Tuesday, February 28, 2006

The Good News

Ok, so there was some good news. The NCAA released it's first "official" academic progress report that will result in loss of scholarships for those schools not meeting minimum standards. The good news - Georgia Tech will lose no 'ships in any sport. The full report will actually be released Wednesday, but Tech publicity decided that good news was needed to supercede the newly minted lawsuit just filed against them.

"We pride ourselves on being a good academic institution," Tech athletics director Dave Braine said. "We should have people who can do the work. This proves that we do."

UGAg chose NOT to release their results yet...........

Like a Bad Horror Movie

....... that just won't end. Now there are allegations of a cover-up high up in the athletic administration. As a bonus prize, why don't we throw in a wrongful termination lawsuit. No, I'm not kidding - check it out.

"It's unbelievable he'd accuse the president of a university of a cover-up," Braine said Tuesday. "[The NCAA] looked at it. There was never any intent to cover up anything. It's unbelievable he would say that. He might end up being sued for libel."

Want my opinion? I think the whole thing stinks. This could be sour grapes from a jilted former employee. This could be truth uncovering its head. Which is it? Personally, I hate to chose sides at this point. The old innocent until proven guilty seems fair. However, one thing has always bothered me about this sequence of events of this whole mess - the anonymous tip the NCAA got about issues inside the department. Well, we all know anonymous tips tend to come from "inside" - who else is going to know? Who else is going to worry so much that they want to remain anonymous? So if "someone" inside knew, that means many people inside probably knew. If the tip was "anonymous" then obviously "someone" didn't like what was going on and feared for their job. It seems pretty obvious to connect the dots and say that Shane Olivett must be the whistle blower (although the article does not blatantly say that).

Quite frankly, if Olivett slammed Braine and the administration during his interview with the NCAA during this process, then it is quite obvious why we got probation and a seemingly unfair punishment compared to worse violations at other schools. The NCAA must have sniffed cover-up. Quite frankly, this appears to put a nail in the coffin of a potential reversal of judgement by the NCAA. Of course you never know, but this just makes the whole thing worse.

Now, having said all that - check this out. This is not the first time Shane Olivett has been involved with the NCAA. There's this.

Old article just prior to Olivett taking GT job:
Nearly nine months after the NCAA first started making inquiries into South Carolina's football program, investigators still are asking questions.

Former USC academic counselor Shane Olivett, now in the same position at Georgia Tech, met with an NCAA investigator two weeks ago to discuss matters related to USC, a Georgia Tech official confirmed Tuesday.

Jennifer Condaras, Georgia Tech's director of compliance, said Olivett gave her a "courtesy heads-up" before his meeting with an unidentified NCAA enforcement official. Condaras knew none of the details of the meeting.

"He's not allowed to talk to us about it," Condaras said. "Usually with those cases you're not allowed to."

Olivett, who worked at USC for two years before departing last fall, did not return phone messages Tuesday.

Check out this quote from Olivett on the USC matter with Lou Holtz and how he was told to handle these matters:

"That the easiest way to say is, 'You don't have any knowledge or recollection, please refer to my supervisor," Shane Olivett, who left USC for Georgia Tech,told investigators. "That was explicitly stated in that meeting. ... Do not keep memos like that. Do not keep a file in your office about those things. Delete e-mails that could be harmful, was the way he described it."

Whever the truth lies, it stinks. We don't look good. Olivett is starting to smell. The whole thing just stinks..

NOTE TO DAN RADAKOVICH - WELCOME TO GEORGIA TECH!!!!! Glad to have you with us!!!

Monday, February 27, 2006

Beesball - ACC Sweeps the Polls

The ACC holds the top 3 spots on the new Baseball American top 25 poll.

#1.... Clemson
#2.... Georgia Tech
#3.... North Carolina
#10... FSU
#18... NC ST

Outstanding start to the season.

Hoops - Dennis Scott Makes a Proposal to Terrell Owens

How about this - Dennis Scott, now the GM of the Atlanta Vision, have offered Terrell Owens a professional basketball contract. Legit move to win or a publicity stunt? What do you think?

Football - Calvin Johnson - "Workout Freak"

ESPN thinks Calvin Johnson is the nation's #2 "workout freak" in college football.

2. Calvin Johnson, WR, Georgia Tech: The 6-5, 235-pound junior is the most dynamic wideout in the country and has the total package. "Along with freakish skills, he has an unbelievable work ethic to match," says Tech director of player development Eric Ciano. "Calvin leads by example and he never complains or quits. His athletic ability is second to none. His first semester at Georgia Tech, Johnson vertical jumped 43 inches and had a standing long of 11-2. He has run consecutive 4.3 40-yard dashes at 235 pounds. He also power cleans over 330 pounds with ease. His strength, speed, and explosiveness are unmatched."

Hoops - Jackets Knock off the Deacs

A nice victory for the Jackets on Saturday, knocking off the Wake Forest Demon Deacons in the battle to stay out of the cellar. If you really want to know the impact of not having a top-notch Point Guard, watching this game surely hit it home for you - from a Wake Forest perspective for sure. Here we are grumbling about the inability of a bunch of freshman and sophomores to "get it together" and Wake Forest, with NBA caliber talents Justin Gray and Eric Williams is in the ACC basement. Go figure. Shows you how important Point Guards really are, no matter how much experience you have in other positions.

By the way, we just signed papers to put our house on the market in Greenville SC as we prepare for the move to Albany NY. Certainly a time of mixed emotions. Hopefully nothing a good sports satellite package can't cure.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Hewitt on the New AD

During Coach Hewitt's call-in show today, he had some pretty strong words to fans who are crying sour grapes over the new AD. At one point he said this:

- "If you want to complain and take your ball home, fine. Just give up your tickets and we'll give them to someone else"............ These comments were basically making the point that people just need to get behind the new guy. He's our guy, so give him your support.

- He met with both candidates. He was very impressed with Bill Curry and D-Rad had a lot of interesting ideas about on how to improve GT athletics. D-Rad told him one of his first goals was to improve marketing at GT.

In addition to this, he had VERY strong words about the hoops program this year.

- He said the season has not gone how he expected it and that it was NOT acceptable. He said that from what the coaches have learned, what the players have learned and from their desire not to go through this again, and from the current state of recruiting, that "we will never have a season like this one again".

- In addition, he said some players need to get in even better shape. Said Jeremis Smith needs to lose another 5-6 pounds. Didn't mention Zam, but we all know he could drop another 10-15 lbs easy.

- Said next year's recruits will really provide the depth the team needs to keep people fresh.

- Once again there was talk of M.Faye. Coach said he's coming along nicely and is a real unknown by others. Said he should be able to contribute next season. Coach said he is trying to develop a team with a power forward who can guard further out and even has a good mid-range jumper, and yet be big enough to mix it up inside. Wes Durham compared Faye to Jawad Williams. Coach Hewitt compared him to I.Evtimov.

Strong stuff!!!

Hoops - Recruiting Never Stops

In case you were wondering, there were a load of major in-state recruits at the game last night, including stars from the classes of 2007, 2008 and 2009. At least 8 major recruits watched last night and spent time with the team in the lockerroom after.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Hoops Template - Jackets Lose to (insert opponent here)

Well, the Jackets started off strong tonight against (insert opponent here). They went up by double digits through hot shooting and activity on defense as the (insert opponent mascot name here) seem to be cold from everywhere. However, in the 2nd half the Jackets seemed to go through a cold stretch at a critical time as (insert opponent name here) just took advantage of a stale offensive halfcourt game, turnovers and poor ball movement. In the end the Jackets lost in a fairly close game to (insert opponent mascot here), and just couldn't do the small things at the end to make the win happen. It was the big man (insert opponents center here) who really made the difference tonight for (insert abbreviated opponent mascot name here).

Ok, so maybe I'm a little hard on the guys because this did happen to be the #1 in the nation. But regardless of the fact that this was Duke, the loss was a blueprint, carbon-copy in so many ways of how this team loses. Thirty minutes of brilliance and 10 minutes of utter helplessness. All this proves is that this team has the ability to play WITH any team in the nation, but that's the problem - they're only learning how to play WITH their opponent (well, for most of the game), instead of living up to their potential.

The final was 73-64, but I'm proud of the group. They did NOT embarrass themselves at all. They just showed the impact of youth and lack of leadership. Same old, same old.

