VTF Countdown: #26 Desmond Frye

With 26 days until Virginia Tech faces Alabama in the Georgia Dome, we turn our attention to no. 26 on roster Mr. Desmond Frye. After spurning a redshirt year, Frye is in an intriguing place on the depth chart. He is the current backup behind Kyshoen Jarrett at rover, yet he is still relatively green as a true sophomore. Thanks to Jarrett playing over 900 snaps on defense in 2012, Frye was relegated to taking only 36 defensive snaps last season. If the spring was any indication then Frye does seem to have a good amount of potential at the position. He may need to get a little bigger and add more bulk but he has a good skillset to play at a high level in a year or two.

The Breakdown

  • Height: 6’2”
  • Weight: 184 lbs
  • Position: Rover
  • Year: Sophomore
  • High School: Thomas Dale High School
  • Location: Chester, VA

High School Career

Like most great high school athletes, Frye was a do-it-all player for Thomas Dale High School. He recorded 91 tackles, three interceptions, returned two of those INT’s for touchdowns in the same game all while adding 16 receptions for 420 yards on offense as well as a senior.

Frye committed before his senior year, which kept him from blowing up on a more national level. However, the three star did earn offers from Virginia Tech, UVA, Maryland, Duke, and South Florida. I’m sure a few other FCS teams extended offers as well.

Reasons For Excitement

Length and Athleticism: Virginia Tech does an excellent job finding guys who have long arms, great athleticism, and tremendous potential. They then develop those guys who may not have great offer lists out of high school into NFL prospects. Frye is the type of player who has that ceiling.

Causes For Concern

He May Need a 5th Year: The downside to not redshirting a player is that you’re committed to only four years with said player. Most college football recruits are way more valuable as a 23 year old 5th year senior then they are as an 18 year old wide-eyed freshman. The only upside here is that if Frye suffers a major injury early on in the season, he has the ability to take a redshirt without much resistance from the NCAA. The downside is with Jarrett back for potentially two more years, there’s just not a great opportunity for Frye to see the field in a starting role.

What to Expect

Even though Tech lost a good player in Michael Cole after his scary neck injury last season, I like the depth Tech is building in the secondary. Both of our starters are juniors who may return for two more seasons. The depth behind them is green but talented. Frye has a lot of potential at rover and I like what Der’Woun Greene brings to the safety position. The Hokies will also give Anthony Shegog and Chuck Clark a look there as well.

Frye is a good athlete but he’s in a tough situation backing up a guy who’s almost a sure-fire NFL prospect. I fully expect him to retain the same role he had last season. Spend a little bit of time on special teams and run with the 2nd string unit in practice. After all, he is just one play away from being the guy at rover.

Bottom Line

With a 6’2” frame and long arms, Frye is the type of player you look for on the recruiting trail. He has the ability to be a very good player in time but I think he may be one year away from realizing that potential. Still, he may be called upon at some point this year and if he is, we’ll get to find out what this kid is made of.