DeJuan Ellis De-commits from the Hokies

The Hokies' 2018 recruiting class loses a quarterback commitment.

[DeJuan Ellis \ Facebook]

Virginia Tech's 2018 recruiting class shrunk by one Tuesday evening when quarterback DeJuan Ellis opened up his recruitment.

Ellis committed to the Hokies last August as a quarterback, but is now prepared to pursue offers as an athlete.

Ellis turned heads at the D.C. Nike Opening regional at the end of April as the fastest camper (4.48-second 40-yard dash). He also finished as the third highest rated athlete at the entire camp.

In an interview with The Key Play, Ellis admitted to monitoring Tech's QB battle this spring. However, he did not balk at eventually competing for the job with those in Blacksburg — Josh Jackson, Hendon Hooker, and A.J, Bush — or 2018 verbal commit Quincy Patterson.

"Just work hard, that's it," Ellis told The Key Play regarding the competition before him next season. "It's the main thing you have to do to win anything, to work hard and to want it. So I'm definitely going to work hard, and it's gonna be a great competition for the both of us."

The loss of the 5-11, 160 pound, 3-star McDonogh School product is a blow to Tech's 2018 class whether the speedy Ellis would've emerged as Tech's top signal caller, or would've made use of his jets as a receiver or corner. However, the aforementioned Patterson — who recently earned an invite to the prestigious Elite 11 — remains firm to the Hokies. Furthermore, Tech bucked the trend last cycle and eventually signed 4-star DE / athlete Tyjuan Garbutt after he decommitted.

Comments

Could he not be an athlete at VT? Hope we can get him back in the fold.

"Give me a fu¢king beer", Anonymous Genius

I heard today from #sauces (this person does work with the team in a support role) that some recruits weren't happy with how some things went from the draft perspective. I think that is a little near-sighted, but when 2 record breaking players fall to the 6th and 7th rounds, I think it put a little worry (again, not needed in my opinion) in some 18 year olds.

I'm not sure if Ellis was one of those or not.

Though I don't have #sauces, this was a discussion that I had with a few friends. Not happy to hear that what was nothing more than a pessimistic theory is somewhat legitimate.

Ellis likely isn't one of those guys. Look at the date on his note: April 24. He's been thinking this for a while. The TKP article actually came out on April 24, so he did the interview noting that he's going to work hard and he's cool with the QB competition, and within hours he's starting to formulate the idea of decommitting. Maybe the draft played into the final decision, but it certainly wasn't the impetus.

if true, and I don't doubt your #sauces then this is pretty disappointing considering the NFL advisory board told ALL of these kids to stay in school another year. while I respect their decisions to go pro for whatever reason they made that choice and while we all love our hokies and believe they should have went higher than they did (especially Isaiah if not for the pure fact that some of the WRs that went ahead of him were not even close to his level) I wouldn't say that these players so much as slipped into the later rounds but were rather projected to go anywhere from 4-7 anyways with experts really having no idea where they would end up and that's WHY they were told to stay in school for another year. (I for one don't think after the 4th round there is much rhyme or reason to draft picks some teams go best avail, some go needs, some pull names out of hat.... there is no way any expert really knows what's going on after the 4th they are at best semi educated guesses)

for a recruit to be upset by where someone is drafted is mindboggling to me, if you have the talent you will go NFL teams don't say oh Mike Vick went to VT they've never had highly drafted QBs before so were not going to pick him because he went to VT. but if you're going to make this case hell 18 of the last 19 years a DB has been drafted from VT so why not just show up on campus and play DB you're guaranteed to go to the NFL right.

#Bapn ain't EZ

Wanna win put boobie in! Let boobie spin coach!

