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Virginia Tech football: Two Hokies named to Athlon’s first-team preseason All-ACC squad

A total of six Hokies landed on the preseason teams.

NCAA Football: Virginia Tech at Duke Jaylynn Nash-USA TODAY Sports

It’s that time of the year when fans can head to their local supermarkets and pick up college football preview magazines. Unfortunately, the magazine isle is much smaller than it used to be and the options are limited, but you can always count on Athlon Sports.

Athlon’s college football preview made it to newsstands a few weeks ago, and the Phil Steele College Football Preview should be out soon.

So, what does Athlon think of Virginia Tech in 2023? Not very much, as the Hokies are picked No. 12 out of 14 teams. Remember, the ACC eliminated divisions, meaning the Hokies are listed ahead of only Boston College and Virginia.

Here’s Athlon’s predicted order of finish for 2023:

  1. Florida State
  2. Clemson
  3. North Carolina
  4. Miami
  5. Duke
  6. Pittsburgh
  7. Louisville
  8. N.C. State
  9. Wake Forest
  10. Syracuse
  11. Georgia Tech
  12. Virginia Tech
  13. Boston College
  14. Virginia

After a 3-8 season in 2022, Athlon predicts a slight improvement in 2023, as the Hokies are projected to go 5-7.

A total of six Hokies were named to Athlon’s preseason All-ACC teams. Surprisingly, cornerback Mansoor Delane was listed on the second team. Delane was one of the ACC’s top freshmen last season.

Here’s a look at the Hokies who were honored:

  • 1st team: WR Ali Jennings
  • 1st team: PR Tucker Holloway
  • 2nd team: CB Mansoor Delane
  • 4th team: G Kaden Moore
  • 4th team: CB Dorian Strong
  • 4th team: P Peter Moore

It’s nice to see Jennings get some respect. The former WVU and ODU wideout transferred to the Hokies in the offseason and was named as one of college football’s top transfers.

Holloway was electric as a punt returner last season once he received the opportunity. The Hokies are excited about the sophomore wide receiver.

Delane had a terrific freshman season and is one of the more underrated players in the ACC.

The older Moore brother is Virginia Tech’s top offensive lineman and could have a breakout season under new OL coach Ron Crook.

Strong had a big freshman season but battled some injuries last season. If healthy, he and Delane should form an outstanding cornerback duo.

Moore’s numbers fell back a bit last season, but he was really good in 2021.