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April 9, 2013

Beamer's Scrimmage Experiments

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The good thing is Virginia Tech won't look like it did in yesterday's open scrimmage, come August 31 or even in fall camp in August.

That's a good thing for the Hokies' offense, which struggled yesterday to get going while installing a new offensive scheme. At the same time, the defense looked great, recording 10 sacks, giving coach Frank Beamer a better look at what he has to work with as Virginia Tech continues to tinker on both sides of the ball.

"Even just the veteran guys, we've got some new guys on the offensive line," Beamer said. "The experience is over there with the defense right now. But again, I thought the whole thing went pretty well. The defense is gonna be ahead and should be ahead right now."

The tinkering is especially noticeable on offense. With players still getting adjusted, offensive coordinator Scot Loeffler said that only about a quarter of the new offense has been installed.

It's also about who fits best where. Senior-to-be D.J. Coles, who missed all but the season opener last season due to injury lined up in a few different looks yesterday. That included wide receiver, but also an h-back, which Beamer said could be a good look.

"He's got some size and you'd like to get some mismatches going," Beamer said. "He's big enough to play like an H-back. We want him to be athletic enough to play like a wide receiver and he may need to lose a few pounds to do that. We'll talk about that after spring practice, but we're experimenting with that a little."

True freshman Carlis Parker has been talked about as a quarterback, drawing comparisons by Beamer to Michael Vick. But yesterday, Parker got a look at wide receiver, another chance for mismatches for the Hokies.

"We're going to let him be the shotgun guy, as far as the quarterback goes," Beamer said. "And then be getting him in a position where we can get him in the game, whether he's at wide receiver or comes back in and runs the stuff from the shotgun. He's a good athlete. He's just young and we need to keep experimenting with him."

The biggest downside of the day was an injury to guard David Wang. The senior to be told HokieHaven.com he had his right ankle rolled on and the result was a sprain that left it looking purple by the end of the day.

"I hate to see that," Beamer said. "We needed all the reps in there on our offensive line we could get. He's had trouble with injuries, so I hate to see that."

But as Virginia Tech has done, it will continue to tinker to find a replacement and find what players fit each position best.


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