Virginia Tech football vaults into ESPN post-spring Top 25

After entering the spring unranked by ESPN, the Hokies vaulted into the Top 25 post-spring rankings.
Sep 30, 2023; Blacksburg, Virginia, USA; Virginia Tech Hokies wide receiver Jaylin Lane (83) scores
Sep 30, 2023; Blacksburg, Virginia, USA; Virginia Tech Hokies wide receiver Jaylin Lane (83) scores / Peter Casey-USA TODAY Sports

The hype surrounding the Virginia Tech football team for the 2024 season is growing. A big part of the reason for the hype is the retainment that head coach Brent Pry got as well as additions that they got on both sides of the ball in the transfer portal.

Another reason why there's some hype is because of the schedule the Hokies have. There's no Florida State, North Carolina State, and Louisville this season, Virginia Tech's three ACC losses last season, but they do have a trip to Miami and they host Clemson. The non-conference schedule is manageable with Vanderbilt, and Old Dominion on the road and Marshall and Rutgers at home.

After a good spring and some key transfer additions, the Hokies entered the spring unranked by ESPN, but vaulted in their post-spring rankings.

ESPN puts Virginia Tech in post-spring Top 25

The Hokies began spring practices out of ESPN's Top 25, but with an impressive Spring Game from some key players to additions made on defense in the transfer portal, the hype train that one writer said the Hokies need more of is real.

"It has been quite a while since the Hokies were a legitimate contender in the ACC race, but that might change in coach Brent Pry's third season. ESPN colleague Bill Connelly ranks the Hokies No. 1 in his returning production percentages -- No. 1 on offense (95%) and No. 12 on defense (77%) -- and Pry and his staff have done a good job of using the transfer portal to plug holes. The Hokies averaged 43 points over their final four games of 2022, a stretch in which they went 3-1. Quarterback Kyron Drones passed for 22 touchdowns and three interceptions and ran for 818 yards with five scores. He's one of 11 starters coming back on offense. Pry shored up the defensive line by bringing in four transfers: Duke's Aeneas Peebles, Oklahoma's Kelvin Gilliam Jr., Alabama's Khurtiss Perry and Western Community College's Kemari Copeland. Virginia Tech's nonconference schedule is more than manageable (Vanderbilt, Marshall, Old Dominion and Rutgers) and it doesn't play Florida State, Louisville or NC State during the regular season."

Mark Schlabach

It certainly feels like Virginia Tech will be a contender this fall in the ACC and it could be considered a surprise that it's happening in Year 3 of the Pry-era, but here we are. He has built it through the transfer portal and with a culture that made players want to come back for 2024 rather than entering the NFL Draft or the transfer portal. There is depth on both sides of the ball for Pry and coordinators Tyler Bowen on offense and Chris Marve on defense.