Tech Thoughts: spring practice Vol. III: Qb1, Qb2, and Qb3!!!

Spring Practice Volume III:

Virginia Tech football is in recess, intermission or on a V.T.C.C. ‘esque furlough. At least as the always mandatory “voluntary” off-season workouts, S&C, skeletal drills and varying preparatory girds go. (and Coach God be merciful on the knee injury power outage in Watts; dang; and Godspeed!)

The 2018 Hokies are approximately centennial or right at 70 days removed from tipping-off August Camp and about a quarter of a year removed from what will be way more than just a work-out when they sojourn 641 miles down to Atlantic Divisional stalwart Tally to face the powerhouse Florida State Seminoles. All that to say, it is high past time that someone got around to saying something about the seemingly defunct and therefore nullified Qb1 derby this spring that may or may not have ever really, truly, madly, deeply kicked-off. Nevertheless, who did what here? Who inched upwards, who was on the level and who may have taken a step backwards? Read on, to find… out!

To paraphrase coach Shakespeare…

Qb or not to Qb, that is the… section.

Finally, b.street has come back to… the Quarterbacks!

Only took me seven ‘ish weeks to get to this section too— so without further adieu… let us recount things a bit… and the we will see just how sectional this selection is from there…

First up, we saw pre-spring Virginia Tech quarterback coverage (pardon the bad pun); begin with an article saying that Hendon Hooker was pretty close to winning the Qb1 job last August (2017). Or at least that Hendon Hooker appeared closer than most thought in Joshua Jackson’s (JAX) side mirror— if not in point of fact tailgating JAX’s rear bumper.

Notice that someone did the kind thing, someone who prefers Cobra Kai to wimp-making Purely Chicken Karate kids. As that someone let that writer off the hook and merely turned the null response other cheek. As either that writer knew something that nobody else did, (possibly); or we file this one under the British euphemism of: “When ten men tell you your drunk you’d better lie down.” (…hic)

As not one single source, or any other writer(s) that I know of said the 2017 Virginia Tech Qb sweepstakes to be *that* dang close. As although Joshua Jackson (JAX) may not have run away and hid; he surely was on no less than on cruise control and most cruise control’s ride pretty well, or so last time I checked.

Then we heard… nothing.

Not tumbleweeds chirping, not crickets tumbling, nothing. The Tech Qb1 forest went silent for about the first 10’ish days of spring practice.

What you should have been asking yourself was… why?

Well, the heretofore prime mover of a reason was that… there were no pivotal prime movers at all.

Anyone ever seen these two in the same room of the Jamerson (or J. Edgar Hoover) building at the same…time?

Ergo, any investigation of elevator or ladder theories need not apply as this 2018 -hoped for- Qb1 sweepstakes opened up a bit flat. And by that I mean basically flat like a carpenters dream. As no O&M potential Qb1 made much of any move(s), be that up or even down the Pivotal depth-chart. (Recall: Pivot being C.F.L. and C.F.L. being Canadian Football League for quarterback or Qb)

Nobody caught fire, nobody got snuffed out. And by “flat” I mean they all three pretty much opened up at or near where they were when the Staff last saw ’em. And not that I’m major party to this train of thought… although there are those who say if you are not getting better you are standing still or therefore getting worse. i.e. if you are not improving, well, honestly… someone else, is.

Then we saw a feeding frenzy spite of articles from the never played neverwasbeen O&M football (non) cognoscenti forth estate whereby suddenly Joshua Jackson had: “improved”. As none other than Coach-Fu’ went dorsal-fin and chummed the media waters with just how much Joshua Jackson had: “improved” as “a leader” and by “being more vocal.” And the totally feral up-vote BOGO orgy was on! And yes summertime wildlife Commissioner Roy Scheider and I keeps a “bigger boat”.

Because for those of us who actually know what time it is? Well, that’s nice; as it is not like I or anyone else with any sporting aptitude on-board wants to see Joshua Jackson take a step backwards as a “leader”; (LOL), or even worse yet, learn how to be a manpleaser or cow-tail or cuckold at such a pivotal position. The very alpha-spokesman position in situ in the offensive huddles by any and all possible definition mind you.

And yet where was the first report (from last year) or even from early on this spring that Joshua Jackson lacked: “leadership”?

