Virginia Tech Football: 5 Best, Worst Offseason Developments
Virginia Tech will be starting an entirely new backfield this season.
This offseason was quite a busy one for Frank Beamer and his staff, and the roster experienced some turnover as well.
The Hokies are coming off a season in which they went 8-0 in the Atlantic Coast Conference and 11-3 overall, and despite losing multiple starters, head coach Frank Beamer will unquestionably have this team ready for the 2011-12 season and another run at the ACC Coastal division crown.
5. Best: Signed 2012 Quarterback T.J. Millweard
T.J. Millweard of All Saints Episcopal High School in Fort Worth, Texas is currently rated as the No. 6 quarterback in the class of 2012.
At 6'4", 225 pounds and blessed with both a great arm and good speed, Millweard has the tools to be a big time contributor by the time he makes it to Blacksburg.
5. Worst: Tyrod Taylor Goes to NFL
Tyrod Taylor may not be an NFL-style quarterback, but he had a pretty terrific college career.
He increased his totals in completions, passing yards, passing touchdowns and quarterback rating in each of his four years at Virginia Tech. He also ran for 23 touchdowns in his four seasons.
While Virginia Tech does have a quarterback who is able to step in and start this year, replacing Taylor's consistency at the position will be difficult.
4. Best: David Wilson Steps Up
David Wilson, the 5'11" junior from Danville, Virginia, was the team's third-leading rusher last season, but he averaged a more-than-solid 5.5 yards per carry.
He was able to find the end zone five times with his limited touches, and he should expand on all his totals while shouldering a bigger load for the Hokies this year.
Wilson has breakaway speed, and that will make up for some of the big play ability the team will lose due to the absence of Taylor, Williams and Evans.
4. Worst: Ryan Williams Goes to NFL and Darren Evans Graduates
Ryan Williams and Darren Evans formed one of the most potent one-two combinations at running back in the country, and now they have both moved on.
Williams was drafted by the Arizona Cardinals, and although Evans went undrafted, it's possible he catches on with an NFL team as a free agent once the lockout ends.
Even though David Wilson can step into their shoes, it's unlikely he'll live up to the standards set by these two studs.
3. Best: Mike O'Cain Takes over Play-Calling
Mike O'Cain has been the quarterbacks coach for Virginia Tech since 2006, and he did an admirable job molding Tyrod Taylor the last few seasons.
Allowing him to call plays this year will free up the offense a bit, and you can expect to see the Hokies put up a lot of points this year.
When O'Cain was the head coach at Clemson, the Tigers were routinely one of the top scoring teams in the nation.
3. Worst: Kicker Chris Hazley Graduates
Normally losing a kicker does not seem like that big of a deal.
However, Hazley was ridiculously effective last year, connecting on 21 of 22 field goals, and 53 of 56 extra points.
College kickers are wild cards, and you never know how you're going to replace one as consistent as Hazley was last season.
2. Best: Logan Thomas Is Ready to Step in
Logan Thomas had a really strong spring game, and looks ready to take over the reins in a new-look offense for new play-caller Mike O'Cain.
Thomas completed 11 of 17 passes for 113 yards and two touchdowns in the spring game, and gave people reason to believe he'll be one of the better quarterbacks in the ACC this season.
Thomas is saying all the right things so far, and looks like he could possibly be a star for the Hokies.
2. Worst: Bryan Stinespring's Ego Hit
Bryan Stinespring has been calling plays for Virginia Tech since 2001, and now that responsibility has been taken away from him.
He's staying on as tight ends coach and "offensive coordinator," but if the offense struggles early, there could be some controversy in Blacksburg, Virginia.
Stinespring's contributions to VT as a recruiter are invaluable, and stripping him of his play-calling duties could put that in jeopardy if he takes another coordinator job elsewhere.
1. Worst: The ACC Is Improving
The ACC hasn't been nearly as good as it used to be the last few seasons, and the reason for that pretty much starts and ends in the state of Florida.
However, Florida State had an impressive first season under head coach Jimbo Fisher, and looks to be the class of the conference this year.
Miami has hired a new head coach in Al Golden, and he should bring the discipline and drive that the Hurricanes have been sorely lacking the last few years under Randy Shannon.
Both teams should be improved this year, and that could be bad news for Hokies fans.
1. Best: Frank Beamer Is Still Head Coach
Frank Beamer is a terrific coach, and as long as Beamer-ball is being played in Blacksburg, the Hokies will be competing for a chance at the ACC title.
It's as simple as that.