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|Welcome to TSLMail #197 - Friday, October 14, 2005||
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Haynes Jeep/Chrysler and Haynes Outdoor Marine!
TSL is pleased to welcome Haynes Jeep/Chrysler and Haynes Outdoor Marine as new sponsors. Whether you like driving, boating, or both, Haynes can take care of you, so please give them a look if you're in the market for a boat or a car -- and tell them that you saw their ads on TechSideline.com.
If you can get your hands on a copy of the 2005 Virginia Tech football media guide, flip to the records section and check out some of the statistics you see in front of you. The Hokies have had some good quarterbacks over the years, but Virginia Tech has never been known as a pass-happy school. Nevertheless, there have been some interesting passing stats posted since 1952 (thatís as far back as the media guide goes), and this TSLMail will point some of them out.
For the first amazing statistic, letís begin with Virginia Techís starting quarterback in 1952 and 1953, Johnny Dean. Dean had a career touchdown-to-interception ratio of 2 to 23Öthat is not a typo. Not exactly All-American numbers. He also completed less than 50% of his passes. Check out the overall numbers for those two seasons for Dean:
The truly amazing thing about those statistics is not how horrible they were, but the fact that the Hokies actually managed to win some games. VT went 5-6 in 1952 and 5-5 in 1953. In those two years, the Hokies lost a total of five games by seven points or less. How much do you want to bet that some Johnny Dean interceptions played a major factor in all of those losses?
Billy Holsclaw passed for 1,013 yards in 1958. He was Virginia Techís first quarterback to throw for over 1,000 yards in a season. He would also be the only Virginia Tech quarterback to throw for that many yards until Don Strock in 1971, meaning that just one Tech quarterback in 19 years (1952-1970) passed for over 1,000 yards. Remember, the coaches in that time period were Frank Moseley and Jerry Claiborne, whose teams were never known as aerial juggernauts.
Another eyebrow raiser is the number of passes that Tech quarterbacks completed. No Hokie signal caller completed more than 70 passes in a season until Don Strock. Billy Holsclaw completed exactly 70 in 1958. Billy Cranwell, Techís leading passer in 1954, completed all of 18 passes (out of 37 attempts).
The Hokies made up for lost time when new head coach Charlie Coffey arrived in 1971. He brought with him a modern passing game and had a future NFL quarterback in Don Strock to run it. Coffey never won a lot of games (12 in three seasons), but Strock did complete a lot of passes. From a yardage standpoint, Strock had the two best seasons of any Tech quarterback. Take a look at these numbers:
While he did complete a lot of passes and put up a lot of yards, Strock still was able to find the time to throw 47 passes to the opposing team during his career (46 in the years listed above, one more in a previous season). His 47 career interceptions ranks first (or last, depending on how you look at it) on Virginia Techís all time list. Will Furrer tried to put a scare into Strock by throwing 46 career picks, but he couldnít quite pull it off. Nice try by Will, who was a four-year starter, so he had a lot of opportunities to throw interceptions. Strock only started for two seasons, making his record all the more impressive (or unimpressive, depending on your point of view again).
After Strock graduated following the 1972 season, Charlie Coffey only stuck around for one more year. With his departure, the Hokies didnít have another 1,000 yard passer until Steve Casey accomplished the feat for three consecutive seasons, 1979-1981. The Hokies have had a 1,000 yard passer every season since 1986, with the exception of 1989, when injuries forced the Hokies to play three quarterbacks: Furrer (589 yards), Cam Young (543 yards) and Rodd Wooten (413 yards) season.
Earlier we touched on Johnny Deanís touchdown-to-interception ratio in 1952 and 1953. Letís go to the opposite end of the spectrum and take a look at the best ratios in Virginia Tech history.
In 1996, Jim Druckenmiller threw 17 touchdown passes and just five interceptions, good for a 3.4-to-1 ratio. Al Clark had a very good mark in 1997, throwing ten touchdowns and just three picks, a 3.33-to-1 ratio. Maurice DeShazo was a little better than three-to-one in 1993, with 22 touchdowns and seven interceptions. Thus far, Marcus Vick has them all beat with a five-to-one ratio. If Vick keeps this pace up (and assuming VT makes the ACC Championship game, which is certainly not a lock) he will have 20 touchdown passes and just four interceptions heading into the bowl game.
There havenít been a lot of touchdown passes throughout the years at Virginia Tech. Bryan Randall threw 21 in 13 games in 2004 on his way to ACC Player of the Year honors, and Maurice DeShazo threw 22 in 11 games in 1993. And believe it or not, those are the only two players to throw more than 20 touchdowns in a season for the Hokies. Will Furrer threw 19 touchdowns in 1990, a mark that stands third on Techís all-time list.
As a comparison, look at the final passing statistics across the NCAA in 2004. 31 of the top 99 rated quarterbacks threw for 20 or more touchdowns during the season. Without looking up the stats for any other season, letís just say that about 30 quarterbacks per year throw for 20 or more touchdowns. And to think that only two VT quarterbacks have done it since 1952? Thatís an indicator of the run-first approach favored by Frank Moseley, Jerry Claiborne, Bill Dooley, and Frank Beamer, the four coaches who account for 46 of the 53 seasons spanning 1952-2004.
Marcus Vick has only started for half a season, but he is already moving up in Techís all-time rankings. Vick has thrown for 1,518 yards in his career, which is good for 14th best in Tech history. Assuming that Vick will throw for another 1,000 yards this year, he will rank 12th at the end of the season. If he throws for another 2,000 yards during his senior year, he will rank fifth in Tech history, just behind Maurice DeShazo, but in front of Jim Druckenmiller.
Vick is off to a good start in touchdown passes as well. He has ten on the season and 12 for his career. If he throws another ten this season, and 20 next season as a senior, he will finish his career with 42 touchdown passes. That would rank him fourth on Techís all-time list, behind only Randall, DeShazo and Furrer.
And thatís after missing an entire season because of his suspension. Had Vick played and started in 2004 (not to start another Randall vs. Vick debate, but Vick probably would have started over Randall in 2004), he would be a candidate to break just about every passing record in Tech history.
The Virginia Tech Iraqi Outreach Committee has initiated a program called "Operation Provide Classroom Comfort". The program originally began in 2003 by Major Mark Sherkey and his Field Artillery battery (C/1-377 th FA) in Iraq. The goal of the project is to rebuild schools, transform classrooms into learning environments and provide teachers and students with the tools to facilitate learning.
In the original program, over 2,500 pounds of school supplies were provided for over 2,000 Iraqi students. As words spread about the program, the project continued to grow. Help came in from 26 states. Because of the help that was provided, Maj. Sherkeyís unit was able to develop a good relationship with the local villages.
With the help of Virginia Tech, the project has been reborn. The Virginia Tech Iraqi Outreach Committee was formed on April 28, 2005 and began to plan the effort. With the help of Hokie fans, their goals can be met.
The project will run from October 22 through November 5. There will be a venue for collection at Wal-Mart in Christiansburg, VA for this time period. There will also be seven collection points at Lane Stadium at the Boston College game on Thursday, October 27.
You can help Operation Provide Classroom Comfort by doing any of the following:
Virginia Tech Foundation
To find out more information about Operation Provide Classroom
Comfort, visit their website.
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