Early Signing Day is less than a week away as Virginia Tech is making a big push with some 2018 guys. Today, the Hokies gained two commitments from Jeremy Webb
and James Mitchell, but that isn't the only notable recruiting news from the week.
Big Official Visit Weekend
It's a big official visit weekend in Blacksburg with a solid list of visitors. Here's a list of visitors:
- 4* OT Rasheed Walker
- 4* OLB/DE Javontae Jean-Baptiste
- 3* OT Walker Culver
- 3* RB Anthony Grant (Tennessee commit)
- 3* CB Jermaine Waller (VT commit)
This list could grow with VT commits, but the main guys to watch are the uncommitted recruits.
Rasheed Walker appears focused on four schools: Virginia Tech, Penn State, Ohio State, and Maryland. Walker visited Penn State last week, and is likely to visit Ohio State and/or Maryland during January, likely ruling out him signing next week. This is a critical visit for the Hokies' hopes as a really good visit could even make them the favorite.
Javontae Jean-Baptiste has recently emerged as one of the Hokies' top targets with this being his second official according to 247 Sports
after visiting Boston College last week. Jean-Baptiste is unlikely to sign next week, but will remain a top target for the next six weeks. Right now, VT appears to have a great shot at Jean-Baptiste, but there will be competition from Boston College, Nebraska, Tennessee, and others.
Anthony Grant appears more likely to sign next week with either Tennessee where he's currently committed, or VT. The coaching change and following coaching search fiasco has opened the door for the Hokies to have a legitimate shot at Grant with this official visit being their shot. While this visit is important, one factor that could affect this is how much Jeremy Pruitt wants to keep Grant. If his interest is lacking, it opens the door wide open for the Hokies to flip him.
Walker Culver's recruitment is the most cloudy of any VT target as the Hokies pushed hard for him while he was committed to Colorado, but an Ohio State offer right around his decommitment and a recent Auburn offer have made things interesting. If VT doesn't gain his commitment and sign him after this visit, it's hard to see Culver ending up in Blacksburg unless things change with Auburn and Ohio State.
JUCO TE Corey Thomas Commits as a Walk-On
and Jeremy Webb weren't the only player to commit to Virginia Tech today as JUCO TE Corey Thomas, a teammate of Webb's, committed to the Hokies on a preferred walk-on offer. We reached out to Thomas about why he chose to commit to VT over five FCS offers, and this is what he had to say.
"I had 5 D1 offers, but I decided to go to VT because it’s in my home state, the staff said if I perform how I should that I can earn a scholarship in a year, and they brought me on a great visit today. They told me that I could make a difference here and have a bright future at VT," Thomas said.
Thomas has three years of eligibility remaining, and plans on arriving this spring. He has intriguing size at 6'4'' and 225 pounds that help his upside especially since he gets to work with Ben Hilgart. The JUCO tight end also believes he can fit in well with the Hokies.
"They use the TE on the line of scrimmage, in the backfield and out wide. The coaches feel that my versatility will help me a lot moving forward," Thomas said.
The Hokies have had plenty of successful walk-ons including guys like Sam Rogers, Joey Slye, and CJ Carroll most recently. Keep an eye on Thomas who could be a sneaky good pickup for VT.
Virginia Tech Stands Out After Offering 2019 ATH KJ Johnson
The Hokies surprised 2019 athlete KJ Johnson with a scholarship offer this week. However, the Hokies immediately jumped into contention for the 2019 athlete as Johnson told us that Virginia Tech, Wake Forest, and Kentucky are the schools he's focusing on with the Hokies and Demon Deacons standing out.
Johnson has five offers so far from the three schools previously mentioned plus Colorado and Toledo. The 2019 athlete is out of Buford High School that has plenty of talented recruits including Anthony Grant
, Riley Simonds
, and Harry Miller
. Johnson was also one of multiple offers that VT sent to Buford High School players this week.
Johnson doesn't have a timetable for formally cutting his list down or making a decision, but the Hokies are already a serious contender for him. Going forward, Hokie fans should keep an eye on Johnson as he could be one of a mass of recruits from Georgia powerhouse Buford that could end up in Blacksburg.
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