By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Young Georgia Tech squad hits the field
08.01 GT prax
Quarterback Josh Nesbitt is one of 78 players who are either freshmen or sophomores for new Georgia Tech coach Paul Johnson. - photo by File photo

Georgia Tech Sports Information Department

ATLANTA — Georgia Tech head coach Paul Johnson had a chance to see his entire Yellow Jacket squad for the first time Wednesday as Tech conducted its first practice session of the 2008 season.

The Yellow Jackets practiced for two hours in helmets and shorts at Rose Bowl Fields.

“There’s a lot of excitement going into the first practice, and for me, a lot of anticipation,” Johnson said after seeing Tech’s newcomers on the field for the first time. “But you have to remember it’s just the first day and we’re not even in pads yet.”

Wednesday’s practice appeared to run much smoother and at a quicker pace than the spring sessions held in March and April when Tech players were being introduced to new schemes.

“I think there is some carryover from the spring,” Johnson said. “The guys who were here in the spring at least knew where to line up. We may have even tried to do too much today given that we have so many freshmen.”

There are 26 true freshmen in camp, including 21 on scholarship. There are 78 players on the roster who are either freshmen or sophomores.

The defensive line, meanwhile, returns three senior veterans in tackles Darryl Richard and Vance Walker and end Michael Johnson.

“We’ve got some experience on defense, and I think we’ll play well,” Coach Johnson said. “But we have to play well for the entire season.”

Tech will practice at 3 p.m. today at Rose Bowl Field. The Great Jacket Encounter is scheduled for Saturday at 3 p.m. in Bobby Dodd Stadium.