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18 Virginia Tech
August 20, 2012
A ninth straight 10-win season is within reach, but the star QB will have to dig even deeper
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August 20, 2012

18 Virginia Tech

A ninth straight 10-win season is within reach, but the star QB will have to dig even deeper

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The Skinny

LOGAN THOMAS'S spring break this year wasn't exactly an MTV reality show experience: He spent a week in San Diego improving his footwork at the academy run by quarterback guru George Whitfield Jr. Thomas did do some sightseeing, exploring SeaWorld and the city's renowned zoo. The best part: "Nobody recognized me," he says. "I was able to be myself out in public." Back on campus? Not so much. Thomas's sensational debut as a starter last fall (a school-record 3,482 yards of offense, 30 total TDs) made him a celebrity in Blacksburg. With running back and 2011 ACC player of the year David Wilson gone, as well as last year's top two receivers and four O line starters, the junior is also one of the few familiar faces on the Hokies' offense.

Key Recruit

JOEL CALEB With wideout stars Jarrett Boykin and Danny Coale now in the NFL, the 6'3", 205-pound freshman—a QB at his Virginia high school—will compete with senior Corey Fuller and redshirt freshman Demetri Knowles for time as the Hokies' No. 4 receiver.

Breakout Player

MICHAEL HOLMES The 5'11", 208-pound redshirt freshman was a scout team dynamo last fall. Now he's expected to break away from a pack of young runners trying to fill the void left by Wilson's departure. "At that position, if they've got it, they've got it," says Beamer, "and [Holmes] is a guy that's got the ability."

Final Analysis

WHILE THE inexperienced offense will need time to jell, the defense is more fully formed: Nine starters are back from a unit that ranked 10th nationally last season, including second-team all--ACC cornerback Kyle Fuller and defensive end James Gayle. That stout D will ease the burden on an offense that, even more than last year, will revolve around Thomas, whose considerable gifts can mask the holes around him and already have NFL scouts buzzing. "It'll be interesting to see how we put this thing together," says coach Frank Beamer. "It all starts at quarterback. Fortunately we've got a good one."