When our opponent decides to lockdown the perimeter, it usually works. Not only do we miss shots or not take them, we forget how to pass the ball. The Jackets were 1-4 from 3pt range tonight. Let me type that again - 1-for-4. Duke played terrible D in the first half and we really exploited that down low. The 2nd half was a different story as Duke just did the same thing the Tarheels did -with similar results.

Man, Jeremis. No, I mean Jeremis is a man. That guy is tough and boy does he work hard. He told Wes in the post-game show that he was doing fine. He said when he got hurt, as long as there was no broken bones you have to go back in the game. Smith ends the game with 18 points and 12 boards and a couple of blocks. Here's to you for yet another blue-color tough-man effort.

Sean Dickey has really shown us something that past 10 or so games. It's interesting - we knew what he had in the post........... but he's got a dang good jump shot - even close to 3pt range. When Chris Bosh was here he would take about 1 or 2 long range shots per game, but he hit over 40% of them if I remember. But it was almost not right when he took them - like it didn't fit into a Paul Hewitt offense. What if Dickey could develop and take a consistent shot from about 10 - 15 feet out? What if he took a handful of those each game? Could it open up the inside even more? Could it change the dynamic of the game?

Key coaching question of the game - why didn't we design some better plays to get the ball down low to Dickey once Sheldon Williiams had 3 fouls? We tried the old "throw it into the post" a few times and had some key turnovers. Why didn't we go after him with something to get him the ball more effectively? What happened there? Dickey disappeared a bit in the 2nd half once the Dukies decided to play tough perimeter D.

Zam ends the night with 9 assists. Wow.......... Uuuhhhhhh........... 9 turnovers to go with that. Ouch.

A-Mo thigh bruise.......... Rio cramps............. J-Smith back spasms............... Hard enough to win when everyone is healthy. A-Mo was MIA as he struggled with that thigh bruise.

Look at the bright side - the kids played hard. The fought. They don't give up. They just don't know how to close it out yet. They'll get there. The games might be ending in losses, but every game has offered hope. It's not like these guys are getting the floor wiped with them. They are close. They might not figure out how to get over the hump, but man they're close.

If that doesn't do it for you then how about this - we had some timeouts left at the end of the game. Well, I tried.

A Great Story

Now, you want to read a GREAT story? Read about Eric Massey. I'm telling you - this is what collegiate athletics is all about. READ IT!!!!!!!!

Meet your new Athletic Director

Dan Radakovich is your new Georgia Tech Athletic Director - per the AJC.......

It's hard to fault this choice. He's got all the credentials. The only issue that people will have to get past is not being a "Tech man", and coming from the SEC. Well, that and having to spell out his name, which I am already somewhat frustrated with........

Congrats Mr. Radakovich. Like I said yesterday, it's hard to imagine how we could have go very wrong with either choice, but I think the right choice was made.

Beesball - Jackets Sweep Double Header

Nice effort, taking 2 from East Tenn State yesterday......... Jackets are now 8-0

Hoops - If JJ Redeck Breaks the Record....

.... what do you think will happen? Will they stop the game? Will they continue play? Will he be honored? Will the audience cheer and clap for his accomplishments? Will they boo him? What do you think will happen?

AD Announcement at 3:00 pm today

Stay tuned because at 3:00 today we'll know who our next Athletic Director will be..............................

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Editorial Time - Head or Heart?

Ok, I tried not to weigh in on this AD search too much. However, I have to give my two cents. We have a real spread of opinion about Bill Curry. The most general way to characterize this is that the older and more influential alumni want Bill Curry to have the job...... Period......... The vast majority of them are pressuring the administration for a "Tech man". Sorry, but I don't buy it. Dan Radakovich came a bit out of left field, but his qualifications for the job are CLEARLY superior to Bill Curry's. How can anyone possibly dispute that fact?

Do I have a problem with the fact that Bill Curry left Tech to coach at Alabama? No way, and you shouldn't either. That is not a good reason for him to lose this job. Does it bother me that people call him a Tech man but he hasn't been to Bobby Dodd Stadium but once or twice in the past 20 years? Well, a little, but not a lot....................However, there are some good reasons he shouldn't have it. First, he does not have the qualifications and experience to be a major college athletic director. If raising money and having great sound bites on television were the top requirements then maybe he's our guy. In my opinion, AD's are better neither seen nor heard when it comes to the media. So why are people so googly-eyed over Bill Curry's ability to talk good on TV? Curry just doesn't have the administrative experience to take care of the behind the scenes work of an AD. Just my opinion. Do you want a guy learning this side of things in the twighlight of his years? I just don't see it.

Ask yourself this question. If there was another candidate with the exact IDENTICAL qualifications as Bill Curry - with one difference - he went to school somewhere else - would you hire him? Would you hire a former player turned football head coach with a ok track-record, that bounced around to different schools, then decided to be a broadcaster? Would you do it if he was an Auburn grad? or an Oklahoma grad? Is being a "Tech man" so important to you that qualifications take a backseat?

Believe me, I understand that Bill Curry is a great embassador for Georgia Tech. I have no doubt what colors he bleeds. No doubt he's a Tech man to the core. Having said that I just don't think he's the best candidate for the job between these two.

Dan Radakovich has the experience and the credentials for the administrative side of the job. He's practically the AD at LSU now, overseeing football, basketball and baseball, including a national championship football team. He has been involved in all aspects of the AD job there, including hires, personnel issues, facilities upgrades, etc. He has a degree in finance and an MBA. He played football also (at Indiana U). He's the "young up-and-comer"............. Here is an interesting article where a UGAg sports business class actually did a project to identify who they thought should be the next AD at Auburn. Who did they pick? Try Radakovich. Pretty interesting. Of course it is from a bunch of mutts, so take it with a grain of salt.

So, I said my peace. Truthfully, there are pro's and con's on both sides. Is Radakovich going to focus on winning or be President Clough's "yes man". That worries some people. Does he truly understand the challenge that comes with succeeding at Georgia Tech and the unique acadmic / athletic balance? How can we be sure?...............Does Curry have the superior ability to raise money from alumni? If he has the older generations in his pocket, then the purse strings might open more for him. Is Curry going to know what to do to ensure that "flunkgate" and the other issues that have plagued the school won't happen again? Having said that, don't forget that LSU is battling lawsuits from those professors who were asked to change grades a number of years ago to keep players eligible. Remember that? The result was that a bunch of players played in the Peach Bowl a few years back and beat a certain Georgia Tech football team, when they should have been disqualified. Remember that? Now, Radakovich may have had nothing to do with that, but LSU hasn't had a perfect track record either............... Will Curry truly unite the fanbase split that has occurred the past few years? Folks, I'm sorry, but there is only one thing that unites a fanbase - run a clean program and win. Period. If we don't win and clean up our recent "messes", neither of these guys will unite anything...................... There are just a lot of questions that I'm not sure have easy answers.

Bottom-line....... You have a young but experienced candidate for the job skills required and you have an older, less experienced candidate as the sentimenal favorite because he's an alumni. Truthfully, I don't think we can go too wrong either way............... on one condition. If Bill Curry gets hired, we better darn well have an experienced administrator as his right-hand man. I don't know anyone in the current admin, but let's face it - we have had more problems the last 4 years than anyone wants to bring up, so they aren't getting it done. If Curry just takes over the current admin group, then I'm going to have that nagging feeling in the back of my head - is something happening right now that's going to screw up our chances 5 years from now. I have that feeling now. I want it to disappear.

In a one-on-one choice, winner take all, I give the nod to Radakovich. If Curry has a good "right-hand man", then I can buy into his choice as well. Stay tuned - should be interesting.............

One last note - hiring Radakovich will take MAJOR courage by Clough. I'm sorry, but I'm sick of hearing about "influential older alumni". I know money talks, but the safe move by our President would be to hire the guy that all the "big money" wants. If Curry fails, he can throw it right back in their face and tell them to shut up and let him do his job now. If he steps out and hires Radakovich, Clough is going to eat dirt publicly if he doesn't work out. I have a strong feeling Clough wants Radakovich, so we'll see what happens................It is also important to note that not all older alumni like or want Bill Curry. That is certainly a generalization, although it is certainly a vast majority.

Ok, I lied - one last note. This decision is a heart / head thing. Almost any Georgia Tech fan or alumni deep in his heart likes Curry as the choice. But any sane person using their head can see that Radakovich is a better choice. So what's better - heart or head? I say go with the head, but what do I know.

Tech AD hunt gets down to two | ajc.com

Tech AD hunt gets down to two ajc.com

Interesting difference in choices - the older alumni former coach and the young non-technie up-and-comer. Seems like it will be hard to go wrong either way.

