FOURTEEN AND A HALF. That’s the spread for tonight’s Virginia Tech-UVa game, and it’s enough to make you wonder how many minutes of this one will actually be worth watching. In the previous 10 meetings between these in-state rivals, the largest spread on either side was Virginia by 8 on Dec. 5, 2010. UVa ended up winning that game by three.
TECH CARRIES A SIX-GAME LOSING STREAK INTO TONIGHT, while Virginia is trying to build a resume worthy of NCAA tournament inclusion. Jerry Palm writes today that the Cavs aren’t even on the bubble yet given their six losses to teams outside the RPI top 100. Obviously, they can’t afford to fall at home to their slumping neighbors.
YOU CAN BET ERICK GREEN IS DRINKING GATORADE AS YOU READ THIS. After his bout with dehydration on Saturday, the Tech star shouldn’t plan to get a breather tonight. “Man, I’d like to be able to [rest] him more,” Tech coach James Johnson says, “but especially when you’re playing a team like Virginia, where you’ve got to manufacture points and … we don’t have guys right now that are putting the basketball in the hole like we need them to, it’s very hard to take him off the floor.”
Game’s on ESPNU at 7 p.m.
EX-HOKIE GETS PREP JOB: Martinsville High School hires former Tech standout Orion Martin as its head football coach. The Bulldogs are coming off a 1-9 season. Martin’s a good dude; best of luck to him.
VICK STAYS IN PHILLY: The Eagles restructure Michael Vick’s deal, giving him a one-year contract that could be worth as much as $10 million. New coach Chip Kelly praised Vick’s competitiveness, adding: “He still has that skillset. He can still throw the football.”
LAZOR’S TAKE: Doughty catches up with former UVa offensive coordinator Bill Lazor, who left this offseason took a job with the Eagles. He rejects the notion that Mike London ever “meddled” with his offense. “I don’t know that I would ever use that word because, to me, it has a negative connotation,” Lazor says. “To me, it was discussions. Even when he didn’t like what I had to say, that was my responsibility. Then, he decides.”
SURPRISE SIGNING: The Indians land free agent speedster Michael Bourn, giving him a four-year, $48 million deal.
AT LEAST THERE’S STILL MODERN PENTATHLON: The IOC drops wrestling for the 2020 Olympics. I’ve never been an Olympics guy and probably never will be, but isn’t wrestling the kind of sport that’s MADE for the Olympics? I like this line in the story: Modern pentathlon combines fencing, horse riding, swimming, running and shooting – the five skills required of a 19th century cavalry officer. In other words, totally modern.
NAME THAT TUNE
I got a job making money for the man
Throwing chicken in the bucket
With the soda pop can
Puke green uniform on my back
I had to set it on fire
In a vat of chicken fat
I leaped on the counter
Like a bird with no hair
Running through the mini mall in my underwear…