Virginia Tech just started the official 2017 recruiting cycle with a bang. Joining defensive back Devante Smith is Fredericksburg, VA defensive end Tyjuan Garbutt. Rated as a 4-star DE by Rivals, Scout, and 247, and a 3-star by laggard ESPN, Garbutt rates as the 190th player in the country by Rivals, the 214th by 247, and the 171st by Scout. He's a headlining piece for Justin Fuente to close on this early, especially in the state of Virginia. He's been offered by UNC, Michigan State, Oklahoma, Ole Miss, Pittsburgh, Penn State, Tennessee, West Virginia, Kentucky, and others. He was a big target for Frank Beamer before, but to get him to commit already can portend great things for Tech in the state this year. While at the NoVA Hokie Club recruiting event I heard Coach Holmon Wiggins talk about how dedicated this staff will be to the line of scrimmage, and that offensive and defensive linemen were a priority in this class. Garbutt gives Tech a great start on that, too.
Tyjuan Garbutt (Fredericksburg, VA. 222lbs, 6'-4". Defensive End)
Garbutt plays wide receiver and defensive end, but his body and his ideal place works best at defensive end. He's extremely athletic and while he has great hands and size and a potential matchup nightmare, I'm more looking forward to unleashing that off the edge. He does play a bit of stand-up end or outside linebacker, and BOY that would be a pain for anyone to block. He's got plenty of speed to chase down ball carriers, and moves very fluidly in space. Look, either way he goes, especially if coach Cornelsen or Coach Fuente get overeager, he'll be a terror in orange and maroon. The one flaw I can see in his game as a defensive end is the lack of a definite move or a clear technique. He's amazingly strong and athletic, but he'll have to rely more on tactical skills in the future. I'd love to see him develop a defined swim move with his frame. Time will tell, but this is a huge get for the Hokies.
Congratulations, Tyjuan, and welcome to the Hokie class of 2017!