Press Conference: Frank Beamer

“Generally speaking, we’ve had a good preseason practices. We’re going to cover some unusual situations that come up in a ball game and do that today and then it’s game week for Georgia Tech after that.”

Q: Has having the offseason to prepare for Georgia Tech been an advantage?
A: “I think extra help does help. There is some extra preparation there for their offense and their defense. Their defense is different from us to so I think that part is good. I do think it is a critical game, the first ball game so as I’ve said many times, I think there’s good and there’s bad. The good is you have had some extra time and I think your players’ practices have very gone well because they have an opponent that they really respect and know how good they are and know that this ball game is important to both of us, but playing your first ball game when you’re keeping score for real, some unusual things could happen, that’s a little scary too so there’s some good and bad about playing a team like Georgia Tech in your opening ball game.”

Q: How has he seen Paul Johnson’s option evolve since he took over at Georgia Tech?
A: “I think the thing that really jumps out to me is that they really know what they’re doing. They’ve done it for a long time. Coaching at the game they know what they’re doing, they make great adjustments, and it’s just tough. You see a lot of option, but you don’t see much option where the quarterback is at the line of scrimmage reading the first option, the dive option. You see more where is back two or three yards off of the ball so having that option right there, the first part of the option, the dive at the line of scrimmage, I think it’s just different from what you normally see. That to me is what makes it really tough.”

Q: Is Tariq Edwards ruled out for this game?
A: “Yeah, he’s not going to play in this game.”

Q: How has the scout team’s understanding of Georgia Tech’s offense come along?
A: “We talked about it in our team meeting yesterday and how we have to have great execution and full speed work, particularly for your first five steps from our scout team this week. I’ll let you know more at the end of the week with how we’ve done.”

Q: How are planning on using Michael Via?
A: “He’s a guy that played a little center and then played a little guard and then he’s played some tackle so he’s the guy that we have a lot of confidence in. He’s smart. He can play all of them so he’s the guy right now that will challenge [Brent] Benedict for playing time at the right guard position. We’ll practice both of them and see who starts and who’s the backup.”

Q: How much progress have the running backs made this summer?
A: “I think J.C. Coleman is a different guy than he was in the spring. I think that whole you’re mind tying up your feet, I thought that was really the case. I think he had a great summer of physical preparation and gaining a little weight, and I think he’s been extremely quick on the field here in the fall. Michael Holmes has done well and Tony Gregory has looked fast out there in the scrimmages and Martin Scales in a good, tough hard-nosed runner so I think they’ve done a good job.”

Q: Has your confidence grown in those guys?
A: “Yeah, I’ve always been confident, but I was glad to see J.C. come back and preform the way he has, and then Tony coming off of his knee surgery watching him, I think they’ve done very well.”

Q: Have you picked a punter yet or will the competition continue this week?
A: “It’s going to continue. We have their stats over the preseason. Their times are just about equal, their operation time, their hang time, their distance. [A.J.] Hughes is listed as number one and [Hunter] Windmuller as number two and that’s how I think of it right now, but I tell you that we’re going to continue this week. Both of them have certainly had their moments. They’re two good punters, I can tell you that.”

Q: Is J.C. Coleman still struggling with holding the ball due to his hand? 28 – August 28, 2012
A: “It hasn’t affected his playing so as long as he plays the way he does, I think he’ll be fine.”

Q: What is James Gayle’s status?
A: “He’s on at practice today and we’ll see. I’ve been pleased with [Corey] Marshall and [J.R.] Collins, they’ve hung in there. Another guy, McCray has the ability to play inside and outside and Matt Roth has come along to where he feels like he’s ready for some playing time. The good thing is that I think we have some capable guys there. We expect both Gayle and Wilson both to come back and practice today.”

Q: Have you picked anyone on kickoff situations?
A: “No, we’re going to decide that this week. [Michael] Branthover is in the running [Cody] Journell is in the running and [Ethan] Keyserling is in the running. They’ve all done very well along with [Brooks] Abbott. Abbott has been in the running to. We’re going to in the next couple days figure out who’s going to be our kickoff guy.”

Q: Do you mind having your field goal guy being your kickoff guy?
A: “No, whoever gives us the best chance to get the started inside their 20. Whoever that is, that’s who we’ll run out there.”

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