Who would you chose? Vote in the new poll in the right-hand column.

Monday, February 20, 2006

Hoops - Dickey versus Smith

I watched most of the replay of the game, only to find out my "TIVO" (actually Moxi) did not record the last 3 minutes of OT, even though I told it to stop recording 30 minutes late. Ouch.

Anyhow, I have one interesting point to discuss. I didn't see anyone talking about Ra'Sean Dickey's mid-range jumper making a stronger appearance against Maryland. I have to tell you, it's a good looking shot and even when he misses, it's usually pretty close. Nice form, nice arc - I like what I see. It's an element of his game I wasn't really expecting. All-in-all, I have to say that Dickey's offensive game has really developed this season and he seems to have conquered (for now) whatever mental lapses he was going through.

On the other side of the lane, there's Jeremis Smith. Our new AJC beat writer (doing a nice job by the way), referred to Jeremis as the "requisite garbage man". Honestly, that's not far off. He has some nice post moves and his patience on the pivot foot usually causes defenders to commit letting him score. However, his jump shot just looks bad. Sorry, I don't know any other way to put it. It looks so awkward, and it's obvious that this is a part of his game that his actually been dwindled down since entering college. Funny, because Smith was known as having a decent jump shot in high school. I just don't know where it went.

So you have Dickey developing a mid-range game as a bit of a surprise and having success with it. On the other side you have Smith, who's game is turning into a blue-collar clean-up one.

What do you think about what you've seen from their games? Has Jeremis Smith tapped out his potential? Where do you think we'll see his game go next? What about Dickey? Where do you see his game developing?

Hoops - Jarrett Jack / Chris Paul Mention

Article on Chris Paul with this mention about Jarrett Jack, as the two hung out recently:

(photo: Nate Billings for ESPN)

Perhaps that was never more evident than Tuesday night, when Paul chilled with Portland rookie and former ACC counterpart Jarrett Jack. The two NBA infants swapped stories about the first four months of their professional lives, discussing everything from the right way to address a referee ("Don't ever call him Mr. Ref," Jack explained) to Kobe's brilliance ("I remember when he had 19 in the first quarter on us and I was like, 'Speedy, we gotta do something. He's on pace for 76,'" Paul said.). In between, they ogled a pair of pink, purple and green pastel Nike Air Force Ones in Paul's living room while watching Duke hammer Wake Forest, Paul's alma mater.

But when it came time to talk about their lives in the league, things couldn't have been more different. While Paul lives in Oklahoma City with his brother, Jack lives in Portland by himself. "And it's lonely," he said. "You get so bored you can't stand it."

While Paul has become not only the featured guard but also the featured player on his team, Jack is fighting for playing time with three other guards, Steve Blake, Juan Dixon and Sebastian Telfair. While Jack, who played at Georgia Tech, is a cross-country flight away from home, Paul is only a couple of hours from North Carolina.

Even during Wednesday night's game, a 102-86 Hornets victory, a stranger could see the difference in the NBA lives of the two rookies. Paul drives the lane and draws a hard foul -- and his four teammates are there to help him up. Jack drives the lane and draws a hard foul -- and he walks to the free throw line without a teammate saying a word. Or even patting him on the back.

"When you stop to think about it," Chris says. "A lot of it is luck. It's just the way it worked out. I was blessed."

The Miss

Beesball Team Goes to 6-0

Alright, the beesball team is now 6-0. Murmers of starting pitching concerns should be somewhat quieted after Jacket pitchers only gave up 2 earned runs to Kennesaw in a 3-game series. Tim Ladd got his first collegiate start and made the best of it, going 5 shutout innings for the win. Story here. Keep it up boys.

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Hoops - Ladies Get Verbal from 6'7" Center

Nice recruiting effort by nabbing a 6'7" center also being sought by LSU, GA, MD, Auburn. Jasmine Duffy.

Jasmine Duffey, a 6-foot-7 center at Jonesboro High, has committed to sign with Georgia Tech's women's basketball team during the spring period. Duffey, the tallest girls player in the state, chose the Yellow Jackets over Maryland, Georgia, LSU and Auburn. The all-stater has averaged 10 points, 10 rebounds and eight blocks this season. "They did a great job of recruiting her," said Alvin Duffey, Jasmine's father. "It seems to be a good fit and great opportunity. She grew up on the south side of Atlanta, and besides, Georgia Tech is a great school."

Saturday, February 18, 2006

Hoops - Jackets Lose a Heartbreaker..... Again

Didn't actually see the game, but I monitored it on my cellphone. I chose to help serve at our church's 1st annual wild game supper. About 400 other people thought it was an outstanding night of quail, duck, venison chili and wild boar. A win sure would have capped things off nicely for me personally but it was not to be. When I saw the final score of 87-84 in an overtime loss to Maryland, my heart sunk. But it wasn't one of those sinking feelings of despair. It was my heart feeling for these kids who just seem to be playing their hearts out and just can't piece the puzzle together. I could use all the cliches in the world, but they won't help. A loss is a loss. Get over it and move on. I'll watch the game on Sunday if I have time, but keep you chins up gang!! Story here.

Football - It's Coachspeak Folks

The AJC had an article toning down any thoughts of a completely revamped offensive scheme. However, here's what I say - don't believe it. The answer lies somewhere betwixt and between the lines. First of all, this article was based on an AJC reporters visit to an alumni meeting where Patrick Nix spoke. There were high hopes about Nix revealing our new offensive plans, but the truth is he gave the audience mostly coach-speak - which is just what Coach Gailey would want. You think the staff is going to reveal our offensive plans now and tip-off Notre Dame in their own preparations? Having said that, I fully expect the changes to be more significant than the article indicates. So stay tuned, don't get frustrated............ yet. Let's see what the staff has up their sleeve in spring ball..............

Football - For Recruiting Fans

Ok recruitniks - a great website to surf - the Georgia High School Football Historians Association. Check out every state "Super 11" or every all state team going back many years. Good stuff here!!!!.................... well, except for the fact that we haven't gotten enough of these talented kids on the flats.

Hoops Recruiting - Zach Peacock & Javaris Crittenton

Zachary Peacock had an incredible playoff game the other night, scoring 23 points, grabbing 21 boards and blocking 4 shots and grabbing 4 boards. His team beat Northwestern and are a couple of games away from the state final.

Meanwhile, Javaris Crittenton helped his team through the first round of playoffs with a strained calf. He scored 26 pts, had 9 assists and 5 steals as his team won.

Hoops - New NIT Rules Could Favor Jackets... or not

The NIT hoops tourney just changed their rules. On the plus side for the Jackets, you no longer have to have a winning record to get in. In the past you had to be .500 or better. That could play a factor as the Jackets are the only ACC team under .500. However, there's another change that could actually hurt our chances at the same time. There are 31 conferences that have champions that are NOT invited to the grand-daddy NCAA Tourney. All 31 conference champions will be invited to the NIT, which means that 31 of the 40 total slots are already filled, leaving only 9 "at large" NIT bids. The door is opened, but only a little........... Story here.

Friday, February 17, 2006

Hoops - McDonalds All-American List

Well, the McDonalds Website mistakenly posted the McDonalds All-American team on their site a week early, then they took it back down. But it was there long enough to confirm that both Thaddeus Young and Javaris Crittenton were named to the team. Interestingly they list JC as a SG...................CONGRATS!!!

