The Virginia Tech Hokies were dominant on Saturday against the Purdue Boilermakers on the way to a 51-24 victory that could've been even bigger. The Hokies were in absolute control on both sides of the ball, and made a statement on the road in a moderately loud environment.
The Hokies made a couple changes in their starting lineup with the most notable being Adonis Alexander making his first career start at rover over Desmond Frye. It was unknown how long it would take Alexander to become a starter, but the only way he may not be the Hokies' starter is if he's hurt.
Alexander was impressive in his first career start with 7 tackles and his second interception of the season. The freshman rover showed his impressive athleticism off while he is also starting to look like a better football player whether it is as an open-field tackler, playing solid run defense, or being productive in pass defense.
Alexander made plenty of good plays to contain Purdue running backs with quality open-field tackles. Throughout much of the game before the starters were pulled, Alexander seemed to be right in position to shut down the opposing running back when either D.J. Knox or Markell Jones tried to run outside the tackles.
Alexander has developed into a very talented player in the box that is starting to show some development in his football instincts. Alexander also is taking advantage of his impressive athleticism, and that should be a scary thing as he should only become better as the season goes along.
For the second straight week, Alexander also had an interception, and is improving in his pass coverage. Alexander's pass coverage is likely the area where he has the most room to grow, but the Charlotte native has proven to be opportunistic with two interceptions in three games.
Alexander should be the starter the rest of the season after proving against Purdue that he is the Hokies' best option at rover. Alexander is one of the Hokies' best steals on the recruiting trail over the last few years with Alexander only having offers from the Hokies, Wake Forest, East Carolina, Charlotte, Ohio, Marshall, Appalachian State, and Old Dominion.
Alexander is the type of athlete that the Hokies have been needing to bring more of into the program. However, Alexander also has proven to be a tough, hard worker that seems to be a fairly fast developer as shown by his growth from his arrival in the spring to taking the starting rover job in the third game of the season.
Adonis Alexander is going to be one of the best safeties Virginia Tech has ever had, and should be the starter at rover for the rest of his time in Blacksburg barring injury.