McCray Picks Virginia Tech

Looking on as Virginia Tech's first senior camp came to an end, Brookville (Lynchburg, VA) defensive end prospect Zack McCray looked relaxed.

Looking on as Virginia Tech's first senior camp came to an end, Brookville (Lynchburg, VA) defensive end prospect Zack McCray looked relaxed.

The 6-5, 235-pound rising senior, who was sporting a Virginia Tech hat, shirt, and shorts, was excited and relieved with the verbal commitment he made to the Tech coaches earlier in the day.

"There is a ton of pressure off," McCray said yesterday afternoon. "It's great. It's a great feeling."

McCray's decision ultimately came down to Virginia Tech, Alabama, LSU and North Carolina. He made the decision a week ago and waited a week to give Frank Beamer and company the good news.

"I came to the decision probably last Sunday," said McCray, who had been offered by close to 20 Division 1A programs. "I mean, I was going to try to go to Alabama and LSU, but every time I tried to something else popped up. I figured if it was that hard to try to get down there to take a visit it's going to be super hard to try to get back home and stuff and see the family. North Carolina, I looked at that and they are just really deep at defensive end. This just seemed like the best fit."

Virginia Tech, which signed McCray's cousin Logan Thomas in the 2009 class, has been high on McCray's list throughout the process.

"Starting out, they definitely were [the favorite]," McCray said of Virginia Tech. "I think some other teams kind of caught up, and then at the end they took off. They kind of were the frontrunners at first, if you want to put it that way."

McCray entered Rector Field House decked out in Virginia Tech gear and headed for Tech defensive coordinator Bud Foster.

"I got in here and thought it would be fun," McCray said. "Coach Foster actually wrote me a note that just said 'Come on' on it. I wrote 'I'm coming' on it and walked up to him and handed it back to him. He got this big smile, gave me a big hug and I went around and talked to all the other coaches."

Coach Bud Foster was a big reason why McCray decided on Virginia Tech, and he and the rest of the coaching staff did a tremendous job recruiting the in-state star.

"Coach Stinespring recruited me a lot, but Coach Foster, when he talked to me, threw it out there that I was their number one guy," McCray said. "He couldn't do too much else besides that. The whole coaching staff gave me a lot of love and it was tough to get past that."

A first-team all-state selection at defensive end last season as a junior, McCray eyes a chance at early playing time for the Hokies in 2010.

"It just depends on what happens over the course of next year," said McCray, who tallied 20 sacks for Brookville in 2008. "Hopefully I can have a good season, come in at the right weight and keep my speed up to get on the field. I don't expect to come in and start as a freshman, but getting on the field would be a big enough honor."

McCray becomes Virginia Tech third defensive line recruit in the 2010 class, joining future Fork Union Military Academy (VA) prospect Nick Acree and Highland Springs (VA) star Derrick Hopkins. Both prospects were on hand for Tech's camp yesterday as well.

"They're great," McCray said. "I haven't really talked to Derrick too much, but me and Nick we get along great. I'm sure it'll be the same with Derrick. It's a big family."

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