Well, Tech’s had some news over the past few days, so let’s run through the latest watercooler fodder. First things first…
Virginia Tech had a bit of coaching turnover recently. Not in football, but in wrestling. With Coach Dresser off to Iowa State, the Hokies looked in their own staff to hire Tony Robie as the new head coach. He’s hired two new assistants recently- both former Olympians. Frank Molinaro and Jared Frayer join the Virginia Tech staff. Both are former middleweights. Molinaro is a Nittany Lion and a former national champion, and Coach Frayer is a former coach from Oklahoma. The other news in that regard is that All-American Hokie wrestler Ty Walz will be returning to the Hokies as a Volunteer Assistant.
The Hokies football team will be welcoming former Ohio State receiver and track athlete James Clark as a graduate transfer here in the summer. Clark is a former four star wide receiver from Florida. His career has been hampered by injury, and now that he’s healthy and somewhat behind on the depth chart, he’s choosing to graduate and head to another team. He’ll be one of the only seniors in the receiver room, bringing some more needed college experience with him. Welcome aboard, James.
First, three football player departures to talk about. Virginia Tech is losing three players to roster attrition- Eron Carter, Tre Hubbard, and Wright Bynum. Hubbard, a linebacker, and Bynum, the team’s holder, are both walk-ons. Hubbard was an Ocean Lakes graduate, and recorded a forced fumble and a tackle. Bynum, one of the Hokies’ few South Carolinians, held on field goals and extra points. Carter is the somewhat more impactful departure. At the moment he was the number three mike linebacker behind Andrew Motuapuaka and Tavante Beckett while the other mike, Sean Huelskamp, healed up this spring from injury. Since Huelskamp and Motuapuaka are redshirt seniors, it looks like the Mike spot will be manned by Beckett or another even younger player next year- potentially Dylan Rivers? Carter apparently wanted to leverage his track and field talents more than his football ones- which is fair, he was a great track and field athlete in high school. We wish them all luck.
Update on LB Eron Carter: Sounds like he wants to throw discus and shot put competitively. Future might be somewhere other than VT. #Hokies— Andy Bitter (@AndyBitterVT) April 3, 2017
Second, the Hokies have a current commitment departing here soon for Los Angeles. Quincy Patterson, the class of 2018 quarterback commitment from Solorio Academy in Chicago, was invited to the Elite 11 Finals in California thanks to his Nike’s The Opening Regional performance. He won QB MVP, and was the only invite to the finals in his region. He’s currently a three-star recruit, but I have a feeling that will change over time. He’s got a LOT of upside.
Okay, so ONE extension, but it’s a big one. Looks like Coach Fuente quite likes where he is- and Whit doesn’t mess around when he likes what he sees. After the quite informal, frank, and quick extension of Buzz Williams back in the fall, this comes as no real ‘surprise’. If it was going to come, it was going to come like this. But today it was announced that Buzz is joined by Justin Fuente at the extension table, joining on through the 2023 season. Named Coach of the Year by several organizations and coming out of a 10-4 season which saw the Hokies get to an ACC Championship game and win a dramatic bowl victory, Coach Fuente looks poised to grow the program given more time and funding. Seems like we’ve got a winner, folks. Congratulations to Coach Fuente.