JUMPING! START 2022 VIRGINIA TECH FOOTBALL GAMEDAY GUIDE Vol. 15 No. 1, August 2022 The Official Publication of Virginia Tech Athletics
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Published by the Virginia Tech Athletics Department • Inside Hokie Sports (ISSN 8750-9148, periodical postage paid at Blacksburg, VA 24060 and additional mailing offices) covers Virginia Tech athletics and is published six times annually. The publisher is the Virginia Tech Athletics Department, 21 Beamer Way, Blacksburg, VA 24061. Mail all address changes, written inquiries and complaints to Virginia Tech Athletic Fund, P.O. Box 10307, Blacksburg, VA 24062-0307 or call 540-231-6618. Inside Hokie Sports assumes no responsibility for companies and persons who advertise in this publication. Reproduction of contents in whole or in part without written permission is prohibited. Publisher does not guarantee accuracy of information contained in any advertisement. ATTN POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Virginia Tech Athletic Fund, P.O. Box 10307, Blacksburg, VA 24062-0307. Printed by Worth Higgins & Associates of Richmond, Virginia. John Sours Designer Dave Knachel Photographer Contributor Clay Brunner Virginia Tech Sports Properties August 2022 Vol. 15, No. 1 inside.hokiesports.com *To advertise with Virginia Tech athletics or Inside Hokie Sports, contact Kyler Pilling at Virginia Tech Sports Properties— 540-418-6307 contents 2 A Word from Whit 4 Roth Report 5 A Message from Coach Pry 7 Gameday Guide 9 2022 Virginia Tech Football Parking 10 Lane Stadium/ Worsham Field 12 Win Sheridan: Constructing the Future for Virginia Tech Football 14 Your Gameday Experience! 15 2022 Football Schedule 16 Position by Position Previews 22 Compliance Corner 27 Monogram Club News 29 Inside the Huddle 2 12 16 5 22 29
2 Inside Hokie Sports Dear Hokie Nation, We hope you all had a fantastic summer filled with your family and friends. As fall quickly approaches, we cannot wait to have you back in Blacksburg soon. Thompson Field, Cassell Coliseum, and Lane Stadium are ready for you all to fill the seats of each venue and cheer as loud as possible for our outstanding student-athletes. Coach Brent Pry and his staff have been working incredibly hard to prepare their team for a challenging slate in 2022. They have made tremendous strides in the short time they have been on campus, and we have faith in how that will translate to restoring our football program to a championship brand in the ACC. This staff has a proven track record of developing young men into leaders, and I know this special group of student-athletes will make Hokie Nation proud. We are excited to create memories for our fans who make the trip to Lane Stadium this fall. Our department is committed to serve Hokie Nation and give them the best experiences only Virginia Tech can provide. We have been strategizing the best ways to ensure each and every one of you will wholeheartedly enjoy their time in Blacksburg. Fan-first concession pricing, mobile ticketing, and responsible alcohol sales will be returning in 2022 after great feedback from the previous season. In addition to the gameday aspects that are returning, our department has also dedicated its efforts to logistically planning the best stadium entrance processes to implement this year. We know Hokie Nation will continue to make Lane Stadium the toughest place for opponents to play in college football. As we move into the 2022 fall sports season, we are excited for what’s on tap for our Olympic sports in Blacksburg. Coach Chugger Adair has made Virginia Tech Women’s Soccer a consistent winner in the ACC in his tenure as head coach, and we suspect 2022 will be no different. On the men’s side, Mike Brizendine and his talented roster return after making the NCAA Tournament for a sixth straight season and have the capability to compete for an ACC title this season. Marci Byers is building a contender with our volleyball program and has galvanized momentum with a strong recruiting class. Last, but certainly not least, Dave Cianelli and Eric Johannigmeier mold student-athletes into strong, determined runners, and we look forward to seeing what Virginia Tech Cross Country will do when their season begins in September. Hokie Nation joined together to accomplish ambitious goals set by our athletic department in the 2021-2022 year. The Drive for 25 reached its triumphant conclusion with over 29,000 Hokie Club members, and the $400 million Reach for Excellence campaign surpassed the halfway mark earlier this year. Pressing forward into a new academic year, it is inherent that we continue on our positive trajectory as a fanbase to further support our nearly 600 student-athletes. There are also new, expanded ways to help our student-athletes in the realm of name, image, and likeness, and we encourage Hokie Nation to follow our compliance guidelines to establish these relationships. We are once again asking that not one person do everything, but for every Hokie to make a commitment to bettering Virginia Tech in the national scope of collegiate athletics. We are strong together as Hokie Nation. Thank you for your unbridled support of Virginia Tech Athletics. We cannot wait to welcome you HOME! Go Hokies! Whit Babcock Director of Athletics A WORD FROM WHIT
MARCH 1 2023 NEW HOKIE SCHOLARSHIP FUND DEADLINE The Hokie Scholarship Fund has a new deadline! Reach your desired giving level and renew your football and basketball season tickets by March 1, 2023. Scan the QR to make a gift today!
