March 24, 2010
Georgia Tech has 15 spring football practices to find a back-up to senior All-American candidate Josh Nesbitt at quarterback, replace at least three starters on the offensive line and install a 3-4 defense.
Spring football practice begins Monday afternoon and culminates with the April 24 Spring Game at Bobby Dodd Stadium.
“We are looking forward to getting started on Monday,” head coach Paul Johnson said. “There’s lots of excitement. I think when you have things like changes on the staff and tweaks to schemes, that it renews enthusiasm.”
Johnson replaced four coaches from his 2009 ACC championship staff. Al Groh (defensive coordinator), Andy McCollum (defensive line/recruiting coordinator) and Joe Speed (inside linebackers) joined the Tech staff in January. Together with secondary coach Charles Kelly, they face the task of installing a 3-4 defense that Groh knows so well.
Nesbitt, who is recovering from ankle surgery, will miss spring drills. That leaves the door open for three inexperienced players — redshirt sophomore Tevin Washington and redshirt freshmen Jordan Luallen and David Sims — to split the snaps this spring.
So, Coach, what about the quarterback position?
“We’ll have one,” Johnson deadpanned. “Tevin (Washington) will start the spring with the Ones (first team), but this (Nesbitt’s absence) gives Luallen and Sims an opportunity to get a ton of snaps.”
Despite returning just two starters on the offensive line — senior All-ACC selection Sean Bedford at center and senior Austin Barrick at tackle — Johnson thinks the offensive line can actually be better than last season.
“It’s possible we could upgrade on the offensive line,” Johnson said, “but they have to show us. Most of them are still (redshirt) freshmen. How hard are they going to work?”
2010 Spring Practice Schedule
March 29, 3:45 p.m.
March 31, 3:45 p.m.
April 2, 3:45 p.m.
April 3, TBA
April 5, 3:45 p.m.
April 7, 3:45 p.m.
April 9, 3:45 p.m.
April 10, TBA
April 12, 3:45 p.m.
April 14, 3:45 p.m.
April 16, 3:45 p.m.
April 17, TBA
April 19, 3:45 p.m.
April 21, 3:45 p.m.
April 24, SPRING GAME, 12:30 p.m. (Bobby Dodd Stadium)