The loss of sophomore running back Darren Evans leaves Virginia Tech with three healthy running backs. Only one of those backs has played in a college football game. However, none of them are the bruising, between-the-tackles style running back Evans is. Oglesby is close, but can't do it as consistently or successfully as Evans.
Josh Oglesby | Sophomore | 5-11 | 210 lbs.
Oglesby played in 12 games as a freshman and carried the ball 38 times for 88 yards (2.3 YPC). He originally wanted to go to North Carolina, where his father ran for over 17 hundred yards in the '70s. However, he ended up at Virginia Tech. He's an All-Practice player who has never had that success translate into games. Last year, it was Oglesby, not Evans making headlines in the spring and in preseason practice. He's never been afraid to speak his mind to the media, even on his lack of playing time. Well, he'll finally get a chance to walk the walk this season. Oglesby is the Hokies' Swiss Army running back. But like the knife, Oglesby is able to be used in a lot of roles as a running back but not do any of them exceptionally well. Since he's the closest thing the Hokies have to a North-South runner, he better become exceptional at doing that and quickly.
Ryan Williams | R-Freshman | 5-10 | 206 lbs.
Williams is the guy all Hokie fans have been waiting to see in games. He came in as a very highly touted freshman, but was redshirted because he wasn't going to get significant carries in 2008. It wasn't because of lack of talent, it was because he had trouble pass blocking. In Virginia Tech running backs coach Billy Hite's world, you either block effectively or you don't play. Williams has reportedly fixed this flaw and is ready to see the field. He was the best player in Virginia Tech's Maroon-White game, accounting for 151 of Maroon's 187 total yards and scored a touchdown on his first touch of the game, a 56-yard screen pass.
David Wilson | Freshman | 5-10 | 200 lbs.
Wilson might be the fastest player on Virginia Tech's roster. And while he was impressive at GW high in Danville and this summer for Team USA, I wouldn't exactly call the French national team still competition (insert UVa joke here). Wilson will get touches on special teams, but will have to show he can pass block before he gets significant carries out of the backfield. With his speed, he can also be used as a slot receiver to get him more touches. He's certainly a gifted athlete, but it will be a year or so before he's a gifted running back.