The 2019 Virginia Tech Sports Hall of Fame class was revealed this past Sunday with six former Hokies going into the Hall of Fame headlined by former Pro Bowl cornerback Brandon Flowers. The six picks for the VT Sports Hall of Fame got me thinking about which current Hokies are already surefire Virginia Tech Sports Hall of Famers.
This got us wondering which current Hokies are already the most certain to be Virginia Tech Sports Hall of Famers one day?
Now there are plenty of recent Hokies who are also deserving of this honor but for our list, we're only including Virginia Tech athletes and/or coaches who were active this past athletic year. With that said, here are the five Hokies who are surefire future Virginia Tech Sports Hall of Famers.
Justin Robinson, Men's Basketball
No one should be surprised to see Justin Robinson at the top of the list, but there's no doubt that Robinson is leaving Blacksburg with a legacy on the level of the greatest basketball players in program history.
Robinson's legacy starts with the fact that he was at the forefront of three-straight NCAA Tournament appearances for the Hokies, the first time that has happened in program history. Additionally, Robinson started 105 games during his four seasons that included those 3 NCAA Tournaments and 1 NIT with 86 starts in the past three seasons, a number that would have been higher if not for an injury this past season that caused him to miss more than half of ACC play.
Because of his injury, Robinson was unable to receive the All-ACC honors that he seemed certain to receive this past season, but he was named a finalist for the Bob Cousy Award despite not playing a full season while being an All-ACC Second Team honoree as a junior.
Robinson is undoubtedly the Hokies' greatest passer as the Hokies' all-time assist leader averaging 4.5 assists per game for his career while averaging over that number for the past three seasons along with double-digits in points. Robinson was the ideal creator and leader as shown by how Buzz Williams deferred to his star point guard in big moments where Robinson delivered.
Lastly, there may not be a player that goes down as the one who defined the Buzz Williams era more than Justin Robinson who played selflessly with incredible hustle while being his teammates' number 1 supporter when he wasn't on the floor, all of which made him one of the most popular athletes in the history of Virginia Tech.
Justin Robinson will undoubtedly go down as one of the greatest players in Virginia Tech basketball and the only question that actually remains is whether the Hokies should retire his number or not?
Mekhi Lewis, Wrestling
Mekhi Lewis has done more in one season than 99% of all collegiate wrestlers will do in their whole careers with a trifecta of great achievements along with one of collegiate wrestling's most prestigious awards as a true freshman.
It started for Lewis when he became a Junior World Champion during the start of the season, making an early season statement that he would at least be one of the best new wrestlers in college wrestling. Of course, Lewis made sure by the end of the season that he was the best newcomer to collegiate wrestling with a performance to remember in Pittsburgh.
Leading up to the NCAAs, Lewis cruised to winning his first ACC title at 165 pounds on home turf in Cassell Coliseum. From there, Lewis went to Pittsburgh and went on a run to remember starting as the 8 seed and taking out the top overall seed on his way to reaching the finals.
Once in the final, Lewis put together his finest performance defeating two-time defending champion Vincenzo Joseph of Penn State to become the first individual national champion
in the history of Virginia Tech Wrestling. On top of that, Lewis also became the first Hokie to earn Most Outstanding Wrestling of the NCAA Tournament for his performance winning the title after starting as the 8 seed.
The case for Lewis is quite easy given the impressive individual accomplishments that no other Virginia Tech wrestler can claim to have. Combine that with the fact that Lewis has become a superstar in collegiate wrestling because of his performance at the NCAA Championships and the case for Lewis to go in as soon as possible once he eligible is quite obvious.
Mekhi Lewis is already on track to go down as the greatest wrestler in Virginia Tech athletic history, and is certain to be a Virginia Tech Sports Hall of Famer.
Amanada Hollandsworth, Women's Golf
Amanda Hollandsworth was there at the beginning of the Virginia Tech women's golf program and as she leaves Blacksburg, she has set the bar quite high for now as the best golfer in the program history.
Much of Hollandsworth is built around the fact that she was a part of the first signing class for Virginia Tech women's golf while the way she finished her career sets a high bar of excellence for future women's golfers at Virginia Tech.
During her collegiate career, Virginia Tech reached the NCAA Women's Golf Tournament for the first two times in program history in 2018 and 2019. Personally, Hollandsworth made even more history becoming the first Virginia Tech golfer to qualify for the NCAA Championships out of the NCAA Regionals this past season.
From there, Hollandsworth built on the individual accomplishments by becoming the first female Virginia Tech golfer to qualify for the U.S. Women's Open followed by finishing fifth at the NCAA Championships. Hollandsworth was unfortunately able to keep the strong run going missing the cut in Charleston, but simply turning pro and playing on the biggest stage in women's golf after a top 5 in the NCAA Championships is an incredible legacy.
Amanda Hollandsworth bought into the vision of building Virginia Tech women's golf before the Hokies made their debut in the sport and should be the first women's golfer to go into the Virginia Tech Sports Hall of Fame someday in the future.
Paige Petty, Lacrosse
After two seasons, it's already clear that Paige Petty will go down as one of the greatest players in the history of Virginia Tech lacrosse.
After a school record 66 goals this past season, Petty moved to sixth on the all-time goal scoring list with 124 goals in only 2 seasons. Both her freshman and sophomore seasons are among the top 4 for single-season goals in the over two-decade history of the program.
Petty has been one of the most dominant players in the ACC and she has received the accolades because of that with a pair of All-ACC First Team honors in 2018 and 2019 along with an All-American Honorable Mention from Inside Lacrosse this past season.
Petty is likely the biggest surprise on this list, but what she has been able to do in two seasons both individually and being a significant part of the first NCAA Tournament team in program history is already an impressive legacy. Combine that with the fact that she has two years to go and not only could be an All-American each of the next two seasons, but also is almost certain to break the school record for most goals in a year (possibly as a junior), and you have a recipe for a future Virginia Tech Sports Hall of Famer.
Jacory Patterson, Men's Track and Field
Cole Beck may have the most name recognition among Virginia Tech men's track & field freshmen, but Jacory Patterson is the most successful one by far and already building a major legacy that will live beyond his time at Virginia Tech.
As a freshman, Patterson has broken three indoor school records (200m, 300m, 400m) and the 400 meter outdoor record while winning individual ACC Championships at 400 meters both indoors and outdoors. While there have been other successful freshmen this year including 400m hurdle champion Miles Green, Patterson has been in a league of his own not only
Some track and field athletes simply dream of breaking one school record or winning one ACC title over four years whereas Patterson has already claimed four records and two ACC titles with Patterson having the potential to win four-straight titles at 400 meters both indoor and outdoors, and you have a recipe for a future Hall of Famer.
Of course, Patterson still has plenty of work ahead and unlike Mekhi Lewis, the lack of All-American honor and an individual national champion still means he has some work to go. However, Patterson seems well on his way to going down as one of the greatest athletes in the history of the Virginia Tech men's track and field as he heads to the NCAA Championships looking to finish a freshman season to remember well.
Photo Credit: Harley Taylor
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