In this installment of the Opposing View, the real Tech does a Q&A with the other, lesser tech. You know, the one down in the ATL with the not-so-good-looking women (though not many of them), georgia tech. Maybe you’ve heard of them.
Thanks to Mr. Smith from In the Edge – gt for taking time out to let us interview him. His site is all about raincoats; aka: yellow jackets. Mr. Smith is a graduate of georgia tech in Computational Media (’07) and is currently a grad student there.
Q: You said you on your site that you questioned the “classiness” of VT fans at Lane Stadium. Why?
A: Let me start off by saying my two trips to Lane Stadium have probably been my favorite away trips as I love the stadium and atmosphere. Unfortunately, I’ve had to deal with some less than friendly fans. Being down on the field some fans behind our bench have yelled things that went a little beyond heckling in my opinion. I’ve also talked with some other GT fans that have had that experience walking to the stadium. I understand supporting your team and all but some VT fans take it to a level that it shouldn’t be. Although, all schools have fans like this but GT fans just found them more prominent at VT.
Niemo’s Note: Ha! Glad he didn’t see or hear me at the game in ATL this past Fall. I was even worse! No intimidation at all at ga tech, aka: Baby D Stadium.
Q: What are the strengths and weaknesses of this yellow jacket team?
A: The strengths of our team are that we play very physical and usually with a lot of energy. If we are playing our best we can frustrate another team very quickly. Also, if our offense is clicking then we can score in bunches very quickly.
The weaknesses are that we are very inconsistent. We were playing well for a stretch of games but have not played so well lately. It’s almost a flip of a coin as to whether or defense plays like it should and on offense we are often caught standing around which is very easy to defend.
Q: What are the key match-ups in this game?
A: I would say it is whether or not the Jackets can shut down A.D. Vassallo. 3-point shooters have killed us in the past, including Jack McClinton this past weekend. If we don’t guard him well and he starts to heat up then it is not a good sign for the Jackets.
Q: gt has stunk on the road over the last few years, including losing something like 19 straight in opponent’s arenas until last season. Is this year’s squad any more resilient?
A: We are actually better on the road than at home this year. We won three straight at UVA, NC State, and Wake and played pretty well at UCONN. However, we played very poorly at Clemson, but I would look for us to at least make it a close game against the Hokies.
Q: Will Matt Causey be giving VT a thank you card for not guarding him in Atlanta and saving his career? He owes us one.
A: I don’t expect him to drop another 30 but he may be in the range of 10-15. I think the ACC is glad he is only here for one year because he can be a very fiery and scrappy player that can annoy the crap out of opposing fans. I would like to see VT fans chant a clever nickname for him (he’s already had ones such as Hobbit, Frodo, and a few others).
Q: Paul Hewitt seems to be in hot water. Give him another year or has he had his chance?
A: Well, I’ve worked with the team and I think he deserves at least another year or two. He’s had four different starting point guards in the last four years and that can be tough on any ACC coach. I think if we can get some consistency at that position you will see us start to improve quite a bit. Also, we have a very highly rate point guard coming in next year in Iman Shumpert that shouldn’t be a one and done like Javarris was.
Q: What do you think of the Hokies basketball program, now and long term?
A: Seth Greenburg is a good coach and has the Hokies playing very competitively. I think it will be really hard to jump up into that upper echelon of the ACC due to the tremendous competition we have in the ACC. If Seth can get some better recruiting going on and bring in some blue chip prospects then VT could become a sleeping giant.
Q: Were Crittendon and Young worth it (two freshman for gt last year that bolted after one season for the NBA), or do you wish they had never come?
A: My thought is I would always rather have them for one year than not at all. I mean if Lebron James said he would come to VT but only for one year, would you take him? Look what Carmelo did for Syracuse.
Niemo’s Note: stiney would have commandeered Lebron from the bball team and turned him into a blocking TE… So in a way, I’m glad he didn’t come to VT.
Q: What’s your prediction for this game?
A: As much as my head says that we will continue our losing streak, we also have our backs up against the wall. I’m pretty sure our NCAA hopes have burst but we still have a shot at the NIT and extra games will always improve the team. I simply can not pick against the Jackets. I’ll go with a Jackets win, 75-71.
Niemo’s Note: I’m pretty sure VT is undefeated when the interviewee picks his own team… or did I just invoke the Niemo jinx?… 1) team ahead at first media timeout is 8-0… promptly lose the next game; 2) home team in md/VT series is 5-0… VT wins…
Q: Were you in favor of ACC expansion four years ago?
A: I was certainly in favor of it. I know it was mainly for football, but the teams have also proven competitive in basketball as well. I enjoy the fact that we have an ACC Championship game now. Adding BC also allows us to have the Baseball tournament at Fenway, which is awesome. I’m also not one who shies away from competition. As they say, “You gotta beat the best to be the best.”
Q: What do you think of Virginia Tech’s addition to the conference now?
A: I enjoy the rivalry and the (mostly) competitive games against you guys.
Q: Is georgia tech a football school or a basketball school?
A: Georgia Tech is a little weird in that I believe it flops back and forth. In the late 90’s we were definitely a football school with Joe Hamilton and Cremins in his waning years. However, when I started at Tech in 2003 we were probably a basketball school as Chan was in the middle of his mediocrity and we went to the Final Four. In ’90, however, we won the national championship in football and went to the Final Four. Personally, I’d rather be a football school and I believe Coach Johnson may get us back to that.
Q: Who is gt’s biggest rival in the ACC?
A: Clemson. They are geographically very close so our fans get to interact a lot more than we do with other fans. Also, both fan bases travel well to each others stadiums since we are only about an hour and a half or two hours apart. The football games against each other have also been historically very close with great finishes.
Q: Since joining the league, VT is 3-1 in football against gt and 3-2 in basketball. Who is the REAL Tech?
A: Come on, did you really think I’d give in on that one? It’s definitely GT and no Jacket fan would say otherwise. Most Jacket fans are going to point to our academics as the justification for that. Also, technically, you guys are VPISU.
Q: Are you excited about having a wishbone offense now? (Thoughts on Paul Johnson)
A: First of all, Coach Johnson might punch you in the face for calling it wishbone. (There have been fairly heated debates on The Hive about this.) Most just call it the triple option or the Tech Spread. I think most Jacket fans are very excited about it. After watching Navy some it is a very exciting offense and it is often hard to figure out who has the ball. Coach Johnson is a man of integrity that has won everywhere he’s been and maybe most importantly beat his rivals. Most GT fans are just ready to beat Georgia.
Q: Reggie Ball: Worst ACC QB ever? His completion percentage got WORSE each year, despite the fact he had Calvin Johnson his last 3 seasons!
A: In terms of statistics, probably. He frustrated the crap out of GT fans, especially with his antics at the end of Georgia games. However, I have to put some of the blame for his lack of development on Patrick Nix. Watch Miami’s offense and you’ll probably understand what I mean.
Q: Virginia Tech has 2 outright ACC football titles in four seasons. georgia tech only has one outright title in their whole history, and tied for another. Why the struggles?
A: We joined the ACC in the late 70’s I believe and we just weren’t a very good team throughout the 80’s. Florida State was a monster of a powerhouse throughout the 90’s so it was hard to top them. Chan’s mediocrity ruled most of the 2000’s so we are hoping for a turnaround with Coach Johnson.
Q: ACC school you dislike the most…
A: NC State. I think it all started with Julius Hodge and has spread from there.
Q: ACC school (other than gt) you respect the most…
A: Probably Wake Forest. They have great coaches with great character, great academics, and have been VERY competitive lately.