It’s been a big week for the new coaching staff in Blacksburg with two big commitments and it will hopefully become even bigger on Friday when 4-star RB Shai McKenzie will decide where he will play college football, with Virginia Tech being a serious contender.
This Thursday Virginia Tech received a verbal commitment from 4-star defensive back Ashton White from Washington D.C. The 6-0 172 pound cornerback is the second commitment for the 2015 class along with 4-star defensive end Michael Barnett from South Carolina. White noted that both early recruitment and consistency in the program with a 21-bowl streak influenced his decision. It probably also helps that he will be playing for one of the best defensive minds in the country in Bud Foster, as well for defensive backs coach Torrian Gray who was just nominated this year for the Broyles Award, which is given annually to the top assistant coach in the country.
White will be a great addition to the already elite Hokie secondary. True freshman Kendall Fuller was recently recognized by the coaches as the ACC defensive rookie of the year, with his teammate Brandon Facyson finishing second in the polls. With a potential all-American secondary and handful of highly rated defensive backs coming in for 2014, look for White to be redshirted and probably not see the field until the 2016 season.
The Hokies also picked up a surprise commitment from an Ohio quarterback Chris Durkin. The 3-star pro-style quarterback was formerly committed to Michigan State but surprised both the Spartans and the Hokies when he flipped to Virginia Tech on Monday. Durkin’s said that early playing time was a deciding factor in his decision. This will no doubt create an interesting scenario for the starting quarterback competition in 2014 between him, Andrew Ford, Mark Leal and Bucky Hodges. The Spring and Summer camps will likely see a combination of competition, position changes, and redshirting, but it’s never a bad thing to have a surplus of talent.
Finally, Shai McKenzie will be making his decision on Friday between Virginia Tech, Pittsburgh and Georgia Tech. McKenzie tore his ACL early in his senior season, but that did not slow down his recruiting. All three schools are going after him hard, but it appears as though Virginia Tech and Pittsburgh are the leaders for landing him. If he does choose the Hokies, he will join Marshawn Williams and D.J. Reid as three RB’s in the 2014 class.
Having Bud Foster as the defensive coordinator always gives the Hokies a chance for an elite defensive, so it is refreshing to see the new coaching staff load up with talent on the offensive side of the ball.