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   Welcome to TSLMail #222 - Friday, April 14, 2006    
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   Tech Sports News

Join Cascades Condominiums at Their Tailgate This Saturday

Cascades Pointe Condominiums in Blacksburg is having a big tailgate this Saturday in Lot 2, the same lot as the TSL tailgate. Just look for the big VT flag and the Long and Foster Cascades Pointe Hummer by the Grassy Knoll, near the Southeast corner of Lane Stadium.

Visit and check out the latest project in Blacksburg, Cascades Pointe, a new 96 unit affordable condo conversion development less than 2 miles from the stadium on the BT line, aimed at the savviest of Hokies.

*** NOTE: Cascades Point Condo model units are opening in May! ***

Prices are well below existing market prices -- these condos are priced to sell NOW. First time home buyers, parents, renters, and investors welcome.

  • 1 BR-1 bath and 2 BR-1 Bath units starting out in the mid $80's and $90's.
  • 3 BR-2 batch and 4BR-2 bath units starting out in the low $100's to $120's.
  • Available for start of school 2006.
  • Pool, basketball court, small clubhouse, outdoor cooking areas.

[email protected]
or 540-239-1657

These condos will go fast.

Carroll Dale's Words of Wisdom
by Chris Coleman,

The following passage is from Carroll Dale in the foreword of Legends: A Pictorial History of Virginia Tech football, a good book published in 1986 and written by Roland Lazenby:

“Since I arrived at Virginia Tech as a freshman 30 years ago, the growth in the football program has been phenomenal. The team has moved from Miles Stadium to modern, impressive Lane Stadium. Sparked by great team and individual efforts, the school has added 176 wins and four bowl appearances to its record.

Such progress takes many dedicated people—coaches, fans, supporters, and players. It’s been a team effort. What’s even more remarkable, all this progress has taken place within what some people see as an atmosphere of negatives. Every Tech fan has heard those negatives. Especially the complaints that Blacksburg is a small, rural town with a limited airport and travel facilities. The reason I mention this is that Tech’s rural character is sometimes given as an excuse for an unfulfilling football season.

Yet to me and many of the other athletes who have attended Virginia Tech, that small town atmosphere is anything but a negative. It’s a positive. In fact, many of us might not have come to Tech if we hadn’t visited Blacksburg and found a beautiful school in a beautiful setting.

It seems that in years of success, I hear less about those negatives. That stands to reason. Winning is catching. It makes everything easier. Recruiting. Fund Raising. Planning. Unfortunately, sometimes there’s too much emphasis on winning. In competitive college football, not every season is going to be a peak season.

But every season can be a sound one. What you really need to have a sound program is dedicated people who in times of losing won’t let their emotions tear down what we’ve all worked so hard to build.

If anything has hurt Tech football over the years, it has been that impatience among supporters. Sometimes they’ve failed to recognize that it takes years of development to build a football program. That’s especially true in this modern age of big-business athletics.

The fickleness of fans has always irritated me, as a player and a supporter. That’s why I’d like to see a little more stability and larger numbers in the support group for Virginia Tech football. The success of the program depends on it.

As you read the following pages, I hope you acquire an understanding of the background and tradition of the program. I also hope your thoughts turn to the future of Tech football. We should dream the big dream for our school and set high goals. Then, maybe one day we’ll achieve them.”

Carroll Dale had a lot of advice in this foreword that still rings true today. One in particular is applicable to the Beamer Bowl Era. Dale said not every season could be a peak season, but every season could be a sound one. Since 1993, Virginia Tech has put a sound team on the field every year. They have peaked in 1995, 1996, 1999 and 2004, as well as 2000 and 2005. Their worst seasons have featured only seven or eight wins. So if the Hokies don’t win their division in the ACC or go to a major bowl game, don’t worry. There are peaks and valleys in every program.

As a fairly regular follower of recruiting, I’ve noticed that many people bring up the subject of Blacksburg being a rural town and being located nowhere near a big city. According to Carroll Dale, those statements have been made in previous eras of Tech football as well. Some things never change. It’s interesting to see it being addressed by a former player, even if the recruiting process of today is much different than it was in the 1950s.

One final thought…Dale’s thoughts were penned in 1986, when Lane Stadium seated about 50,000 fans, had no enclosed end zones and featured a small press box. Dale described that version of Lane Stadium as “modern” and “impressive”. Virginia Tech football has come quite a long way in 20 years.

Directors’ Cup Standings

Virginia Tech has drawn a lot of criticism for their lack of a good overall sports program. For years the Hokies have lagged low in the Directors’ Cup standings. The Directors’ Cup is given annually to the school with the best overall athletics program. Since the 1993-94 season, Virginia Tech has finished in the top 60 just once.

Directors' Cup Final Standings
Year Points Rank
1993-94 141.5 90
1994-95 81.5 129
1995-96 147.5 91
1996-97 152 92
1997-98 70 96
1998-99 90 86
1999-00 260.5 63
2000-01 278.5 63
2001-02 168 105
2002-03 157 112
2003-04 218 79
2004-05 331.5 58

It’s no coincidence that the Hokies achieved their highest point total and final ranking in 2004-05, their first year in the ACC. From 1999-2001, Tech reached the rank of 63, largely due to two top 10 finishes in football.

