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Jermaine Waller adds to #ExitLight18 Defensive backfield

Virginia Tech added another class of 2018 commitment with Maryland cornerback Jermaine Waller.

NCAA Football: Belk Bowl-Arkansas vs Virginia Tech Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

Midday commitments, eh? Well, I’m not complaining. Today, the Hokies picked up another commitment for their current recruiting class, this one being Jermaine Waller. A cornerback from Bethesda, Maryland, Waller is the 19th commitment for the class. He’s the fifth (or sixth or seventh, again depending on ‘athlete’ numbers) defensive back to commit to the Hokies, and the second Maryland recruit, following DeJuan Ellis. He’s rated as a mostly-across-the-board 3 star. 247, Rivals, and Scout have him as a three star, while ESPN doesn’t have him listed at all. His primary recruiter, per 247/Scout was Holmon Wiggins. Taking him probably means that there’s only one defensive back slot left in the class, and that’s pretty well reserved for Kalon Gervin if/when he decides to commit. The Hokies faced competition from Maryland, Connecticut, ECU, NC State, Ohio, Virginia, and others for his commitment.

Let’s take a look at his tape real quick.

Jermaine Waller (Bethesda, MD. 6’-2”, 170lbs. Cornerback)

Waller typically plays off at corner. Doesn’t seem to matter, because he can close and has solid instincts and ball skills- he plays right into the corner role for Foster’s defensive scheme- especially at boundary corner where he’ll start his career. We’ve had corners rack up a pile of interceptions there for years- see Jayron Hosley, Kyle Fuller, et. al. He does a great job at reading the quarterback, though that can get you into trouble if the quarterback is good with his eyes and can move defensive backs with looks. It’s not common in college ranks, but it can happen. Waller is a willing tackler (note that I said ‘willing’ and not ‘good’) and a bigger kid- yet another corner prospect that the Hokies are taking with a taller/larger prototypical frame. Guess the coaching staff finally tired of quite literally being thrown over by ECU/UNC types. I do also like his general speed and athleticism- especially his lateral agility. That’s not me dismissing his strength, either- he’s genuinely a shifty type and does a great job with body maneuvering. Off the top of my head I don’t know his competition level, but the Avalon School is an independent school (one of multiple private Catholic schools in Maryland and northern Virginia). I’m assuming that that competition level isn’t that great, helping lead to a mediocre rating. The areas he really needs to work on are his hands and his man-on coverage.

Welcome aboard, Jermaine, and Go Hokies.