From a recruit's perspective, I can see how this would raise a bunch of red flags about VT. Not saying that I personally believe this to be the case (I don't), but if I was a recruit and I saw 3 of the best offensive players at one school declare early only to see them fall to 6th/7th round or completely undrafted, I'd worry that the coaches didn't do what was in their best interests and convince them to come back to improve their stock for the future. I'd also worry that VT's ability to accurately train for the NFL and recognize what the NFL actually desires if they thought those 3 should go and each fell as far as they did.

Don't let this comment take away from the fact that Arkansas blew a 24 point 2nd half lead in the Belk Bowl.
Don't let the Belk Bowl take away from the fact that Matt Ryan blew a 25 point 2nd half lead in the Super Bowl.

I mean it IS a legitimate question. Ford, and to some extent Bucky I kinda maybe get. Evans almost certainly should have gotten an ear from the coaches before he made a decision.

Who says he didn't? Why would you assume that because these players declared early that the coaches didn't do everything in their power to try and convince them to stay? Ultimately these three individuals made their own decisions, and they bear sole responsibility for the outcome of those decisions.

I'm not assuming anything, but recruits most certainly could see it that way. Like it or not, it IS a legitimate question someone looking from outside the program would ask given the circumstances. Sheesh.

And all of those conclusions are premature. What if all our guys drafted end up having great NFL careers? Then the problem is not with the coaches, but with the scouts evaluating them or with the priorities of the GMs deciding who to draft.

I mean, should we point to Ryan Williams or David Wilson as examples of guys we put in the league? I don't think so because they ended up being busts. But you do point to guys like Tyrod or Kam who have been around long enough to become household names.

Again, these are 17 year olds so I don't know how far down the rabbit hole they choose to go, but I would hope they don't draw too many conclusions from a draft class where the players spent just one year under the new coaching regime.

Warning: this post occasionally contains strong language (which may be unsuitable for children), unusual humor (which may be unsuitable for adults), and advanced mathematics (which may be unsuitable for liberal-arts majors)..

And if they do have great NFL careers, the revisionist thinking will always be "how many millions in rookie contract did VT cost these players by pushing them out the door before they were ready"?

Don't let this comment take away from the fact that Arkansas blew a 24 point 2nd half lead in the Belk Bowl.
Don't let the Belk Bowl take away from the fact that Matt Ryan blew a 25 point 2nd half lead in the Super Bowl.

This is taking it too far to be a legitimate consideration.

Believe what you want. I'm telling you how this is being used against us on the recruiting trail right now.

Don't let this comment take away from the fact that Arkansas blew a 24 point 2nd half lead in the Belk Bowl.
Don't let the Belk Bowl take away from the fact that Matt Ryan blew a 25 point 2nd half lead in the Super Bowl.

Nothing we can do about them pushing a false narrative. The coaches can't force them to stay. They could have been hanging on their ankles as they walked out the door, doesn't change a thing. Also tons of schools have guys get drafted lower than normal or have off years in the draft. Georgia had one draft pick this season and they just signed their best ever class and are probably going to have another top class this year. It's all short term shit coaches say to try to win recruits. If a recruit chooses to believe a false narrative we can't do anything about that.

Also, just to make this clear, Ford wasn't going to be a super high draft pick, he just didn't have the measurables, coming back wasn't going to make him run a 4.4. Bucky allegedly (and I do mean allegedly) had some off-field concerns that we weren't privy to that came out. Nobody is really arguing against Evans should have come back but it's obvious from everything I've heard that it was always his plan to leave and the coaches couldn't stop that.

EDIT: To go back to defending my original post that you are taking it too far. Do you think college coaches are going to in 5-6 years (long enough for these guys to have established successful NFL careers) are going to be able to sell recruits that "VT let them leave too early! Look at how they missed out on a bigger signing bonus!" That's just silly, and the fact that they are successful in the NFL would be a better pitch for us without even saying anything than that nonsense.

Did VT push these players out?

I don't like that narrative, and I don't believe it.

I'm guessing that VT will try harder to talk players out of leaving early in the future, and they have some good examples. That said, the student-athlete has to make their own decision in the end.

