After receiving word from the Virginia Tech staff that he had an official scholarship offer, Brandon Barden paid a visit to Blacksburg along with his parents for a second look at the Tech campus. On Friday, June 1st, the Lincoln High School (Lincolnton, GA) standout made his verbal commitment to head coach Frank Beamer.
“It was my favorite in the country. I wanted to go there over anybody,” Barden said of Virginia Tech. “I went up there over spring break and talked to the coaches. I talked to one of the coaches again the other day and they said they were going to offer me, so I went up there with my family. I decided that’s where I wanted to go. I told coach Beamer that I’m a Hokie.”
As is the case with many recruits, comfort level played a major part in Barden’s decision. He also was a fan of the Tech program before he ever made a visit to Blacksburg.
“You see Virginia Tech on TV and then I’m not a real big Georgia fan even though I’m from Georgia,” Barden said. “I liked the school. When I went up there and saw how country it was, it reminded me of my town. I felt like I fit in good there. And I like the football team, too. I’ve followed them.”
Barden, whose mother is the Principal at Lincoln County High School, says education was another huge factor. An excellent student, he carries a 3.7 grade point average.
“As you can realize, my parents are real big into education,” Barden said. “Education is first. We went there and met with the academic advisors and everything. They liked that part, and I really want to go into Engineering so it’s good for me.”
Barden has played on the varsity football squad all three years, including the past two as a starter. As a junior last season, he played quarterback after seeing time at tight end or wide receiver in his first three games. He led the team, which went went 0-3 in the first three games, to 12 wins in a row and a Class A state championship.
Virginia Tech is recruiting Barden initially as a tight end or wide receiver.
“Most people project me as a tight end, but I like wideout better than tight end,” Barden said. “I have some pretty good 40 times, so maybe I could have a shot at that position. My fastest 40 time is 4.57, and that’s electronically timed. That was at the Nike Camp in Athens.”
Virginia Tech’s primary recruiter here is Torrian Gray, who has landed each of Tech’s first two commitments.
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