Buzz Williams continues to strengthen the backcourt, as the Hokies make a late addition in PG Tyrie Jackson who just visited over the holiday weekend. He hails from Tifton, GA and was rated as one of the top remaining unsigned players in the state. Jackson is part of the 2016 class, so he will begin training with the Hokies this fall. While his 24/7 page doesn't have a star-rating for him, there's plenty to like about Jackson. The newest Hokie stands at 6-1, 180 pounds and has solid athleticism for the position. Jackson was seen as one of the biggest sleepers left on the market drawing interest from teams like Auburn and Wichita State.
I see this move as more for the 2017 Hokies' squad than for the upcoming fall and winter. This year's team is loaded with depth in the backcourt with Justin Robinson, Seth Allen, Justin Bibbs, Ahmed Hill, and Ty Outlaw. But this should turn out to be a worthwhile investment. Jackson easily has the potential to at least be a backup PG while Justin Robinson should still be the primary one-guard in a year.
It's easy to see why Buzz likes this kid. The primary reason is that Jackson can get to the rim. When you look at games where the Hokies have been successful, they are able to attack the basket and get to the line. At times, Jackson looked like he was toying with defenders with his handles and quickness while making his way to the basket - obviously given the talent disparity, that's what he should be doing. Once he got past his man, you see Jackson's PG skills come into play with his ability to make difficult passes with either hand. Jackson is also a flexible scorer, and can shoot the ball as well as he can drive it with his solid form and mechanics.
Good Late Pick Up by @TeamCoachBuzz , 16' Tyrie Jackson was 1 of Top Players in the State of GA. Tough,Hard Nose Guard,shot 60% from 3.— Corry Black (@CoachCBlack) May 30, 2016
As the three-ball becomes more and more important, his ability to light teams up from deep will surely come in handy when he takes the floor.
It's obviously tough to evaluate his defense. He's not the most explosive guy so he wasn't blocking dunks by the other teams' bigs on a regular basis. What you generally look for are the physical tools and mentality to become a good defender on the next level. Jackson checks most of those boxes. Like all freshmen, the main he'll need to work on his positioning and chemistry with his new team.
So how does he fit in with the Hokies? Like I said before, it's unlikely he will see major minutes this year. He's probably the sixth guard on the depth chart barring injury. I would've liked to see another frontcourt pickup as opposed to another backcourt signing, but Jackson was one of the better guards left so it's definitely not a bad pickup. Buzz has a plan, and if this helps his staff follow that plan, then I trust him.