4 Inside Hokie Sports A new season and a new era of Virginia Tech football begins on Friday, September 2 in Norfolk when the Hokies kickoff their 2022 season against ODU. In fact, you’re going to hear the word ‘new’ a whole lot this fall around the Tech program. New coach. New culture. A renewed commitment to relationships. And a fresh reset on a program that hopes to regain its previous stature. For first year Tech head coach Brent Pry, September 2 is a night that’s been a lifetime in the making. Raised on the sidelines of his dad’s teams—father Jim spent 40 years in coaching—Pry has been an assistant for 31 years under some of the sport’s biggest names. In Norfolk, he’ll lead his own team onto the field for the first time. “Excited. Passionate to get it going. That’s how I’ll feel,” Pry predicted. As for his goals? “When you’re the son of a coach, the expectations you put on yourself to win and to make your dad proud. That’s pretty powerful stuff,” Pry said. “For us, it’s about being sound. And being smart. And having the kids understand what you want,’ Pry said. “We have good schemes, but it’s the fundamentals, it’s the personnel that’s important. Developing our roster is key for us.” While the overall talent isn’t there just yet, Pry feels he’s upgraded the quarterback position in ’22, as Marshall transfers Grant Wells and South Carolina transfer Jason Brown have joined the program. “They are both demonstrating leadership qualities,” Pry said. “Their relationship with (quarterback Coach) Brad Glenn and (offensive coordinator) Tyler Bowen is excellent And we have two really good people. Hard workers with high football IQ.” “They’ve both had success in different ways. Grant’s had good numbers and a lot of snaps. Jason’s won on the biggest stage over some really big folks in some big games.” Wells threw for over 5,500 yards and 34 touchdowns as Marshall’s starting QB the last two seasons. Brown threw for 36 touchdowns at South Carolina over the last three years. The Fredericksburg, Va. native led the Gamecocks to wins over Auburn and Florida last year before entering the transfer portal. “They both bring a lot to the table,” Pry said. Still, if the Hokies offense will have an identity this year, it will be on the ground. “I want us to run the football,” Pry said. “I know as a defensive play caller, it makes a game difficult to call if you can’t stop the run. We went out and hired the best offensive line coach in the country (Joe Rudolph). We’re not gonna be three yards and a cloud of dust, but you have to have a legitimate running attack.” And what will the Hokies look like on defense? “Well … we’re going to look like Penn State,” Pry chuckled. Makes sense. Afterall, Pry was one of the nation’s top defensive coordinators at Penn State where he built some of the nation’s top units before coming to Tech. “One of the things I look at first is this: I want to see guys running by people to get to the football, “Pry said. “No regard for their body.” “A trademark of Bud’s (Foster) defenses when they were at their best, and what I would hope people would say about our Penn State defenses was that they just played so hard. You don’t worry about bangin’ an With fresh intensity, the Brent Pry era begins at Virginia Tech elbow. You’re not feeling your way. You’re going! You’re hell-bent and rolllin’ to the football. The ball declares, you react and you drive. You run by people to get to the ball.” “We have to do that. We have some guys who can do that, but we don’t have enough of them right now.” It’s going to be a work in progress for sure. And ironically, it all begins against one of his closest friends, ODU head coach Ricky Rahne who was QB coach and offensive coordinator at Vanderbilt and Penn State with Pry and James Franklin before getting the head job in Norfolk. “To be honest, it’s going to be pretty neat,” Pry said. “Obviously we want to win the game and win it big. But I want him (Rahne) to be successful.” “I hate it that we schedule them (ODU) so often because I’d like to see us do this thing together, hand-in-hand. Let’s get these kids to stay in-state, pull for each other, have camps together, have clinics together. I’d prefer it to be that way, and when there are opportunities to do that, we will.” Friendship aside, when the Hokies take the field in Norfolk, so much will be new. The staff. The helmets. The uniforms. But the biggest thing Pry predicts is this: a fresh intensity from Virginia Tech. “I don’t like to lose, “ he said. “I’mwilling to really invest to be determined to win. Nothing bothers me more than someone underachieving or not maximizing potential and giving themselves the best chance to win. And you gotta do it every day. “Development. Hard work. Sacrifice. Fundamentals. Technique.” That’s the focus Pry wants to see out of his team and his program. When you take over the family business as Pry is doing, the pride factor is substantial. In a way, he’s been preparing his entire life for this job, at family dinners, team busses, and hundreds of dad’s practices. And now he has his own team. And his own program. BROADCASTING TEAM On a personal note, it’s wonderful to be back in the Virginia Tech broadcast booth. This is such an exciting time in Hokies’ athletics and the start of a new era in football. We’ve revamped our broadcast team as well starting with the 202223 season and I know you’ll love our new Director of Broadcasting Zach Mackey who joined the Hokie family this summer. Zach has excelled as a broadcaster at Montana State, Iowa and with the Big Ten Network and will host Tech Talk Live with Mike Burnop each week, plus handle the play-by-play duties for men’s basketball games. With Zach, Evan Hughes, and Mike, we’ve put together a group of broadcasters and content creators who will do an excellent job telling the amazing stories of Virginia Tech’s athletes and chronical the success of the various teams. Mike and I are really excited to launch Level Seven, a weekly podcasts that will focus on Virginia Tech football. Why Level Seven? Take a listen to find out more, but our radio booth at Lane Stadium is on Level 7. It affords us a unique perspective on all things Virginia Tech football, and it’s true: You can see things from Level 7 that you can’t see anywhere else! Hope you’ll give it a listen to our new show, plus all of our digital offerings on our Virginia Tech podcast network: https://hokiesports. com/podcasts By Bill Roth
A MESSAGE FROM COACH PRY Dear Hokie Nation, These past nine months have been an insanely rewarding experience for myself, our staff, and our student-athletes. You all have been nothing but welcoming and have reinforced our decision to come to Blacksburg. Now is the time where we can finally showcase all of our hard work. I want to thank all of our season ticket holders and Hokie Club members for your passionate support of our program. You are instrumental in our vision to elevate this program to new heights. We are dedicated to creating the best product on the field for you all to support. This is a great group of young men, and they are going to give 110% for you all. Their work ethic and commitment to the culture we have instilled in them has made our staff incredibly proud. As for the future of this program, we are encouraged by the footprint our staff has stamped into the Commonwealth of Virginia. We have sparked positive relationships with coaches throughout this state, which is saturated with some of the best high school talent in the country. We know that by doing this, we will greatly impact the amount of home-grown talent that will want to come to Blacksburg in the future. Even outside of Virginia, we have made amazing progress with establishing lasting connections in our region, and we are optimistic about the dividends this will pay for the future of our program. We cannot wait to run out of the tunnel for Enter Sandman for the first time on September 10 in front of all of you when we take on Boston College in Blacksburg. In the meantime, we have been diligently preparing for Old Dominion, and I look forward to seeing many of you in Norfolk. It has already been an honor to serve as the head coach since I took the job in November 2021, and I am thrilled that I finally have the chance to represent Hokie Nation for the first time in the coming weeks. Go Hokies! Brent Pry Head Coach, Virginia Tech Football inside.hokiesports.com 5
