September 28, 2009

Hill shines in starting role

Freshman wide receiver Stephen Hill has made a major impact since arriving on the Georgia Tech campus this summer. Hill finally cracked the starting lineup for the North Carolina game and he had a pair of pass receptions and several key blocks on running plays helping an energized Yellow Jackets offense pull off a 24-7 win Saturday.

In his first career start, Hill caught his first two career college passes for 38 yards.

"It was great and it was a good thing just being out there helping the team," Hill said after the game. "That was the best thing."

Hill did not find out he was starting until receivers coach Buzz Preston informed him on Friday.

"The day before coach told me I was going to start and it is all good," Hill said. "Coach told me he thought I was the person that could help this team the most. He told me to go ahead and do it."

Ultimately, Hill is not concerned with starting or how much he plays in a particular series. He says he simply wants to help the team any way that he can.

"Starting is great, but as long as I can get on the field help the team, that is all I care about," he said. "That is the biggest thing for me."

Quarterback Josh Nesbitt looked for Hill several times on screen plays, but was only able to connect once on that type of play.

"We had stuff like that designed to get me the ball. The second one we ran was kind of hard because the corner was really pressing me real hard," he said. "Other than that, I am glad we came out with this win."

Hill gave the fans a glimpse of his great body control at the end of the first half when he caught a long pass down the sideline from Nesbitt with time running out. The two connected on a 33-yard pass down the sideline that would have set up a field goal had time not expired prematurely.

"I was trying to turn inside, but I was also looking at the line to see where I was at the same time," Hill said. "There were things that I can build off of and work on going into the next game."

The Jackets return last year's number two receiver Tyler Melton this week. Melton strained MCL during fall camp. Hill will have to continue playing at a high level to maintain the top spot for the rest of the season.

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