Yah; laughing out loud, Roger that, and me, neither...
 As I've not heard that one, ever before; have you?

Joshua Jackson’s leadership abilities have never been and never will be the problem here folks. Out of 7,000,000,000+ potential sources on Earth, not one has ever once compared JAX to MV1, (who would barely speak other than to call the play). Nobody said he was a lockeroom disenfranchised pariah like the former Qb1 who got beat out by T-mobile, unfortunately ultimately became. In point of fact, I’ve heard nothing short of glowing reports as to how well lockeroom liked, respected and liked all the more one #17 or Joshua Jackson truly is. As I dare say that Joshua Jackson is the first Qb1 since Bryan Randall, who might just push said Bryan Randall for cool-moodine or Lando Calrissian smooth operator status. As I seriously doubt Joshua Jackson lacks any off-field she offers, I doubt he is anything less than the effortless B.M.O.C. at off-campus parties. As this The American’s cast member lookalike ain’t exactly ridin’… Solo. So his leadership needed to improve, how? Why? (READERS note: please do use the comment section space below to explain this to me as the next explanation I hear on how 17 was a bad leader last year and therefore his leadership needed to “improve” will be the (very) first)

Nonetheless, how that wimpy of an answer spawned -even bastardized- a stem to stern tidal-wave of up-voting articles from across the O&M gridiron pantheon of sports-writers (sans one) is entirely beyond me?!? LOL, that’s not, that’s facebook.cuck. La di da…

Ladies and gentlemen, put your hand on the Bible and: “swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing less the truth.”

What would you prefer that Joshua Jackson had actually and factually improved at during this off-season and/or during 2018 spring practice?

The most useful Spring Practice improvement for Joshua Jackson to make woulda been in what... category?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...


Well beyond staying healthy? (Which we will dissect and Deering Hall biology lab objectify in part IV) Well if you ask me? And you did via reading these very words… I could go for any betterment in the following Joshua Jackson on-field game-day categories:

  • more speed/agility; or at least a few open-field move(s).
  • more overall arm strength and better deep targeting software.
  • more Option work on the pitch-out and comfort/familiarity with the same.
  • more of a self-preservation mentality | and (if somehow possible) more field-vision. (see: the 4Q @Miami INT defenseless and totally unawares I.C.B.M. hit)

Look, I can not type for any of you… although as to me and my committee of one? This one would gladly eschew Fu’ standing up there and bottle feeding the sporting scribes feel good, social media, thought police tripe regarding improvements in leadership from the kid who might just win Homecoming King in 2020. LOL, give me a break and again, just how bad of a leader was Josh’ Jackson last year? (Recall: now graduated seniors Cam and Wyatt had nothing less glowing things to say about Joshua; as they and their 9 years combined fell right in line behind JAX).

Or to put a very fine point on all of ^that^… what did Jackson really “improve”?


So the first near fortnight of spring practice 2018 transpired, the boys perspired and nothing much, emerged. Beyond a couple of offensive linemen movers and shakers and maybe even the same at Dt, albeit to a lesser trajectory extent. That, and possibly one Wr and then one or maybe even two Lb’s made a modest upward depth chart ascent as well.

Then (finally) something happened along the way to the 2018 O&M Qb1 candy-store…

Here and there a few Belmont whispers called an “audible” and then a few vibes were (finally) felt over on the downstairs display case Derring Hall seismograph as Pivotal movement(s) went.

Not an E.S.M. or “mechanical” gridiron engineer, is, he?

Not real sure which came first here, chronologically speaking, the chicken or the egg… although the latent spring time insider takes went something like this…

Hooker was nearly said to be regressing, or at best relying too often on his wheels to please Fu’ and/or Corny, and therefore not actually progressing as his throw-game matrix goes. Because after all, how many passing reps to you gain when you self-elect to take off running? Although I suppose that is indeed north of an INT or turnover; albeit something of a fractured -if not a broken field play- or a puerile Friday Night Lights Montell Jordan first year under Coach Taylor response. Sandlot, ad-lib, or even mad-lib type football; and guess who deep down is too closet red-state Frank to be comfortable with any of that? Also heard that there were a few turnovers here as Hookin’ ain’t easy; or at least that playbook is not as literate as it (hopefully) will eventually be given some further seasoning or hooked on Fu’nics plural. (NOTE: this would however basically require more than Qb3 clipboard carrying, play call sign-language signaling, just stand there and catch some rays nothing. When you could and dang well should be throwing routes, or scout even team reps— I.e. don’t waste this r-freshman’s inattentive second season; and then wonder why he’s no better to begin the third).


