Not the people who were in the chat. You brought great questions. But a snafu with our Cover it Live membership resulted in a the chat being limited.
Short version: our account was being switched from Landmark owned to Berkshire Hathaway, so it reverted to a trial version, which had a capacity for participants. I didn’t know this until the chat started. (You’re asleep after reading this paragraph, aren’t you?)
We will have the problem fixed for the next chat. And it will be a triumphant return to get all your Virginia Tech questions answered. I apologize for today’s inconvenience.
In the meantime, I copied and pasted the questions on here. (Had to go through an reverse the order so it read chronologically too.) This a pretty ghetto way to read the chat, but it’ll have to do for today.
12:30: OK, I’m here to answer your Virginia Tech questions. Everybody type carefully. Nobody wants to see anymore injuries.
12:31: While I’m waiting for questions to come in, here’s one from Eric on the blog:
If Coleman can’t play about Alabama and Trey Edwards gets hurt prior to the game, would Beamer consider playing Caleb then suspend him the following game? Or should we just expect LT to run the ball 20 times like last season?
12:32: I’d be shocked, honestly. Frank Beamer doesn’t seem like a coach who would renege on a punishment like that. A suspension is a suspension. Not sure if he’d even be able to circumvent (circrumvrent?) it if he wanted to.
VT moved Mangus back to TB and had Jerome Wright working there last night too. Sounds like they are the contingency plan if Coleman can’t get back.
12:32: Comment From Guest
Any chance Donaldvan Manning will stay?
12:32: Doubt it. He was on the fence before. He was on the fence this year before deciding to leave. Seems like he’s done with VT.
12:32: Comment From Josh
Who is in line to be the starting WHIP now that Vandyke is done?
12:34: Josh Trimble and Derek DiNardo are the next two guys on the depth chart. Both are walk-ons, so I’m not sure if that’s the direction Bud wants to go (we won’t have a chance to talk to coaches again until after the scrimmage tomorrow).
12:34: Comment From Mike
Will RVD ever be able to be the force Bud thought he would be?
Bud is big about getting the best players on the field. It seems like that would be a nickel situation here, although VT is not the deepest group in the secondary here. Would a secondary of Kyle Fuller and Facyson at DB, Kendall Fuller at whip/nickel and Jarrett and Bonner at safety be the best? Possibly.
12:35: If he gets his shoulder right, there’s no reason to think that he can’t. He’s still just a sophomore, having redshirted his first year here. If he comes back 100 percent next year, you’re talking about a full junior and senior season to still make a mark. That’s still plenty of time to do something in his career.
12:36: Comment From Nick
What miracles will need to take place in order for us to have a fighting chance against Alabama?
12:38: Obviously, it’s going to take a lot, given all the question marks surrounding this year’s team.
Most of all, I think VT needs to exploit it’s biggest matchup advantage. And that’s probably on the d-line vs. Bama’s o-line. The Hokies have everyone back, and the Tide is replacing three All-Americans on the line. That’s significant. Bama has a tone of skill guys, but VT has to be able to prevent them from getting going by messing up the operation before it has a chance to start.
That, and I think Logan Thomas needs to have the game of his career.
12:38: Comment From David
How about an update to the depth at the whip position.
12:39: Trimble, then DiNardo, McKinnon played there some before, but he moved to the inside. Not sure if he moves back now.
12:39: Comment From Guest
Nerf gun to your head, who do you think starts game 1 next year at qb? Leal, Hodges or Ford?
12:40: Leal. You’re talking about a fifth-year senior vs. what will be a redshirt freshman and a true freshman. There’s a huge experience disparity there, even though Leal hasn’t played much.
12:40: Comment From Sun Bowl Season Ahead
With all of these injuries going on what do you think of Chris Mangus returning punts instead of K. Jarrett? We need to get the ball in Mango’s hands, he is shifty in space and would be a great PR. We can’t afford KJ to get injured.
12:41: There seems to be a few candidates at punt return right now. Just the other day, I saw Jarrett, both Fullers, Newsome and Willie Byrn taking reps there in practice. I’d assume one of those guys would probably get the job. Jarrett and both Fullers are really integral to the defense, though. I wonder if VT would open them up to injury like that.
Don’t know about Mangus. They might want to get him to focus on RB now, especially if they need him there vs. Bama.
12:42: Comment From Guest
I still can’t get over the fact Van Dyke is done. What happened to turn a seemingly minor problem into one that ended his season?