™ A P A R T M E N T S CEDAR POINTE A P A R T M E N T S
inside.hokiesports.com 7 Continued on page 8 ADA INFORMATION If you are a person with a disability and desire special accommodations, please notify the ticket office well in advance of the game. Please contact the ticket office for special ticket arrangements, 540-231-6731 or (800) VA TECH4 (828-3244). Handicap parking is available for a $25 fee on the day of a game in the designated parking lot (see map). An accessible shuttle is provided to and from the lot. LANE STADIUM INFORMATION, GUIDELINES AND GUEST SERVICES Admission All fans entering Lane Stadium regardless of age must have a valid ticket to gain admission to the stadium. Alcoholic Beverages Patrons are not allowed to bring alcohol in Lane Stadium. Intoxicated and/or disorderly behavior as well as violation of any alcohol policy may result in ejection from Lane Stadium without refund and could result in the loss of season tickets. Alcoholic beverages are sold at designated concession stands throughout Lane Stadium. Alcohol policies are as follows: • Underage drinking is prohibited. • ID regardless of age. Patrons with an out of state license may be asked to provide a second form of identification. • Two drink maximum per identification, per transaction. • Patrons under the age of 21 found in possession of alcohol will be reported to the police. • Patrons who are consuming alcohol and appear to be under the age of 21 must be prepared to show proper identification. If proper ID cannot be provided upon request, patrons will be reported to the police. • Patrons who are seen supplying alcohol to underage guest will be reported to the police for ejection from the event and/or disciplinary action. • Patrons may be refused purchase at the discretion of concessionaire, police, stadium personnel or event staff. • No refunds will be offered for confiscated beverages. • Patrons are not permitted to leave the stadium with alcoholic beverages. Assistance Please text (540) 739-0089 for assistance. ATM Machines Lane Stadium is a cashless stadium and does not have ATM machines. Banners, Signs, and Flags Banners, signs and flags are not be permitted in Lane Stadium. Bus Service Blacksburg Transit Fare - Virginia Tech Football Gamedays Blacksburg Transit (BT) bus fare is free three hours prior to kickoff until three hours post game. Please note: shuttle services from remote lots are not available unless they are on a regular scheduled BT route. Code of Conduct Virginia Tech football should be an enjoyable experience for all fans. In order to promote athletic excellence and fan enjoyment, we ask for your assistance in displaying a high degree of sportsmanship at all times. Virginia Tech reserves the right to remove individuals whose conduct disrupts players, coaches, officials or other fans. No refunds will be given in these cases. Any person entering the field of play at any time will be subject to arrest. Hokie fans are known for their support of the Virginia Tech Football Team and how they have made Lane Stadium one of the greatest GAMEDAY GUIDE
8 Inside Hokie Sports Continued from page 7 Saturday Games Arrival Departure Parking Lots (Donor/Public) 7 a.m. Saturday 7 a.m. Sunday RV’s (Donor) 5 p.m. Friday Noon Sunday RV’s (Public – Golf Course) After 12 p.m. Friday Before noon Sunday RV’s (Public – Duck Pond) After 5 p.m. on Friday Before noon Sunday Non-Saturday Games Arrival Departure Parking Lots (Donor/Public) After 4 p.m. game day Before 6 a.m. following day RV’s (Donor) After noon game day Before 6 a.m. following day RV’s (Public – Golf Course) After noon game day Before 6 a.m. following day RV’s (Public – Duck Pond) After 4 p.m. game day Before 6 a.m. following day RV’s (Donor/Public) After noon game day Before 6 a.m. following day Parking Lot Hours of Operation “home fields” in the country. A big contributor to that enthusiasm is the tailgating and pre-game spirit built before the kick-off. As we continue with that long-standing tradition, let us not forget “Hokie Respect” and our goal of creating a first-class environment to lend our support to the Hokies while maintaining a safe and fun environment for all Hokies and our visitors. First Aid Rooms First aid rooms are located throughout the stadium. Patrons can ask for assistance from event staff or rescue squad members stationed at various portals around the stadium. Game Day Tickets, Will Call Patrons with ticket issues that purchased their tickets through the Virginia Tech Athletics Ticket Office or through StubHub should come to Will Call (ticket office) window next to gate 4. Patrons that purchased through other secondary markets or private individuals will need to reach out to the seller if they are experiencing ticket concerns. Public Will Call, Player Guest and Recruit Will Call are located beside gate 4 on the west side of Lane Stadium. Will Call is open 3 hours prior to game time and remains open through the end of the first half. Visiting Team Will Call is located in the south end zone end of Lane Stadium, in front of gate 2. ID is required. General Ticket Information • Every person must have a ticket, including infants. • Times and dates of games are subject to change. • The athletics ticket office is not responsible for tickets that are lost, stolen or mailed to a second party. No refunds or exchanges are permitted if the game is played. Gates All gates open two hours prior to kickoff. Lost and Found Lost and found is located on the west side of Lane Stadium, beside gate 4 (south tower). Items can be claimed the following work day by calling (540) 231-6728. Prohibited & Permitted Items All persons entering the stadium are subject to search. To protect the safety of our patrons, players, officials and staff, the following items are prohibited. PROHIBITED ITEMS • Coolers/Containers/Bags (unless medical supplies and prior approved) • Purses larger than a clutch bag • Fireworks / Explosive / Weapons • Illegal drugs; follows State and campus guidelines • Laser pointers • Noisemakers (horns, whistles, cow bells, turkey calls, etc.) • Outside food or beverage • Pets (except service animals) • Signs, flags, banners • Smoking/Vaping • Strollers or umbrellas • Unmanned aircraft (drones) PERMITTED ITEMS The following items are permitted inside the venue: • Binoculars and cameras (without case) • Radios with headsets • Small clutch purses no larger than 4.5 inches by 6.5 inches • Seat cushions without arms or backs Public Parking Public Parking is available on game day for $25 in designated parking lots on campus: Prices Fork Parking Garage, North End Center Parking Garage; Ag Quad, and Squires. Re-entry There is NO re-entry. Restrooms Restrooms are located beneath all permanent stands and can be reached by exiting any portal. Family/Special Needs restrooms are located in the following locations: behind section 1 (east side); behind section 205 and 509 in the south end zone, and behind sections 2 and 18 on the west side. RV/Camper Parking Hokie Club members who have purchased parking passes for RV’s are located either in Lot 3 or 16. Parking passes must be purchased in advance, Public RV parking is available at university golf course, Duck Pond Overflow lot, and the student remote lot (Smoot Drive in the Corporate Research Center). The Virginia Tech/Montgomery Executive Airport also has RV parking, please contact them directly at 540-231-4444. The lots controlled by athletics are $150-$175 per weekend and is a first-come-first serve. Security Checks All persons entering the stadium may be subject to search by stadium personnel prior to entering the gates. Smoking/Vaping Virginia Tech is committed to providing a smoke-free environment in all facilities, both indoor and outdoor. Smoking/vaping WILL NOT BE PERMITTED on the concourses, seating areas, restrooms or portals leading to the seating area. Smoking is permitted at Gates 1S, 6S, 7S and 3. Souvenirs Souvenir stores are located on the west side, across from sections 10-12, and in the south end zone concourse near section 205.