The Hokies’ second year in the ACC has been very impressive. Tech has already set a school record for Directors’ Cup points with 403.5, with spring sports still to come. Virginia Tech is currently ranked 22nd in the Directors’ Cup standings. That places them fifth among ACC teams. UNC, Duke, Florida State and Maryland are all ranked higher than the Hokies. Boston College, UVA and NC State are other ACC schools that rank in the top 50.

Each of Virginia Tech’s teams is getting more and more ACC caliber players each year. The Hokies have always struggled in recruiting in the Olympic sports in the past because they were in the middle of ACC country and the top recruits wanted to play in the ACC. ACC programs were also funded better than Virginia Tech in the past. Now those recruits can play in the ACC at Virginia Tech.

Many of Virginia Tech’s top athletes probably would not be at Tech were it not for ACC membership. The latest men’s basketball recruiting class is a good example. The Hokies pulled in four recruits who are all ranked in the national top 100 by various services. That wouldn’t be possible at Virginia Tech without ACC membership. As time passes, VT’s overall sports program should continue to get better. Pass - Your Ultimate Ticket to Hokie Sports!

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-- Will Stewart Updates From the Past Week
Inside the Numbers: Rating the 1997 Recruiting Class
April 13, 2006
Back in early 1997, the Hokies were coming off four consecutive bowl bids, including two trips to Bowl Alliance games. VT had whipped Texas in the Sugar Bowl following the 1995 season and had played Nebraska close for three quarters in the Orange Bowl. Tech had won 10 games in each of the two previous seasons, and things were looking very good in Blacksburg.

Appleton-Miller's Signing Rounds Out Strong 2006 Class
April 13, 2006
Virginia Tech announced the singing of highly-touted basketball prospect Tyrone Appleton-Miller to a letter of intent on Wednesday. Appleton-Miller originally committed to the Hokies back on January 5, and signed on the first day of the Spring signing period. He completes a four-member 2006 recruiting class that should keep the Hokies competitive in the ACC for years to come. Here's a summary of the players that comprise the 2006 class.

Barnes May Visit VT
April 13, 2006
Virginia Tech is one of over 30 programs to offer a scholarship to Richland Northeast (Columbia, S.C.) wide receiver/safety prospect Mark Barnes. Tech is under consideration here and is hoping Barnes will be able to take in the Hokies spring game this weekend.

Hughes Drawing 1A Attention
April 13, 2006
5-11, 175-pound Kempsville (Virginia Beach, VA) defensive back recruit Trenton Hughes performed pretty well at the combine in Durham on March 26th, running the 40 in 4.53 seconds and showing off a 33-inch vertical leap. Those numbers were solid, but Hughes feels he can improve upon them in future combines.

Scrimmage Report: Backups See Some Action
April 13, 2006
Wednesday's scrimmage, the last one before Saturday's Spring Game, was a chance for the backups to get some playing time. Read about a play that former high school teammates Sean Glennon and Eddie Royal pulled off that whipped the crowd into a frenzy, and read the first impressions of Devin Radford as a ballcarrier. All that and more is in our latest scrimmage report.

Hokies Sign Appleton
April 12, 2006
BLACKSBURG, Va. -- The Virginia Tech men's basketball program has announced the signing of Tyrone Appleton to a national letter of intent for the 2006-07 academic year.

Bowden Commits for 2008 Class
April 11, 2006
Even though Shamarr Bowden will not arrive at Virginia Tech until 2008, that doesn't mean head coach Seth Greenberg was any less excited about Bowden's verbal commitment to the Hokies this past weekend. A 6-3, 160-pound shooting guard prospect, Bowden is the first player to commit to Tech for the 2008 class.

The Road to Signing Day 2007: Notes from the Shrine Bowl Combine
April 11, 2006
TSL recruiting analyst Chris Horne and I attended a recruiting combine this past Saturday at Butler High School outside of Charlotte, North Carolina. Ever wondered what a combine is like? We break down some of the mystique around combines with a look at the Butler combine. We've got info on the handful of kids in attendance who are interested in Tech or who are being recruited by Tech. (The short and skinny is that the Hokies aren't making much contact with the kids we talked to.) Check out all this and more in this latest installment of "The Road to Signing Day 2007".

Shrine Bowl Combine Recruiting Reports
April 11, 2006
183 players from around the state of North Carolina turned out to Butler High School in Matthews for a Shrine Bowl combine. Headlining the group as far as 2007 class Division 1A prospects were concerned were Butler standout Ryan Houston; Anson County stars Trinton Sturdivant, Michael Bowman and Barquell Rivers; Vance defensive back prospect Justin Byers and West Stanly defensive back Quantavius Sturdivant. TSL was able to catch up with several of these kids to discuss the event as well as the recruiting process, among other things.

Scrimmage Report: Defensive Backs Impress
April 8, 2006
The Hokies held another scrimmage in Lane Stadium on Saturday afternoon, and one of our insiders was there to see it. Don't miss what he had to say about the defensive backs! And are you wondering which quarterbacks stood out on Saturday afteroon? This scrimmage report will cover that, and more.

The Road to Signing Day 2007: Early Offers
April 7, 2006
Question: Is Virginia Tech slow to make early scholarship offers, and do most of the Hokies' early scholarship offers come in-state? April (ten months before signing day) is an ideal time to ask this question and examine the answer. As the Commonwealth of Virginia is beset by college football programs trying to lure the top players out of state, the early figures indicate that the Hokies are going out of state strong so far this year, particularly in North Carolina and South Carolina.
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