Starting mike linebacker Barquell Rivers will miss the next 3-4 months after
suffering a torn quadriceps tendon on Wednesday in the weight room. The injury
will require surgery, and Rivers will miss spring practice.
Rivers, a rising r-junior, started every game at mike linebacker this past
season. He finished with 96 tackles and 6.5 tackles for loss, and was easily
Virginia Tech’s most consistent inside linebacker.
With Rivers missing spring practice, rising r-sophomore Bruce Taylor is
expected to step into the starting role. While the injury obviously hurts
Rivers, the development of Taylor will get quite a boost with so many reps with
the starting defense this spring. However, there is little depth behind Taylor
at this point.
Telvion Clark, a r-freshman, was listed at mike at the end of the season.
Behind him is a r-freshman walk-on, Jack Tyler, as well as r-senior walk-on Tim
Richardson. It’s possible that other players could move to the mike spot this
Rhodes Not Enrolling at Tech
Highly-touted defensive tackle recruit De’Antre Rhodes has been granted a
release from his letter of intent, and has now signed with Louisville. The
Richmond native was a 4-star recruit by TechSideline.com.
Rhodes originally signed with Tech in 2009, but qualification issues forced
him to attend Hargrave Military Academy in the fall. He signed again with Tech
in 2010, but has since been released from that letter of intent.
His high school coach at Varina, Stu Brown, says there are still
qualification issues with Rhodes.
“The bottom line is that De’Antre is not NCAA qualified. He is
academically ineligible,” Brown said. “He is in the same boat with
Louisville he was in with Virginia Tech. Louisville is hoping he can get it
Tech Players Participate in NFL Combine
Six Virginia Tech players took part in the NFL Combine in Indianapolis
earlier this week, and they had mixed results. Two players helped themselves
with their workouts, others held serve, while one likely saw his stock drop.
Defensive end Jason Worilds measured in at 6-1, 254, and he could end up
playing linebacker at the next level. He impressed with a 4.72 in the 40, a very
impressive 38″ vertical jump, a 6.95 in the three cone drill and a 4.29 in
the 20 yard shuttle. He was one of the most impressive defensive linemen in the
combine in those events. However, strength is a concern thanks to his
oft-injured shoulder. He only did 24 bench press reps, one of the lower marks
amongst the defensive linemen.
Cody Grimm worked out with the linebackers and put up strong numbers. He ran
a 4.64 in the 40, posted a 35.5″ vertical and ran a 6.58 in the three cone
drill. His three cone time was the second fastest time of the entire NFL
combine, regardless of position. Only Scott Long of Louisville had a better
time. Grimm is expected to play safety in the NFL, and it’s questionable as to
whether he’ll be drafted. However, he helped his chances at the combine.
Kam Chancellor ran a 4.62 in the 40, which was about what was expected. He
also had 22 reps on the bench press. He didn’t do anything to help or hurt his
stock. The same can be said for Ed Wang, who had 29 bench press reps and ran a
5.14 in the 40.
Unfortunately, Stephan Virgil did not have a good combine. Virgil has had
knee problems since the Alabama game last September, and only ran a 4.69 in the
40. That was the worst time of the 27 cornerbacks who participated in the 40.
Brent Bowden was one of a handful of specialists who participated in the
combine. He hopes to catch on with an NFL team as a punter.