The Fisher Law Firm Friday Q&A: Recruiting Thoughts, Ryan Willis, Bowl Games and More

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1) What is a preferred walk-on?  What does the preference get them? – Centex Hokie

Chris Coleman: Just about every walk-on on the team is a preferred walk-on.  The other term for them is “invited walk-on.”  Guys like John Engelberger and Sam Rogers don’t just show up and try out for the team. They don’t enroll at Virginia Tech as regular students.  They enroll as football players, but as football players without scholarships.  I think a lot of people have always though of walk-ons as players taken out of the student body, when the vast majority of them are anything but.

Guys like Engelberger and Rogers probably had scholarship offers to FCS schools.  Why would they come to Virginia Tech instead of taking that scholarship offer, unless they were guaranteed a spot on the roster at Tech?  They wouldn’t.  Jack Tyler is another example.  He was recruited to Virginia Tech as a non-scholarship player.

It’s extremely rare that a regular student tries out for the team and secures a roster spot.  If 30 guys try out, maybe one or two might make it.  In fact, I don’t even know if Virginia Tech holds walk-on tryouts anymore.  I always say that there are no diamonds in the rough anymore, and I think that extends down to walk-ons as well.

I don’t know why Virginia Tech announced