Virginia Tech Continues To Search For Wide Receivers

Fontel Mines, Virginia Tech
Virginia Tech wide receivers coach Fontel Mines continues to search for wideouts. (Ivan Morozov)

Virginia Tech has 19 verbal commitments for the 2023 recruiting class and will try to add some more between now and the end of the recruiting cycle. Outside receiver is going to be a focus as we head down the home stretch.

The Hokies currently have commitments from three wide receivers, though two of them are slot receivers. Another player who is currently slotted as a defensive back could also play wideout. Here’s how it breaks down…

Outside receiver: Marcell Baylor
Slot receiver: Takye Heath, Jonathan Pennix
Could play outside receiver: Krystian Williams

It’s not certain that Williams will end up at wideout, nor is Marcell Baylor a sure thing (the level of competition has been pretty poor). Considering what we know about the current situation at outside receiver, it makes sense for the Hokies to target some outside types. Some players slip through the cracks until their senior seasons so it’s always wise to hold open a few scholarships for late risers.

The first thing Virginia Tech did was take a look at potential in-state late risers. Though Brandyn Hillman plays quarterback for Churchland, he’s an excellent all-around athlete, and I suspect that the Hokies are targeting him for wide receiver. They offered him on September 27 and were the first FBS program to do so. With a month’s worth of senior film, it was clear that he was an FBS-level athlete, so the Hokie coaches wisely pulled the trigger.

Brandyn Hillman, Virginia Tech
Brandyn Hillman probably would have played for Virginia Tech in the days before Hudl. (@dmv_b3)

The problem is that thanks to the modern wonder that is Hudl, a bunch of other programs found out about Hillman at the same time as Virginia Tech. Boston College, Vanderbilt, Virginia, West Virginia, Notre Dame, Tennessee, Kentucky, North Carolina, Oklahoma and Miami all followed suit shortly after the Hokies; in fact, several of those schools offered within a couple hours of the Hokies extending the offer. Hillman has since visited Notre Dame, and most people seem to think that’s where he’ll end up.

15 years ago, Hillman most likely would have ended up at Virginia Tech as one of those in-state late bloomers who nobody else found out about because not as many schools recruited Virginia. However,