August 6, 2010

Hokies have ties, pursue 2012 QB

The Hokies are getting an early jump on the 2012 recruiting class with a number of offers already out. Tech is one of many teams that have already pulled the trigger on a rising junior quarterback from out-of-state. Find out more about him inside.

"I've got offers from Purdue, Texas Tech, Michigan, Michigan State, Wake Forest, Auburn, South Carolina, Minnesota and South Florida," Plant City, Fla. quarterback Bennie Coney said. "I've heard a lot from Virginia, Boston College and Notre Dame.

"Virginia Tech is very interested in me. They talked to my coach a lot and they keep coming to my games. I've heard an offer is coming from them. I hear a lot from them."

The newfound interest from the Hokies is coming directly from a close tie to the program.

"Our old head coach Jason Strunk left for a coaching job at Purdue, he was replaced by our new head coach Wayne Ward (Virginia Tech running back)," he said. "I know him pretty well he's been at the school as an assistant for like 10 years (since 2002). He was actually our defensive coordinator last year, he's a good coach."

So, how much does Coney know about the Hokies?

"Coach Ward has told me it's a good school," he said. "He did say it probably won't fit me playing wise as they are better for wide receivers and running backs, he knows how I like to pass the ball, but I'm keeping my options open and thinking about it. I like it."

Obviously interest is coming for Coney from all over the country, does he like anybody?

"I like them all, I'm going with the flow right now," he stated. "I'm enjoying the process and I don't plan to narrow it down to a top five until next year.

"I can say I've always been a big fan of Florida State cause of Bobby Bowden. I just like the team and I've watched their games. Florida State has come by my school once."

In addition, the Florida prospect has ties to a number of other schools.

"My cousin coaches at Texas Tech and my ex-head coach coaches at Purdue," he said. "I don't feel that impacts me a lot, but both of those schools provide somebody I can relate to already.

"What I want is a good college, somewhere that has what I want to major in, I'm thinking about law and being a lawyer or going into sports management. I want to be surrounded by good teammates and coaches. I want somewhere that will help me to get to the next level and if not, help me graduate."

To date, Coney has only visited a few schools including Auburn, South Carolina, Georgia Tech and South Florida.

The 6-foot-2, 205-pounder is coming off a solid sophomore season that saw him earn all-conference honors after throwing for 1,600-yards, 14 touchdowns and 16 interceptions. He added 300-yards on the ground and seven more scores.

"I think what stands out about me is my leadership and definitely my size," he said. "I want to improve this year on my footwork and getting faster in my drops. I want to improve my reads a lot so that I have less interceptions and just learn coverages more to prepare for the next level."

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