12:43: I don’t think a shoulder dislocation is a minor problem. It’s just that Vandyke had been through it before, so he knew what the process was.
He said when it happened to his left shoulder, he knew he’d need surgery for it to ever be right. Perhaps he came to that same conclusion with his right shoulder. And if so, better to take care of it now than later.
12:43: Comment From Guest
Have the coaches purchased bubble wrap in bulk for the remaining practices?
12:43: Even more than that. They’re all in those giant Bubble Boy bubbles. I actually think it’s be a great evolution for football.
12:43: Comment From Miles
how does Carlis Parker look at WR?
12:45: New. He’s got good height, seems to run pretty fast. But he’s still getting the technique stuff down, and that might be what holds him back, at least early in the season. Moorehead’s still making sure he has the right foot in front of the other when Parker is lining up. He’s not doing that with other guys right now. But that’s to be expected. I think over time he can be a pretty good receiver, though. Seems to get open right now.
12:45: Comment From Tom: Where are the injuries and lack of depth going to be felt the most? OL or RB or elsewhere?
Shuman was a pretty big blow to the OL. He was working at a couple different spots. And he was a rare veteran in the group. It’s really, really, really inexperienced at tackle right now.
12:47: These latest ones? Probably the OL. Running back could get dicey for the opener, but Coleman will recover and Caleb will be available after the first game.
12:48: Comment From HokiESQ
Which players from ODU should we borrow to replace all of our injured players?
12:48: 18 minutes in, first ODU-related question. Take note.
12:49: Comment From Guest
Any chance that David Prince will see the field this year?
12:49: Possibly, although he’s banged up right now. Not sure exactly what’s wrong, but as a freshman, he can’t miss any reps in the preseason if he wants to play.
12:49: Comment From Chuck
I asked this qusetion of Frank Beamer at a VB HokieClub meeting and he danced around it, wanted to see what you think: With and unproven OLine and Running game, do you forsee more short passing to get Logan on the same page as his recievers early? Sort of a dink and dump, then possibly open up the running game and deep ball
12:50: I think if you do that, defenses will catch on pretty quickly. You’ve got to be able to do it all, run, throw short, throw deep, mix things up, or people will read you like a book. Especially a defense as good as Alabama’s.
12:50: Comment From HokieGal
Any word on where Brooks Abbott will end up?
Have not heard.
12:50: Comment From Matt
Given the recent rash of injuries and the already low preseason expectations, could this be the year that VT actually overachieves when it’s all said and done?
12:52: Well, they’ve accomplished the “low expectations” part, at least from an outsider’s perspective. Can they exceed them? We’ll see. It’s a lot of question marks at once at a lot of crucial positions. And the ACC isn’t necessarily a pushover this year. (And neither are ECU and Marshall, despite what some people say.) I pick VT to go in the 8-4, 7-5 range this year, a modest improvement from last year. But I don’t know if 10 wins are in the cards.
12:53: Comment From guest
what’s the current line on the VT-AL game?
12:53: I saw 18 on some betting sits. I’m sure it’s bound to go up after yesterday’s news.
12:53: Comment From David
What is your first impression of Bucky Hodges, in particular his throwing motion?
12:54: Needs some work. But a lot of true freshmen are like that. I remember hearing about Bryan Randall’s throwing motion when he got here, and he turned into an ACC POTY. There’s a big difference in HS coaching vs. college coaching. TONS of focus on mechanics. I’m sure that’ll be a big thing in his redshirt year.
12:54: Comment From Mike
You think Teller will stay on the OL?
12:56: I think he’s there for now. And that might be an emergency type situation. It might be permanent. I don’t know. But I do know that he was going to redshirt as a DL. This might be a way he can help the team now. It doesn’t necessarily mean he’ll play in games. But one or two more injuries at tackle and VT is really screwed. Best to have a contingency plan in place.
All that said, many of the guys who broke down his HS film say he has everything you’d want in an offensive tackle. Height, reach, nastiness. VT doesn’t have a ton of options.
12:56: Comment From Jeremy
What would be considered a win for the alabama game…losing by only 24..avoiding any season ending injuries? I just can’t see us being competitive with all of the offensive and defensive question marks.
12:58: You don’t want to talk about moral victories. Nobody really likes to hear it. But VT needs to show that it at least has a semblance of what it’s going to do on offense this year. You know the defense will be good. You have a pretty good sense that Logan will be better. Those two things together are a pretty good start. If other guys can come around, VT can be OK. It just can’t let a bad showing the opener linger for a while. Honestly, most teams in college football aren’t going to be able to compete with Alabama.
