Via Enjoying Senior Season

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Northeast Guilford (McLeansville, N.C.) offensive lineman/defensive end Michael Via had been to Blacksburg for a Virginia Tech football game many times before, so heading there for the season opener versus East Carolina wasn’t a new experience. What was new, though, was the fact that he entered Lane Stadium as a Virginia Tech football commitment.

“It was kind of cool to go to the game and realize that would be me out there in another year, especially since I grew up going there,” said Via, who has been to most of Tech’s games this season. “It is nice. Walking around the stadium, people have come up to me. That is cool.”

Via committed to Virginia Tech back in June, shortly after Tech’s one-day camp. He remains extremely excited about his decision, recently telling last year’s National Champions that he is firm in his commitment.

“I’m solid with Tech,” Via said. “Florida did come up and they were talking to me. They were making sure going to Tech is what I wanted to do. They said they needed a tackle, but I told them I am pretty firm.

“I’m just real excited about my decision and I can’t wait to be at Virginia Tech.”

Via is excited about his senior season as well. Northeast Guilford is 7-2 and, after last week’s big victory over Greensboro Dudley, the team is in prime shape for a good playoff seeding. For Via, last week’s win was the biggest of the season.

“That was a big game,” Via said of the win over Dudley. “We won by one point. That was probably the highlight of the year for our team so far. It was 7-6 after they blocked our extra point. We scored again and got a 2-point conversion to go up 14-7. They scored and we stopped the extra point. We were up 14-13 with four minutes to go. The finishing play was when we intercepted one of their passes in the end zone.”

Last season, the 6-6 Via says his playing weight was about 220 pounds. He entered this season at about 255 to 260 pounds and has felt great so far, turning in solid performances on offense and defense. Recently, he was named to the North Carolina/South Carolina Shrine Bowl, a big honor for prep players in those two states.

The added weight and strength has helped Via improve on the gridiron.

“You can kind of tell the difference in weight when you go heads up against someone and they are easier to push around,” said Via, who