With the Hokies returning an extremely high percentage of their starters this fall, it is going to be very hard for the latest class of freshman to find a ay to get playing time this fall. Mook Reynolds is the only obvious choice as a player that will see the field a lot as a freshman while Dwayne Lawson has the talent to take the quarterback job if Michael Brewer slips up, and Yosuah Nijman could be the first offensive tackle off the bench if one of the two starters gets injured.
However, Reynolds may not be the only defensive back that plays a lot for the Hokies this fall.
Adonis Alexander enrolled early for the Hokies, which has given him more time to get up to speed to the collegiate game along with getting in the weight room to bulk up some. Alexander also has the opportunity to earn the starting rover job with C.J. Reavis no longer on the team, and his future status being unknown.
Alexander was used at cornerback and rover this past spring, but the freshman safety will likely stay at rover for all of fall practice due to his big upside at the position. Alexander is still fairly raw as a safety, but his athleticism is valuable, and he seems ready to fight for some playing time this fall.
At minimum, Alexander has shown a high work ethic that could allow him to earn a role similar to what C.J. Reavis had as a freshman last fall. Reavis wasn’t used much on defense for the Hokies, but he was a valuable special teams player that also had the blocked punt against Virginia.
Alexander has the athleticism and work ethic to be a very good special teams player from day one for the Hokies. Frank Beamer has shown a willingness to not redshirt true freshmen that can do damage on special teams, which definitely helps Alexander’s chances of avoiding a redshirt.
Alexnder likely has already been given a decent amount of time on special teams from this past spring, which likely gives him an inside track. Alexander also seems like a quick learner that could be a rapid-developing talent for the Hokies. Alexander might be able to at least earn the backup rover job behind a veteran like Donovan Riley, which could also push someone like Terrell Edmunds back to cornerback.
Adonis Alexander has a bright future in Blacksburg, and he will get some playing time this fall, though it’s still to be determined if it will be more than being a valuable special teams player just like C.J. Reavis last fall.