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Football Recruiting Update-Defensive Line

Hokies are in the mix for some BIG-TIME talent.

Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

Virginia Tech over the years has had its fair share of talent, but over the past several months the football program has hit the recruiting trail arguably harder than they ever have. The result is a boost of confidence among the current coaches, players and administration. Key to this turn around is the wealth of talent in and around the Commonwealth as well as some additions to the Hokies recruiting staff. Several of the top-targets remaining on the board include:

Josh Sweat: A weak-side defensive end from Chesapeake, Virginia is a top-priority prospect for the Hokies and one many experts believe has a real chance of landing in Blacksburg. He is a 5* player and the overall number 1 prospect in the 2015 class according to 247Sports. He recently suffered a season-ending knee injury, but is still planning on enrolling early. The current teams that are after him include VT, Oregon, UGA and FSU.

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Tim Settle: A defensive tackle from Manassas, Virginia is another top prospect that the Hokies are very high on. He was recently in Blacksburg for an official visit and has several recruiting analysts thinking that the long time out-of-state lean could stay closer to home to play his college ball. He is a 4* according to 247Sports and the number 3 overall player in the state of Virginia.

Houshun Gaines: A strong-side defensive end from Rocky Mount, North Carolina is a 3* product according to 247Sports and will be making his college decision this Friday between VT, NCSU and Florida. The vibes have been in Virginia Tech's favor for quite some time now, but some analysts think that he may be looking to stay closer to home. I personally think he chooses the Hokies, but there is still a long time between Friday and signing day in February for one of the Carolina schools to reel him back in. Keep your eyes and ears open on Friday as we will have a scoop about Houshun's decision.

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>Great talking to the head honcho Coach Beamer today, always a pleasure. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/GoHokies?src=hash">#GoHokies</a></p>&mdash; Houshun Gaines (@HZGduoUno) <a href="https://twitter.com/HZGduoUno/status/517113256063029248">October 1, 2014</a></blockquote>

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Jalen Dalton: A weak-side defensive end from Clemmons, North Carolina has been a long time UNC lean, but that never kept the Hokies staff from going all in for the 5* prospect according to 247Sports. The relentless effort from D-line coach Charlie Wiles has seemed to pay off in the recruitment of Dalton who took an unofficial to Tech several weeks ago. Dalton will be at the UNC-VT game this Saturday and is planning on a return trip to Blacksburg for an official visit. I think that if he leaves Chapel Hill this weekend uncommitted to the Tar Heels then the Hokies will have better than a 50/50 chance of landing him, especially if he visits Lane Stadium for the Thursday night game against Miami.

A lot of credit has to go out to the Virginia Tech coaching/recruiting staff for being in the mix with all of this top talent. While the Hokies have been up and down on the field this year, there are a lot of things to look forward to in Blacksburg, especially if the staff can close with this kind of talent.