Athlete, Class of 2023
Oscar Smith High School, Chesapeake, VA
Oscar Smith (Va.) three-star athlete Tory Johnson insists there’s no pull, but then again, he admits there might be a slight one.
Johnson’s parents are both alumni of West Virginia University, but he’s leaving the door to his recruitment wide open, giving Virginia Tech and others an opportunity to make a pitch. So far, Johnson has scholarship offers from Virginia, Maryland and Pittsburgh, in addition to the Mountaineers. This summer, he made in-person trips to a few of those and other options, but for now, there’s no serious movement towards a decision.
“I just want a place that feels like family,” Johnson said. “Distance isn’t a big deal because I know my family will be at as many games where I’m at. I just want the best opportunity to play, also.”
Virginia Tech has so far yet to offer a scholarship, but Johnson camped there and then attended the Hokies’ barbecue last month. From that trip, he got a better sense of the program and where he is overall.
“Before I left, Coach Smitty (Ryan Smith) said I was right there regarding the offer,” Johnson said. “I really like the campus buildings, the limestone. I did tour campus and the facilities and I liked those, too.”
Smith has been Johnson’s primary recruiter for Virginia Tech, and so far their relationship has continued to grow.
“They said they want to see my first few games being in pads of the season,” Johnson said. “I really like Coach Smitty. He has a real personality, just a cool dude to talk to.”
Johnson, Rivals.com’s No. 10 player in Virginia for 2023, did see West Virginia in-person in June for camp. His interest extends from the program itself to the prospect of being a legacy with the Mountaineers.
“West Virginia was really great,” Johnson said. “When I got there, everyone from the GA’s to the coaches even knew my name. My dad played there, and my mom went there, so it was good. I mean, my mom and dad always told me it’s my career, my football experience. They said, ‘we’re not forcing you to go there because we went there.’ It’d definitely be cool, though.”
The one program Johnson saw twice this summer, however, was Virginia. Relationships and location have been the biggest factors there so far.
“I really like UVA,...
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