I just don't buy the line of thinking that no one told them it was in their best interest to stay, and we just don't, and won't, know about it. Hell, it's in our coaching staff's best interest to support the entire thing no matter what they actually recommended a player do, or how hard they push that argument. It looks pretty bad to have one of our best athletes have a less than stellar draft, only to have our staff jump up and publicly pat themselves on the back by throwing said athlete under the bus about how the kid should have listened to them. On the flip side, it looks just as bad to publicly tell a kid to stay in school, and have him kill it in the NFL. Then you look like you don't know what you're doing. Once the decision is made, the best thing VT can do is support the players, express confidence in their abilities, and move on to the next question.

You want from spitballing speculation to this is the reality of the situation in two posts. Roll it back.

This. Right here. Holy hell, this thread is soooo May.

Ellis was all about playing QB - and being an active participant in the VT QB competition - until he wasn't. That may have been because he sees the youth and talent in our QB room (present and future), or because he realizes he may not have the frame to play QB anywhere - after all, he didn't decommit from us, but stay a QB. He's rebooting as an athlete.

Given our QB room at the moment, and given what I'm learning about CJF and the types of athletes he's seeking for various positions, I find it hard to believe that it was ever in CJF's head that Ellis would end up a QB at VT. The big question I come away from this sitchy asking is: if he's still so high on VT, couldn't he have just changed his "position status" to ATH? He didn't have to decommit. Did he? Is there a rule somewhere in here of which I'm not aware?

You're the only ones that I can talk to about this, you guys.

Do you think the idea that VT doesn't put players in the NFL is a new thing being used against us in recruiting? Because it's not remotely new.

I hate the word bust to describe players who earned starting jobs and got horrible injuries.

I'd agree that Ryan Williams was a bust in the NFL, but I'm not sure I'd put David Wilson in that category...the guy was drafted in the first round, played throughout one season (including that one game where he set a few records) on the first team, and then had his second season cut short due to a career ending injury...not exactly the fault of the school's preparations that he got hurt the way he did.

Ryan Williams won the starting job twice, the second time after a major injury. He just couldn't stay healthy.

Bust may have been the wrong word. What I mean to say is that they never became household names. Who outside of Tech fans and maybe Giants fans (big maybe) remember who David Wilson was? No one's going to use either of those guys as a pitch because they are not success stories in the same way as Kam Chancellor is or Bruce Smith was.

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Similar with kyshoen. Dude was playing a lot in Washington even though he was a 7th rounder but got his nerves going to his arm severely injured.

Personally, I was wondering if it might have anything to do with some headlines that some of our fans were making regarding a certain former Virginia Tech QB...

edit: but based on when he started writing this, I guess not.

Now finish up them taters; I'm gonna go fondle my sweaters.

The teams that recruit the best have the nastiest online fan bases (FSU, LSU etc). I'm not saying we need that to recruit well, but any team that has a large fan base is going to have enough for a loud minority.

No doubt, and every fan base has its share...it's just not everyday you see a national news outlet publish an article highlighting the ass-hats of your fan base.

You know opposing coaches are already pointing that out to potential recruits who are looking at us also.

Now finish up them taters; I'm gonna go fondle my sweaters.

I highly doubt that. If anything they're pointing to the fact that he didn't get drafted and that everyone got drafted in the later rounds.

I really don't see that article mattering to recruits. Just about every D-1 college athlete with an internet presence will encounter his or her share of "trolls" (whether actually fans of the team or not). None of the comments in the article were that offensive.

For the record, I did see an article on Brobible about Jerod's tweet that he will never forget this. It didn't exactly paint it positively.

Drink?

I never get too excited when a kid commits more than a year from his enrollment date much less two years. Seems like those guys fly the coop pretty regularly.

"I'll put a quote here to distract you from my inane comment."-Me

Agreed. They do not know the meaning of the word "commit". We do need to hold our excitement until they officially sign.