12:59: Comment From Tyler
Are you hearing anything on who will replace Wisconsin in 2016?
12:59: I have. Not enough to report it, though. If it’s the team I’ve heard about, you’ll all like it.
1:00: Comment From Guest
Last couple of seasons we have been so bad on offense as everyone is well aware of. Was it the coaching staff not preparing the players or is it lack of talent to execute? Is there a notice
1:02: You know, two years ago, VT wasn’t terrible on offense. Logan and Coale and Boykin and Wilson and DeChristopher leading a decent line. That was a decent offense. Not up and down the field great, but it did set some records that year.
Last season was obviously a down year. And I think there are some talent issues that caught up with VT eventually (not having a RB ready to take the reins, OL questions up and down the lineup).
I think there’s a little bit different attitude around this year’s camp. Obviously the coaches are a big part of that. But the roster isn’t very much different. It’s going to take some time for them to recruit guys they think can fit in their systems and it’s going to take a while for the current guys to get a grasp of it. That always happens with coaching changes.
1:03: Comment From ed
will the coaching staff take a second look at walkons from open tryouts?
1:04: Doubt it. Remember, there are roster limitations in August. So even though Tech has a ton of guys out there (it’s permitted 105), that group grows to include more once school starts. I know of a couple guys that will be added to the roster soon who have been around but aren’t on the camp roster. It’s still a full boat.
1:04: Comment From Sean
How has Willie Byrn looked in practice?
1:05: Moorehead said he’s the one guy who hasn’t had a bad day out there, which is saying something. He sounds like a consistent guy who is going to do what he’s going to do, even if that’s not anything spectacular.
He’s 5-10, 170, so he doesn’t have great size. In fact, Loeffler requested a bigger receiver step in for one particular route VT was running in practice. That’s just how it’s going to be. But if he’s consistent, reliable and can catch, he’ll have a place in this receiving corps.
1:06: Comment From HokieGal
You think Charley Meyer will get to play some this fall?
1:07: He’s going to have to. VT doesn’t have a ton of options at WR and Meyer is a guy who the coaches like quite a bit. Runs good routes. Catches the ball. He’s had a hamstring issue in camp he’ll need to get over, but if he does, he’ll get quite a bit of playing time.
1:07: Comment From BmoreHokie
What can you tell us about Trimble and DiNardo? Any hype during spring or off-season on their progress? any achievement awards in the weight room? What should we expect?
1:08: Trimble was second to Tweedy last year on special teams tackles. So the coaches like the fact that he has that kind of ability. Seems like that could carryover to the regular defense.
DiNardo was a guy Bud said had come a long way in the spring, to the point that they were giving him more looks in the base defense.
1:08: Comment From Jeff
Prediction on the season and score of the opener?
I haven’t watched either too closely in practice. I certainly will this Saturday, though.
1:08: I’m going with an 8-5 record including the bowl game
Opener, right now I’m thinking 34-6 Alabama. We’ll see if I change my mind there at all. But I don’t like VT’s chances.
1:09: Comment From Josh
Any detail on Wyatt Teller’s move to OT? I have heard he volunteered for it and it was also to be short term from lack of depth there.
1:09: Yeah, that sounds pretty much like it. VT’s running out of bodies at OT and needs to have a backup plan. Teller played there in HS and wasn’t going to play on D this year. Some think he could be a better OT than DL. We’ll see. He’s way behind on technique stuff at this point, as is expected.
1:10: Comment From Sun Bowl Season Ahead
@ Andy-Prince has an ankle sprain, nothing to big.
1:11: It’s not a big deal, but if it prevents him from getting reps, it is. True freshman need every bit they can get.
1:11: Comment From GJP
Does VT have enough depth at Corner/Safety if Bud decided to put Kendall Fuller or Jarret at Whip/nickel? I know Donovon Riley is there is tookes but anyone else
1:14: That’s the issue. There’s not a ton of depth anywhere on the back end. Manning leaving certainly doesn’t help that. In the nickel, you’re looking at two true freshmen in the lineup. They’re talented guys, but true freshmen nonetheless.
VT really needs guys like Riley at CB and Frye and Greene at S to advance their games. If they can do that, it might open up some options for Foster. Maybe Jarrett can be more of a whip guy? He played pretty well near the line of scrimmage last year near the end of the year.
