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Virginia Tech football: Hokies add SEC defensive back for 2021

Tae Daley started 23 career games for Vanderbilt.

Vanderbilt v Missouri
Tae Daley bringing down a Missouri ballcarrier in 2018.
Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images

The Virginia Tech Hokies were hit hard by the transfer portal after the 2020 season. Quarterbacks Hendon Hooker and Quincy Patterson and offensive linemen Doug Nester and Bryan Hudson were among the players leaving Virginia Tech.

Naturally, panic began to set in as fans felt no one wanted to be a part of VT’s 2021 roster as long as Justin Fuente remained as head coach.


While some of those were big losses, particularly Nester and Hudson, and the two quarterbacks were victims of the offensive staff’s inability to develop passers, the Hokies still have plenty to offer experienced players looking for a fresh start in their career.

Last week, it was center Johnny Jordan of Maryland.

On Wednesday evening, defensive back Tae Daley made his intentions known that he would play for the Hokies in 2021.

Daley, a 6-foot-0, 198-pound safety, played his first three years for Vanderbilt and is a graduate transfer who is eligible immediately. Daley appeared in 23 games for the Commodores, making 17 starts.

He was Vanderbilt’s third-leading tackler in 2019. He opted out of the 2020 season and entered the transfer portal in September.

There is a connection to Virginia Tech’s staff as co-defensive line coach Darryl Tapp spent the 2019 season as an assistant at Vanderbilt, and that was enough for Daley to choose the Hokies.

Daley played his high school football at Northside High in Warner Robins, Georgia.

The Hokies are building a strong secondary for 2021. After the addition of Daley, Tech is getting a healthy Jermaine Waller back in 2021, too.

Also, the Hokies hope Devin Taylor returns, and there is optimism surrounding his future. Virginia Tech freshman cornerback Dorian Strong was outstanding in his first season.

After the addition of Taylor, the Hokies still aren’t done. Fuente could look to add another corner, a defensive end, a defensive tackle, and at least one more offensive lineman. The Hokies could also add a quarterback from the transfer portal.

Daley is a strong addition to Virginia Tech’s defense in 2021.