Similarly, coaching staffs don't always honor verbal commitments. It's a two-way street. I don't begrudge a player for exploring different opportunities throughout the process. At-best, a verbal commitment is a spot in line, and it goes both ways.

People always forget this when they complain about players not honoring commitments.

Haters gonna hate, potatoes gonna potate, and hetzers gonna hetz

It's all good, he's probably gonna end up at Maryland

Hokies, Local Soccer, AFC Ajax, Ravens

That would surely be too bad.

Here's a funny story. There is a website that thinks the article on this website about Ellis caused him to decommit. True story.... Not my story but it's out there.

Well, now I'm curious.

Same here. So much so in fact that I decided to peruse the boards of another popular site that I have never checked out before, and while I didn't find what he mentioned I did encounter some of the most ignorant and irrationally negative fans I have ever seen. I saw multiple people call for the current staff to be fired and one person said that they are telling everyone to not give a dime to the Hokie Club until something is done. Seriously how do people like that exist.

Sometimes I like to leave off the /s just to mess with people.

I'm going to assume I just read some of the posts you're talking about. What a bunch of negative clowns. I can now see where the embarrassing Jerod tweets came from.

That same site also had people calling for Whit's head during October of Frank's last year (before he announced his retirement.)

Ironically, the same people who called for Whit's firing are now calling for some of the current staff's firing. Go figure.

In Sam Rogers we trust.

holy moly, I had never been over there either, but what a cess pool. What inspires people to be so irrationally negative without even attempting to understand the bigger picture will always be a mystery to me.

When people over there started calling for Bud Foster to be fired a couple years ago I quit participating in their community.

Ok now I need to know where this stupidity lives?

Joe I owe you many of whatever you want for giving us this site.

Wet stuff on the red stuff.

Join us in the Key Players Club

Y'all make this place worth it.

What is the gist of this reasoning? How would the article cause a Decommit? I don't get it....sounds like total irrational BS. I doubt he was going to play QB for us, with Hooker, Jackson, and Patterson in the fold. Opens up another spot for another good recruit. Next man up...if they don't want to be here, then good luck somewhere else.

Fire Fuente? Lol....some people are total fritata's.

VHokie

fritata's

But in all seriousness, we just put two guys in the NFL who were successfully transitioned from QB to another position (Rodgers and Hodges) and they were only utilized in the new system for a year. I think we can do athlete pretty well if the guy shows he is willing to learn a new position.

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Fritata's

I DO think it means what I meant it to mean...I'd you watch The League, you would know. Check the glossary of terms from The League....it fits the posters on the other site.

VHokie

Warning: this post occasionally contains strong language (which may be unsuitable for children), unusual humor (which may be unsuitable for adults), and advanced mathematics (which may be unsuitable for liberal-arts majors)..

If you're referring to my post above, I was merely establishing a timeline that pushes back on the notion that our rough showing in the NFL draft caused his decommit.

April 24: TKP article hits the web citing positive commentary about VT, hard work, and QB competition
Also April 24: Ellis drafts his decommit note, which means he's been working on this for a while
A week later: The draft happens. Does this influence his thinking at all? Possibly, but what I was pointing out was, despite public proclamations, the decommitment has been in his mind for a while.

TL;DR - recruiting is complicated and commits/decommits are not solely due to one factor.

Bummer, I hope he wants to be an athlete with the good guys. Regardless, good luck to him. If he's not a Hokie then I hope he finds a place at another school NOT in the ACC. I highly doubt this had anything to do with the draft rounds of our Hokies, although anything is possible. Heck, if that's the reasoning (and I'm generalizing here) then Southwest Oklahoma State College/or insert other unknown school that had players drafted above Tech could land recruits. Unless you're a blue blood prospect to begin with or develop substantially into an NFL caliber player, most guys aren't going first or second. Two years with CJF&Co. gives you a could chance, three substantially increases that chance, 4+ years and I could easily see players (and I'm not starting another subthread about our 2017 draft class and benefits/drawbacks of returning) going 1st or second.