1:14: Comment From SY
Does Alston Smith look like he can break into the 2-deep and get some playing time this year?
1:15: BOOM. 44 minutes in. And hey, Smith is actually a legitimate question this year!
He had 1 1/2 sacks in the mini-scrimmage last week for youngsters, so he’s shown he’s got some ability (and a flat-top fade). It’s still a four-man race for that other backup DT spot, with Harley, Baron, Smith and Williams vying for it.
He could get reps, but at this point, I have no idea. Wiles will tell us what he’s thinking when a decision is made, though, that’s for sure.
1:16: Comment From Ryan
Can you give some insight as to what makes Kendall Fuller such a special talent? Big hits? Speed? Right place right time? Football IQ?
1:17: I think it’s kind of a combination of all those factors. He’s a five-star prospect in the truest sense. He can play near the line and throw his body in the mix. He can cover. He can pick things up with little instruction or correction.
I haven’t heard one discouraging word about Fuller so far from anyone.
1:17: Comment From Merle
Just playing worst case scenario: If Logan were to go down (God Forbid!), what kind of QB talent do we have behind him? I know about the recruit that is a hs senior this year, but who do we have now and what does his future really look like?
1:19: Leal is a QB who the coaches have had good things to say. He’s never really had a chance to do anything in a game, but Loeffler has been pretty positive about him so far. If VT needs to dip into its reserve QBs, he’d be a solid option.
Beyond that, it’s a ton of youth. Motley is the third-teamer, but he’s a redshirt freshman. So he’s got a long ways to go. Bucky Hodges is behind him. As I mentioned before, he looks like he’s got some things to do before VT can consider playing him .And Ford is Loeffler’s guy in next year’s class.
I think the real interesting QB battle will be in 2015.
1:19: Comment From Tyler
What % chance would you give Tech on having a 10 win season? (Seems like a reach right now)
1:21: Low. Let’s look at what would need to happen. I don’t think the Hokies will beat Alabama. That means they’d have to win 10 games of the remaining 11 to get there (or 12 if you count the bowl game). That’s an extremely small margin of error, especially with games at Miami, Georgia Tech and against North Carolina at home.
I’d probably put it around a 5 percent chance or so. You’d be talking about 4-game improvement from last year’s regular season. That’s quite a stretch.
1:21: Comment From Patrick
Have they released the breakdown of tomorrow’s scrimmage yet (# of plays etc.)?
1:21: Have not seen anything yet. Perhaps this afternoon.
1:22: Comment From Miles
what ever happend to David Mellstrom ? the walk on WR ?
1:22: Chose not to come back this year.
1:22: Comment From Compeau
With Ronny Vandyke’s injury, is there any chance Dadi Nicolas gets some reps at LB?
1:24: Don’t think so. Tech’s whole goal on defense is to get faster. And you don’t do that by putting DEs at OLB.
I think it’s telling that VT lists Foster’s defense as a 4-2-5 this year. The whip really has more in common with the rover (safety) than it does with any kind of defensive end. That’s why I wonder if Jarrett could be a guy who could play there if the Hokies have any capable rover to take his place.
I’m just spit-balling here. I have no inside info on it. I’m curious to see what Foster has to say about it.
1:24: Comment From GJP
on Kendall Fuller, He played at my High School and had the opportunity to see him a lot. He’s faster than the high school game, he was a great receiver as well, he’s got solid hands for knocking balls away and for catching. But what I liked about him the most was his quickness, bar none at least for high school, he’s so quick when a ball comes his way or when he makes a tackle. Good Speed as well but I wouldn’t call it blazing speed but he is quick.
1:24: There you go. A first-hand account.
1:24: Comment From fauxplay
Do you believe that everyone is over thinking the problem(s) rather than just preparing for football with the basics and creativity on the field?
1:26: I think some folks might have hit the panic button a little early, but the injury problems are real. When you’re dipping into the true freshmen ranks to find an offensive tackle, that’s not a great sign.
I think it all gets magnified because of who the opening game is against. Bama is not an ideal opponent to play when you have a ton of question marks all over the offense. And honestly, the result of that game is probably not going to be an indication for how the season will go.
1:27: All right folks, there have been some technical things that limited this chat today, so I’m going to cut it off here.
Sorry about the problems. We’ll have them fixed the next time we get to this. Thanks to everyone who was able to get in.