Virginia Tech adds needed wide receiver depth from transfer portal

Virginia Tech Hokies head coach Brent Pry. Mandatory Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports
Virginia Tech Hokies head coach Brent Pry. Mandatory Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports /

Last season, the Virginia Tech offense struggled, to say the least. They finished near the bottom of the FBS in terms of rankings and only Boston College from the Atlantic Coast Conference was worse.

Looking to improve in 2023, Hokies head coach Brent Pry hit the transfer portal to make some additions for quarterback Grant Wells. The second-year coach added three wide receivers from the portal and hopes it will help open up the offense.

Virginia Tech adds three wide receivers from the transfer portal for 2023

Ali Jennings will join the Hokies from Old Dominion where he had 54 receptions last season for 959 yards and nine touchdowns. He led the Sun Belt averaging 106.6 yards a game. In Old Dominion’s 20-17 season-opening win over the Hokies, he had five receptions for 122 yards with his longest being a 38-yard catch and run.

Jaylin Lane makes the move to Blacksburg from Middle Tennessee State University where he had 69 receptions for 940 yards and five touchdowns. He had four receptions for 130 yards, including an 89-yard reception to key a touchdown drive in their 45-31 upset of the University of Miami, then-ranked 25th in the country.

Da’Quan Felton makes the jump to Virginia Tech from Norfolk State after having 39 catches last season for 573 yards and seven touchdowns.

Pry’s deepest position in camp this summer and entering the season opener on Sept. 2 against Old Dominion is at wide receiver. Wells is hoping to bounce back after his 2022 season and his coach has set him up to throw the ball downfield with his current returners, plus the newest additions.

Tech is hoping to get to a Bowl game in 2023 and getting help from outside the program in the transfer portal was necessary, especially at wide receiver. They face an early test with non-conference games against Old Dominion, Purdue, Rutgers, and Marshall before ACC play begins. Look for the Hokies to incorporate more downfield passing in 2023. Jennings, Lane, and Felton should help make that happen.

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