Edit: the people you speak of on the other website are delusional. I hope it's trolling from simple minded shitheads.

"I want to punch people from UVA right in the neck, don't ever come on my show and talk about your football." - Colin Cowherd

Hope we keep pressing and get him back on board.

Womp, well on to the next one.

No lets stay on this one

If he is the next one, then sure, but still, on to the next one.

I don't understand why Evans' poor draft performance or any other Hokie's draft stock is in consideration for current recruits.

With the exception of Evans, all were Beamer guys, which Fuente hasn't any control over. This seems to be either unnecessary hand-wringing, or simply comments from "fans" who either are just plain dumb, or aren't Tech fans to start with, or both.

This seems to be either unnecessary hand-wringing, or simply comments from "fans" who either are just plain dumb, or aren't Tech fans to start with, or both.

Yes. Let's move on.

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I seriously doubt that a poor draft showing affected a recruit / recruits interest in us - at least in a major way. We haven't had a solid showing in several years now in the draft and it didn't affect us getting some better talent this last year.

Just win, baby. The rest will fall in its place.

Just win, baby. The rest will fall in its place.

Ehh that's not really how recruiting works.

Actually, winning does play a big part in recruiting....it just makes everything easier.

VHokie

lmao - you don't

meh, I know what you mean, but I'd rather be Justin Fuente recruiting after wrapping up a 10-win season than Bronco Mendenhall recruiting after a 2-win season. Maybe that's just me.

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you get it.

My guess is that he either was told by schools or feels that schools may have been turned off by his insistence on being a college QB. Either attending the regional opening or some advice has changed his mind and now that he is willing to play a position other than QB and be recruited as an athlete, he wants to see if his offer list grows or see who all is now interested. Not a bad strategy and by no means should everyone feel that he can't still end up at Tech. My only concern here is that to me this says that he doesn't feel like Tech is a top tier school and it looks to me like he is hoping to entice a bigger name. Otherwise he could have kept his commitment and discussed the position switch with Fuente and Co. (or maybe he did and they told him they were full up on ATHs).

Come to Blacksburg and see what the Hokie Pokie is really all about

Thoughts - if he's a 3* QB what are the odds he becomes a high 4* athlete thus making him a higher value recruit to multiple schools?

"I want to punch people from UVA right in the neck, don't ever come on my show and talk about your football." - Colin Cowherd

Definitely possible, at his size it was always going to be an uphill battle to be a highly ranked quarterback

Remember no one has strapped on pads or played a down of real football. There is more mystery this year around VT than there was last year. Recruits are in wait and see mode, put up or shut up mode, what have you done for me lately mode. Between the feeling that a lot of young guys will be get playing time, a better home schedule, and rejuvenated fan interest there is a lot of interest and wonder as well. Recruiting will pick up after September when things start to matter. Right now it is a guessing game for everyone. We may not get a lot of early commits but late commits and flips are a stronger possibility.

NFL is NFL and VT still had 4 players picked in the NFL draft from a previous staff that honestly didn't have that much talent overall (NFL wise) coming out. More the Duke, Maryland, UVA, Penn State, and NC State and 4 from UNC. Teams we constantly recruit against

They may have been late rounders but they were still picked and are on NFL Rosters.

"Welcome to the Terror Dome." -- Corey Moore

I doubt tweets had anything to do with this. Let's give Dejuan a little more credit than that. He can make his decision however he wants, and VT is still a top contender for him.

But still, this notice has to be posted:

VT fans, .

Please don't twitter-troll athletes, coaches, potential recruits, commits, prior team members, etc. It serves no useful purpose.

-------- The Management

But....I thought tweeting at a recruit was the best possible way to get him to come to VT

Cue the "Should I tweet a recruit" flow chart.

Take the shortest route to the ball and arrive in bad humor.

