Virginia Tech Spring Game 2013: Date, Time, Practice Schedule and TV Info
Once national signing day is in the books, most major football schools look to the next big date on the football calendar: the spring game.
Things are no different for the Virginia Tech Hokies as attendance for the spring game continues to rise each season. The game was cancelled in 2012 due to inclement weather but that didn't keep Hokie fans out of Lane Stadium as thousands were in attendance even with the stormy weather.
With the 2013 spring game just under two months away, here is a preview of the game and what to expect.
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Date: Saturday, April 20, 2013
Time: 3:00 p.m. ET
Practice Schedule: The information for the practice schedule hasn't officially been released but expect the Hokies to begin practicing sometime in late-March.
TV Info: The game will likely be streamed live on www.hokiesports.com as it has been in past years.
What to Watch out for on Offense
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The Hokies were abysmal on offense in 2012, and that led head coach Frank Beamer to make changes to the offensive staff. Scot Loeffler is the new offensive coordinator while Jeff Grimes is the offensive line coach, and Aaron Moorehead is now coaching the wide receivers. Former coordinator Bryan Stinespring has been re-assigned to coach tight ends.
The Hokies biggest addition on offense, however, was senior quarterback Logan Thomas deciding to return to school for his senior season. With so many other losses on offense, the Hokies couldn't afford to be breaking in another quarterback as well. Everyone knows Thomas has the talent to be a terrific quarterback, but was inconsistent throwing the football in 2012.
His development will be key to the offense having success in 2013.
Getting the running game back on track will be Loeffler and Grimes' top priority this spring. Look for up to five running backs to get an opportunity to shine in the spring game. The Hokies want and need the running game to thrive if they want to return to the top of the ACC.
What to Watch out for on Defense
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Statistically, the Virginia Tech defense wasn't at its very best in 2012. They finished a not too shabby 18th overall in total defense after struggling the first half of the season.
The good news for Hokie fans is that nine starters return from this unit. Seniors Jack Tyler, James Gayle, Antone Exum and Kyle Fuller lead this group. Unfortunately, Exum tore his ACL in a pickup basketball game in late-January, and his availability for the season opener will remain in question through the summer.
Depth in the secondary was an issue for the Hokies last season, so the team went heavy in recruiting defensive backs. However, only one of those defensive backs will be eligible to play in the spring game, and with Exum unavailable, two of last year's freshmen will have a chance to compete for playing time: Donaldven Manning and Donovan Riley.
The spring game will be important for Ronny Vandyke, too, as he is the leader to take over the whip linebacker position. Vandyke is a terrific athlete, and the Hokies hope he has a better grasp on the mental assignments this season.
Replacing three-year starting linebacker Bruce Taylor will be a top priority for defensive coordinator Bud Foster this spring.