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May 7, 2010

Blakely and Stewart receive Skelton Awards

By: Jimmy Robertson

Women’s tennis player Martha Blakely and men’s swimmer Trey Stewart each received the Skelton Award for Academic Excellence in Athletics – the top honor handed out by the Tech athletics department.

Candidates must have participated in an intercollegiate sport for at least two competitive seasons and must have a grade-point average of 3.4 or higher. Winners receive a one-time $5,000 scholarship for the upcoming academic year.

Blakely, a native of Reading, Pa., is majoring in biochemistry, chemistry and mathematics. She is currently in the honors program and has been a member of the Virginia Tech College of Science Dean’s List and AD’s Honor Roll since her inception at Virginia Tech.

Stewart, a native of Luling, La., is majoring in biochemistry, with a minor in chemistry. He has been a member of the Dean’s List, AD’s Honor Roll, and the All-ACC Academic Team since 2007. In 2007 and 2008, he earned College Swimming Coaches Association of America honorable mention academic All-American status.

On May 3, the athletics department honored more than 130 student-athletes for their work in their respective sports, in their classes and in the community at the All-Sports Banquet held at Squires Student Center.

For photos of the evening and a listing of the winners, please check

Metallica sends gift to Tech football program

Members of the band Metallica presented Tech head coach Frank Beamer and the football program an autographed football as a way of thanking the Hokies’ program for the use of Enter Sandman as the introduction music before taking the field at Lane Stadium. The members of the band – James Hetfield, Lars Ulrich, Kirk Hammett and Robert Trujillo – signed the ball, and they also wrote, “Start Jumpin’!” on it.

Bruce Gearhart and his son, Mac, a first-year student at Virginia Tech, presented the ball to Beamer before the Hokies’ spring scrimmage on April 10. Bruce Gearhart, the president of Bacchus Importers in Baltimore and a former executive with EMI Records, has a relationship with the band members.

“We were honored to learn a few years ago that Enter Sandman had become a small part of Virginia Tech’s outstanding football program,” said Marc Reiter, senior vice president of Q Prime Inc., Metallica’s management group. “When they checked out the videos on YouTube, they were blown away to see 70,000 people jumping around in Lane Stadium as if it were a Metallica show! Now that the phenomenon has spread to the basketball program, and perhaps other Hokie sports programs that we have yet to see as well, the band feels an even stronger bond with the school and with the Hokie Nation.

“On behalf of all four members of Metallica … Keep jumping!”

Worilds headlines Tech draft contingent

Jason Worilds’ decision to leave Virginia Tech early and declare for the NFL Draft appears to be a good one, as the Pittsburgh Steelers selected Worilds in the second round of the draft with the 52nd overall pick.

Worilds was one of five players drafted, and the group brings the total to 80 players drafted since head coach Frank Beamer took over in 1987. It also extended the streak of having at least one player drafted for 17 consecutive years.

Kam Chancellor, Ed Wang, Brent Bowden and Cody Grimm joined Worilds as draftees. Chancellor and Wang went in the fifth round to Seattle and Buffalo, respectively, while Bowden went in the sixth round and Grimm in the seventh round. Both of them went to Tampa Bay.

Additionally, six more seniors have signed free agent deals with NFL clubs. They include tight end Greg Boone (Tampa Bay), defensive end Nekos Brown (Tampa Bay), offensive lineman Sergio Render (Tampa Bay), defensive tackle Demetrius Taylor (Pittsburgh), defensive tackle Cordarrow Thompson (Pittsburgh) and cornerback Stephan Virgil (Buffalo).

Dates set for Greenberg hoops camps

The dates have been set for this summer’s Seth Greenberg Hokie Hoops Camps, which run from early June to the beginning of August. Here are the dates:

- Hokie Experience Camp, June 11-12 (for parents and children K-12 and will feature competitions, games and drills)

- Post and Perimeter Position Camp, June 21-23 (for rising eighth graders through 12th graders who want to work on advanced concepts of this part of the game)

- Hokie Hoops Individual Day Camp, July 5-8 (for boys and girls grades first through eighth who want to learn and improve basketball skills)

- Hokie Hoops Individual Overnight Camp, July 11-14 (for boys ages 7 through 12th grade who want to learn and improve basketball skills)

- Hokie Hoops Day Camp, Aug. 9-12 (for boys and girls grades first through eighth who want to improve fundamental offensive skills while also playing in games)