No. Name Pos. Hgt. Wgt. High School, State (Original Hometown) College
5 Earl Clark SF 6-9 220 Rahway High School, NJ (Rahway, NJ) Louisville
11 Mike Conley PG 6-1 170 Lawrence North High School, IN (Indianapolis, IN) Ohio State
2 Javaris Crittenton SG 6-5 195 SW Atlanta Christian Academy, GA (Atlanta, GA) Georgia Tech
22 Wayne Ellington SG 6-4 185 The Episcopal Academy, PA (Wynnewood, PA) North Carolina
43 Gerald Henderson WF 6-5 190 The Episcopal Academy, PA (Blue Bell, PA) Duke
1 Tywon Lawson PG 6-0 190 Oak Hill Academy, VA (Clinton, MD) North Carolina
21 Vernon Macklin C 6-9 225 Hargrave Military Academy, VA (Portsmouth, VA) Georgetown
50 Greg Oden C 7-1 260 Lawrence North High School, IN (Indianapolis, IN) Ohio State
3 Scottie Reynolds SG 6-1 185 Herndon High School, VA (Herndon, VA) Oklahoma
20 Lance Thomas PF 6-8 200 St. Benedict’s Prep, NJ (Scotch Plains, NJ) Undecided
34 Brandan Wright PF 6-9 200 Brentwood Academy, TN (Nashville, TN) North Carolina
33 Thaddeus Young SF 6-8 215 Mitchell High School, TN (Memphis, TN) Georgia Tech
Head Coach Doug Lipscomb, Wheeler High School (Marietta, GA)
Assistant Coach Marc Carver, Wheeler High School (Marietta, GA)


No. Name Pos. Hgt. Wgt. High School, State (Original Hometown) College
00 Darrell Arthur PF 6-9 220 South Oak Cliff High School, TX (Dallas, TX) Undecided
15 D.J. Augustin PG 6-0 180 Hightower High School, TX (Fresno, TX) Texas
34 Chase Budinger WF 6-8 200 La Costa Canyon High School, CA (Encinitas, CA) Arizona
2 Demond Carter SG 5-11 170 Reserve Christian School, LA (Laplace, LA) Baylor
4 Sherron Collins PG 5-11 195 Crane Technical Prep High School, IL (Chicago, IL) Kansas
14 Daequan Cook SG 6-5 200 Dunbar High School, OH (Dayton, OH) Ohio State
3 Kevin Durant WF 6-10 205 Montrose Christian School, MD (Suitland, MD) Texas
35 James Keefe PF 6-8 220 Santa Margarita Cath. High School, CA (S. Margarita, CA) UCLA
32 Spencer Hawes C 7-0 230 Seattle Preparatory School, WA (Seattle, WA) Washington
30 Brook Lopez PF 7-0 245 San Joaquin Memorial High School, CA (Fresno, CA) Stanford
21 Robin Lopez C 7-0 245 San Joaquin Memorial High School, CA (Fresno, CA) Stanford
22 Jon Scheyer SG 6-6 180 Glenbrook North High School, IL (Northbrook, IL) Duke

Football - New Coaches Everywhere

Ok, a lot of this has been known, but many of the announcements are out and official.

1. We have a new tight ends coach - Johnson "Jeep" Hunter, who has been at U of Memphis the last few seasons coaching the nations leading rusher D'Angelo Williams. Nice resume and seems like an excellent get. He played ball at Catawba College before a knee-injury ended his career. He has a strong recruiting background in the southeast (GA and FL in particular) and we certainly need that.

2. Charles Kelly has been named as the new Special Teams Coordinator. He comes from Nicholls State, where he was the defensive coordinator. His defenses were in the top 20 in Div IAA, so he has some pretty strong credentials. He has an outstanding reputation as a recruiter. In case you were wondering, he is an Auburn grad, played football there and there are Patrick Nix ties here. They are both Auburn grads and they both coached together at Henderson State.

3. Geoff Collins has been named Director of Player Personnel. Collins is a familiar face to many Techsters as he coached the tight ends back in 1999-2001. Collins has a reputation as a fantastic recruiter with a strong attention to detail. He will direct Tech's coaching clinics, camps and events as well as manage on-campus recruiting efforts. Collins was the defensive coordinator at his alma mater Western Carolina. That program led the nation in pass defense last season and in the top 18 nationally overall in Div IAA. His defensive squads had tremendous success while he was there. He's a native of Conyers GA and understands recruiting and what Georgia Tech is all about. Just an outstanding get here.

4. Jon Tenuta has been named "Associate Head Coach". I guess when you make one of the top assistant coaching salaries in the nation with your newly inked deal, you need a better title. I have no problem with this.

4. Giff Smith will be the new "Recuiting Coordinator". Many of the hardcore followers of recruiting believe Smith is the staff's best recruiter, so this makes some sense.

So what grade do you give this new group? Well, based on resumes I would have to give a solid A-/B+. On recruiting, this should significantly improve the recruiting efforts. This group seems to all have strength in the recruiting arena, particularly in the southeast.. Coach Gailey has recognized the need to recruit stronger and has made changes to do just that. In fact, look for the national recruiting efforts to narrow down a bit as they focus in a stronger way in-state and on the surrounding states. In terms of on-the-field coaching, Gailey just brought in 2 defensive coordinators with top 20 IAA defenses and a running back coach who has worked with the nation's leading rusher. That's pretty strong if you ask me.

Overall this injects a good bit of hope for the future of Georgia Tech football. Nobody likes to end a season on a sour note, but this should add an extra level of excitement going into spring, not to mention the prospect of an entirely new offense. I'll have more on that later.

Football - Making Alumni Proud

Everytime I see this story I have to re-post it. It is such a great historical story of Georgia Tech student pride and it makes me honored to be an alum.

Though college and professional football today are as integrated as any big city, the gridiron wasn't always that way. Bob Grier was the only black player on Pitt's team that season, and only a few northern universities fielded integrated football squads.

It was an unwritten rule that all-white football teams from southern schools would not risk being defeated by teams with black players, which is probably what Georgia Gov. Marvin Griffin feared when Pitt took on Georgia Tech in the Sugar Bowl.

Before the game, Griffin issued a public statement as ill-informed and bizarre as the institution of segregation itself, claiming "the South stood at Armageddon," and swearing to not "make the slightest concession to the enemy in this dark and lamentable hour of need."

Grier's white teammates had already gone on record supporting their teammate, promising to skip the Sugar Bowl appearance altogether if Grier, a star fullback and linebacker, could not play.

And in one of the more inspiring and unexpected moments of the whole civil rights era, Grier watched as thousands of white students at Georgia Tech took up his cause. In the days before the game, they staged protest marches in support of Grier, burning Griffin in effigy and at one point nearly storming his residence before being turned away by Georgia National Guardsmen.

"It was incredible to see all this support and when we finally went down to play, the white players from Georgia Tech let me stay with them because the hotels where the visiting teams stayed didn't allow blacks. I'll never forget how nice people were to me," said Grier, who served in the Air Force before returning to Pittsburgh in 1966.

Though Pitt lost the 1956 Sugar Bowl because of a controversial pass interference call against Grier, a look at any college football roster today shows that it was Grier and his teammates who really won that day.

So while we're all whining and complaining about how we can't run a motion offense in the half-court set, let's remember our brothers and how they were really making a difference.

Where are they now - Chris Bosh

Wow, talk about some incredibly kind words about NBA All-Star Chris Bosh. Please, for those of you who are bitter that the young man left after one season - GET OVER IT! He did the right thing and you would have too. And it benefits this school for him having been here. Don't forget about recruiting benefits of seeing a Georgia Tech guy that left early and is being showcased in the NBA All-star game.

Check out the article and some of these quotes:

"We found out about him because he was such a great student. We went to see him primarily because he had very good grades," Hewitt said in a phone interview from Atlanta. "And then once we got him into practice we kind of realized: this guy is different.

"You could see right away that he had not only special talent, but he had a very special work ethic in how he approached the game and how he wanted to become the best."

None of this surprises Hewitt, who says Bosh is the perfect package of smarts, talent and a good attitude.

"He's unbelievable," said Hewitt. "It's rare to find such an all-around player. He's a good student, he's a good person, he's a great player, he works at his game, he's humble. I don't care what field you're in, it's rare to have a person that has that combination."

And while people around the NBA rave about Bosh's wide-ranging talents, Hewitt says they've always been there, he's just constantly improving on them.

"I remember one game we played and the team was pressing us and I had him bringing the ball up the court," said Hewitt. "A fellow coach, a friend of mine called me and said, 'Either you're a genius or you're crazy. How do you have a 6-10 freshman bringing the ball up the court? Don't you realize that every NBA team will see that?"'

While the all-star selection is a well-earned honour, Bosh won't be one to rest on his laurels, and as Mitchell told him last week, the next step is to make the Raptors a playoff team.

"You know what he looked at me and said? He was like, 'Coach, just keep me humble, stay on me, keep pushing me, keep me humble, keep (me) focused on the big prize,"' Mitchell told reporters.

And check out how Chris Bosh is trying to make a difference off the court:

While Bosh continues to lead the Raptors on the court, he's also quietly making a huge difference off it, through his Chris Bosh Foundation.

With a mandate to promote education, social enrichment and athletics in youth, Bosh runs a book club and mentoring programs in Toronto, and recently opened the Chris Bosh Learning Centre in south Dallas, a resource centre for students stocked with computers and study materials.

Hewitt has travelled to Dallas the past couple of off-seasons to work with Bosh on his back-to-school events, where the Foundation provides everything underprivileged kids need for back-to-school, from school supplies to haircuts to scholarships for SAT preparation courses.

