We are in the final week countdown to the Labor Day weekend, and not inconsequentially the season opening kickoff at Lane Stadium as the Virginia Tech Hokies host an opening warmup game against the Liberty Flames. There will be some differences in the way we cover the games, though. Last season, Gobbler Country did its best to cover the Tech home games from a mixture of student season seats, and TV/Net coverage. That effort will still continue, as those vantage points have great reporting advantages. This season, however, presents Gobbler Country with a great challenge. We will be covering the home games and the Battle at Bristol live. In the case of home games, we will have two reporters to cover from the Lane Stadium Press Box, and on both sidelines of Worsham Field.
This season you will see Game Day pictures from the pregame tailgates, and goings on around Blacksburg. We won’t be able to stream or record live video, but we can take pictures and we certainly can report on our @GobblerCountry twitter feed, and the GC Game Thread. We will be posting what we can, and will always work to deliver accurate information in a timely fashion. Look for Game Day Coverage to begin when the ‘Skipper’ fires in the Hokie Village, through to the final press conferences after the games. It’s going to be exciting and we are looking forward to having you, our loyal readers, right there with us.
So, let’s introduce the 2016 Gobber Country Staff.
Jay Johnson – VT ’05 Business (Marketing Management)
Alright, ladies and gentlemen! I am back for another year covering the endeavors of Virginia Tech Hokies athletics, and I couldn’t be happier! My first year at Virginia Tech was Michael Vick’s last year. I spent five years in Blacksburg, and graduated with a B.S. in Marketing Management, and a minor in Religious Studies. The following fall I shipped off to join the United States Navy, where I have remained employed since. During my time in the military Virginia Tech had been a central part of my life, which I detailed in an article last year. In addition to my attachment to the Hokies I also have a substantial emotional connection the Jacksonville Jaguars. Outside of football I am a rabid fan of Formula 1 racing, in particular I support the American based effort of the Haas F1 Team. I am looking forward to this football season, and I hope you elect to participate with Gobbler Country for 2016 ! Follow me @jjohnsonVATech on Twitter.
Joshua Schneider – VT ’13 Architecture and Urban Studies (Architecture)
I'm known on the site as BlueLoneWolf and twitter handle of @VTStatBoy. I am a full time graduate architect, part-time scout and opinion writer for Gobbler Country. I generally cover recruiting and previews and wrap-ups, though I enjoy writing deeper things analyzing existential questions and situations for the football program we all know and love. (ed – note: Josh played 4 years of high school football and earned two letters for his efforts)
Jawhar Ali – VT ’18 Business (Finance and Accounting)
Whaddup GC readers?!? My name is Jawhar Ali and I'm happy to be here for my first football season here at Gobbler Country. I'm currently a junior at VT double majoring in Finance and Accounting, and I'm pretty freakin' upset that I only have two more years in Blacksburg. Most of y'all know me from basketball season (which I can't wait for by the way), but I can't wait for Joey Slye (or the Liberty kicker - whatever his name is) to kick off the Hokies' 2016 football season. In case you haven't noticed, I'm a film addict. Football is my heroin and film is my needle. In addition to my Fuente 101 breakdowns I've been doing this offseason, I'll hopefully be able to do film breakdowns for every game assuming schoolwork hasn't done me in first. My favorite professional football team is the Eagles - so make all the jokes about me you want, I've heard them all. Anyways...you can follow me on Twitter @soundslikejafar (https://twitter.com/soundslikejafar) for analysis of both Hokies' football and basketball throughout the fall/winter.
Mohamed Hassan – VT ’16 Engineering (Chemical)
Legend has it that I came out of the womb with orange and maroon pajamas and a laptop ready to cover Virginia Tech sports. (Follow Mo @mobestrong on Twitter) As a Virginia Tech graduate myself, I couldn’t be happier to cover the team I love. When I am not writing about the Hokies, I work as a nuclear engineer. (ed – Mo is our newest writer and we cannot wait to see what he has to say this season.)
Assistant Editor/ Staff Writer
John Schneider – VT ’81 Liberal Arts and Human Sciences (History)
Also known as @VTNeanderthal, and The Mighty Fahvaag (On the site – I won’t elaborate but the nickname came from the ‘70’s from my friends at Tech, and it stuck for the net.) I am the certified ‘Old Man’ of Gobbler Country, and am the only one of us who didn’t start off as a Virginia Tech Hokie… I was an actual Fighting Gobbler and have memories of the sad ’77 and ’78 football seasons to show for it. Well, ’79 wasn’t so good either, but tickets weren’t cheap for students back then. This season is going to be a major effort, and we are looking forward to hearing from Gobbler Country’s segment of Hokie Nation.
Roy B. Hatfield – Salem High School Class of ‘92
My name is Roy Hatfield, and am the managing editor at Gobbler Country @roybhatfield. I have held that position for over a year now, and really enjoy it. My favorite Virginia Tech memory was standing on the field after we beat Boston College in 1999. I currently live in Mobile, AL, and also enjoy fishing. The Hokies' 2016 club should be interesting, and can’t wait to cover them.
So that’s us; the 2016 Gobbler Country Staff. It’s going to be an exciting season. There is so much that is new, and relatively unknown. There will undoubtedly be triumphs, but also disappointments. Great achievements are often balanced off by dunderheaded goofs. We’ll be there to report it and comment on it with objectivity; but also a great love of all things Virginia Tech.