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Football Scrimmage Kicks off Georgia Tech Sports Day

April 15, 2005

ATLANTA–Georgia Tech concludes spring practice with a final scrimmage Saturday morning at Bobby Dodd Stadium/Grant Field. The scrimmage is free and open to the public and kicks off Georgia Tech Sports Day on the Tech campus.

Following the scrimmage, fans and families can move outside Bobby Dodd Stadium to the top of Peter’s Parking Deck for autographs and fun. Tech student-athletes, including the football and basketball teams, will be available for photographs and autographs, and Buzz, the Rambling Wreck and the Tech cheerleaders will be on hand. There will be interactive games for children, face painting, music, food and giveaways.

Fans can also select and purchase 2005 season football tickets.

Then fans can choose a Tech sporting event for the afternoon as the Yellow Jackets’ fourth-ranked baseball team hosts No. 9 Florida State at 1 p.m. at Russ Chandler Stadium, the eighth-ranked women’s tennis team faces No. 16 Duke at the Bill Moore Tennis Center at 12 noon, and the No. 19 softball team hosts UAB in 1 p.m. doubleheader at Glenn Field.

For the scrimmage, fans should enter Bobby Dodd Stadium Gate 4 and sit in the West Stands. Parking is available on the lower level of Peter’s Parking Deck.

The quarterback position has been under scrutiny this spring as two-year starter Reggie Ball has been challenged by redshirt freshmen Taylor Bennett, the lefthander from St. Louis, Mo., and Kyle Manley, from Buford, Ga.

Ball, the junior from Stone Mountain, Ga., remains number one and should take the majority of the first team snaps in Saturday’s situational scrimmage.

“Reggie is still in the lead,” said Tech head coach Chan Gailey. “He has the most experience, he has the most knowledge, and he has most of the intangibles right now. I still think Taylor is second and I see a great deal of potential in him, but he just has not had as many snaps.

“I think Reggie has done some very good things this spring, as has Taylor, and even Kyle has done some good things. But that is still the pecking order.”

While the depth chart is stable at most other positions, tight end, fullback and punter are three competitions that are virtually even as spring practice ends.

At tight end, juniors Mike Matthews and George Cooper are competing to replace Darius Williams, while sophomore fullback Mike Cox has only a very slight edge of senior Ajenavi Eziemefe. Starting punter Ben Arndt returns, but sophomore Kyle Belcher, who concentrated on kickoffs last fall, has punted very well this spring.

“Tight end is probably a dead heat at this time,” said Gailey. “Coop has made some progress, so that’s probably even. Mike (Cox) is a little bit ahead of Ace (Eziemefe) right now, but that’s another good battle. Punter is a dead heat right now. Kyle was actually a little bit ahead, but Ben was killing it today, so we’ll have to wait and see.”

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