Shai McKenzie was never a highly rated recruit but his tape showed a player that looked like someone who should have been a unanimous four-star recruit. The Hokies were successful in getting him to come to Blacksburg which was definitely one of the best commits in the Hokies’ Class of 2014.
On tape, McKenzie proved to be a very talented running back that could do some damage between the tackles or get outside and make a big play. McKenzie has very good speed and agility but more than just having those qualities, McKenzie knows has good football IQ which allows him to be even more effective. McKenzie also knows how to take the ball inside and has the toughness plus the strength to do damage.
McKenzie enrolled early for the spring semester but was unable to particpiate in Spring Practice due to how he was stil recovering from a torn right ACL he suffered in September of 2013. However, McKenzie was able to get to some stuff off the field including the fact that he got to focus on learning the playbook while gettting to work with trainers at Virginia Tech with his rehab.
Yesterday, Shai McKenzie got his first chance to practice and Frank Beamer was impressed.
Beamer gave a shoutout to RB Shai McKenzie, who he was seeing full speed for the first time. Said he made some natural looking cuts. #Hokies
— Andy Bitter (@AndyBitterVT) August 4, 2014
To draw this type of praise after the first day of practice from Frank Beamer is quite impressive and proves McKenzie is a guy who is ready to do damage in Blacksburg. McKenzie has worked hard in the weight room also as he is currently at 220 pounds which is a very good weight for a running back that is 5-11.
Shai McKenzie is definitely a future starting running back in Blacksburg as he has the talent to take over that job whenever Trey Edmunds leaves whether that is after his senior season or earlier if he declares for the NFL Draft. McKenzie also could move past J.C. Coleman and Joel Caleb to become the backup running back behind Edmunds.
Shai McKenzie is a star in the making and is the best new running back in Blacksburg.