inside.hokiesports.com 9 2022 VIRGINIA TECH FOOTBALL PARKING SOUTHGATE DR. WASHINGTON ST. WEST CAMPUS DR. WEST CAMPUS DR. GROVE LN. DUCK POND DR. DUCK POND DR. OAK LANE WASHINGTON ST. OLD TURNER ST. STANGER ST. ALUMNI MALL BEAMER WAY BEAMER WAY BURRUSS HALL DRILLFIELD WAR MEMORIAL CASSELL COLISEUM HAHN HURST BEAMER-LAWSON IPF NEWMAN LIBRARY TORGERSEN HALL MCBRYDE HALL NORTH END CENTER GARAGE CONSTRUCTION CONSTRUCTION THE INN AT VIRGINIA TECH DUCK POND VIRGINIA & MARYLAND COLLEGE OF VETERINARY MEDICINE MCCOMAS HALL ENGLISH FIELD @ ATLANTIC UNION BANK TECH SOFTBALL PARK JOHNSON-MILLER OUTDOOR TRACK RECTOR FIELD HOUSE MV CENTER PUBLIC SAFETY BUILDING LANE STADIUM / WORSHAM FIELD DAVIDSON LOT SQUIRES STUDENT CENTER SOUTH RECREATION FIELDS REMOTE PARKING GOLF COURSE MOSS ART CENTER SOCCER/ LACROSSE FIELDS 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 11 12 13 13a 14 16 18 19 PERRY STREET GARAGE DERRING HALL P P P PERRY ST. TURNER ST. GILBERT ST. MAIN ST. TURNER ST. BARGER ST. PRICES FORK RD. MAIN ST. Donor Lots 1 - Cassell Coliseum 2 - Stadium 3 - Maintenance Lot 4 - Track/Softball 5 - Chicken Hill 6 - Health & Safety 7 - Vet Med 8 - Litton Reaves 9 - Litton Reaves Overflow 11 - Engel 12 - Price Hall 13 - Davidson Hall 13A - Hahn 14 - Solitude 16 - I Lot / Cage 18 - Smithfield Road 19 - Media Building Public RV Parking (shuttle provided) Public Parking
10 Inside Hokie Sports LANE STADIUM/WORSHAM FIELD Lane Stadium/Worsham Field 1 3 5 7 9 CC DD EE FF GG A B C D E F G H J South End Zone Premium Seating West Side Premium Seating Beamer Way 402 401 404 406 405 408 407 403 503 502 501 509 508 507 506 505 504 510 409 105 104 103 102 101 206 205 204 203 202 201 4 20 18 12 16 14 10 2 8 6 19 29 39 31 33 35 21 11 23 13 25 15 27 17 37 E-2 E-3 E-4 E-5 E 6 6S 5 4 3 2 1 1S 7S 7 Moody Plaza West Side Premium Seating ADA Seating Water Refill Station First Aid Station Entrance Gate Family Restroom Visiting TeamWill Call Police Bookstore Will Call Ticket Office / Lost & Found E E E E NToo wrt e h r SToo wut e h r Beamer Way
ORTHO LIKE NO OTHER When Hokies need help with sports injuries, they turn to Carilion Clinic. Because when you need to get back in the game, you need the best in orthopaedic care. Our expert team is proud to provide specialized sports medicine treatment for Virginia Tech’s student-athletes. Carilion Clinic is the official health care provider for Virginia Tech athletics.
