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Virginia Tech Hokies 2016 Roster Preview - Overview

It's less than eight weeks until the 2016 Football season officially kicks off. That means four weeks (or less) until practices start in earnest, and the Pro Football Hall of Fame Game kickoff (sort of semi official beginning of all football seasons) is set for August 7th. So, we get started reviewing the Virginia Tech Hokie 2016 Roster to see where we are before two-a-days begin.

Cam Phillips is Back for 2016
Cam Phillips is Back for 2016
Stacy Revere/Getty Images

It's time.  Coach Fuente has just sent out the tweet emphasizing that it is a mere 8 weeks until the opening game kickoff with Liberty.  It's also a reminder that "fall" practices are to start early in August (Tickets are being mailed in August as the ticket office reminds us.).  So, it's time to dig into the official roster.  First, there must be the official disclaimer and notice that we here at Gobbler Country, for this type of review stick to the official roster posted by the Virginia Tech Athletic Department at the Hokie Sports web site.  Yes, there are other theoretical rosters, or slightly more dynamic proposed rosters out on the web, but those are the products of the reporting and speculation of those sports journalism projects.  We might comment on something that we see on the various web sources or even local reporting, but for the purposes of the roster review we will stick to the program's officially published information.

Now that we have gotten the formalities out of the way let's get down to talking about the Fall 2016 roster.  Let's first take a look at where the players are from, it's an issue that keeps cropping up as to recruiting territories and results from around the state.  It also involves some interesting buildups from results in parts of the country that we normally scout.

There are a total of 109 players on the current roster.  Of those, 67 are from various parts of the Commonwealth, and 42 are from out of state.  The numbers for Virginia break down as follows:

Area Code



757 Players


Though the highest number it's surprisingly small

703 Players


NOVA also encompasses some of the 540 area as Fredericksburg and Stafford are more NOVA than central and SW Virginia

804 Players


Richmond, Petersburg, Midlothian

540 Players


Central Virginia including Blacksburg, Christiansburg, and Lynchburg

276 Players


South West, Tazwell, Abingdon, Galax

434 Players


South Central, Danville area

Total Virginia Players     67

It's very surprising to note that the Hokies have a roster that has 1/3 of the players from out of state.  Florida leads the list, but a surprising number of players are listed from all over, mostly the south, and Georgia is showing up as a surprise with six players, which is as much as North Carolina.  We even have the Kish brothers from California.  There is a nice spread, but it sure would be nice to see some more of the football powerhouse states in the south central part of the country.  We could really give some good three and four star players from Texas, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, and Arkansas a chance to play.






represented by positions all over the roster

North Carolina




New Jersey




301 counts as 703, sort of, but 410 is closer to Jersey



South Carolina






The Kish brothers are out of redshirt status we'll see where they land on the depth chart.



Washington, DC


You could count the DC and Maryland players in the 703 area.







Total Out of State Players            42

As we progress through each of the squads this pre-season, we will be left guessing as to their depth chart arrangement.  We'll give it a good shot to see if we can come up with a depth approximation at the end of each article.  It will give us something to talk about other than the frustrating wins and losses stuff that we get wound around without any hope of really knowing for sure.

The series starts off with the Offense this season.  The Offensive line has its work cut out for it, and the players are working off of a list of new and inexperienced faces.  There are 12 freshmen listed (6 redshirts and 6 newbies) out of the 22 total O-Line players listed.  That's pretty thin, and the redshirts are going to need to step it up big time.

We'll cover the Backs on the next article. They are running on a razor's edge again with 6 Tailbacks on the chart.  That seems like a whole lot of leg; but if you look at the injury count from the last few seasons, the Hokies could be scraping the bottom of that barrel.  GC will also look at the other backs(even dip into the Quarterback issue); but No Number 1 has officially been named. I don't see Coach Fuente tipping that hat until the last possible moment.

The Receiving Corps will be up for the last look at the pre-season offense.  It's where we have the most depth, and the most accomplished talent.  Between our starting wide outs and tight ends, Fuente's offense is going to have a rich target environment for whichever quarterback is in the pocket.  There is one caveat though; once we get past the first XYZ combination, we are looking at another chart full of first and second year players.  Staying healthy is going to be critical this year.

Next week we'll do the same treatment on the Defense.  It'll be the line, first, then linebackers and defensive backs. There have been lots of changes for the #LPD and #DBU is thin as rice paper.  There are off field issues to talk about factoring into the equations, too.  So next week isn't going to be so easy.

Normally we don't talk much about Special Teams.  Who wants to talk about kickers, punters, and long snappers?  Well, this season we have a couple of big things to talk about.  No more ‘pride and joy' (which means a new coach and new disciplines).  It also means that we have exactly one... one punter on the roster.  So those are serious issues that we'll chew on a bit.

Again, we have eight weeks until the first game starts, and that means the summer, though it's barely started, is getting old, fast.  There are actually back to school ads in the paper.  The stores will start stocking the college dorm room stuff soon.  I can almost hear the tailgaters looking for their portable grills and dining flies to check for repair needs.

It's going to be different this year, and that's all that I have to say about that... well for now anyway.