Since everyone is being lazy and it's almost two hours later. We need Fireman's Rich Rod response time.

Outspoken team cake advocate. Hates terrapins. Resident Macho Man Gif Poster. Distant cousin to Dork Magic. Frequently misspells words.

Thank you!

Take the shortest route to the ball and arrive in bad humor.

Due to his size, I never expected Ellis to end up at QB. This was bolstered by his testing results at the regional Opening Combine. Consequently, I can't imagine the QB competition had much to do with his decision.

I think he could easily see the field at VT as a WR or CB, so it is disappointing to see him decommit, especially since he specifically mentions being recruited as an Athlete. I hope the staff can get him back on board at some point, but I can only recall one two players (Phil Patterson & Garbutt) decommitting and later recommitting to the same school. I'm sure it happens, but it feels awfully rare.

EDIT: Legs for both of you. Yes, Garbutt did that last season. Thanks for the correction

@Fightin_Gobbler

Go Hokies

Go Falcons

Garbutt did it just last year. But yea this kid will see the field some way if he comes to Tech. Too explosive not to

didn't Garbutt just do that this last cycle? I mean, that still doesn't make it a common occurrence, but given the number of decommitments this staff has had, we can pretend they do better than your average coaches.

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Wait a 17 year old kid changed his mind?! Let me put on my shocked face.

I can imagine no more rewarding a career. And any man who may be asked in this century what he did to make his life worthwhile, I think can respond with a good deal of pride and satisfaction:
“I served in the United States Navy"

KCCO

Slightly bothered by some of the posts in this thread. He's saying we're still very much in the race, and are still considered the favorite, but he wants to see what kind of interest he will get as an athlete rather than a QB. He thought we were the best spot for him when he was going to be a QB, and he's going to do the process again to see if he can find a better fit as an ATH. He says we're still a good fit, but there might be a better one, and its better to keep his options open.

That's a smart move by him.

We very well might still land him, but the number of "good riddance" and "next man up" kind of comments are really not a good look for us should he see what we're thinking. This is a kid we absolutely want to have in the program, and its a mistake to publicly state otherwise.

Don't let this comment take away from the fact that Arkansas blew a 24 point 2nd half lead in the Belk Bowl.
Don't let the Belk Bowl take away from the fact that Matt Ryan blew a 25 point 2nd half lead in the Super Bowl.

bravo... this is exactly my sentiment as well. Do whats best for him.

"Welcome to the Terror Dome." -- Corey Moore

We very well might still land him, but the number of "good riddance" and "next man up" kind of comments are really not a good look for us should he see what we're thinking. This is a kid we absolutely want to have in the program, and its a mistake to publicly state otherwise.

I just went through this entire thread and I didn't see any "good riddance" comment, but I agree with you that we shouldn't give up hope. I also looked at his twitter, and at the time I did that it appeared that the comments from VT fans were all pretty supportive.

I feel certain that the VT staff are going to stay hopeful that he still comes to VT. He still says VT is in the running, so I'll take him at his word.

I agree with you but if some big time athlete is going to get his feathers ruffled because of message board posts then they might want to rethink the line of work they're getting themselves into. Especially if he wants to get offers from some of the more traditional power programs or go to the NFL, cause this is nothing...

If a player can't handle a "next man up" comment from some lowly fan like myself, then maybe he should re-evaluate and play another sport. I mean seriously, who am I? I. Just a guy posting on a fan board. Is everyone so overly sensitive now that fans have lost the right to say "next man up"?
I hope he comes here, but if he chooses somewhere that he thinks is a better fit?.....well then good luck to him. We have to then move on and find another talented fit for the program. So seriously, next man up. We have to keep moving forward and no disrespect to DeJuan.

VHokie

The Key Play is off the hook....Ellis is back....

Two completely true statements but I don't get what they have to do with each other.

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A 17 year old changed his mind twice in a few days? SHOCKING!