12 Inside Hokie Sports Virginia Tech director of athletics Whit Babcock announced that Virginia Tech alumnus and longtime benefactor, Win Sheridan, has pledged $5 million to the Virginia Tech Football program. Sheridan’s generous gift will help fund a complete redesign and renovation of the Hokies’ locker room facility. A variety of design options and upgrades are currently under consideration. Conceptual renderings for the project will be shared at a later date once further details are finalized and approved. “I am extremely enthused about the direction of the Virginia Tech Football program under the leadership of head coach Brent Pry,” Sheridan said. “Coach Pry was working under Coach Beamer when the Hokies truly emerged onto the national stage with a historic win in the 1995 Sugar Bowl, a victory that helped propel Tech to the National Championship Game following the 1999 season. When our football program is successful, it raises the profile of our entire university. I was fortunate to help fund the construction of the current locker room along with some of my best friends, and it’s truly my pleasure to help transform this space to meet the needs of Coach Pry and our team for years to come. I’m immensely proud of Virginia APEX Founders and longtime Virginia Tech benefactors (L-R): Ted Hanson, Win Sheridan, Jeff Veatch and Brian Callaghan. Tech and the trajectory of a place that means so much to me. It’s a great time to be a Hokie!” Sheridan co-founded Apex Systems, an information technology services company, in 1995 with fellow Tech alums Brian Callaghan and Jeff Veatch. Apex Systems, which was acquired by ASGN Incorporated in 2012, had sales of $2.4 billion in 2021 and employs approximately 30,000 individuals. Sheridan has served as a Director of ASGN Incorporated since 2012. Sheridan was part of the group that provided substantial funding for the original Team United Locker Room in honor of Frank Beamer that was constructed in 2009 as part of a $15 million expansion of the Jamerson Athletic Center. Sheridan was joined in that effort to fund the existing locker room facility by Callaghan, Veatch and fellow Tech alum, Ted Hanson. “Win continues to serve as a great example of the tremendous impact our alumni can have on our overall success and make in the lives of our student-athletes at Virginia Tech,” Babcock said. “Win has consistently set a very high standard in terms of his benevolence and commitment to Tech Athletics over many years. The redesign and WIN SHERIDAN CONSTRUCTING the FUTURE for Virginia Tech Football Longtime Hokies donor makes $5 million pledge to locker room redesign, renovation
inside.hokiesports.com 13 renovation of the football locker room will mark another key project to ensure we provide a first-class experience for our football team, in addition to remaining competitive with our peers in terms of player-centric spaces and recruiting. Win is creative and a great leader in his own right. He understands what it takes to be great. We appreciate him stepping up and investing in our momentum and future at this critical time.” “Win has been exceptionally generous to his alma mater over the years,” Virginia Tech Football head coach Brent Pry said. “On behalf of everyone associated with Virginia Tech Football, I would like to personally thank Win for his continued support and specifically his most recent gift. Win’s investment in our locker room project will positively impact our football family. We sincerely appreciate Win’s example of giving back to this university and his belief in the direction of our football program.” “Win Sheridan and his Apex partners who helped fund the original construction of our locker room are great Virginia Tech success stories,” Hall of Fame coach Frank Beamer said. “More importantly, Win, Jeff, Brian and Ted are all tremendous people. They have all been wonderful supporters of Tech Football and other campus initiatives over the years. It didn’t surprise me at all that Win decided to step up with a generous gift to bring our locker room up to today’s standards. I’ve greatly appreciated Win’s friendship and his love of our alma mater over the years. Thank you, Win, for your latest contribution to the success of Virginia Tech.” Investing in the future of Virginia Tech students certainly isn’t a new concept for Sheridan, who has contributed over $8 million to a variety of projects at his alma mater over the years. Virginia Tech’s Apex Center for Entrepreneurs was named in recognition of a joint commitment of $5 million by Sheridan, Callaghan, Veatch and Hanson. Motivated by a simple vision to create a University-wide platform for entrepreneurship, the Apex Center for Entrepreneurs is supported by alumni highly committed to supporting student founders and launching the Center on a trajectory for rapid growth.
14 Inside Hokie Sports THE OFFICIAL KIDS’ CLUB OF VIRGINIA TECH ATHLETICS TO CHOOSE FROM Visit hokiesports.com/hokiekidsclub to join! ORANGE LEVEL: FREE MAROON LEVEL: $35 TWO PLANS YOUR GAMEDAY EXPERIENCE! HOKIE VILLAGE Located at Moseley Turf Field, across from the West side of Lane Stadium, Hokie Villages opens 3.5 hours before kickoff, is free for all, and begins Virginia Tech’s game day experience. HOKIE WALK Established in 2001, the Hokie Walk is your chance to greet the football team as they arrive on campus, approximately 2.5 hours prior to kickoff. The Hokie Walk begins on Beamer Way—directly outside Hokie Village - and ends at the Merryman Athletic Center. MARCH TO VICTORY Join the Marching Virginians, along with the HighTechs, HokieBird, Espirt de Corps and Skipper, as they make their way to Lane Stadium on game day approximately 1 hour prior to kickoff. The parade begins at the Marching Virginians Center at Chicken Hill (Lot 5), winding through Lot 2 and Lot 3, ending at the southwest tunnel. HOKIESPORTS APP Download the official mobile app of Virginia Tech Athletics and experience the Hokies from your fingertips – 24/7! Want to receive breaking news as soon as it drops? Want to listen to the game with just one touch? You can come to a game, show your ticket, upgrade your experience, watch highlights, shop for gear and more. MAROON AND ORANGE MEMORIES Upgrade your game day! Experience moments that will last a lifetime with Maroon and Orange Memories! For more information, open the HokieSports App on your mobile device. HOKIE EFFECT & GAMEDAY PROMOTIONS • September 10 vs. Boston College: Orange Effect • September 17 vs. Wofford: Military Appreciation Day & White Effect • September 22 vs. West Virginia: Hokie Effect & Throwback Night • October 15 vs. Miami: Homecoming & Maroon Effect • November 5 vs. Georgia Tech: Virginia Tech Sports Hall of Fame Day • November 25 vs. Virginia: Senior Day & Smithfield Commonwealth Clash FIND YOUR COLOR FOR THE HOKIE EFFECT GAME!
