Virginia Tech Football Recruiting: The 757 Region, A Rich Past And A Solid Future

Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

The 757 area code is a region rich with talented football prospects and is a known commodity to recruiters at schools across the nation. The past players to come out of the area have been nothing but spectacular and helped Virginia find its place on the football map in America. None of this seems to be slowing down any time soon as the 757 is well represented in the Virginia Top 30 prospects of 2015.

Being born and raised in Virginia and growing up watching and playing public school sports I always heard stories, more like myths of teams and players from the 757. The teams from the area were a different breed, maybe there was something in the water down there that made them more talented and competitive. The skill set, the speed, the knowledge of football in the area was something that no one else could rise to compete with. My old high school football coach was on the Hampton Crabbers coaching staff before coming to coach our team, so I would always hear about Virginia State Championship seasons, games, and all the players he coached that went on to play college football and the select few that went on the the NFL.

The 757 is a gem of a recruiting region that was once a hidden place on the eastern shore of Virginia. But now just about every college recruiter is familiar with the talent rich area. The numbers speak for themselves folks: (This list contains mainly what the players were most known for or what was relevant for them while some are more up to date).

Chesapeake

Ed Beard (b. 1939) – professional football player for the San Francisco 49ers

Dré Bly (b. 1977) – professional football player with the Denver Broncos

Chris Crocker (b. 1980) – professional football player with the Atlanta Falcons

Kenny Easley (b. 1959) – professional football player with the Seattle Seahawks

DeAngelo Hall (b. 1983) – professional football cornerback for the Washington Redskins

Darren Perry (b. 1968) – football player with the Pittsburgh Steelers

Hampton

Ronald Curry (b. 1979) – professional football player for the Oakland Raider

Shaun Gayle (b. 1962) – professional football player with the San Diego Charger

Chris Hanburger (b. 1941) – popular Washington Redskins player in the 1970

Mike Husted (b. 1970) – former kicker for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Oakland Raiders, and Washington Redskins

Allen Iverson (b. 1975) – professional basketball player, point guard for the Philadelphia 76ers. Also considered one of the best Virginia high school football players ever

Jerod Mayo (b. 1986) – professional football player with the New England Patriots drafted 10th overall in 2008

Dwight Stephenson (b. 1957) – professional football player for the Miami Dolphins and member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame

Dwight White (1949–2008) – defensive end on the Pittsburgh Steelers during their 1970s glory years

Jimmy F. Williams (b. 1984) – professional football player with the Atlanta Falcons

Newport News

Willie Armstead (b. 1952) – former professional football player in the Canadian Football League

Antoine Bethea (b. 1984) – professional football Strong Safety for the San Francisco 49ers

Larry Bethea (1956–87) – late professional football player for the Dallas Cowboys

Darryl Blackstock (b. 1983) – professional football player for the Cincinnati Bengals

Aaron Brooks (b. 1976) – former professional football quarterback for the Oakland Raiders, land developer

Elton Brown (b. 1982) – former professional football player for the Arizona Cardinal

Marques Hagans (b. 1982) – NFL Player

Henry Jordan (1935–77) – former professional football player for the Green Bay Packers and member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame

Leroy Keyes (b. 1947) – former professional football running back for the Philadelphia Eagles

Kwamie Lassiter (b. 1969) – former football safety for the Arizona Cardinals

David Macklin (b. 1978) – professional football player for the Washington Redskins

Tommy Reamon (b. 1952) – former pro football player and coach.

Norm Snead (b. 1939) – former professional football quarterback for the Philadelphia Eagles

Mike Tomlin (b. 1972) – head coach of the Pittsburgh Steelers

Al Toon (b. 1963) – former professional football player for the New York Jets

Marcus Vick (b. 1984) – former NFL player, quarterback for Virginia Tech

Michael Vick (b. 1980) – football quarterback for the New York Jets

Norfolk

Plaxico Burress (b. 1977) – professional football wide receiver for the New York Jets

Kam Chancellor (b. 1988) – professional football safety for the Seattle Seahawks

William Fuller (b. 1962) – professional football defensive end for the Houston Oilers, Philadelphia Eagles and Chicago Bears

Bruce Smith (b. 1963) – Pro Football Hall of Fame football player for the Buffalo Bills and Washington Redskins

Ace Parker (b. 1912) – Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterback who also played baseball with the Philadelphia Athletics

Suffolk

Johnnie Barnes (b. 1968) – Graduate of Hampton University and former football player for the San Diego Chargers and the Pittsburgh Steelers

Terrence Warren (b. 1969) – former NFL player and All-American sprinter at Hampton University

Virginia Beach

Ken Barefoot – former NFL tight end for the Washington Redskins

John Fox (b. 1955) – Head Coach of the Denver Broncos

Percy Harvin (b. 1988) – Current football player for the Seattle Seahawks

Brandon Noble (b. 1974) – professional football player for the San Francisco 49ers, Dallas Cowboys, and Washington Redskins

