As a wide receiver, the way that Christian Philpott views the Georgia Tech offense isn’t quite man-bites-dog unusual, but it doesn’t quite follow the conventional wisdom.
When he visited the school last summer as a prospect, Philpott said he had questions about his role in the run-heavy scheme until coaches broke it down for him. That explanation, he said, sealed the deal for him to commit.
“Mainly, it’s that it’s a physical offense,” said Philpott, from Tallahassee, Fla., and North Florida Christian. “Receivers have to block, of course, (but) when they do throw the ball, it’s mainly, from what I’ve seen, either curls or posts or goes. That’s really my bread and butter.”
That Philpott favors the deep passing game does not rate as a surprise. Philpott won three state sprint titles in Florida’s Class 1A and plans to run for Tech’s track team. That Tech’s football coaches were supportive of his desire to run was another reason Philpott was won over.
Philpott may possess the fastest straight-line speed for a Tech wide receiver since Stephen Hill. That field-stretching element will undoubtedly help Philpott in the competition in camp at wide receiver, where a slew of inexperienced candidates will vie to make the rotation.
With his speed and ability to track down passes, “I feel like that opens up a way to get a lot of playing time this season, to get on the field and contribute,” Philpott said.
Philpott is undecided on when he would join the track team. He said that if the first season goes by and he doesn’t feel comfortable in the offense, he would hold off on track in order to concentrate on football in spring practice. Philpott won the 200-meter dash in Class 1A as a sophomore and the 200 and 400 as a junior. He holds the school records in both events (21.45 and 48.17). His 200 time is .01 second slower than the qualifying time for USA Track and Field’s junior nationals.
He has been running track since about the fourth grade and began playing football as a high school freshman. He said he likes both sports equally.
Philpott said his goal for the season is to contribute however he can, ideally by starting.
“(Coaches) really just told me that I have a chance to come in and play a lot,” Philpott said. “I’ve just got to get in and work hard and I’ll be able to play.”
1. Philpott was listed at 6-foot-3 and 203 pounds on signing day, but was up to 215 just before he reported to Tech in June. “I feel stronger,” he said.
2. Philpott was assigned No. 82, which was worn last season by Qua Searcy, who came to Tech as a wide receiver but is now an A-back and wearing No. 1.
3. Philpott received scholarship from Penn State, Northwestern, Miami, Louisville, Ole Miss, Central Florida and Indiana, among others.
4. Philpott said that he developed a relationship in his recruitment with wide receivers coach Buzz Preston. “He’s a great coach,” Philpott said of Preston. “I’m excited to be coached by him.”
I had some trouble embedding video for this blog post, for some reason. You can find it linked here.
New in ’15