inside.hokiesports.com 15 2022 FOOTBALL SCHEDULE Date Time At Opponent Location Promotions September 2, 2022 (Friday) 7 PM Away Old Dominion Norfolk, Va. September 10, 2022 (Saturday) 8 PM Home Boston College Blacksburg, Va. Lane, Stadium/Worsham Field Orange Effect September 17, 2022 (Saturday) 11 AM Home Wofford Blacksburg, Va., Lane Stadium/Worsham Field White Effect Military Appreciation Day September 22, 2022 (Thursday) 7:30 PM Home West Virginia Blacksburg, Va., Lane Stadium/Worsham Field Hokie Effect October 1, 2022 (Saturday) TBA Away North Carolina Chapel Hill, N.C. October 8, 2022 (Saturday) TBA Away Pitt Pittsburgh, Pa. October 15, 2022 (Saturday) TBA Home Miami Blacksburg, Va., Lane Stadium/Worsham Field Homecoming Maroon Effect October 27, 2022 (Thursday) 7:30 PM Away NC State Raleigh, N.C. November 5, 2022 (Saturday) TBA Home Georgia Tech Blacksburg, Va., Lane Stadium/Worsham Field Hall of Fame November 12, 2022 (Saturday) TBA Away Duke Durham, N.C. November 19, 2022 (Saturday) TBA Away Liberty Lynchburg, Va. November 26, 2022 (Saturday) TBA Home Virginia Blacksburg, Va., Lane Stadium/Worsham Field Senior Day December 3, 2022 (Saturday) TBA ACC Championship Bank of America Stadium, Charlotte, N.C. Martin Knows WE’RE HERE FOR YOU As you think about future vacations and trips, travel with someone you trust. As your source for all things travel, Martin Travel is here for you before, during, and after your trip. ©2020 AAA Club Alliance Inc. 20_717265b C o n t a c t a M a r t i n T r a v e l A d v i s o r T o d a y Ma r t i nTr a v e l . c om / H o k i e s | 5 4 0 - 3 4 3 - 5 4 0 0 | I n f o@Ma r t i nTr a v e l . c om TR_IN_20_717265b_Martin Travel_Hokies Insert-7.5x4.8_DN3.indd 1 6/19/2020 9:51:28 AM
16 Inside Hokie Sports QUARTERBACKS PLAYERS TO WATCH One of the biggest question marks for a first-time head coach is: who will be under center? For Brent Pry and offensive coordinator Tyler Bowen – who inherit a team with no entrenched starter – their first few months in Blacksburg have centered around finding that answer. All roads through fall camp point to a two-man battle for the starting job between transfers Grant Wells and Jason Brown, who have each shown flashes of success and athleticism. Wells, a Marshall transfer, completed 66.3% of his passes last season for 3,532 yards and 16 touchdowns. Additionally, the Charleston, West Virginia native demonstrated his dual-threat ability by finding the end zone seven times on the ground. A two-year starter during his time in Huntington, Wells comes to Virginia Tech having been named the 2020 Conference USA Freshman of the Year – a crowning title for the 6-foot-2, 203-pound rookie who led the league with 2,091 passing yards and 18 touchdowns. Wells also owns eight career 300-yard passing games to his name. A welcome addition to the Hokies’ quarterback room, Wells brings a wealth of experience, knowledge and accolades to Blacksburg after his successful stint with the Thundering Herd. Brown is a Fredericksburg, Virginia native who comes to the New River Valley having started four games a season ago at South Carolina, where he quickly became a key component in helping the Gamecocks reach bowl eligibility for the first time since 2018. A 6-foot-2 athlete, JASON BROWN GRANT WELLS
inside.hokiesports.com 17 Continued on page 18 Brown connected on 60-of-108 passes for 721 yards and eight touchdowns during the 2021 season for Shane Beamer’s side who ultimately won the Duke’s Mayo Bowl. After leading the garnet and black to two big-time victories against Florida and Auburn, he was viewed as a fan favorite during his brief stint in Columbia. Prior to South Carolina, Brown was a 2019 FCS All-America selection at St. Francis (Pa.) after leading the Northeast Conference with 3,084 passing yards, completing 62.3 percent of his passes while delivering 28 touchdowns against six interceptions. QB NOTES •Wells went 14-9 as a starter at Marshall •Wells earned Honorable Mention All-Conference accolades in 2021 after ranking 15th in the nation with 3,532 passing yards •Wells became the first freshman quarterback to earn First Team AllConference USA honors in the league’s history • Brown went 2-2 as a starter at South Carolina, leading the Gamecocks to wins over Florida and Auburn • Brown completed 60 of 108 passes (55.6%) for eight TDs with six INTs at South Carolina • Brown was a 2019 FCS All-America selection at St. Francis (Pa.) after leading the Northeast Conference with 3,084 passing yards POSITION OUTLOOK Whether it’s Wells or Brown who leads the Hokies onto the field on Sept. 2, Tech will be in good hands with an experienced quarterback who is eager to attack the next challenge. RUNNING BACKS PLAYERS TO WATCH Tech’s backfield may feature one ‘workhorse’ or it may be a stable of talented, productive backs who give Bowen and the offense versatility. At ACC Kickoff, Pry indicated that he had not determined which system he prefers, but is looking for production in the running game. Where might that come from? Jalen Holston, Malachi Thomas and Keshawn King are names that quickly come to mind. Holston, a sixth-year senior, rushed for 199 yards and five touchdowns on 52 carries a season ago, registering an additional receiving touchdown while serving on many of the Hokies’ special teams coverage units. Thomas is back for his sophomore season after announcing himself last fall against Syracuse, rushing for three touchdowns during his 151-yard afternoon on the ground at Lane Stadium. The Hartwell, Georgia native was relied upon heavily throughout the second half of the year, finishing his rookie campaign by rushing for 440 yards on 93 carries. Meanwhile, King recorded 29 carries for 117 yards and a touchdown a season ago, showing flashes of his speed and productivity we saw him boast as a freshman in 2019 prior to opting out of the 2020 season. Stu Holt, Tech’s running backs coach, will certainly have his fair share of decisions to make, but will have a contingent of experienced student-athletes to select from as