College Football News Preview 2020: Virginia Tech Hokies

Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

College Football News Preview 2020: Virginia Tech Hokies

Virginia Tech

College Football News Preview 2020: Virginia Tech Hokies

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College Football News Preview 2020: Previewing, predicting, and looking ahead to the Virginia Tech Hokies season with what you need to know.


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– What You Need To Know: Offense | Defense
Top Players | Key Players, Games, Stats
What Will Happen, Win Total Prediction
Schedule Analysis
– Virginia Tech Previews 2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015

2019 Record: 8-5 overall, 5-3 in ACC
Head Coach: Justin Fuente, 5th year, 33-20
2019 CFN Final Opinion Ranking: 27
2019 CFN Final Season Formula Ranking: 44
2019 CFN Preview Ranking: 37

Obviously, no one knows what’s going to happen to the 2020 college football season. We’ll take a general look at where each team stands – doing it without spring ball to go by – while crossing our fingers that we’ll all have some well-deserved fun this fall. Hoping you and yours are safe and healthy.

5. College Football News Preview 2020: Virginia Tech Hokies Offense 3 Things To Know

Before getting going, few teams are going to be more fluid than Virginia Tech. Almost no one has dealt with the transfer portal more, and no one has had crazier things happen to its receiving corps.

The Hokies finished 86th in the nation in total offense and averaged just under 31 points per game, but there are plenty of reasons for hope for a huge seasons, despite all the wild changes.

Start with that receiving corps. Leading touchdown guy Damon Hazelton – coming up with eight scores – is now a Missouri Tiger, and the 16 combined 2019 catches from Hezekiah Grimsley and Phil Patterson are leaving the building. However, most of the other transfers leaving were reserves who hadn’t done much, and 6-3, 205-pound Evan Fairs is coming in from Kansas after making 28 career grabs.

Leading receiver Tre Turner is back after making 34 grabs for 553 yards and four scores, and speedy Tayvion Robinson will do more after a good freshman season. Tight end Dalton Keene was taken in the third round by New England, but junior James Mitchell is back – he’s a solid deep threat.

And all of the receivers have a rising star throwing their way.


CFN in 60 Video: Virginia Tech Hokies Preview


Hendon Hooker flirted with the transfer portal before last year, came back, and took over the starting gig after the first month of the season. The 6-4, 228-pounder hit 61% of his passes for 1,555 yards and 13 touchdowns, but his big claim to fame was being careful with the ball – the two interceptions he threw in the loss to Virginia were his only two picks of the year. He also ran for five scores – he’s the franchise star.

6-4, 245-pound sophomore Quincy Patterson is a decent prospect battling former Oregon transfer Braxton Burmeister to be the main backup.

The transfer portal took away plenty of receivers, but it also brought the Hokies some terrific running backs – a must with leading rusher Deshawn McClease leaving early. 5-9, 205-pound grad transfer Khalil Herbert comes in from Kansas where he ran for 1,735 career yards and 14 scores. He’s ready to roll right away, but the instant eligibility of speedy Rutgers star Raheem Blackshear is still in question.

Devastating as a runner or a receiver, Blackshear will eventually fill a variety of roles – he ran for 912 yards and six scores and caught 80 passes for 810 yards and six touchdowns in just over two seasons. Combine these two with 5-11, 182-pound sophomore Keshawn King – he was third on the team with 340 yards and two scores – and the Hokies have a nice backfield.

They’ll all have a great-looking line to work behind. Three reserve options left through the transfer portal, but all five starters – all underclassmen last year – are expected to return including All-ACC performers tackle Christian Darrisaw and guard Lecitus Smith on the left side. It’s a big, good line that should become a big plus.

NEXT: College Football News Preview 2020: Virginia Tech Hokies Defense 3 Things To Know

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