While the recruiting on offense came up short for a number of positions —
specifically running back, offensive line, and tight end — the needs on the
defensive side of the ball were almost completely met. The only shortcoming on
defense was possibly at the Whip Linebacker spot, but several recruits have the
potential to be moved to this position. In this second of a series of recruiting
articles, I continue to break down this class in more detail and provide a
scouting report and prediction for success for the defensive recruits.
The greatest position of need in this recruiting class was the defensive
line, and Tech landed six good prospects. Tech needed some pass rushers and
signed two excellent prospects from New Jersey in Jason Adjepong and Mike Gee.
Tech also gained the signature of arguably the top line prospect in Virginia
last year, John Graves. Tech needed some big, quick defensive tackles and landed
Olufemi “Ladi” Ajiboye from Georgia and Daryl Robertson from nearby Bedford.
Tech received a late disappointment when Budd Thacker decommitted from the
Hokies to accept a January offer from his hometown favorite Florida State.
However, Tech rebounded by uncovering a sleeper in hard-nosed Joey Hall from
Sanford, North Carolina.
The greatest disappointment in the defensive line recruiting, aside from the
change of heart of Budd Thacker, was the loss of defensive end Brian Whitmore
from Oscar Smith High School in Chesapeake. Whitmore favored the Hokies, but his
parents, in particular his mother, wanted him to sign elsewhere. He was the one
recruit that specifically mentioned Virginia Tech’s image problems late in the
season being a major factor for his family’s reluctance to support his desire
to become a Hokie, so Whitmore is now a Terp. Tech also lost defensive end Josh
Minton to his home state team, the Kentucky Wildcats, but overall the coaching
staff was pleased with this defensive line class.
Graves, from Meadowbrook High School
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