Virginia Tech players continue to send a strong message about the future in Blacksburg

Things are turning around quickly in Blacksburg for Virginia Tech football coach Brent Pry and his players are telling us so by some of their decisions recently.
Virginia Tech v Virginia
Virginia Tech v Virginia / Ryan M. Kelly/GettyImages

Over the last week, some members of the Virginia Tech football team have put their names in the transfer portal for 2024. A few of them have committed to playing out the month of December in practice and the Military Bowl against Tulane on Dec. 27.

While some Hokies have said that they are leaving Blacksburg, some big names have already come out and committed to returning in 2024. The players who are leaving but finishing the season with their current teammates sent a strong message, but so are the players who have announced that they are returning.

Virginia Tech players committed to returning in 2024 send another strong message

On Dec. 3, eight days after the Hokies became bowl-eligible with a 55-17 win over Virginia in Charlottesville, Atwaun Powell-Ryland announced that he is coming back to Blacksburg for 2024. Then, defensive lineman Josh Fuge announced he was returning for one more season as well. Those are two big names coming back for defensive coordinator Chris Marve.

Last week, Baylor transfer and quarterback Kyron Drones announced during a radio interview that he's coming back next season, then Tuesday night, he got an early gift for 2024 when four receivers announced that they are also coming back.

Ali Jennings, Dae'Quan Felton, Stephen Gosnell, and Jaylin Lance all announced that they are coming back to give Drones some serious talent to throw to for one more season. They combined for over 1,500 receiving yards, and 19 touchdowns. To make that even more impressive is the fact they did that in 10 games and Jennings never played with Drones after getting injured in Week 2 against Purdue, the same day starting quarterback Grant Wells also went down with an injury.

What's the message being sent here? It's almost the same message that was sent by the transfer players, they love the culture that head coach Brent Pry and his staff are building and they know that they are set up for big success in 2024 if they can all remain healthy.

There are other players that Virginia Tech would love to have back, including running back Bhayshul Tuten on offense, that would them a much more dangerous group. There is no doubt that things turned around quickly in Blacksburg when ACC play began and the Hokies went 5-3 to become bowl-eligible at 6-6.

They still have one more job to finish in 2023 against Tulane in Annapolis, Maryland, but former coach Justin Fuente left Pry a mess in just two short seasons. He has turned things around, mainly the culture, with players wanting to finish the season with their teammates if they are leaving and players wanting to run it back for one more year. The rebuild is coming together fast.