half of the conference.

First up is Chris Wallace, formerly of the Robesonian and VA paper, who has evidently taken a job as the ACC editor for Rivals. He has picked GT to finish 9th this season (link here), only ahead of Duke and UNC. Certainly interesting because last season he picked us DEAD LAST (if memory serves me correctly). Here is what he had to say about GT:

Georgia Tech, meanwhile, would be my pick at No. 9. The Jackets were the surprise of the ACC a year ago and freshman QB Reggie Ball was sensational at times. But Tech lost many of its top players, including stud linebackers Keyaron Fox and Daryl Smith and the Rambling Wreck has not recruited well in the last few years.

Meanwhile over at they have also picked GT at 9th place, finishing ahead of you-know-who (link to crappy ACC picks here, courtesy of someone at the Hive). Not only that, they have us with no "big wins" and no "big losses". That alone discredits this entire site, because we all know GT manages BOTH every year. Last season beating Auburn was certainly a surprise, and losing to Duke equally shocking...... Further down the page Eric Henderson is not included in his all-ACC team. All-in-all, total disregard for GT, like we're not even in the conference......... By the way, the same dude picked GT to finish 7th with a 4-8 record last season, even behind Duke. Link here to crappy 2003 picks. In fact he voted GT as the "Team most likley to disappoint", including this:
Georgia Tech… The off-season occurrences in Atlanta do not instill me with confidence for this team. No proven QB or RB (no back rushed for more than 300 yards last season), to go with an injury-questioned defense and two new kickers, leads me to believe the Jackets spend the better part of the season procuring their young talent.