Hewitt, Debose will be factors for Hokies

VT looking to solidify D-Line


ROANOKE, Va. – With Tim Settle declaring for the NFL draft, the Hokies are searching for a few pieces to complete the puzzle on the defensive line. 

Virginia Tech has a strong core of guys returning with experience -- Ricky Walker, Trevon Hilll, Vinny Mihota and Houshun Gaines -- but it hopes to add in a few younger guys to solidify the line. Jarrod Hewitt and Zion Debose are just two who hope to help the team in 2018. Hewitt played in 10 games a year ago, getting 13 tackles and two tackles for loss. Both players value the lessons they've learned under the older guys thus far.

"Last year, I mean, I got to do some reps throughout the spring and then, throughout the fall, I was running with two's and even sometimes during the ones," Hewitt said.

"I feel like I had enough experience going in. I got a decent amount of exposure from my freshman year, but now I have a whole two camps under my belt. Now this second spring coming to an end, I feel like I'm pretty experienced now and I'm (in a) pretty comfortable position."

Zion Debose spent 2017 as a red-shirt under Tim Settle and Ricky Walker. Despite wanting to play immediately, he now sees the benefit of having had a season to watch.

"Actually, I feel like the redshirt year was actually a good decision. Honestly, I wanted to come in here and start and play early but the coaches told me, you know, this was best for me," said Debose.

"So, what I got out of it was being able to, you know, learn more from the game and know what to do: get bigger, faster and stronger." The spring game gets underway at 3:30 p.m. Saturday at Lane Stadium. Former standout quarterback Michael Vick will be in attendance.

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