Aaron Rouse (b. 1984) – Professional football player for the Green Bay Packers

Williamsburg

Mel Gray (b. 1961), professional football player and member of NFL all decade team of 1990s

Ron Springs (b. 1956) – played running back for the Dallas Cowboys and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Shawn Springs (b. 1975) – football player for the Washington Redskins

Lawrence Taylor (b. 1959) – former professional football player for the New York Giants, professional wrestler, and member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame

York County

Terry Kirby (b. 1970) – professional football player for the Miami Dolphins and Oakland Raiders

Bryan Randall (b. 1983) – 2005 ACC Football Player of the Year

Chris Slade (b. 1971) – professional football player for the New England Patriots

Now you have a glimpse into some of the past of the 757 players and their success in the NFL. There's no doubt the the 757 is a hotbed for highly talented athletes that can compete on the highest levels. Currently there are 18 players from the 757 on NFL rosters today (This does not include the 2014 Draft Class):

Player


School/Town


Percy Harvin


Landstown/Virginia Beach

Marvin Mitchell


Lake Taylor/Norfolk

Xaiver Adibi


Phoebus/Hampton

Palxico Burruss


Green Run/Virginia Beach

Kam Chancellor


Maury/Norfolk

Deangelo Hall


Deep Creek/Chesapeake

Tyrod Taylor


Hampton/Hampton

Jerod Mayo


Kecoughtan/Hampton

Ras-I Dowling


Deep Creek/Chesapeake

James Anderson


Deep Creek/Chesapeake

Darryl Tapp


Deep Creek/Chesapeake

Chris Crocker


Deep Creek/Chesapeake

Josh Baker


Western Branch/Chesapeake

Michael Vick


Warwick/Newport News

Don Carey


Washington/Norfolk

Antonie Betha


Denbigh/Newport News

Levi Brown


Granby/Norfolk

Arthur Moats


Churchland/Portsmouth

A lot of these names look familiar as you will recognize that seven of them are former Virginia Tech Hokies. Some of these guys are All-Pro or Pro-Bowlers and even Super Bowl champions. The accolades for the 757 players keep on going.  This is THE major recruiting area in Virginia in terms of talent, skill, and producing NFL caliber players. With that being said, Virginia Tech is able to recruit a lot of players from this region. Some recruits have slipped through the cracks to out of state schools and to the Virginia Cavaliers in recent years, but Tech always generates some buzz around the region year in and year out and 2015 is no different. Here's a look at what the 757 has to offer this time around:

Rankings last update: 5/30/2014

Name


Position


Height/Weight


Star-Rating (247Sports)


School/Town


Josh Sweat


WDE

6-5/237

5

Oscar Smith/Chesapeake

Jaason Lewis


ATH

6-3/233

4

Ocean Lakes/Virginia Beach

Trevon Hill


WDE

6-3/210

3

Salem/Virginia Beach

Jahvonni Simmons


ILB

6-1/225

3

Ocean Lakes/Virginia Beach

Quincy Watts


WR

5-11/165

3

Ocean Lakes/Virginia Beach

Deshawn McClease


RB

5-9/175

3

Oscar Smith/Chesapeake

Harry Lewis


SDE

6-2/260

3

Phoebus/Hampton

Blake Camper


OT

6-7/280

3

Frank W. Cox/Virginia Beach

Jahque Alleyne


S

6-1/180

3

Ocean Lakes/Virginia Beach

Jamez Brickhouse


CB

5-9/165

3

Bayside/Virginia Beach

Nhyre Quinerly


CB

5-11/180

3

Lake Taylor/Norfolk

T.J. Griffin


CB

5-9/180

2

Ocean Lakes/Virginia Beach

DJ Davis


S

6-1/176

2

Salem/Virginia Beach

Army Montuapuaka


OG

5-11/265

2

Salem/Virginia Beach

This is a list of the players from the 757 area that are ranked within the 247Sports top 50 recruits in Virginia. The 757 tops out at 14 players in the top 50. Only Harry Lewis, Jamez Brickhouse, and DJ Davis have verbally committed to schools so far. Lewis has committed to the Hokies and both Brickhouse and Davis have committed to Old Dominion. The Hokies are said to be in the running for at least five of these 757 recruits, with weakside defensive end Josh Sweat being the prize everyone is fighting for. The two top dogs for Sweat are rumored to be the Hokies and Florida State. But, overall this 757 class is still as strong as ever with top level talent available all over the place.

The 757 must be doing something right, because it is a national stomping ground for college recruiters across the land and the talent seems to be sprouting from the soil in the tidewater region, where it shows no signs of slowing down. The Hokies have plenty of options to choose from and plenty of opportunities to impress and lure the 757 recruits to Blacksburg.

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