Bosh and his cousin Adriane Mayes started the foundation during his one season in college. Mayes, who has a Masters degree in business administration, shares a Toronto condo with Bosh and runs the business side of his foundation.

Did you read that closely? He and his cousin started the foundation while he was IN COLLEGE. I find that hard to believe, but if it's true then wow! Well, wow either way. He's a special talent. He's a special young man and Georgia Tech was better off for having experienced his game even if it only lasted one truly up-and-down season.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Football - Tenuta Gets Contract Extension

Details here, but Jon Tenuta will go from being the highest paid assistant in the ACC to the REALLY highest paid assistant in the ACC................... and worth every penny. Good move!!!

However, note that the contract allows him to leave for another program at any time without penalty.

Hoops - Mark Price an Aussie?

Well, we'll know in days if he accepts the job as the head man for the NBL League South Dragons. This is the team also trying to sign Luke Schenscher.

Hoops - Game Notes from last Night

From a UNC Website - lots of info:

Game story..northcarolina.scout.com/2/499902.html
Locker Room Report..northcarolina.scout.com/2/499970.html
Roy Williams Quotes + Audio..northcarolina.scout.com/2/499947.html
Paul Hewitt Quotes +Audio.. northcarolina.scout.com/2/499959.html
Photos.. northcarolina.scout.com/2/499997.htmlnorthcarolina.scout.com/2/499994.html
Box Score.. northcarolina.scout.com/2/499930.html
Notes.. northcarolina.scout.com/2/499969.html

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Hoops: Day and Night

Jekyl and Hide
Abbott and Costello
Yin and Yang

How does one team go from playing so good one half to playing so bad the next? Well, all you have to do is watch Georgia Tech basketball and you're bound to find out. The Jackets blow a 20 point 1st half lead to North Carolina on the road only to lose by a final of 82-75. UNC Freshman Tyler Hansbrough just goes off, scoring a Dean Center and UNC freshman record 40 points. So what happened?

The Jackets ended the half something like 9-10 from 3 point range. In fact it was only their last 3 point attempt of the half that we missed. Well, the lid shut in the 2nd half. In fact if my math is correct, we were 0-7 in the 2nd half from long distance. Live by the 3, die by it. We died. Now why did that happen? I'll tell you why. UNC decided to start getting hands in faces and making shots a lot tougher. We hit some open looks in the 1st half. They weren't so open in the 2nd half. UNC just shut down the perimeter.... period.

Well, 20 turnovers is almost always a formula for failure. Unfortunately the majority of these turnovers were at crucial moments in the 2nd half. Too many extra opportunites for the Tarholes. How about this - UNC had 20 assists and 13 turnovers. The Jackets had 13 assists and 20 turnovers. Whoops.

Outrebounded tonight 35-28, including 13-6 on the offensive glass. And to sound like a broken record, some of those boards by UNC were at crucial points at the end of the game. We did not do a great job of protecting the glass. In fact, we were outrebounded by 10 in the 2nd half. Let's see. Lots of turnovers, not many assists, missed outside shots, crushed on the glass. The real question is how we kept the score so close at the end. Ra'Sean Dickey ends with 2 rebounds. I seem to remember about 2 from him last game. Need more activity folks on the glass.

Forget about the challenge of getting the ball inside. For most of the 2nd half it seemed like a monumental challenge just to pass the ball to some other player on the outside. How many passes were tipped? How many were ssssooooo close to being tipped? How many times did a guy pick up his dribble only to watch the rest of the team turn their backs and go the other way? The half-court offensive was mostly dreadful in the 2nd half. We just seemed to lose our ability to break down anyone off the dribble. We just seem to go into these funks where just getting the ball to another player is harder than rooting for Bode Miller. The few times we did get the ball in to Smith or Dickey mostly turned out ok. We just couldn't do it enough. No dribble penetration by the guards. Clearly a good strategy against this team is to pressure the guards way out top.

Well, Coach Hewitt talked about how Buck played much better last couple of games by playing fewer minutes. Well, guess what - he looked tired at the end of this one. Minutes? Try 31. It's obvious 25 is about his max.

A-Mo was so hot in the 1st half. On fire. He led all Jacket scores with 22. But he had a 5-8 minute stetch that was key in the 2nd half where he just seemed to be in a zone. No not a "hot" zone. I mean "zoned". Lack of movement and you could see a certain level of frustration getting the best of him. I hate to say it, but he looked like a beaten man the rest of the way.

Lewis Clinch. Hesitant. Tentative. Lewis, please don't underestimate your ability to break people down off the dribble. You've got it man. Use it.

I haven't said a lot about the coaching this season, but I have to. There are too many games where the opposing coach makes adjustments, and we don't counter. Coach Hewitt has not made excuses for his team's play. He has said when things get tough, he has to look at himself. I agree. What exactly is happening when we just forget how to run a half-court offense? Where are the adustments? Why do our guards forget how to handle overplaying defenses? Why are we running out of timeouts with 12 minutes to go? It's like we're completely willing ourselves to a letdown. Oh, no, it's gonna come. It's gonna come......Here it comes....... and there it is.......

Yes, I know we had 31 fouls called against us and UNC only had 16. The truly strange thing was that at the half it was about 24-7 and we had a nice lead. Complain all you want. It wasn't officiating that lost this game. It was composure. It was playmaking. It was coaching.

Folks, the Georgia Tech YellowJackets went into the Dean Center and dropped a 20 point lead on the Tarheels. Yes, UNC is young too, but let's give some credit for that play early. The talent is there. It is absolutely there. They just haven't meshed the individual talent with a higher level of team chemistry and the playbook. Put those things together and watch out. It's crazy to say that this team has as much overal talent as anyone in the ACC. However, I say it's true. I believe it.

Hang with these boys. They'll get it. They're trying. All of the points above are highlighting this game - one game. I tell you though - I like these kids. There is some real character there. Appreciate the struggles they are going through trying to put the pieces together. It will pay off at some point in the future. I really believe that.


Hoops Video of Dunks

Check out video of the 3 great dunks from last game here.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Hoops - Bennerman on Fredrick

NC State's Cameron Bennerman had this to say about Zam Fredrick's performance the other night:

"He had a career night," Bennerman said. "We're all entitled to one of those."

Excellent point Cameron. Excellent point. Couldn't have happened on a better night.

Hoops - Using Stats for Real

There is a popular saying that "stats are for losers". While this is sometimes true - like trying to make sense of what happened in a game by reading the box score - there are some real applications of stats that can make a differece. Like this:

"[Assistant] Coach [Peter] Zaharis broke down my shot chart from [3-point range], and I see what they're talking about," Fredrick said. "Once you see it as a player on film, then you believe it.

"Seeing that you shoot 45 percent [on your 3s] on the inside-out, 29 percent on the ball reversal and 11 on stop-and-pop ... you stop shooting the stop-and-pop. You try to get more of the ball reversals and the kickouts."

Makes perfect sense to me. Detailed breakdowns on player tendencies and success rates under certain scenarios. I wonder what other type statistical tools the staff is using to find the hot spots.

Speaking of tactics, what about the mental side? Check out Paul Hewitt's recent comment about "pressure" to win that some of our players were feeling:

ewitt chuckles and proceeds to manage his players' psyches by suggesting they don't have psyches to manage.

"These are college kids playing basketball. I read Jeremis' [Smith's] comment about pressure [in the newspaper after the FSU game]," Hewitt said. "I said [to the players], 'Look, you don't have pressure. My mom used to tell me all the time when I was growing up, 'Pressure's having a big family and a small paycheck.'

"That's pressure. You've got all your meals taken care of, you're a college kid living in Atlanta, Georgia, playing in the ACC. I don't want to hear that there's pressure. Give me a break. Any pressure you have is self-imposed. It's like not studying for a test. That's pressure you put on yourself. You come out . . . and don't put velocity on passes, you're putting pressure on yourself."

Just another outstanding example of Coach Hewitt trying to ground these young men and keep their perspective. Great stuff.

Looks like a new Assistant Coach

No official word, but you don't resign from your current job if you don't already have another one lined up. Seems like we have our new special teams coach - Charles Kelly.

Head football coach Jay Thomas announced Monday that defensive coordinator Charles Kelly has resigned to pursue the special teams coordinator position at Georgia Tech.

"Coach Kelly did an outstanding job during his four-year career at Nicholls State University," commented Thomas. "He was a vital part of us capturing the Southland Conference Championship this past season, and will be sorely missed by this coaching staff, and especially the players."

