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Virginia Tech football: 37 days til kickoff with a look back at Jesse Allen

Allen was a hard-hitting fullback for the Hokies.

Nokia Sugar Bowl
Former Hokie FB Jesse Allen
Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

Today is July 25, 2019, which means we are officially just 37 days away from the Virginia Tech Hokies opening the college football season at Boston College. Yesterday, we profiled the leading tackler in Virginia Tech history, Rick Razzano.

Today, for No 37, we look back at someone who played the unheralded position of fullback; Jesse Allen. Allen arrived in Blacksburg in 2002 as a walk-on from Pathfinder Regional in Monson, Mass. During his high-school career, Allen was a four-year letterman who played running back and linebacker.

Allen had a game in high school where he rushed for over 300 yards. He broke the school record with 2,316 yards during his senior season. For his career, Allen ran for over 3,700 yards and scored 42 touchdowns, while also finishing with 180 career tackles. His exploits led to his number being retired. Allen’s work ethic and physicality endeared him to the Virginia Tech coaching staff and he was considered a preferred walk-on before later earning a scholarship.

Allen redshirted in 2002 and stood out immediately in the weight room. His 351-pound hang clean was second on the team during fall testing and earned Super Iron Hokies during the spring. For his career, Allen earned Super Iron Hokie honors multiple times throughout his time in Blacksburg.

In 2003, Allen didn’t play. As a redshirt sophomore in 2004, he dressed in 10 games and made two starts. He finished that season with three catches for 24 yards and a touchdown. His first career touch went for a score.

As a junior in 2005, Allen played in all 13 games, making three starts. Allen didn’t carry the ball one time, but did catch three passes for 15 yards and a score. He made several highlight-reel blocks during the season.

In his senior season of 2006, Allen again played in every game for the Hokies. He made a career-high six starts, carried the ball three times and caught four passes for 47 yards.

After his college career ended, Allen received a tryout with the New York Jets. That was a pretty big accomplishment considering he didn’t always have an opportunity to do much at Virginia Tech in terms of running the football. However, his blocking was always terrific and that helped him earn the opportunity.

These days, Allen is a property manager for The Dolben Company in his native Massachusetts.

Allen was an unsung contributor for the Hokies during some really good years and is another success story as a former-walk who developed into a starter and was awarded a much-deserved scholarship.