BLACKSBURG — Virginia Tech wide receiver Tyree Saunders has entered the transfer portal.
He didn’t play last fall, but will still have five years to play four seasons of competition with the NCAA granting all fall student-athletes an additional year of eligibility.
Saunders was the third highest ranked signee in the team’s 2020 class. The three-star receiver was the No. 810 ranked prospect coming out of First Coast High School in Jacksonville, Florida.
He had 25 scholarship offers coming out of high school including ones from Iowa State, Kansas State, UAB and Marshall.
As an upperclassman at First Coast, he had more than 80 catches for 1,600-plus yards and 14 touchdowns. He ran a 4.4 40-yard dash with a vertical jump of 34 inches at camps.
Saunders was one of two receivers — Dallan Wright was the other — Tech took in a small 2020 signing class and was friends with fellow Jacksonville-area natives Keshawn King and Chamarri Conner.
The departure leaves Tech with nine scholarship receivers for the 2021 season including four true freshmen. The Hokies were hoping former Villanova transfer Changa Hodge would be a big contributor this fall, but he suffered a season-ending injury during spring camp.
Tech coaches are optimistic injured receivers Kaleb Smith and Jaden Payoute will be fully healthy for the fall.
They are also encouraged by the progress early enrollees Jaylen Jones and Da’Wain Lofton made during spring camp.
“Lofton has showed up,” Fuente said, this spring. “We made a concerted effort to get him the ball at times with the ones on the field.”
The Hokies had two other players enter the transfer portal in April with veteran safety Tyree Rogers and running back Terius Wheatley leaving the program.