AD Search - Mizzou AD Not coming

Per Missouri AD Mike Alden:

"I'm not going to Atlanta," Alden told the AP.

So take him out of the AD Search. Quite frankly, I can't imagine that he was a serious candidate for that job. Do we want a guy that has hired someone who got into major NCAA trouble for recruiting violations? I don't care if he was a K disciple or not. Ok, so Alden can raise cash, but can he create a vision and and ethic? Just as well. Move on. Nothing to see here....................

Monday, February 13, 2006

Hoops - Jeremis Smith's Sister, Journalist

Jeremis Smith's sister, Jerin, wrote this journal entry in the Dallas Star / Telegram and mentioned this to say about watching GT / BC in Boston (they were on an official visit to Harvard U):

While I was in Boston, Georgia Tech was in town playing Boston College. Normally, I get to see my brother Jeremis play when they are at home in Atlanta. It was quite an experience to see how they were treated on the road. My brother was not too popular with the BC fans. Surprisingly, he voiced his support for Harvard as well. He really caught me off guard. I know he didn't realize it, but his words of encouragement meant the world to me.

This week I also received my school transcript and am proud to say that I have raised my grade-point average and class rank. My GPA is now a 4.1, and I am ranked No. 9 in a class of 202. It took a lot of hard work, and without the help of excellent mentors, coaches, instructors, genuine friends and family, I never could have achieved any of this.

Nice going Jerin.

Hoops - JJ Redick - Spread the Love

..... not. Ran across these two articles. The first is an absolute calling out of Coach K by Gregg Doyel. Check it out.

Krzyzewski has a passion and a love for college basketball, and for six days and 20 hours each week, he's a wonderful ambassador. But for those other four hours, his four most visible hours -- two for this game, two for that one -- he's awful. He's noxious. He is, in fact, an eroding influence on the sport he helped build.

Yes, I'm saying it: For four hours each week, Mike Krzyzewski is bad for college basketball.

Then it is an article on JJ Redick, who evidently Bobby Cremins thinks is a better shooter than Mark Price and Dennis Scott.

"He's definitely one of the greatest players ever to play in the league. ... Right off the top of my head, I would say top 10 or top 15. ... He might be the best shooting guard ever in the league." -- Bobby Cremins, ACC TV analyst and former Georgia Tech coach

Please Coach. If you really want that AD job, don't start having "senior" moments like this. Sorry, while I do respect JJ's game, he is NOT one of the top 10 best players to ever play in the ACC. No way, no how!!! Being an offensive marvel does not make for a well rounded game. Sorry. Is he one of the top 10 offensive players in the league's history? Getting closer but no cigar. Is he one of the top outside threats in league history? Bingo. Now you're in the ballpark.

Hoops Recruiting - Illegal Diaper Gifts

Interesting article talking about recruiting kids younger and younger. This from Coach Hewitt:

Georgia Tech coach Paul Hewitt subscribes to HoopScoop and similar online recruiting services. He said he uses them to help evaluate high school players -- not middle school kids. "Pretty comical, isn't it?" he said, when asked about ranking children.

Hewitt said he doesn't waste his time "looking for the next great sixth-grader."

"It wouldn't make any sense because there's just too much time between fifth or sixth grade and the time a player is a high school senior," Hewitt said. "Kids mature at different rates -- not just physically but with their basketball skills."

Hewitt said rankings can turn a great middle school player into an average high school player.

"It's part of the reason some players in the U.S. are less fundamentally sound than in years past," he said. "They play to the rankings and try to influence the rankings by scoring a lot. Meanwhile, the rest of their game suffers. It's kind of like studying for a test rather than studying to learn."

Speaking of Coach Hewitt - here's a great article on Paul Hewitt with some stats from his college career. As usual he's very humble and self-depracating:

His alma mater currently ranks 20th in Division III men's basketball with a 17-3 record.

Hewitt's career as a player, however, was not quite as successful as the current Cardinals team. He averaged highs of just 4.7 points and 3.8 rebounds per game as a senior and speaks the truth about his playing career.

"I was so bad they moved the program back to Division III," he joked.

Then he speaks to student-athletes:

"My biggest concern when I see a conference like [the UAA] is how much study time does it take away from the kids," Hewitt said. "Student-athletes are quite often criticized and stereotyped for not being interested in school. I think if you put a nonathlete in a schedule a student-athlete runs, I think they'll have a much greater appreciation for how much harder student-athletes work. … You really learn how to manage your time as a college basketball athlete."

Then he wraps up with a nice comment on the purpose of collegiate athletics.

"The primary purpose of sports, in my mind, is to bring all of a school together," Hewitt said. "If run the right way and marketed the right way, I think it can be a real galvanizing point for any school at any level, [Division] I, II or III."

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Hoops - Jackets Beat the Pack, Break Streak

Just an outstanding afternoon as the Jackets take down their nemesis, the NC State WolfPack by a final of 71-68. Just a nice overall team effort against a tough team. So what was the difference?

Statistically, we reduced turnovers (15 total). However, the key was that the Pack only scored 7 points off those turnovers. Meanwhile the Jackets scored 14 pts off 19 Pack turnovers. For some reason this game our turnovers just didn't result in easy fast breaks. Most occured under the basket or near the baseball and were dead ball to's.

This team showed some nice aggressive offense tonight. They attacked the basket, had a nice mix of inside and outside shots and did a decent job of ball reversal. There was a short stretch in the 2nd half where it looked like they were going to fall apart, but they pulled themselves back together and kept it going.

Fredrick was the man tonight, scoring a career high 22 pts on 9-12 from the floor. Throw in 4 rebounds, 6 assists and only 1 turnover and you're looking at quite a game. Oh yeah - he only played 23 minutes. No kidding...... and he played in foul trouble through most of the game. He hit 2 critical shots down the stretch to lead the Jackets to the victory. However, Coach Hewitt commented in the post-game show that a key was Buck playing fewer minutes. He was more fresh throughout the game........ Even Buck commented in the post-game show that not starting allows him to see how the team is flowing and it is easier to see what they need to he can come right in and contribute. He really seemed genuine in his statements there........... Say what you want, but this team is as much "Buck's" team as anyone else's.........

Free throws, charges, loose balls, hustle, ball reversal. The team did more of those things today than we've seen in awhile. It will take that level of effort for 40 minutes for this team to win more games, but they're certainly capable of it.

Well, the Pack shoots 51% overall and 50% from long range, so how can you say it was a good defensive effort? Well, I saw the game and overall it was good. NCST just managed to hit a lot of long, tough shots. Yes, there were a handful of breakdowns that led to typical backdoor layups and dunks - but not like usual. I was pretty pleased with the level of defensive intensity today.

I mentioned Buck already. Dickey had 14 but only 2 boards. Jeremis Smith was mauled much of the day and ended with 7 pts / 6 boards. How about Theodis Tarver. He plays 28 minutes, scores 4 pts, 4 boards, 1 block, 4 assists, 1 steal and only 2 to's. A very solid night for the senior.............. Lewis Clinch was key today. He made some critical hustle plays and ended with 11 pts (4-7), 3 boards, 3 assists and 1 to.

So, which dunk was better? Was it Mario West's high flying throw-down? Was it Sean Dickey's left turn throw-down in a crowd? Was it Jeremis Smith's baseline monster jam? My take - Mario's dunk was the most athletic of the night - hands down. Dickey's was the most physical, as he spun off his guy to left and threw down a monster flush in traffic. But Smiths's was the nastiest, meanest, message dunk of the night. I saw the net crying he threw it down so hard. I mean wow!!

Great win for the team. They stood together and beat one of the best teams in the ACC. Now it's on to North Carolina Wednesday night. GO JACKETS!!!!!!

Saturday, February 11, 2006

Beesball - Jackets win Season Opener

The Jackets hold off a late charge by Georgia Southern and win their season opener on a wet Saturday 13-9 - story here.. One nice stat - 7 different players had an RBI. Nice distribution. GO JACKETS!!!

Football News - Changes Coming

Rivals is reporting some very interesting stuff on their premium board. They have asked that it stay premium, so I will only let you know what has been reported on the free public boards.

1. There are big changes coming to Chan Gailey's offense
2. A new offensive scheme will be put in place (Scout board posted the spead offense)
3. Patrick Nix could be calling all the plays
4. Here's the front-runner for the new special teams coach - Charles Kelly.

There is a lot more but I will respect the site and only post what shows up on a public board.

