Virginia Tech gained their biggest commitment last week since Devon Hunter when four-star WR Tre Turner committed to the Hokies over North Carolina and Florida State among others. Turner was a statement pickup for the Hokies that has given the #NC2VT movement even more momentum with three-star CB and close friend DJ Crossen joining the movement and committing to the Hokies this past week.
Turner has plenty of hype around him in part because of how well he is ranked as ESPN, 247 Sports, Rivals, and the 247 Sports Composite have him as a top 200 recruit nationally, a top 10 recruit in North Carolina (including top 5 by Rivals and ESPN), and no lower than 31st among wide receivers. Turner also has an illustrious offer list that includes Virginia Tech, Florida State, North Carolina, Florida, Oklahoma, Penn State, Tennessee, Notre Dame, Louisville, Miami, South Carolina, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and more.
The offer list and ratings are impressive but there is no doubt that he is at least as good as the recruiting services say he is.
Turner is a tremendous talent that has the speed, size, and athleticism that coaches at the collegiate and professional levels dream to get to work with and develop. Turner is definitely an outside receiver but athletically speaking, he is the complete package and may have the best blend of size, speed, and athleticism that VT has ever had in a receiver.
Throughout Turner’s highlight tape, we see that his high school team is simply trying to get the ball in his hands as quick as possible with Turner being the playmaker this offense is built around. On any play, Turner is a threat to score a touchdown whether it be on a deep route or a simple screen where Turner has the agility to make guys miss and the speed to take advantage of any hole he gets to turn a solid play into a touchdown.
Turner has great speed not just for a 6’4” WR but for any receiver in general while also having the acceleration to get separation rather quickly. Turner consistently shows off that speed and acceleration on the multiple touchdowns off of screens on his highlight tape, which almost seems like a replay shown four or five times. Turner has great athleticism that likely is boosted from how he has been a dual-sport athlete (football and basketball), something that is quite beneficial for any athlete developmentally with a significant majority of those drafted to the NFL being guys who were dual-sport athletes in high school.
On top of that, Turner has a very good vertical along with great ball skills that make him a nightmare one-on-one and helps him win a lot of 50-50 and jump balls. On his highlight tape, Turner consistently has a greater combination of natural height and vertical than any cornerback that gives him a big advantage with those 50-50 balls while he has great reactions and hand-eye coordination as shown on one pass in particular when a jump ball was tipped yet he still makes the catch as he is coming down from going up for the pass.
Combine these great ball skills and impressive athleticism with well above-average speed and you have a matchup nightmare that will give cornerbacks across college football issues. Turner is a big play machine that has all the athletic skills to become a star at the collegiate level along with having a future on Sundays for years to come post-college especially as someone who can blow the top off of a defense or can turn a quick pass into a big play.
One thing we don’t see with Turner is a varied route tree but that shouldn’t be much of a concern as there are very few great route runners coming out of high school while Turner also has another year to develop his route-running skills and become an even more dangerous and complete wide receiver.
It’s still well over a year till Turner will touch a college football field, but there’s no doubt in my mind that Turner will play as a true freshman for the Hokies especially with Justin Fuente wanting to have 6-8 wide receivers. However, Turner won’t be a backup relegated to a part-time role but he has the talent to be at least a 30-40 reception backup for VT while also pushing older outside receivers like Caleb Farley, Phil Patterson, and Eric Kumah for playing time.
In the long run, Turner has the athletic talent to become one of the greatest receivers in Virginia Tech history. As long as Turner becomes at least a decent route runner, he will be a great player at Virginia Tech that not only will become one of the ACC’s best receivers but also has the ceiling to be an All-American at some point during his Virginia Tech career.
There are many reasons why Tre Turner is the Hokies’ biggest commitment since Devon Hunter, but the biggest reason is the fact that Turner is the most talented athlete that the Hokies have brought in to play wide receiver possibly in program history. Justin Fuente has hit a home run with getting Turner and it’s almost impossible to imagine him not becoming a star wide receiver.