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Va. Tech report | Brewer, Leal atop QB depth chart

BLACKSBURG

Virginia Tech's depth chart still has two quarterbacks on the top line, but one of them is new.

Texas Tech transfer Michael Brewer is on the first-team line along with senior Mark Leal on the Hokies' depth chart, which comes as little surprise since Brewer has taken significant snaps since the start of training camp last week.

Redshirt sophomore Brenden Motley, who emerged from the spring as the temporary No. 1 quarterback and shared that honor with Leal to open August, has dealt with a back injury since camp opened and has been limited.

Tech's coaches have said they want to make a quarterback decision quickly, but have no timetable.

Other changes on the updated depth chart:

* Freshman Shai McKenzie moved onto the second-team line at running back behind veterans Trey Edmunds and J.C. Coleman (Oscar Smith).

McKenzie, who is coming off an ACL tear early in his senior year of high school, enrolled in the winter and was cleared to be a full participant in late May.

Running backs coach Shane Beamer made it sound likely that McKenzie and fellow freshman back Marshawn Williams will play this year.

Williams, a power back who's at 225 pounds, made a step in his recovery from July hernia surgery, wearing a blue, limited jersey for the first time but no pads, per NCAA rules. He had been doing only conditioning on the side up to this point.

* Redshirt sophomore Alston Smith (Cox) moved to the first team at left guard in place of redshirt freshman Wyatt Teller. Both are converted defensive linemen, although Smith, the son of NFL Hall of Famer and former Hokie Bruce Smith, had been behind Teller since battling an ankle injury in the spring.

"The more reps he gets, the better he gets," offensive line coach Stacy Searels said. "And he needs to just continue to get reps and get confident. I think once a lineman gains confidence, has some success, it builds on it."

Jonathan McLaughlin, who started 13 games at left tackle last year as a true freshman, slid into the first-team spot at right tackle with Mark Shuman (knee) out.

* Defensively, Chuck Clark (King's Fork) is on the first-team line at cornerback as Brandon Facyson comes back from a hip flexor.

* The top three kickers, in order, are Joey Slye, Eric Kristensen and Carson Wise. Slye and Wise are freshman walk-ons.

 

Backup attrition

Running back Jerome Wright and long snapper Joe St. Germain decided to leave the team.

Wright, a sophomore, spent his time in Blacksburg shuffling between running back and fullback, but never found a consistent position. He was at least seventh on a crowded running back depth chart and couldn't find time at fullback, where Sam Rogers has the position locked down.

The 6-foot-2, 225-pounder from Richmond played in 12 games last year, but didn't get much of a role as a rusher until the Sun Bowl, when he stepped into an injury-plagued lineup and ran seven times for 27 yards. He also caught three passes for 23 yards last year.

St. Germain, a fifth-year senior from Los Alamitos, Calif., earned the starting long-snapping job in 2012, but had a foot injury last season as Eddie D'Antuono passed him on the depth chart. D'Antuono, a redshirt sophomore, is the projected starter this year.

They're the second and third players to leave the program this summer, joining running back Chris Mangus, who decided to transfer.

Posted to: Sports Va. Tech Football

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