A day after Virginia Tech’s starting place kicker was released from jail, another one was sent home for violating team rules during the Hokies’ first night out in New Orleans.
Fifth-year senior Tyler Weiss is on a Greyhound bus back to southwest Virginia, the team announced Thursday afternoon, after he missed a 1 a.m. curfew Wednesday night. Weiss was slated to handle shorter field goals during next week’s Sugar Bowl after redshirt sophomore Cody Journell was charged with felony breaking-and-entering and suspended indefinitely last week.
Virginia Tech Coach Frank Beamer said senior Justin Myer, the team’s kickoff specialist the past two seasons, is expected to handle the place kicking against Michigan. The team will also give punter Michael Branthover, a place kicker at DeMatha last year, and redshirt freshman Conor Goulding a chance to win the job in practice.
“We had curfew. We talked about it a lot. He didn’t make it and we’re going to send him home,” Beamer told reporters before the team’s second day of practice in New Orleans. “That’s kind of about it.”
“My kickers are not bad guys,” he later added. “They just made bad decisions. And young people do that.”
Myer is 0 for 2 during his career at Virginia Tech, with both misses coming this season from 57 and 53 yards out. Beamer has said in the past Myer has the strongest leg on the team, but has struggled with his accuracy and consistency.
Last year at the Orange Bowl, Beamer sent six players home on a bus after they violated team rules, but none were expected to play in the actual game. He also suspended running back David Wilson and safety Antone Exum for the first quarter of the Orange Bowl after they were in the team’s hotel but not in their rooms in time for curfew on New Year’s Eve.
According to Virginia Tech’s athletic department Web site, the bus ride back to Roanoke from New Orleans this year involves three transfers and takes close to 27 hours.