After Matt Pik's post earlier this week on which Hoo is poised for a breakout season, the STL staff discussed: Which player are you most excited to see on August 31st?
Matt Trogdon: I'm going to go with an outlier and say I'm excited to see Tra Nicholson. Virginia's secondary could be quite good this year, and as a long-time Cavalier fan, I haven't been able to say that often. Tra doesn't get enough credit for locking down his side of the field. But while most eyes have been on the 2nd and 3rd corner positions, I think Tra could be poised for a big year in Jon Tenuta's defense.
Brian Leung: Look, I'm going to go ahead and take the softball here. I can't wait to see David Watford lead the charge. It's been over a year since we've last seen him in action, and by all accounts, there's been tremendous improvement...you know, since when he was 18 years old. There's nothing -- I really mean nothing -- that can get a fan base excited more than a red hot quarterback throwing lasers and darting in and out of traffic, and that's what I'm hoping to see on August 31. Also I may have unrealistic expectations.
Caroline Darney: I'm glad you took a softball, because I'm taking the T-ball. I'm unbelievably stoked to see Smoke. For one, he has an awesome nickname. He's got a lot of buzz surrounding him, and seems hardworking and excited to be here from what I can tell via coach comments/twitter/highlights.
Other than that obvious pick, I'm excited about our receiving corps. It's been awhile since I thought we had any deep threats, or even a group of guys that I think are more likely to catch the ball than muff it.
Leung grabbed the softball before I could. (Wait, that sounds...off). Leung answered before I could.
It's gotta be David Watford. There's always hope in new beginnings, and our QB position is the newest beginning of all. No disrespect to those past valiant student-athletes, but UVA hasn't had a really good starting quarterback in a long, long time. Heck, UVA hasn't even had a true starting quarterback at all in a long, long time.
Watford has the tools to be successful, both in his personal skill-set and his teammates' abilities to make plays for him. I'm not saying he'll take the ACC by storm and win a Heisman...but the bar to exceed expectations is low, and if he is at all servicable, Wahoo fans will be thrilled. Sure, this season could turn into another QB controversy disaster, but I can't wait to see if David Watford can seize this position and lead some semblance of a coherent offensive attack
Justin Ferber: I'M EXCITED TO SEE THE STREAKING THE LAWN TAILGATE, EVERYONE RSVP.
[Justin may have started his own "tailgate" a bit early....but he is right. EVERYONE RSVP]
Paul Guttman: I mean, there's only answer here, and it is Smoke. There hasn't been a Hoo come in with this much hype since probably Ahmad Brooks. A RB with his talent. I can't wait to see BYU punt to him, which I realize means our defense has to first force a punt.
Paul Wiley: This is totally off the wall, outside the box, probably outside the house in which said box is sitting, but I want to see what Trent Corney can do. It seems like every year in college football there's a player or two who came to the game late but had the raw freakish athleticism to become studs. Jason Pierre-Paul was one; Margus Hunt at SMU was another. With the depth and breadth of experience among our coaches, I expect Corney can get caught up on the mental side of the game pretty quickly. And once he does, RELEASE THE KRAKEN.
Schwartz: Fascinating. I admit I had to go back to Tiki's player profile to fully be in tune with that answer.
Darney: [two days later, perhaps forgetting she had already answered...but the more the merrier!] I can't believe it took me this long, but I can't wait to see Jake McGee. He makes up a lot of the highlights from last season (I mean...I'm not sure he can catch with TWO hands), and has glimpses of the same brilliance exhibited by the Man, the Myth, the Legend, Heath Miller. I'm excited about the prospect of a strong third and medium yardage receiver, and he's built to block. And it's just fun to yell, "MCGEEEEEE."