More or less temporally commiserate with this was a very hot/cold vibe that emerged from Dorthy’s favorite Qb1 candidate— with no word yet from: “Toto”.

Although some say his holdover, hand-me-down, transfer, refugee, retro KU 2016 Qb1 still blue-n-red attire clad kid, which may not have been his best potential 2018 O&M Qb1 campus look… nevertheless; this potential Qb1 candidate, one #5, Ryan Willis did make something of a late spring practice move. This of course publicly climaxed with a potentially lucrative looking spring game via several HR type throws that are just not part of Joshua Jackson “Rolex game-manager” although lowercase Q-score Rolodex package.

The message boards were immediately abuzz regarding Ryan Willis and his lofty looking deep game, as after all… chicks -and apparently message boards- dig the long-ball.

whatchu talking about Willis”?!?

Nonetheless, is that fair to Joshua Jackson?

For that matter is that even fair to Ryan Willis?

Well, let’s take a closer look at Ryan Willis and then yah; I am gonna go in on Joshua Jackson and… throw… shade!

Though Ryan Willis first…

So Ryan Willis is a 6′5″, 221 lb., r-Junior year former Qb1 from Kansas University Jayhawking fame. Where Ryan and his very surprising 33″ easily dunking vertical, his decent enough 4.65 20-yard shuttle and his reasonable enough 290 lb. bench; where all of that started parts of his t-freshman and then his t-sophomore seasons at KU.

In (Kansas) high school Willis only threw for 5,986 yards and 65 TD’s in just fewer than two full seasons as Qb1. Meriting 1st-string AAAA all-state honors after his senior campaign. Not much more than a serviceable runner was Ryan, checking in with a relatively meager 182 total yards rushing his final year good for 24 points. Although Ryan was one other thing… he was perfect. As in unbeaten on his way to cutting down the oblong spheroid nets as the Kansas quad-A football state championship went in 2014. That does not suck; and that surely speaks to being a winner, at least to me. His old-man, poppa Steve was a defensive standout in football at Kansas State… Ryan’s mum Lois ran track and field at Iowa State. So Ryan’s Human Genome Project is most willing indeed.

Hudl had Ryan listed as the 50th best Qb in all the land in his emerging 2015 Qb class in national terms. With major offers/interesting from Wyoming, Illinois, Kansas, K-state, Missouri, Iowa State and Tulsa as regional D-1 love went.

Sources close to Ryan describe his game as follows… a classical stand-up, vertical pocket passing 1970’s type Qb. As Ryan is not a modern era Spread-set or dual-threat Qb via intrinsic trade. He is however basically the lowest possible A— thrower no matter which category you rate him in. Literally: A—‘s straight across the board in: accuracy, footwork, arm-strength, release/fundamentals, throwing on the run, poise, pocket presence, decision-making and touch. Ryan tallied the lowest on: pocket presence, with poise his penultimate low. As he tends to ride a collapsing pocket about as long as Jim Druckenmiller once did. Ryan rated highest in Release/fundamentals, throwing on the run and arm-strength; all just a smidgen below a full blown A letter-grade scaling.

His run-fit however was described to someone as: “lacks dynamic play-making capability with his feet.” Another source described Ryan’s wheels as: “runs a little bit better than you think.” Though still yet, methinks that Joshua Jackson is a noticeably better runner than Ryan Willis is; and mind you that I only rate Jackson as the lowest possible B— or the highest possible C+++ ground-gainer his ownself. That all candidly being said, I do not make purchase on immobile pocket-Qb tags such as: “statue ‘esque” or being planted like a Grant Noel tree. Indeed Ryan has tallied underwater or negatively submerged rushing totals in 12 of his 17 career games. (I.e. he has rushed for >0 yards only five times in 17 career games)! Nevertheless, Ryan can actually move just enough to ½ roll the pocket, or when a deeper latent developing long protect play is called, or when an escaping naked backside bootleg first down jaunt says so.

