Virginia Tech Closes Practices
For the last two decades, Virginia Tech football practices were open to the media. The Hokies seemed to be pretty good. So when Maryland officials freaked out about letting the media in, I would always snicker and say, "Well, the media spies haven't seemed to hurt Virginia Tech too much," ha ha ha, silly Terps. And now this:
The days of the media enjoying carte blanche during Virginia Tech's football practices are history.
In a change of policy from his first 20 years as Tech coach, Frank Beamer has opted to cut back on media access to his club's preseason and regular-season workouts. Media members, whom in the past have been accustomed to watching an entire practice, are now allowed to view only the first half of the club's two-hour workouts.
My contention was always that most media folks are either too dumb or too vague in their stories to be able to convey anything other than the most obvious observations merely from watching practice as a spectator. And that such obvious things--the starting center is limping, for example--would become obvious after the first play of any game, at which point the opposing coaches would likely attack that weakness exactly as they would have had they known about the injury in advance. But Beamer is apparently worried about more than just the media:
Beamer noted he learned a valuable lesson during his club's preparations for last year's Chick-fil-A Bowl, in which he team lost 31-24 to Georgia.
"We practiced out at Georgia Tech and we let all kinds of people through there ... people we didn't really know," Beamer said. "And I thought it hurt us in the bowl game. I'm not blaming anybody ... but I thought Georgia knew exactly what we were doing in several situations.
So now my rejoinder to paranoid Maryland officials is forever lost. And I'll instead have to point to Jerry Glanville's Portland State Vikings.
Posted by: ScottVanPeltStyle.com | August 6, 2007 3:25 PM | Report abuse
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