camp opens. OTHERS IN THE MIX Redshirt-freshman Chance Black and highly-regarded true freshman Bryce Duke are on campus and eager to show their talents on the field. Tech suddenly has a lot of different avenues it can explore when trying to determine who will earn the majority of the carries when toe meets leather during the coming weeks. Black has yet to rush the ball during his time with the maroon and orange, but has shown his flashes of speed inside Tech’s kick return game throughout the latter portions of the 2021 season. RB NOTES • Virginia Tech ran for 2,408 total yards in 2021, but will have to replace its top two rushers in Raheem Blackshear and Braxton Burmeister • Holston has produced 1,070 all-purpose yards during his career with nine touchdowns • Thomas is the Hokies’ lead returning ball carrier from 2021 POSITION OUTLOOK The flexibility of having three members of the backfield returning will be a nice luxury for Pry and company to have when determining who will earn the majority of reps. Holston has the experience, Thomas has the explosiveness, King has the speed. The number of guys Tech’s coaching staff plans to use in the backfield regularly, though, remains to be seen. WIDE RECEIVERS PLAYERS TO WATCH With the departure of the offense’s top two targets from a season ago, the receiving room will certainly look a bit different with redshirt-junior Kaleb Smith assuming the leadership role as the elder statesman. He represented the Hokies at ACC Kickoff after a winter and spring where Pry described him as ‘one of the team’s best workers’. The Bumpass, Virginia product totaled 20 receptions for 260 yards and two touchdowns a season ago and will be poised for a big season after a couple of breakout outings during 2021. The former walk-on stole the show at Tech’s 2022 Spring Game, grabbing two touchdowns to lead the Maroon Team to the 26-10 win. Temple graduate transfer Jadan Blue figures to be a nice addition to the Hokies’ receiving game, led by wide receivers coach Fontel Mines. Blue, a native of Hightstown, New Jersey, caught 169 passes for 1,662 yards and 10 touchdowns in 35 games with the Owls. Another potential playmaker is 5-foot-11 sophomore Da’Wain Lofton, who posted seven catches for 98 yards and a touchdown during his freshman season. MALACHI THOMAS
18 Inside Hokie Sports OTHERS IN THE MIX The trio of Jaylen Jones, Dallan Wright and Christian Moss could also figure well into Bowen’s offense. Jones caught a single pass in 2021 that went for 15 yards, while both Wright and Moss redshirted and continued to develop their game. North Carolina transfer Stephen Gosnell should also find himself in the mix now in Blacksburg, having played in 15 games the past two seasons with the Tar Heels. WR NOTES • Tech threw for 3,041 yards in 2021 • In Blue’s career, he’s recorded five games with 10 or more receptions and posted six 100-yard receiving games • Smith has seen action in 32 games during his time at Virginia Tech, making 20 starts POSITION OUTLOOK Smith and Blue will probably find themselves at the top of Tech’s depth chart, but do not rule out a breakout year from some of the Hokies’ younger athletes. TIGHT ENDS PLAYERS TO WATCH Drake De Iuliis has always been a contributing piece to Tech’s passing game during his tenure in Blacksburg. Now, after the departure of James Mitchell to the Detroit Lions (2022 NFL Draft, fifth round), De Iuliis is going to have an opportunity to become an even bigger playmaker in the Hokies’ offense. Of course, with Mitchell missing 11 games a season ago, we saw a glimpse of what the position group could look like in 2022. De Iuliis, listed at 6-foot-5 and 247 pounds, hauled in five receptions for 76 yards and a touchdown for Tech during the 2021 season. His counterpart Nick Gallo caught 14 passes for 130 yards during his sophomore campaign. Gallo played in all 13 games, making 11 starts, highlighted by a career-long 27-yard reception in the Hokies’ 26-17 win at Georgia Tech. Both athletes have the capabilities necessary to produce a solid one-two punch at the tight end position. OTHERS IN THE MIX Returning to a position he once played during his time at Texas A&M, one-time quarterback Connor Blumrick is finding ways to affect the offense in Blacksburg. He has been spending time with Bowen learning the position group. TE NOTES • Gallo finished as Tech’s top tight end target in 2021, catching 14 passes for 130 yards • De Iuliis has played in 40 games during his time in Blacksburg, starting four POSITION OUTLOOK Bowen and the tight ends are in great shape heading into 2022. With a room full of experience and continuity along with Blumrick’s proven track record of athletic ability, the Hokies should feel good about this position group as the clock continues to tick towards September. OFFENSIVE LINE PLAYERS TO WATCH Though the Hokies lost a ton of talent with three NFL departures in Luke Tenuta (Buffalo Bills), Lecitus Smith (Arizona Cardinals) and Brock Hoffman (Cleveland Browns), plenty of talented pieces remain up front for Joe Rudolph, Tech’s offensive line coach. Continued from page 17 SILAS DZANSI KALEB SMITH Two veterans, sixth-year Silas Dzansi and graduate student Johnny Jordan, will set the tone up front for a unit that also returns Kaden Moore, who started all 13 games as a freshman last season. Dzansi, another Tech representative at ACC Kickoff, made starts at right tackle, left guard and left tackle in 2021. Jordan is on the Rimington Trophy Watch List, presented annually to the nation’s top center. He made three starts at that position in 2021, while also getting reps across other positions on the line throughout the season. As a senior at Maryland during the 2020 campaign, Jordan earned AllBig Ten Honorable Mention honors, helping lead the Terrapins’ pass protection effort that yielded the conference’s second most passing yards per game (264.0). Moore, who hails from Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, earned The Athletic Freshman All-American honors for his 2021 body of work.