On a side note, it looks like Tenuta won't be getting the Michigan DC job, as they will announce Ron English as their guy.

Football Recruiting Class

From the AJC - check out our class of 2006:


abernero Defensive tackle

South Aiken HS (Aiken, S.C.)

• Ht., Wt.: 6-2, 265
• The dish: "My type of school. My type of defense," Anderson says of Tech, which offered him a scholarship his junior year. When he's not rushing passers (six sacks as a senior) or pumping iron (his favorite pastime), "Big Ben" enjoys fishing "... and more fishing," four-wheeling, cranking up the Kenny Chesney and watching cartoons. He expects to make an impact by his sophomore season.

boyer Tight end

Moody HS (Moody, Ala.)

• Ht., Wt.: 6-3, 235
• The dish: In 10 years, he hopes to be "in the NFL with my degree and a supermodel wife." For now, Barrick will settle for a chance to compete for a spot on the depth chart a season after hauling in 48 catches for 789 yards and 12 TDs. Barrick, who picked Tech over Colorado, Duke and Vanderbilt among others, says his style reminds some folks of Jeremy Shockey's.

boyer Linebacker

Central HS (Pickerington, Ohio)

• Ht., Wt.: 6-4, 210
• The dish: He took the most unconventional path to Tech, committing last May, graduating from high school a month later, sitting out the fall while working part-time at a Pickerington pizza restaurant, enrolling at Tech in January and signing Wednesday. A high school safety who could play linebacker in the ACC, Bowen piled up 118 tackles and three interceptions his final season.

boyer Linebacker

Central HS (Pickerington, Ohio)

• Ht., Wt.: 6-4, 210
• The dish: He took the most unconventional path to Tech, committing last May, graduating from high school a month later, sitting out the fall while working part-time at a Pickerington pizza restaurant, enrolling at Tech in January and signing Wednesday. A high school safety who could play linebacker in the ACC, Bowen piled up 118 tackles and three interceptions his final season.

boyer Defensive end

Greenbrier Christian Academy (Chesapeake, Va.)

• Ht., Wt.: 6-0, 230
• The dish: Three things that sold Bray on the Jackets: an offense that sends its fullbacks out in pass patterns; a coaching staff he hit it off with; and a Saturday night trip during his official visit to Fogo de Ch‹o, the Buckhead Brazilian steakhouse. "That made my day," he says. Wednesday was a big day at Greenbriar Christian, which never had a Division I-A football recruit. And to think it was Tech's track coaches who first contacted VirginiaÕs reigning shot put champ.

boyer Wide receiver

Central HS (Macon)

• Ht., Wt.: 6-0, 180
• The dish: Welcome to 21st century recruiting. When Earls knew he wanted to be a Yellow Jacket, he zapped a text message to Tech assistant Giff Smith, who fired back a text message saying how happy he was. "It seemed like [Tech] wanted me the most," says Earls, who picked Tech over Auburn and Clemson. Rivals.comÕs 71st-ranked receiver nationally, Earls caught 12 TD passes as a senior.

boyer Running back

Irving HS (Irvin, Texas)

• Ht., Wt.: 5-6 1/2, 179
• The dish: Yellow Jackets fans can only hope Evans pans out as well as the last Lone Star State tailback who picked Tech, a guy named P.J. Daniels. In three seasons, Evans piled up 6,349 rushing yards and 65 TDs, enough to garner scholarship offers from Iowa State, Minnesota, North Carolina and Oklahoma State. Rivals.com rates him the sixth-best all-purpose back nationally. He's enrolled at Tech and will practice this spring.

boyer Linebacker/running back

Fairfield Central HS (Winnsboro, S.C.)

• Ht., Wt.: 5-10, 201
• The dish: The surprise of last year's class was a lightly recruited defender from a small Palmetto State town who wowed recruiters at the North Carolina-vs.-South Carolina Shrine Bowl. Could Griffin be this year's Vance Walker? "He's a real fast, aggressive football player," Fairfield coach Reginald Kennedy says. Walker, who Kennedy says was clocked at 4.45 seconds in the 40-yard dash, picked Tech over Furman.

boyer Linebacker

Hawkinsville HS (Hawkinsville)

• Ht., Wt.: 6-2, 210
• The dish: A big believer in Chan Gailey & Co., Hall says Tech "looks to be a top contender for a national championship in the upcoming years." That was reason No. 2 for picking Tech over Ole Miss and Purdue, sandwiched between location and potential playing time as a freshman. Future engineering major's likes include: "Forrest Gump," Bill Romanowski and eating cereal -- "with a fork."

boyer Quarterback

Redan HS (Stone Mountain)

• Ht., Wt.: 6-4 1/2, 172
• The dish: "I have a good opportunity to start in later years," says the slender QB who goes by "Wook." Ingram was sold on Tech right away, not even visiting Duke or Tulane, the runners-up for his services. He piled up close to 1,300 yards and accounted for 13 TDs. The only quarterback in the class, he's rated 25th nationally at his position by Scout.com, 35th by Rivals.com.

boyer Safety

Dunwoody HS (Dunwoody)

• Ht., Wt.: 6-3, 195
• The dish: Jasper's as good a saxophonist as he is a safety, playing the instrument in Dunwoody's jazz, concert and symphonic bands. On the field, he had 62 tackles as a senior, earning scholarship offers from Tech and Wake Forest. His dad, who ran track at Stanford, tried to sell him on the Cardinal, but Jasper had his mind set on Tech after a one-on-one meeting with defensive coordinator Jon Tenuta. "I'd heard horror stories, but he's cool," Jasper said. "He's just intense."

boyer Running back

Decatur HS (Decatur)

• Ht., Wt.: 6-0, 215
• The dish: You won't find a bigger Tech fan in this class, maybe even this town. "I grew up on Tech football," says Kelly, who picked the Jackets over Arkansas. "So I already feel as if that is where I belong." A speedster who once harbored Olympic dreams -- "I used to like running track more than playing football" Ñ Kelly averaged 8.3 yards per carry and piled up 17 TDs his senior season.

boyer Cornerback

Key West HS (Key West, Fla.)

• Ht., Wt.: 5-11, 160
• The dish: It isn't every year that recruiters flock to the Florida Keys in pursuit of a blue-chip prospect. But Marius had them making it to Margaritaville, where he says he earned a reputation as a cornerback who'll "lock you down." Twelve schools offered scholarships; Tech beat out Spurrier U. and Duke in the end. "My mother wanted me to pick a school with good academics. I wanted a school that was winning. I just combined the two," he said.

boyer Wide receiver

Auburn HS (Auburn, Ala.)

• Ht., Wt.: 5-10, 175
• The dish: Two things Tech got out of trips to Auburn last fall: a stirring upset of the Tigers in the season opener, and a speedy athlete who could play a number of positions for the Yellow Jackets. Reese was a high school quarterback but was recruited by Tech, UAB, Southern Miss and others as a receiver and return man. He threw for 1,300 yards and ran for another 1,000 as a senior.

boyer Wide receiver

West Laurens HS (Dublin)

• Ht., Wt.: 6-4, 215
• The dish: Georgia wanted him as a tight end. Tech recruited him as a wide receiver. Advantage, Jackets. "I wanted to play wide receiver," Thomas said. "... [Tech] told me they wanted me real bad and that Calvin [Johnson] will probably be leaving after next year and they'll need another wide receiver." Rivals.com's Jeremy Crabtree says Thomas could be the "jewel" of the class, especially given that he's new to wide receiver and has room to grow.

abernero Linebacker

Naperville North HS (Naperville, Ill.)

• Ht., Wt.: 6-3, 225
• The dish: "Georgia Tech gives me an opportunity to better myself in many different fields," says the future business major, the brainy son of a chemical engineer and a risk analyst. That's why the hard-hitting linebacker doesn't mind leaving home for college (Boston College was his second choice). Tongo, who had 110 tackles and 12 sacks as a senior, also likes the chance to play for "a defense that's so highly touted."

Friday, February 10, 2006

Chris Bosh - All-Star

In some desparately needed good news for Jacket fans, Chris Bosh has been named to the NBA all-star team in his 3rd season. Congrats!!! Here's a nice article on the former Jacket.... Some very high praise for the young talent in that article.

It is exciting that arguably one of the top future prospects in the NBA is Bosh and possibly THE top prospect in MLB is Mark Teixeira. Go Jackets!! Way to represent.

Where are they now - Ken Whisenhunt?

