Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Hokie Blog Round Table

Howdy SuperFans,

furrer4heisman over at one of the premier Hokie blogs, Gobbler Country has organized a Hokie bloggers round table for spring practice. Over the next few days, TSF, and various other Hokie blogs will be answering questions that Gobbler Country has solicited. Look for our posts beginning tonight. All three of us here will give each question a stab independently. furrer4heisman will post a consensus once all blogs involved have weighed in.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Umm, isn't it called Virginia TECH?!

Much has been made recently of the 40 yard dash times run by the Hokies football team in Winter Max testing. Historically many Hokies have run much faster times at Tech then they did in their official 40 yard dash times at the NFL Combine. The reason for this is that the times recorded at Tech are done by hand whereas the Combine uses electronic timing. This discrepancy makes no sense to me.

Virginia Tech is an engineering school (and a damn good one if I do say so myself). With the simple technology needed to electronically record 40 yard dash times, I can't figure out why the coaches don't set it up so that the players truly know where they stand against where the NFL is going to want them to be. 

To show how easy it is, I simply downloaded the videos off of Beamerball.com of the players running the 40 yard dash. The videos are at 30 frames/second and all I did was count the number of frames from when the player started his run to when he crossed the finish line and then converted that to a time. Since the view isn't from a camera stationed at the finish line, there is still a margin of error of 0.033 seconds (1 frame), but these are far more accurate than some hand timed stopwatch estimate. The school could do better for these players at minimal cost and I'm sure the engineering school would love to get involved. Seems like a no-brainer. 

Well, off of my soap box and on to the data. Here are the times for each player that had a video showing their run from start to finish (Josh Oglesby and Darren Evans were in the middle of their run in the videos so I couldn't determine their actual times).

Jarrett Boykin   4.63

Xavier Boyce                   4.60

Ryan Williams           4.50

Chris Drager                   4.97

Jake Johnson           4.60

Tyrod Taylor                   4.57

Barquell Rivers           4.60

Vinston Painter           4.97

Nic Becton          5.10

Blake DeChristopher   5.03

John Graves            4.87

Kwamaine Battle   4.83

Greg Boone          4.67

Dorian Porch            4.43

Taco Thompson             5.10

Stephan Virgil           4.47

Ed Wang                   5.00

Nekos Brown           4.70

Cody Grimm              4.57

So what jumps out at you? First of all, keep in mind these are all from one run. It could have been a good run or a bad run for that particular player. For example, Tyrod Taylor had a bad start and was weaving all over his lane during his run and he still clocked a 4.57 but it's obvious he is faster than that. I'll also tell you that Greg Boone is going to have an amazing career in the NFL. A man that size (285 lbs) running the 40 in 4.67 seconds is going to be wealthy. Ryan Williams also looks like the real deal. As a redshirt freshman already running it in 4.5 seconds flat, he easily has another 0.05-0.10 seconds to shave off of that over the course of his college career.

Something crazy is that both Barquell Rivers and Jake Johnson at LB ran the 40 yard dash as fast or faster than Xavier Boyce and Jarrett Boykin who are WR's. By the way, all we're hearing out of Blacksburg about Jake Johnson is that he's an absolute BEAST. He received Super Iron Hokie as a redshirt freshman and I can tell you he sure looked scary in the video of his 40. 

The last thing that really stunned me was Cody Grimm's 40 yard dash time. People say he's too small but at 4.57 and with his football sense, I honestly think he may get a shot in the league. It might just be on special teams, but if I know Grimm, that'll be fine with him as long as he's playing in the NFL.

It's too bad there's no video of Rock Carmichael. I doubt he ran a 4.26 but it would be nice to see how fast he did run. Either way, I sure am stoked about spring football getting started and kicking me out of my depression about the basketball team.


Sunday, March 08, 2009

Tech Basketball

So now the Hokies have to win the ACC tournament to make it to the NCAA's after losing 63-53 to Florida State. It was a perfect demonstration of the season-long theme: contain Malcolm Delaney and you will beat Virginia Tech. No other Hokie this season, besides A.D. Vassallo, stepped up when Delaney was off or hurt.

Keep in mind that against UNC, Duke and Florida State, needing to win only one of those games to lay a legitimate claim to an NCAA bid, the Hokies not only didn't win any of them, but they held the lead for exactly ZERO SECONDS in all three games. In the 2nd half of all three games the Hokies pulled to either a tie or within one possession of taking the lead and every single time, they failed to get that lead. 

The most talented team in Virginia Tech basketball history only has one more shot to reach the big dance - win the ACC tournament in Atlanta. They certainly have the ability, but they'll have to show more heart then they did the entire season.

As for my heart, it's ripped out.