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Virginia Tech football: Lecitus Smith, DaShawn Crawford latest to return for 2021

The Hokies have received some good news lately on players choosing to return in 2021.

Old Dominion v Virginia Tech
Lecitus Smith
Photo by Michael Shroyer/Getty Images

Lecitus Smith came to Virginia Tech in the 2017 recruiting class as a three-star tight end who weighed 255 pounds.

After redshirting in 2017, Smith started a handful of games in 2018 before becoming a fixture at left guard for the Hokies in 2019 and 2020. One of the best offensive guards in the ACC, Smith announced this week he would be returning to Blacksburg for one more season.

This is fantastic news for head coach Justin Fuente and offensive line coach Vance Vice. The Hokies lost Christian Darrisaw to the NFL draft and Doug Nester and Bryan Hudson to the transfer portal. Having Smith, an All-ACC performer at guard, return to the team in 2021 is a win for the coaching staff.

Now, the Hokies will have three starters back next season from one of the nation’s top offensive lines. Smith joins Luke Tenuta and Brock Hoffman as starters returning to school.

Smith is a legitimate NFL prospect at guard.

Smith is the latest offensive player, joining tight end James Mitchell and wide receiver Tre Turner to announce they would return next fall.

Also, coming back for the Hokies is defensive tackle, DaShawn Crawford. This is a win for defensive coordinator Justin Hamilton. A JUCO transfer in 2019, Crawford was good for the Hokies. Unfortunately, injuries limited him to just four games in 2020.

WIth Jarrod Hewitt off to the NFL, it was critical to get Crawford back. The Hokies will remain active in the transfer portal to add one or two more defensive linemen to next season’s roster. Former Clemson defensive tackle, Jordan Williams, is now in the transfer portal and is a top target for this coaching staff.

Williams was a major target for the Hokies when he came out of high school three years ago. A native of Virginia Beach, Williams chose Clemson over the Hokies. He would be a massive addition for Hamilton in 2021.

After some tough news early in the offseason, it has been a good couple of weeks for the Hokies. Let’s hope some of that positive momentum continues throughout the spring.