April 2, 1996
BC QB Hartsell to Bow Out
This goes into the category of "The Best News I've Heard All Week." Boston College quarterback Mark Hartsell, a two-year starter, will not finish out his eligibility. Hartsell is going to get his degree this May, so he's decided not to play any more football and to move on.
Yahoo! This is a key loss for BC, one that's very important to the Hokies' season next year. We open with Akron on the road, and after we carve them up, we've got a road game at BC. Remember the way Hartsell picked on an inexperienced Myron Newsome in the season opener last year? I was dreading what he was going to do to our young defenders this year, considering that he was going to get his shot at them early in the year (again), before they'd had a chance to get their feet wet and learn the system. Not to mention that Hartsell already had two years under his belt, and this was going to be his second season under Dan Henning, so I was expecting him to have a field day against us.
Like most Hokie fans, that loss to BC in the season opener grated on me last year (and it still does), because it turned out to be such an aberration. I mean, BC flat-out stunk last year, and we let them beat us. Like I said last week, we owe them big-time for that game. And now that they're going to be starting a green signal-caller, that makes things look much better for us in that pivotal early-season contest.
More Recruiting Notes
I was Net-surfing the other night, looking for more recruiting tid-bits to pass on to you, my faithful readers, but all I got was mad. I blundered upon a site that lists the SuperPrep recruiting class rankings (SP is a highly-regarded high school football recruiting publication), and they really torched me.
First of all, SuperPrep offended my orange-and-maroon blood by ranking Virginia's (ugh) class very highly in several categories: "Players" (#5), Running Backs (#6), and Overall (#16). Whether SP is right or wrong, I HATE seeing UVa (ugh) get credit for anything. Unless, of course, someone's talking about All-Thug-First-Team star Melvin Whitaker, in which case the words "UVa basketball recruit" are music to my ears.
For those of you not in the know, Whitaker is a highly-touted UVa (ugh) basketball recruit who was indicted today (4/2/96) on charges of malicious wounding. Melvin slashed a man across the face with a razor blade after the two had a disagreement over - get this - a pickup basketball game. There were only about 12,000 witnesses to the event, which occurred at UVa's (ugh) Slaughter Rec Center, so Melvin will be convicted. See ya, Melvin. The only way this could work out better is if Whitaker had actually been a UVa (ugh) player, instead of just a recruit.
But I digress. Back to SuperPrep. From their list of Top 50 Recruiting Classes, I bring you the following excerpts:
1. Penn State (okay, I can deal with that)
Excuse me, but 45th? Behind such football powerhouses as Maryland, Indiana, Arizona State, and Houston? Sure, I have no idea what I'm talking about, and I'm just spouting off at the mouth here, but you've got to be kidding me!
It's a good thing they don't hand out bowl invitations based on SuperPrep recruiting rankings, huh? Although, you've got to admit, the bowl system they do use isn't any better....
Actually, folks, I don't take this stuff seriously at all. I'm happy with Tech's recruiting class. And as for Virginia's class being ranked #16 by SuperPrep, well, as long as George Welsh is coaching them, their players just don't matter, now do they?
Hey, You! Buy Season Tickets!
I know I promised you I was going to talk about basketball recruiting this week, but I wanted to cover this subject instead....
There's always an ongoing dialog about why Tech doesn't sell more football season tickets, and those of you who follow Hokie sports have heard the debate before, so I won't get into the ticky-tacky details here. But, as you can tell from the title of this part, I believe in buying them, even though yes, you can show up on game day and hawk a ticket for $5 off of somebody.
Why buy them? Simple. It's to support the team. Period. Not to mention that if you don't get in line now, folks, you're going to get left behind.
Do you think Tech will always have a jillion season tickets available? This phenomenon of Tech football isn't going to go away, friends. The Sugar Bowl was just the beginning. Dave Braine has stated that his goal is to go to a bowl game EVERY YEAR, and we can do it, too. And every year, Tech cranks out over 4,000 more graduates, people who have jobs and the resources to buy tickets. So check back in ten years, and all of sudden, those $5 tickets you can buy outside the stadium won't be there anymore. And you'll be left standing outside the fence, picking your butt and standing on your tippy-toes to try to see the game. UNLESS YOU LINE UP NOW and start buying season tickets.
My girlfriend is a Penn State grad, and she loves Tech football. You know why? First of all, Tech reminds her of Penn State, but more importantly, as she put it, "You're not so big that you can't be a part of it. If I want season tickets for Penn State, I have to pay $300 just to get put on a waiting list!"
For Virginia Tech, that day is coming. Maybe not now, maybe not next year, but someday. As the Tech alumni base grows, and Roanoke grows, and the New River Valley grows, good tickets will start to be hard to come by. So get yours now, mainly because it's the cool thing to do, but if you don't do it, you could get left out in the cold in the future. And you know how cold Blacksburg gets....