Hopkins Discusses Decision

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Click here for the recruiting card of Antoine Hopkins

Highland Springs (VA) defensive lineman Antoine Hopkins was all set to make official visits before making a commitment. The 6-2, 265-pound prospect was in no rush in the recruiting process and wanted to take a look at his options, which included scholarship offers from Syracuse, Virginia and Virginia Tech and heavy interest from Tennessee. One day about two weeks ago, his mindset changed.

“I wasn’t really leaning anywhere,” Hopkins said. “Each school had something I liked, but Virginia Tech just popped in my head one day as the school I wanted to go to. One day I was just sitting there and it dawned on me to go to Virginia Tech.

“I think it is a better situation for me as far as position-wise. Each school I was considering had good academics. Virginia Tech just popped in my head. It has a really nice environment for me.”

Hopkins was initially going to call the Virginia Tech coaches to inform them of choice, but decided that telling them in person would be better. So he waited until Saturday’s season opener to inform the staff of his decision. He did not let on to the coaches that he would be committing.

“When I told Coach Beamer, I went to the middle of the field before the game. I said I wanted to commit,” said Hopkins, who attended the game with his father, mother and two younger brothers. “He just looked at me and smiled, but he didn’t say much because he had to get the team ready for the game. After the game, he said it was a great thing that I was coming there. He and Coach Cav were very excited. Coach Cav didn’t know until after the game. He said he was surprised because he wasn’t expecting it, but he was very excited to have me be a Hokie.”

Hopkins enjoyed Saturday’s game, which obviously was an emotional one.

“From the first time I have been there to see games, it is always incredible how they come out of the tunnel. This was no different,” Hopkins said. “You could see the whole stadium shaking. The fans were yelling. In the game, the defense flew around. They were impressive keying on the ball. Everybody played good on defense.”

Hopkins, who is Tech’s 19th commitment of the 2008 recruiting class, is being recruited as a defensive end but could potentially play