We detailed DeJuan Ellis’ position change on Wednesday, as he moved from quarterback to wide receiver for the Hokies. However, some other players have learned new positions over the past year.
Devon Hunter, Virginia Tech’s top recruit last season, came to Blacksburg as a safety. Now, Hunter is now the starter at whip linebacker after Mook Reynolds was dismissed from the team. Even if Reynolds had returned for his senior season, there was no guarantee he could have kept Hunter on the bench. Hunter is the type of game-changing talent the Hokies need.
Kyle Chung has seemingly played everywhere along the offensive line during his career. Heck, he came to Blacksburg as a tight end. He’s struggled to stay healthy until last year where he played some right tackle and center. Chung struggled snapping the ball at center but that appears to be behind him now. Chung is a sixth-year senior and it feels like he’s been around since his dad graduated in the early 90s.
Offensive line coach Vance Vice likes moving guys around on the line and has done plenty of that this offseason, too, as he tries to find his best combination. Chung spoke of moving back to center in a meeting with the media on Thursday, per hokiesports.com.
I’ve played there my entire career except for last year. Whether I play inside or outside, I’m comfortable either way. I think that’s a big part of it, too, just me being able to play all five positions. I start to get comfortable at each one, and if there is something I’m uncomfortable with, I have the opportunity to work on it and get more comfortable as time goes on.
In addition to Chung moving back to center, the offensive line has seen plenty of other changes, too. Redshirt freshman Lecitus Smith came to Tech as a tight end. Well, he is now a 315-pound guard. And he looks like he is going to be a very good player for the Hokies, perhaps as soon as this year.
FB Press Conference 8.23.18 - Coach Fuente, Oscar Bradburn, Hezekiah Grimsley and Kyle Chung. https://t.co/IyxfEPJTcS— HokieSports (@hokiesports) August 23, 2018
Yosuah Nijman has been a left tackle his entire career at Virginia Tech. He is now the right tackle with redshirt freshman Silas Dzansi at left tackle. Nijman has been good, Dzansi, however, possesses monstrous potential.
Other guys have moved around, too, such as Emmanuel Belmar from linebacker to defensive end and Xavier Burke from tight end to defensive tackle. A lack of depth at some spots necessitated the moves and this coaching staff is also good at finding the right fit for players and developing them.
With the season quickly approaching, we’ll get to see how quickly these players adjust to new positions.