News With Commentary by TSL Staff

Monday, August 12, 2002
by Will Stewart,

Hokies Hold First Scrimmage

The Hokies held a scrimmage in Lane Stadium Saturday. The scrimmage was highlighted by a 60-yard TD run by Kevin Jones, an interception by DeAngelo Hall, a 17-yard catch and run by true freshman Mike Imoh, and a clothesline tackle of Imoh by fellow true freshman Jimmy Williams.

Quarterbacks Grant Noel and Bryan Randall split time with the #1 offense and #2 offense, with each one taking a turn with each. Marcus Vick played with the #3 offense and the #2 offense.

Noel was 5-7 for 42 yards with one very nice pass to Shawn Witten on a down and out that he placed perfectly into Witten's hands for a 24-yard gain. Randall was reported as being 2-5 for 20 yards by, but had him at 3-5 for 22 yards. He threw one interception on a deep ball that he left slightly short; DeAngelo Hall had the coverage, and although a perfect pass might have been completed, there's no question that Hall, who was trailing the receiver slightly, made a great leaping grab to get the interception.

Meanwhile, Marcus Vick was 3-6 for 28 yards. The freshman showed a good arm and good accuracy, but he fumbled twice and was limited by working with the backup offenses.

On the very first play from scrimmage, in a six-game series featuring the #2 offense against the #1 defense, Jones took a handoff up the middle, and finding congestion, bounced it to the left side and broke it down the sideline for a 60-yard TD. Three players were in pursuit, led by Willie Pile, and none of them could catch Jones, who turned on the juice to go the distance untouched.

In that same series, Jim Davis and Brandon Manning both sacked Randall. Davis beat his man and swallowed Randall up just as Randall was setting up to pass, and on Manning's sack, he blitzed untouched from the whip linebacker position. He approached Randall from the blind side and would have flattened him, had Randall not been wearing a yellow no-contact jersey.

On the next series, Noel completed his 24-yarder to Witten, and Carter Warley had a 32-yard field goal that he crushed down the middle of the North goal post.

Vick's first turn at the controls produced Mike Imoh's most impressive play of the day. Vick hit Imoh in the flat, and the tiny running back/wide receiver juked a cornerback completely out of his shoes and took the ball past him up the sideline, turning a short catch into a 17-yard gain. Warley ended the series with a 47-yard field goal to the South end zone that would have been good from at least ten yards farther out.

The fourth series produced the interception by Hall. After his leaping grab, Hall juked, jived, and generally jitter-bugged his way to about a 10-15 yard return.

On the next series, Noel made a nice play, scrambling away from the rush and throwing a 24-yard sideline completion to Terrell Parham on the run, but Noel was 3-5 yards over the line of scrimmage when he threw it, negating the play. On the very next play, Noel threw a swing pass to Imoh, who was nearly decapitated by Jimmy Williams on a clothesline tackle in the backfield (for a great picture of it from, click here).

Jon Mollerup finished the series with a 47-yard field goal that was not as strong as Warley's but was easily good.

The remaining three series were captained by Vick and fourth-string QB Will Hunt and produced no memorable plays, other than two Vick fumbles, one of which occurred when he and the running back turned two different ways on a handoff.

Other Scrimmage Notes

  • The Hokies tried defensive end Jim Davis at tackle for six plays. The Tech coaching staff is looking at the possibility of using Davis, who is undersized for the tackle position at 251 pounds, in obvious passing situations.
  • Ronyell Whitaker played for the second team defense in the scrimmage, and former safety Vince Fuller worked at cornerback with the first team. Fuller is currently listed as a co-first-teamer with Whitaker at the boundary cornerback position.
  • Warwick High School coach Tommy Reamon, who coached Michael and Marcus Vick in high school, was present at the scrimmage and spent time talking with Tech receivers coach Tony Ball, among others.
  • Prior to the scrimmage, after he came out of the tunnel and was walking down the sidelines on his way to start warming up, Vick received the following advice from a smiling Cols Colas: "Watch your back, baby. Watch your back." Grinning, Colas tapped a finger on the maroon shell of his helmet and said, "You can't see through this part of your helmet." Vick the true freshman did the wise thing and moved along without replying. Just a little friendly banter between the QB and the designated headhunter on the defensive line…
  • Stats from the scrimmage: Jones 59 yards rushing on 2 carries; Lee Suggs 18 yards on 2 carries; Warley, field goals of 32 and 47 yards; Jon Mollerup, one FG of 47 yards; Nic Schmitt, 9 punts for 43-yard average; Bobby Peaslee 5 punts, 45-yard average; Imoh, 2 receptions for 14 yards and 3 rushes for 15 yards; Jimmy Williams 4 tackles; Mikal Baaqee 2 tackles, both for loss; one sack each by Jim Davis, Lamar Cobb, Brandon Manning and Andrew Fleck.

Other Football Notes

  • The Advance Auto Parts Hokie Hotline kicks off tonight. The 90-minute radio show, which originates from the Gobblertown Tavern in Christiansburg, Virginia, is hosted by Bill Roth, the Voice of the Hokies. Fans may attend the show in person, or participate by calling 888-TALK-ISP. The program will continue every Monday night through mid-March from 7-8:30 p.m. and can be heard state-wide on the Virginia Tech ISP Sports Network (click for a station listing) and via the internet at
  • The Hokies are ranked #16 in the preseason AP poll, which was released over the weekend. The Miami Hurricanes, of course, are #1. Click here for the complete poll.


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