Sunday, April 13, 2008

HOKIES BACKFIELD CRUMBLING

Can Billy Hite still tote the football? If this stuff keeps up, Virginia Tech's 56-year-old running backs coach may have to line up in the backfield in next Saturday's Maroon-White spring game.

"I think I'm going to have to suit up," Hite cracked Saturday.

A day after learning that No. 1 tailback Kenny Lewis Jr. (pictured) will undergo left shoulder surgery Tuesday and could be out from four to six months, Hite saw Jahre Cheeseman go down with a broken left fibula in Saturday's final full-scale spring scrimmage.

Cheeseman, a promising redshirt junior, was scheduled to undergo surgery Saturday night. In the best-case scenario, Cheeseman could be back to full strength and return in time to participate in the team's August preseason camp.

"I've been doing this a long time and I've never had this many go down," Hite said.
"Shoot, [fullback] Kenny Jefferson ending up pulling a calf muscle [Friday]. I just hope we can get through the next week without losing anybody else."

With Lewis and Cheeseman sidelined, the Hokies are down to three healthy tailbacks -- redshirt freshmen Josh Oglesby and Darren Evans, and senior Dustin Pickle (Salem).

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