Atop the crowded to-do list for Virginia Tech football this spring was to establish a legitimate pecking order at the running back position.
Last year J.C. Coleman, Michael Holmes, Tony Gregory and Martin Scales all shared the running back role, but quarterback Logan Thomas ended up being the team's leading rusher.
Now, with Saturday's Spring Game marking the end of spring practice, last year’s stats matter little.
Although the coaching staff has yet to decide upon what the official depth chart will be come Aug. 31 when the Hokies take the field for the first time against Alabama, chances are high the backfield’s workhorse may be someone who didn’t see a minute of game action last fall.
Trey Edmunds, son of two-time Pro Bowl tight end Ferrell Edmunds II, committed to Tech in August 2011 and, as many highly coveted four-star recruits do, created quite a buzz in Blacksburg.
Ranked the sixth-best prospect in Virginia according to The Roanoke Times, Edmunds was a nightmare for the opposition in high school on both sides of the ball.
On offense, he rushed for 2,596 yards and 33 touchdowns on 283 carries over his four years at Dan River High School and added 143 tackles, two sacks and four interceptions as a linebacker his senior year.
It was quickly decided upon his arrival on campus that Edmunds would focus his attention on improving his skill-set at running back.
Those who wished to see what the 6-foot-1 Edmunds could do however, would have to wait.
After watching the Hokies rack up 283 rushing yards in the first two games of last season with Edmunds never leaving the sidelines, Hokies head coach Frank Beamer believed it would be best to sit the Danville, Va. native for his freshman year.
“There’s no question about his ability to play and what a terrific player he’s gonna be, but right now I think the four backs have worked out well and hopefully they can stay healthy,” said Hokies head coach Frank Beamer during a 2012 press conference. “He’ll be there. If something should happen, we can re-visit that situation. But for right now, I think redshirting is the best thing for him.”
It’s impossible to know if redshirting him was the best decision or not, but what’s definite is the progress he’s made through last season and this spring.
“I think I’m doing more of the fundamentals better, especially my footwork and holding the ball,” Edmunds said. “I’m still working on it. It’s not perfect, it’s not close to being perfect, but I’m going to keep working on it and hopefully I just keep on getting better and better.”