inside.hokiesports.com 19 OTHERS IN THE MIX In addition to bringing back Dzansi, Jordan and Moore, Tech also welcomes the return of sophomore Parker Clements, who saw action in 11 games while making seven starts at right tackle in 2021. The South Carolina native was deemed a member of the All-ACC Third Team by Pro Football Focus, quietly coming onto the scene after not seeing the field in 2020. Tech’s offensive line also boasts the likes of former Lord Botetourt High School standout Jesse Hanson. The 6-foot-5, 307-pounder saw action in 12 contests a year ago and should be a nice piece to have in Rudolph’s bunch. OL NOTES • Moore is the only returning member of the offensive line to start in all 13 games in 2021 • Dzansi has started 22 games during his time at Virginia Tech POSITION OUTLOOK Complement Rudolph’s stellar track record with the return of Dzansi, Jordan, Moore, Clements and Hanson, and the Hokies’ line looks to be in solid shape. Though there are big shoes to fill with some important departures, Tech has a wealth of capable successors poised to fill those roles. DEFENSIVE LINE PLAYERS TO WATCH With the likes of TyJuan Garbutt, Norell Pollard and Josh Fuga, the defensive line for Virginia Tech certainly will have a chance to be a productive unit up front. Garbutt, a sixth-year senior out of Fredericksburg, Virginia started 11 of his 13 appearances with the Hokies a season ago. The 6-foot-1, 250-pound lineman showed his versatility last season, making nine of those starts at defensive end and two at defensive tackle. He certainly produced, the former four-star recruit tied for second on the team with 3.5 sacks, registering 7.0 total tackles for loss in addition to forcing two fumbles. For Pollard, the Apopka, Florida native totaled 27.0 total tackles (nine solo) and recorded 3.0 tackles for loss. Fuga, who came into his own late during 2021, started three games but was productive during his opportunities. The Woodbridge, Virginia native registered 21 tackles, 2.0 tackles for loss and 1.5 sacks. OTHERS IN THE MIX Mario Kendricks is also poised to return to the mix after missing a good chunk of 2021 due to a shoulder injury he suffered during the Hokies’ 26-17 win at Georgia Tech. The fourth-year junior competed in eight games a year ago. Sixth-year senior Jaylen Griffin returns as well following a season in which he quietly added 14.0 total tackles, 2.5 tackles for loss and 2.0 sacks. DL NOTES • All five of Garbutt, Fuga, Pollard, Kendricks and Griffin have starting experience on their collegiate resumes • The Hokies produced 25.0 total sacks and 68.0 tackles for loss a season ago • Virginia Tech returns 72 percent of its sack production from 2021 POSITION OUTLOOK It is hard to argue that Tech’s defensive line may be one of its most experienced groups from top to bottom as the 2022 season continues to draw closer. With the production returning to Blacksburg this year, the Hokies have every reason to be excited about what is to come up front under the leadership of J.C. Price. LINEBACKERS PLAYERS TO WATCH When looking at the players to watch for on this Virginia Tech team come 2022, very few catch your eye like linebacker Dax Hollifield. A fifth-year senior, Hollifield returns to the middle of the defense where he has been a staple his whole career in Blacksburg. The 6-foot-1, 239-pound Hollifield is coming off a sensational season in which he led the team with 92.0 tackles (44.0 solo), 9.0 tackles for loss and 4.5 sacks. He also recorded his fourth career interception, shining all over the field. The energetic linebacker also lines up on Tech’s special teams units. His partner in the middle of the field, Alan Tisdale, returns for another season, looking to continue his strong form. The redshirtjunior started all 13 games a season ago, finishing with 84.0 total tackles (44.0 solo), 7.5 tackles for loss and 2.5 sacks. OTHERS IN THE MIX While Hollifield and Tisdale receive the most attention in the room, and rightfully so, the Hokies certainly have a talented supporting cast backing them up. Keonta Jenkins is a playmaker who moves up from the safety position and can help out if need be. The Jacksonville, Florida product played in 12 games a year ago, and was able to produce 17.0 tackles. Redshirt-freshman Jaden Keller could also play a bigger role. The 6-foot-3, 216-pounder saw reserve action in four games during 2021 and can be an athlete that can make a big step forward from a development standpoint for the upcoming season. The same could be said about Clayton, North Carolina native J.R.Walker. As a redshirt-sophomore, he played in all 13 games a season ago on special teams and is another one who could find his way into the mix. LB NOTES • Hollifield and Tisdale combined for 176.0 total tackles in 2021, and combined for 111.0 total tackles in 2020 • Hollifield led the Hokies with 92 total tackles, including 9.0 tackles for loss in 2021 Continued on page 20 TYJUAN GARBUTT
20 Inside Hokie Sports Continued from page 19 • Tisdale has started all but five games the past two seasons • Tisdale has racked up at least 50.0 total tackles and 4.0 tackles for loss in the last three seasons for the Hokies POSITION OUTLOOK Combine the return of Hollifield and Tisdale with the addition of the defensive-minded Coach Pry plus defensive coordinator/linebackers coach Chris Marve, Virginia Tech should feel really good about its linebacker unit in 2022. DEFENSIVE BACKS PLAYERS TO WATCH Chamarri Conner has proven to be a must-watch player during his time at Virginia Tech. A hard-hitting machine? Yes. A physical tackler? Absolutely. A dynamic athlete who can fly around the field? You bet. The fifth-year senior returns to the field in Blacksburg fresh off a season in which he finished third on the team with 85.0 tackles, secured 5.5 tackles for loss, 2.0 sacks, five pass breakups, two forced fumbles and one interception. He earned an All-ACC Honorable Mention nod and was named ACC Defensive Back of the Week following his game-sealing interception that capped the Hokies’ 17-10 upset of No. 10 North Carolina at Lane Stadium. Cornerbacks Dorian Strong and Armani Chatman also return in search of another big year in 2022. Strong, an Upper Marlboro, Maryland product, totaled 23.0 tackles (20.0 solo), an interception and six pass breakups a year ago while Chatman, a redshirt-junior out of Virginia Beach, is looking for a big breakthrough season after showing some flashes back in 2021. The 5-foot-11, 205-pounder tallied 13.0 tackles (8.0 solo), an interception and a team-high, seven pass breakups. OTHERS IN THE MIX It would not be a preview without mentioning Brion Murray as someone who can heavily contribute at corner as we inch closer to opening kickoff. Murray, a junior college product out of Milford, Delaware, has been around for some big moments during his time at Virginia Tech. The sixth-year senior totaled 8.0 tackles (5.0 solo) with four pass breakups back in 2021. Nasir Peoples will do the same at safety for Virginia Tech. Another fifth-year junior, Peoples earned All- @PrestonsRestaurant @InnVirginiaTech 540.231.0120 | www.InnatVirginiaTech.com 901 Prices Fork Rd, Blacksburg, VA 24061 (inside The Inn at Virginia Tech) Reservations recommended. A delicious game-day tradition. BEFORE THE GAME OR AFTER, Preston’s Restaurant is a delicious place for a new game-day tradition. Start with our fresh breakfast. Order lunch or dinner from our mouth-watering menu of seasonal cuisine. Sip on hand-cra ed cocktails or a selection from our award-winning wine list. And don’t forget the Valley’s best brunch, every Sunday at Preston’s. Make Preston’s Restaurant your game-day tradition. DORIAN STRONGinside.hokiesports.com