Friday mailblog

Welcome to my office ...

Ted in Stonycreek, Va., writes: Heather,with the resignation of tressel and ohio state's best five players on the bench come game time will a miami victory have any value.

HD: Every win counts, Ted, so yes, in regards to bowl eligibility and taking a step in the right direction under Al Golden, it counts. As to the value it will carry against one of the nation's top teams? Definitely devalued without Tressel and five of his key players, but that status hasn't changed. It would have been the same had he just been suspended.

Robert in North Carolina writes: Heather, what is the difference between what happened at Ohio State and what has happened/is happening at unc?

HD: The biggest difference is that evidence was discovered that Tressel knew what his players were doing about eight months before the NCAA found out (and then lied about it). There has been no evidence at UNC that Butch Davis knew what his players were up to.

Craig Colley in Waycross, Ga., writes: Heather, i got one question. Do you think Jimbo Fisher will allow E.J Manuel to open up the offense more with his athletic ability this year compared to the few games he played in last year?

HD: The more experience Manuel has, the more he'll be able to do, but I don't think Fisher would say Manuel was limited in his abilities last year. And don't forget, the Noles have a pretty good stable of running backs to make use of, too. Manuel doesn't have to do it all by himself.

Russ in Richmond, Va., writes: It seems like every year VT fans are hopeful it's their year to finally win the big game, and I agree that gets old after awhile. Compared to previous years, this VT squad is lacking in defense and the QB position on paper, but this is arguably the easiest schedule for VT in over a decade. With that said and taking into consideration the daunting schedules of the other contenders and the likelihood of many one loss teams in the field, it does seem possible YET AGAIN that this could be their year. Remember, there are no top 5 teams on the schedule for once for VT...do I sound crazy?

HD: No, it's not crazy. The BCS is crazy, which means it wouldn't surprise me in the least if the Hokies found their way into the national title picture. Their schedule, though, is both a blessing and a curse. While it should be easy to navigate, I honestly don't see voters giving the Hokies' schedule the credit it will need to be one of the top 2 teams in the country.

JWhiz in Bristol, Tn. 37620, writes: Hey Heather, any chance of David Wilson of VATech being the suprise player in the ACC this year completely smothering Login Thomas' stardom to come? Shades of Reggie Bush but better???

HD: Absolutely. Thomas will be in the spotlight simply because of the position he plays, but we've already seen glimpses of how electric Wilson can be. It wouldn't surprise me in the least if he became the main star of that team.

Royce in St. Petersburg, Fla., writes: Do you think Greg Reid from Florida State is in position for a breakout year or do you see him as producing similar results as last year which were good also

HD: I thought he had a great season a year ago, but yes, I think he could even improve on those numbers. I wouldn't call it a breakout season, though -- we already know who he is.