As Willis has just enough lateral mobility and just enough wiggle to create a second potential containment breaking looksee downfield. He has better higher end top-speed than someone expected. He’s clearly cut and knifed his Baywatch lifeguard looking body up since he met Ben Hilgirth and ate at As those close to the program say Willis is the one who has physically improved the most of the Top-3 Qb’s; by far; since all three barracked together at Vah.Tech.

Still yet, Willis is the bronze medalist rusher as the 2018 Top-3 Virginia Tech would be Qb1’s go and it’s not all that close. A starting Willis will net you a backside 1st-down securing 10-15 yards then sagely duck outta bounds; and 15-20 will be his max’ gain all year long. (READERs note: his collegiate career long rush is indeed 23 yards; so there you go…)

KU Varsity … blues.

Accordingly, the run-fit side of Ryan Willis’ game may or actually may not actually fit the rushing part of the R.P.O.’s of the Fu’fense all that well, although this little gem just might… {sic: Ryan} is said to be at his best when making sharp pre-snap assessments and getting rid of the ball quickly or A.S.A.P. Almost something of a yesteryear Houston run-n-shoot Qb sans some of the Qb run(s).

Now, do those quick hitting throw-game plays remind you of a certain newly installed 24060 offense anyone? One that brought a new version of always offensive Corn’-rows to a former ag’ school?

Further -or should I type: farther- sourcing says that Wills easily pinpoints the best deep-ball on the team, with a knack for dropping the ball in over the top of coverage on deeper throws. And did we not all just witness this in the Spring Game indeed folks? Willis is said to “spray” the ball at times when he’s off-balance. And I believe this to be the more credible throw-fit description in lieu of the message board tag that his arm-strength forces throws at times. Forcing is a mental punji stick or an Emersonian  Qb1’s (over) “Self Reliance’ on fielding a 155mm howitzer for an arm, or the classical gunslinger self-trap. Think: a younger version of Randall Cunningham in the Pro’s if you are unsure what I meant. I say that as Willis is just a few bricks shy of the Cunningham Iowa Class 16″ main-gun load. Willis courts a WWI dreadnought class Battle of Jutland type main-gun. Though a 14″ main-gun is more than enough firepower for the less that truly vertical needy Fu’fense that is far more parts east-west elastic than it will ever be vertical stretch fantastic. Or to put it more succinctly, the Great White Fleet era Ryan Willis easily outguns the Light Cruiser otherwise known as Joshua Jackson, even if Ryan’s is actually closer to a pocket battleship classification by Jane’s himself.

Then however we finally arrive at the Willis bugbear and/or the nonpareil Fu’fensive bane… turnovers; or in Pivotal terms, INT’s. As film-study suggests that Ryan cups the football at times with his wrist; and this bleeds velocity and this ‘splains his Wagner power-painter spraying a bit too. As Ryan is intrinsically a touch and arc based pocket passer with an A— caliber arm. Thus making Willis something a Ventnor Avenue man’s Joe Montana or Tom Brady in the modern vernacular; albeit with just one, house. I say only one house as Willis had two negative pigskin integrity games with three INT’s each at Kansas and that is not code for being in Fu’/Corny’s doghouse men, that’s code for being buried out back in the damn cellar.

Though do bear in mind that this classical 5-step drop of a Qb also launched no less than six throws in eight starting games at Kansas that spanned 40-72 yards as completion gains go and five of those six stretch throws went for 30 points combined! As thus far (pun intended) Ryan has shown out as a hell or high-water Qb1, feast or famine. What with a starting Qb1 completion percentage that has oscillated all the way from a not so nifty helmet hair or Home Alone 36%, than all the way up to a girls-getting or sleek looking 77% on a good canelo hair day as a rookie.

Yes, it is true, a maturing second year KU Qb1 Willis did matriculate his completion percentage variance all the way up to placing in between 53% and 79%, and yet, Coach-Fu’ likes to, eat…

Sourcing also hinted that Ryan was out-of-favor with the newly installed KU spread set after his decent and flirting with being a solid debut pocket t-freshman year. That’s not Ryan’s A-game and that does fairly and rightfully leave you wondering what his R.P.O. matrix would have to be adjusted to in the more Spread friendly Fu’fense offensive set?

