Leota is listed at 6-foot-3 and 220-pounds. He’s from Asheville, NC. and plays for Asheville High School. Leota is rated as a 3-star prospect by 247Sports and is ranked at the 18th-best player in the state of North Carolina for the Class of 2018. Currently, Leota has five reported scholarship offers, four of which are from Power 5 programs — Duke, North Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia Tech.
On tape, Leota plays against the run very well. He’s adept at fighting through the trash and filling gaps. He disengages well on blocks and thanks to his athleticism, Leota can make plays coming from the back side.
Leota blows past a lot of the offensive linemen he faces. He beats them off the line and dips under the tackle well. However, Leota doesn’t flash any other pass rush moves, something he’ll likely need to learn at the collegiate level. Still, Leota is an intriguing prospect at defensive end. He fits the exact frame that the coaching staff looks for, and with his speed and athletic ability he has serious potential. He’ll probably need a redshirt season to add to his frame and polish his skills, but Leota can be a solid contributor at the ACC-level.
Virginia Tech has experience with the Leota family. The Hokies recruited Pika (formerly known as Pete) Leota in the Class of 2016. Pika Leota signed and enrolled at South Carolina, and redshirted last season as an offensive linemen.
Andrew Leota has visited Virginia Tech before. Leota was on campus for Virginia Tech’s win vs. East Carolina, and he was present for Tech’s Junior Day on Jan. 15. On that visit, Leota lost to Director of Player Personnel Chuck Cantor in a donut eating contest.
— Andrew Leota (@AndrewLeota51) January 16, 2017
Virginia Tech holds Leota in high regard. In fact, Leota is near the top of the board at defensive end, along with KJ Henry and John Morgan. Don’t be surprised if Leota continues to remain a priority for Virginia Tech in this cycle.
The Hokies will likely only take a few defensive linemen in the Class of 2018. Virginia Tech signed three defensive ends (Zion DeBose, Nathan Proctor, TyJuan Garbutt) and two defensive tackles for the Class of 2017 (Robert Porcher IV, JBril Glaze), so don’t expect a large take on the defensive line in this year’s class.