- Dick’s Sporting Goods lays off 478 PGA golf pros
- Senators: Cease-fire must allow Israel to defend against rockets, tunnels
- Sierra Leone doctor fighting Ebola catches disease
- Iraq welcomes Russian fighter jets, helicopter gunships into ISIL fight
- John McCain laments: Obama’s ‘self-pity … is really kind of sad’
- GOP offer to fix VA gives $10 billion in emergency funds
- Paul Ryan offers to repair U.S. economic safety net with a single grant stream
- Kim Jong-un builds bond with Putin: $250M Russia-backed addition to key port opens
- Pope Francis meets Meriam Ibrahim, a Sudanese woman sentenced to death
- Detroit porch shooting trial: Suspect says he didn’t know gun was loaded
Hokies gear up to take on triple option of Georgia Tech
Question of the Day
BLACKSBURG, Va. — Virginia Tech always ends its pre-practice huddles with a little question-and-answer session among coach Frank Beamer and his players. Beamer calls out a topic, the players bellow the response.
This week, the Hokies will do more than mention the Yellow Jackets, their opponent in the Sept. 3 season opener. They’ll get to work preparing for Georgia Tech’s unusual schemes on both sides of the ball.
The Jackets use the triple option of coach Paul Johnson on offense, a dizzying array of fakes and misdirection combined with physically punishing blocking.
Defensively, former Virginia coach Al Groh coordinates Georgia Tech’s 3-4 scheme, giving a different look from the majority of teams that base their defense on a 4-3 look.
That’s why Beamer said his Hokies will turn their attention to their first opponent this week, a week earlier than normal.
“When you think about it, it probably shouldn’t be that hard,” junior defensive end James Gayle said of the Jackets’ offense. “‘Oh, they’re going to run the ball. We’ve just got to stop the run.’ But it’s not like that. They have so many options, trick plays. Sometimes you don’t even know who has the ball. They just go for 3 yards, 3 yards, t3yards, and then they break one.”
A year ago, the Hokies beat Georgia Tech 37-26 in Atlanta, holding the triple option to 243 rushing yards, well below its season average of 316.5 and equaling its second-lowest output of the season.
The coaches and players watched tape of that game Monday.
Virginia Tech’s defensive coaches said success against the triple option begins with having a scout team capable of simulating both the technique and the speed of the Yellow Jackets’ attack.
Graduate assistants started that process Monday morning, getting the scout team acclimated with the triple option.
They have walk-on safety T.J. Shaw, a redshirt freshman, playing quarterback for the scouts, emulating the moves of Georgia Tech quarterback Tevin Washington.
Shaw played quarterback in a similar offense at Franklin County High School.
“It’s a tough offense,” defensive line coach Charley Wiles said. “One person breaks down, and they’ve got a big run on you. They keep coming back, and it’s physical and they’re chopping.”
• Read more about the Hokies at TimesDispatch.com
The subsidies are a hit with patients who don't exist
- Hamas rejects Kerry's call for cease-fire; Fears grow others could join fight against Israel
- 'We're coming for you, Barack Obama': Top U.S. official discloses threat from ISIL terrorists
- Algerian plane diverted due to storms, second aircraft: 116 missing
- Obama's empty tough-talk: Gun prosecutions plummet on his watch
- Obama says public not familiar enough with issues
- Conservative groups decry Democrats' 'war on women' tactic
- House panel OKs resolution to sue president for Obamacare delays
- NAPOLITANO: What if our democracy is a fraud?
- Astronaut shares 'saddest photo' from space: Bombs bursting over Israel, Gaza
- EDITORIAL: Obamacare enrollees faking for freebies
Obama's biggest White House 'fails'
Celebrities turned politicians
Athletes turned actors
20 gadgets that changed the world
Fighting in Iraq