Nevertheless gents, and as this Qb article is certainly already long enough… and I’ve not even given a pay-side message board shout-out to my peeps for their singular to the point of being unique MLb-derby call (of: Ashby). And as I still have not hit my very own home position of pass-catchers, and as I’ve yet to get at the Fu’fense and its lack of run-fit sense of explosion…

And yah; I may indeed throw shade on JAX, or just get right down to the Qb R.A.T.T. nitty-gritty; although all of that is a matter for part IV, and weather.JAX.

So please do tune in next time to learn of Jackson’s physical pedigree, a Hooker’s spring time mentality, and just how did R.Willis close up spring ball this year?

That plus an overall Hokie historical Qb word to the wise… and per every second of every single day… I’ll see you next time, Coach God, willing…


 Virginia Tech Qb1=Joshua Jackson, (for, now)






19 Responses You are logged in as Test

  1. I thought the Fuente statement about JJ was he wants the qb1 to arrive early and stay late when it comes to game film prep. so, perhaps the improvement was that he matured in that regard.

    1. …I took that differently.

      I doubt (many) coach’s sons lack film-study acumen or the ABC’s of X’s and O’s.
      (i.e. I took that as a workout and/or serious prep’ statement)

      Tho’ with Fu’?
      Who, knows???

      He keeps 53 cards up each, sleeve.


  2. Interesting timeline. VT will be starting August/summer/fall camp about a week and a half after they kick off the season at FSU. No wonder we’re underdogs!

  3. I really wish you would cut down on a lot of the verbiage. I mostly enjoy reading your articles, but I really scrolled through most of it to get some substance.

  4. Back-up QBs for VT is a wasted position. Fuente recruits them but seems to be afraid to use them. if I was a ACC Coach recruiting against VT, I sure as Hell would point this out..

    1. so far?

      Yah; yah; kan’t argue you that.
      As I have no evidence to counter you with.
      (not… yet)


  5. Not so fast my friend! We know that Fu replaced prior year starter at Memphis with freshman Paxton Lynch. Truth is, Fu probably does what every other P5 coach in America does, i.e.minimize risks.

  6. For sure.
    Big 10-4 good buddy.

    Fu’ REALLY is the maximal minimalist.


  7. Finally B’street has returned after seven long weeks of waiting….

    An interesting read with color commentary on QB Willis & QB Jackson so allow me to fill in the void for one QB Hooker…. his DNA is pro stock football as in Big D QB, Hall of Fame in the college game this young man too has been trained to know what quarterback position needs to be to execute the run pass option. As noted sitting for one year did not aid this young man’s progression due to lack of game/practice speed cause as running is God’s Blessings but tossing the rock on a string downfield is something he’s developed as we saw a glimpse of it in The Spring game. Remember in Spring and most of practice is two hand touch on QB, but I fall the wheels make a huge difference especially when two out of three RPO involves running. So don’t be surprised when #2 comes off the Hokie sidelines to lead the O.

    Great stuff as always.

    Let’s Go…Hokies!!!
    Beat F$U.

    1. I’m good if/when he does evolve to come in and take that work.

      Though honestly?
      He did not seem right to my peeps this spring.
      (more next time); tho’ I’ma kinda wondering if he stays?
      “wondering”. Not saying I’m sure, am saying I’m: “…wondering”.

      As there has gotta be non-VT coaches on the horn with: “see see!”
      “He did this to Bush last year and now he’s doing it to you. Come play for (____).”


  8. So true, the 336 whispers are getting loud that talent is buried, esp after begging for early entry as Senior in HS. Echoes of shirt needed to be pulled during 2nd half Miami & they got louder in ATL!!! Bottom line, talent like good bread needs a bit of kneeding from the master hands.

    Time will tell…

    Let’s Go…Hokies!!!
    Beat F$U

  9. I gotta say I enjoyed the navel references. I read your site because I know enough to know you know football, but unless you went full Wikipedia just for your maritime references it appears you also have a working knowledge of 20th century navel warfare. You used every reference correctly. My hat is off to you.

Comments are closed.