National signing day came and went Wednesday with the Virginia Tech Hokies signed three players. Don’t panic, the Hokies did much of the heavy lifting in December, when 21 players signed — 11 of those players enrolled in January.
The Hokies also had four players from the NCAA transfer portal enroll in January.
Two of the players Virginia Tech signed Wednesday were known to Hokie fans. Tight end Daequan Wright committed to Tech last summer before his senior season. A big senior season elevated the 6-foot-4, 230-pound Wright and he saw increased attention from other schools late in the season. So, when Virginia Tech let go of former coach Justin Fuente, Wright wanted to meet the new staff before signing his letter of intent, so he chose to wait until national signing day.
Virginia Tech’s coaching staff traveled to Georgia to see Wright and he made the trip to Blacksburg in December. Things went well and Wright stayed firm in his pledge. He was recently elevated to a four-star recruit. Identifying Wright was a good move by the previous staff, and kudos to the new staff for keeping Wright in the boat.
Next up was 6-foot-6, 355-pound offensive lineman Xavier Chaplin from Seabrook, South Carolina. Much like Wright, this was another outstanding find by the previous staff. Chaplin was an unknown last summer when he visited Blacksburg. The Hokies offered and he accepted.
It took a bit to find highlights of Chaplin but when you finally did you could see the potential. First, you can’t teach that kind of size. Secondly, Chaplin can move — and moe well. A strong senior season put him on the radar of SEC schools and the Big Ten. There was interest from Michigan among others, but in the end the Hokies hiring Joe Rudolph as offensive line coach sealed the deal.
These are both massive pickups for the Hokies. I can’t stress this enough. Just ahead of the early signing period, if you had asked me which recruits I wanted Brent Pry to keep, these two would’ve made the final four. Chaplin could be a monster for Rudolph and the Hokies. And he’s the prototypical kid Virginia Tech would sign and develop into a future NFL player.
Wright has the size, skills and athleticism to play as a true freshman.
The Hokies’ third signee is DB/WR Devin Alves of Melbourne, Florida. Alves committed to Tech after a weekend visit. Again, another example of what Tech did best when it was consistently a top-15 team. Find good kids with the combination of size, speed and versatility and develop.
Alves is 6-foot-2, 180 pounds, with twitchy athleticism. He played three sports in high school.
Alves could play wide receiver or defensive back at the next level. Pry said Wednesday he was trying to keep Alves on the “down low.”
Pry on Florida DB Devin Alves, a late addition to the class: "To be honest, we tried to keep him on the down low."— Andy Bitter (@AndyBitterVT) February 2, 2022
Said he can play boundary CB right now. Could be a safety. Also a good WR prospect.
Likes Alves as a long athlete (he's 6-2.5) who can develop. #Hokies
We here at Gobbler Country would like to give a warm welcome to Devin, Daequan and Xavier to Virginia Tech.
In case you missed the rest of Virginia Tech’s class, here is our early signing period wrap-up from December.