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Virginia Tech football: Hokies pick up a big commitment for 2020

Defensive end Justus Reed is eligible for 2020.

New Mexico State vs. Florida
New Virginia Tech defensive end Justus Reed from his time at Florida
Stephen M. Dowell/Orlando Sentinel/Tribune News Service via Getty Images

The Virginia Tech football team picked up some big news on Friday when Youngstown State defensive end Justus Reed committed to the Hokies.

A graduate transfer, Reed has one year of eligibility remaining and is eligible to play in 2020.

Reed chose Virginia Tech over Florida State, Texas Tech and Baylor, among others.

At 6-foot-3, 270 pounds, Reed brings size and experience to Tech’s defensive line under new defensive coordinator Justin Hamilton. Co-defensive line coaches Darryl Tapp and Bill Teerlinck played a major role in Reed’s decision, along with his rapport with Hamilton.

The Hokies clearly needed help along the defensive line, especially at defensive end. Tech focused on adding defensive ends in the class of 2020 and signed four players. Two of which, Robert Wooten and Alec Bryant, were from the state of Texas.

After beginning his college career at Florida, Reed redshirted in 2014. He played in seven games in 2015 and recorded two sacks. He missed most of 2016 with an injury before he decided to transfer.

Reed ended up at Youngstown State, an FCS power located in Ohio.

In his first year at Youngstown, Reed played in seven games, but recorded five sacks and 5.5 tackles for loss. Again, injuries plagued him. He missed all of 2018 after suffering an Achilles’ injury in the offseason.

For the first time in his collegiate career, Reed was completely healthy in 2019 and his performance indicated his true ability.

Reed recorded 43 tackles, 19.5 tackles for loss and 12.5 sacks in 2019 and was named first-team All-Missouri Valley Conference.

After he was injured in 2018, Reed appealed for a medical hardship and received two more years of eligibility. He chose to leave Youngstown State when its former head coach, Bo Pelini left to take over as defensive coordinator at LSU. Reed also wanted to play against stronger competition in the hopes of a potential NFL career.

Reed is a big get for Hamilton and the Hokies. He can help this team immediately while some of the freshmen get acclimated to the college game. Also, he shows other recruits that players in-demand will also choose Virginia Tech.

Reed’s performance in 2019 was essentially what the Hokies got out of their entire group of defensive ends.