Virginia Tech's 2023 high school class is most likely done as the Hokies signed 25 high school players plus have three-star TE Zeke Wimbush committed in a grayshirt situation where he currently would be on track to enroll in spring 2024. With the class just about done, we will take a look at each of the high school commits in this class.
We'll start with a player who was an important early commitment for this class and one of Tech's best recruiters this cycle, three-star QB Dylan Wittke.
Wittke played at one of the biggest powerhouses in Georgia high school football in Buford HS. After splitting time with current Stanford QB Ashton Daniels as a junior, Wittke took over as the starter for Buford this past season with Buford winning 11-straight before crashing out of the playoffs in a mid-November upset.
Wittke played in a run-first offense given that Buford had four-star Alabama RB signee Justice Haynes, one of the top 5 RBs in the 2023 class in America. Despite the run-heavy approach, Wittke put up some solid numbers completing 60.4% of his passes this season while being a solid running threat as well for Buford.
Here's a look at his highlight tape.
Wittke is very much what you expect from the modern quarterback, a pass-first player who can also make plays with his legs and has solid mobility. The days of a pocket passer are basically gone and even guys who qualify as a "pocket passer" are moreso mobile passers than anything else.
One of the biggest things that you see with Wittke is that he has all the tools that you look for in a quality quarterback prospect with significant upside. His arm strength is definitely good which will give him the ability to make all the throws that you want him to be able to make.
He shows some good touch on his downfield passes giving his guys the chance to run under it with good arcs on them. His accuracy is fairly good and shows lots of upside especially with some of sharp throws that he makes that are both mid-range and hitting receivers on deep balls in stride. There's absolutely room for growth with his accuracy but it's a solid foundation that shows his upside.
He is a solid runner who shows good speed though I wouldn't say he is a dual-threat guy compared to what we see as a modern mobile passer. However, he can be effective as a runner and has some good size already to be fairly durable at 6'1'' and 200 pounds per VT's release.
Tech's offense seems built more around a mobile passer rather than a true dual-threat QB similar to what we've seen over the years at Penn State with players like Trace McSorley. McSorley was an effective runner both on scrambles and planned runs providing enough of a threat to balance with him being a passer-first within the run-first PSU offense that had big time backs like Saquon Barkley and Miles Sanders. McSorley did become a little more true dual-threat as his Penn State career progressed but his mobile passer style is definitely similar to Wittke.
Part of the concern with Wittke is the fact that his numbers were fine but not spectacular. He did play well in the big playoff loss they had to end their season but a 9:5 TD:INT ratio isn't exactly inspiring at this point while a 60% completion rate is fine but not spectacular especially given the talent that Buford has.
He also has only one year of true starting experience splitting time last year with Ashton Daniels but generally getting limited reps. He definitely has the tools but still looks like a fairly raw quarterback who will need some time to develop but definitely has loads of upside.
One other thing that definitely helps is the fact that he comes from a great Buford program known for winning at an extremely high level. Bringing in a quarterback who knows what it takes to lead within a high level winning program while also bringing high character himself is always a plus at a position where intangibles and leadership are at a premium.
Dylan Wittke has loads of potential with all the tools that you want in a modern, mobile passer and it wouldn't surprise me at all if he develops into a very good quarterback down the road. Patience will be required with his development but the foundational tools that you want are there. Expect him to redshirt next season as he and fellow incoming HS QB William Watson III will have a fascinating battle to watch in the coming years.