He ain't with the Oakland Raiders, that's for sure. After interviewing with them, HE said "no thanks" and will stay with the Steelers for now.......

Tenuta - Headed to Michigan????

There are rumors circulating that he might become Michigan's next DC. Hard to believe personally, but here are the links from Kevin, one of our readers:

Hey Scott, thought you might want to have a look at some of these rumors going on about Tenuta. mgoblog speculated (emphasis on speculated) about Tenuta becoming the DC at Michigan (everyone wants Herrmann outta there). Then, everydayshouldbesaturday ran a little piece on it, citing mgoblog. mgoblog returned fire stressing that this was all just rumor-mill stuff. Nonetheless, it is interesting/funny to hear what they have to say about Tenuta and the GT football program.

Here is the original mgoblog post: http://mgoblog.blogspot.com/2006/02/rumor-du-jour.html
Here is the EDSBS post: http://www.everydayshouldbesaturday.com/?p=1736
And the second mgoblog post: http://mgoblog.blogspot.com/2006/02/unverified-voracity-what-part-of-un.html

The funny part is, all of this happened today...and it all may mean nothing today, because now there are rumors that Ron English (a guy who all Michigan fans really want to be their DC, but was supposed to take a job with the Bears, but now may not be doing that...) will be DC after all. (see: http://mgoblog.blogspot.com/2006/02/ron-english-may-possibly-be-defensive.html).

So...did you follow all that? Kinda confusing, I know...hopefully you can make sense of it.Take it easy,

Hey Kevin - thanks for that. There is no doubt that this team can ill afford to lose Tenuta in combination with losing Reis / Wilkinson / Davis / Henderson / etc / etc. Without some type of jolt from the offense we're not going to win more games even with a great defense - we've proven that 4 years in a row.

Stay tuned........

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Hoops - Scoring leaders and team success

Interesting comment about national hoops scoring leaders and their team's ability to reach post-season success:

History reveals the consequences of too little balance. In the last three decades, two players among the top 10 scorers in the nation have reached the Final Four. Georgia Tech's Dennis Scott, whose 27.7 average was ninth in 1990, lost a national semifinal. And Indiana State's Larry Bird, second with a 28.6 average in 1979, lost in the national title game to Heathcote's Michigan State Spartans.

Now that's some select company. Cool for 3D!!

Hewitt to shake things up

Well, the starting lineup for FSU is going to look different. In comes Mario West, Lewis Clinch and Theodis Tarver. Out goes Buck Fredrick, D'Andre Bell and Jeremis Smith. Yes, Jeremis Smith. A bit of a surprise, but Smith has not played well during the losing streak, consistently forcing things inside. It's like he and Ra'Sean Dickey decided to swap their game. Could we please have more than 2 guys playing at the top of their game at one time?

Of course, how important is the starting lineup? In my mind, not a lot in terms of on-the-court play. Here's what it is - a message. Coach Hewitt sent that message to Ra'Sean Dickey and he seems to have really turned up his mental game. The starting line-up is about motivation and the mental side of the game. Smith is going to get his regular minutes - count on it. But now he's been called out.

Stay tuned...........

Hoope - Thaddeus Young to Play in Jordan Classic

Thaddeus Young, aka BadThad, has been chosen to play in the Jordan Classic. Surprise surprise, Duke and Carolina had 5 of their recruits chosen between them. Congrats Thad!!!

The recruiting Game

Check out this article about the football recruiting services on the web. Interesting read for sure. I guess we are somewhat naive to think that these recruiting services are totally unbiased. They have bills to pay and they're a business. Tom Lemming, who is quoted in the article, has a checkered history of being a complete Notre Dame homer, even though he presents himself as an unbiased talent evaluator. He's not. As always, insert large grains of salt into mouth before putting all your stock into where our recruits ranked. Coaching is still the #1 factor.......... bbbbuuuutttttt, let's not kid ourselves - you have to get the talent. I kind of see the raw talent level of a recruit as the base, and the ability to "coach up" a player, to develop him physically, add strength, teach technique, fit a system, etc, all contributes to on the field success. But if the base is low, then it your theoretical max top end is lower. The fact that Chan Gailey's classes can't seem to crack the top 30 is no indication that Tech will fail on the field. Quite the contrary. It just means Coach Gailey and staff have a lot more work to do to achieve that success.

Monday, February 06, 2006

Hoops - Let's Talk

Ok, everyone pretty much agrees that the two missing ingredients in this year's hoops team are a true point guard and team leadership. Ok, the first one is easy to get. You need a playmaker. You need a guy who can distribute, control the gameflow, set the tone. While Buck Fredrick has done an admirable job for a guy who is not a natural PG, he has not been the answer to success for this team. I have no doubt in my mind that with Jarrett Jack this is an NCAA tourney team.

Having said that, what about leadership. That phrase is getting thrown around a lot. There is no doubt that upperclassmen provide a steadying influence. They have been through the wars before. But in terms of what a leader actually does on the floor, what are we missing? Are we missing someone to grab everyone for that huddle on the floor. Are we missing that person to put fingers in people's grills and tell them to get in gear? Are we really just missing playmakers to keep the mental focus high through an entire 40 minutes?

What's your opinion? The PG thing is pretty clear. But when people say this team does not have "leadership", what does that really mean to you? Discuss amongst yourselves.

Friday, February 03, 2006

Recruiting - Meet the Walk-ons

..... or "preferred" walk-ons as they're known:

More and more Gwinnett players are choosing to go the preferred walk-on route.
As of Wednesday's signing day, Norcross' Luke Snider, Dacula's Josh Warren and
Duluth's Iain Vance had decided to take that path at Georgia Tech,

Baseball - Rangers Top Prospects - Mike Nickeas

Update on the former Jacket catcher Mike Nickeas:

The Skinny
The Rangers drafted Nickeas out of Georgia Tech primarily because of his skills defensively. He is somewhat comparable to a Taylor Teagarden, with less offensive ceiling and slightly less polished on the defensive end. However, that’s not exactly a bad thing, seeing that Teagarden was just about as polished defensively as a catcher can get coming into the MLB draft. Still, Nickeas impressed at the plate pretty much from the beginning in 2004. He went on to hit .288/.384/.494 for shortseason Spokane and earned himself a promotion all the way up to AA Frisco, skipping two whole full season minor league levels.

This year, Nickeas struggled at the plate all season while battling some injuries. It is hard for the Rangers to get extremely disappointed in his performance at the plate in 2005. After all, what did they really expect when sending a 22 year old catcher with a questionable bat from shortseason A ball to AA ball? The fact that he remained in AA the entire season despite the massive struggle at the plate speaks volumes to the confidence that the Rangers have in him, especially defensively and handling the pitching staffs.

The Future
Nickeas comes into the 2006 season on a high note after hitting .425 in limited action (40 AB) in the Arizona Fall League. One could say that it was Nickeas’ way of saying not to count him out just yet. Although Teagarden has gotten more hype since being drafted this past season, Nickeas still has the leg up on him with a full season of AA under his belt and with Teagarden being sidelined, or at least slowed, by his offseason Tommy John surgery. Expect Nickeas to start the 2006 season at AA and don’t be surprised if he finishes the season at AAA. There aren’t any catchers holding down the Oklahoma job this season and there won’t be any prospects blocking his route. If he stays healthy, hits fairly well, and continues to excel defensively, he could get a look in AAA. Remember, he only turns 23 later this month.

It is safe to say that Nickeas projects as a backup catcher in the major leagues for right now. His solid defense is sure to keep him on rosters for quite some time, but the question remains as to whether he can consistently get it done with the bat. After all, if Einar Diaz can hold down a starting job in the majors for a few years, why can’t Nickeas get a look?

Tech Updates

Some Tech newsletters for your viewing pleasure:

BUZZ Words

The Sting

Hoops - The Aussies Want Mark Price

The same team that wants to sign Luke Schenscher as their marquee player wants Mark Price as their head coach. No kidding. Check it out.

I'm Back - Sort of.......

Wow, a busy business trip and a guy misses a bit. I didn't cover the loss to Boston College. I didn't cover the loss to VaTech (although you can download the ending of the game here). I didn't cover national signing day (although I'll try to give you a peek at the new signees soon). My apologies - just been hectic to say the least. Monday I'm back out on a plane again for a week in Montreal. Getting a family ready to relocate while simultaneously doing a job and raising 2 kids just means less time for the Jackets unfortunately. Have patience with me though. I'll still have some time here or there to get some stuff up. I actually have a couple of pretty fun things in the works I think you'll like.