Fuente's first class at Virginia Tech includes 21 signees

BY foxsports • February 3, 2016

When new Virginia Tech coach Justin Fuente and his staff believe they have bolstered several holes the Hokies had, adding depth at several positions during national signing day on Wednesday.

The Hokies already had one commitment at one of those spots in 6-foot-2 quarterback Joshua Jackson from Ann Arbor, Michigan, and they added another in Jerod Evans, a 6-4 transfer from Trinity Valley College in Texas.

The two are among the top signees in a 21-member class that was largely put together by the since-retired Frank Beamer and his staff, and was kept together when Fuente and his coaches hit the recruiting trail, too.

''When you walk into a high school in Virginia and Bud Foster is walking in next you, it's instant credibility,'' Fuente said of the Hokies' long-time defensive coordinator, one of three Beamer assistants Fuente retained.

The class includes nine recruits from Virginia, nine players who are already enrolled for the spring semester at the school in Blacksburg, Virginia, and 12 players slated to play on the offensive side of the ball.

It includes no running backs or tight ends, but Fuente said that is based more on what he saw as the Hokies' most pressing needs.

''We'll probably be back in the tight end and running back business next year,'' the coach said.


Other things to know:

Top 25 Class: No.

Best in class: Evans. He threw for 395 yards per game with 38 touchdown passes and just three interceptions last season, and has already enrolled at Virginia Tech. A dual-threat, he also ran for more than 400 yards.

Best of the rest: Khalil Ladler, CB, Stone Mountain, Georgia. A four-star recruit who spent the past season recovering from a torn ACL.

Late addition: Eron Carter, LB, Palatka, Florida was being recruited heavily by the service academies, Foster said, describing the 6-2, 230-pounder as ''more of a thumper-type guy.''

One that got away: None.

How they'll fit in: With Fuente bringing what Hokies fans hope will be the high-powered offense they have long craved, the quarterback battle will be crucial to how quickly they are able to meet those expectations. Evans and Joshua Jackson join three holdovers - Brenden Motley, Dwayne Lawson and Chris Durkin, and so the winter, spring and summer will be critical times at what Fuente called ''the most important position'' in football. ''Excited to see those guys compete,'' he said.