Oct 16, 2014; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Virginia Tech Hokies offensive lineman Jonathan McLaughlin (71) blocks at the line of scrimmage against the Pittsburgh Panthers during the second quarter at Heinz Field. Pittsburgh won 21-16. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
The recruiting trail can have plenty of wild twists and turns which it definitely has had for the Virginia Tech Hokies so far. The Hokies have done a solid job of getting offensive linemen but had not done as well as hoped entering November.
One of the biggest disappointments for the Hokies in this recruiting cycle was a few months ago when 4-star offensive tackle Austin Clark of nearby Rockbridge County High School in Rockbridge, Virginia chose South Carolina over Virginia Tech.
However, crazy things can happen on the recruiting trail and that is what has happened today.
Clark announced today that he has decided to flip his commitment from South Carolina to Virginia Tech in a move that has come out of nowhere but has many people ecstatic about the change. This is a big pickup for the Hokies as Clark is a unanimous 4-star that is ranked as the 40th best OT by ESPN, 22nd best OT by the 247 Sports Composite, and 7th best OT by Rivals.
To say that the pickup of Clark came out of nowhere with no real signs of this happening is something but the fact that Clark is now committed to the Hokies shows how Virginia Tech kept pushing. This also is a great job by OL coach Stacy Searels in working hard to get a very talented offensive tackle.
There was also another big piece of news that Clark told the media about when he would be enrolling at Virginia Tech.
The fact that he is enrolling in January is great to here as this will allow him to be put into the system a lot sooner. Clark is one of the most talented offensive tackles that has ever commit to the Hokies and is a big boost for the future of the Virginia Tech offensive line especially with the struggles they have had this season.
With Austin Clark arriving in January, he should be able to compete with Jonathan McLaughlin, Wade Hansen, and Parker Osterloh for one of the starting offensive tackle jobs. Clark is a very talented player and it would not surprise me if he beat out these other three guys and was the starting left tackle for the Hokies next fall.
This is the biggest commitment the Hokies have received so far and hopefully is the start of a very successful final few months of recruiting. Having success on the recruiting trail with big time recruits could also help Frank Beamer keep his job if this continues.