National Signing Day was five months ago and the players that signed for the Hokies that day are now moving into their new home on the campus in Blacksburg. These players will go through orientation tomorrow as they prepare to go through summer workouts and likely take some summer classes.
One of the two headline names of this group of players is top Class of 2015 DT Tim Settle. Settle was one of the last players to join the Hokies' Class of 2015, committing at the Under Armour All-America Game this past January on ESPN.
Settle has tremendous size (6'3'', 315 pounds) that the Hokies haven't often had in an incoming freshman defensive tackle. Settle is a power, space eater that has the potential to be one of the best defensive linemen that the Hokies have ever had come through the program.
There were concerns that Settle wasn't going to make it to Virginia Tech this fall due to academics, but Settle got the job done in the classroom and is arriving in Blacksburg this weekend. Settle will definitely come in ready to compete and show why he was ranked as one of the best defensive tackles in the Class of 2015.
However, could Settle still end up being redshirted this fall? The possibility of that seems higher than many on the outside would expect.
The main reason for this is the fact that Virginia Tech has tremendous depth at the defensive tackle spot. The Hokies are bringing both starting defensive tackles back in Corey Marshall and Nigel Williams with Williams dropping back to being a backup defensive tackle with the return of Luther Maddy from injury. The Hokies' impressive defensive tackle depth goes beyond having a very good, experienced defensive tackle duo starting and the best backup DT in the ACC.
The Hokies have plenty of depth and experience with Ricky Walker and Woody Baron who have been battling to be the fourth defensive tackle on the depth chart behind the aforementioned trio. Vincent Mihota is still at defensive tackle for now also though there seems to be a good chance that he moves to defensive end.
Right now, Tim Settle seems likely to start sixth or seventh on the depth chart at defensive tackle, and while Settle is very talented, him climbing above Walker and Baron in a month to a position where he could get playing time seems unlikely. Unless Settle climbs above those guys, it would make common sense for the Hokies to redshirt Settle.
If Settle actually did have some academic concerns, redshirting him this fall would also help him make the transition from high school to college while being able to focus on developing. Settle has the potential to be one of the best defensive tackles ever for the Hokies and making the transition easier would be another benefit of redshirting him.
Tim Settle is a tremendously talented defensive tackle that will be starting for the Hokies in the not-too-distant future. However, Settle's time to make his debut for the Hokies might not be this fall.