Justin Fuente Praises Redshirt-Freshman Wide Receiver Jaden Payoute in Friday Press Conference

Payoute, a former 4-star recruit, appears to be settling into his role at wide receiver for the Virginia Tech offense
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Virginia Tech head coach Justin Fuente met with the media on Friday afternoon to give an update four practices into fall camp.

The big takeaway from the press conference is that transfer running back Raheem Blackshear's waiver for immediate eligibility was denied on Thursday by the NCAA. Virginia Tech will appeal.

On a lighter note, Fuente was asked about the progress of the wide receiver group, and gushed about redshirt-freshman wide receiver Jaden Payoute.

"I get really excited about the progress he has made. He's worked incredibly hard and he's grown leaps and bounds," Fuente said during the call on Friday.

Fuente credited the medical staff as being a big reason why Payoute has gotten off to a strong start in camp.

"First of all, he feels so much better. He had some pretty severe allergies when he first got to college and our medical staff helped him get those under control," Fuente said.

"His testing numbers [in the weight room] have skyrocketed. He's just going to be a really, really strong wide receiver," Fuente added.

As a composite 4-star wide receiver per 247Sports, the 6'1", 205 lbs. Payoute was heralded for his speed and athleticism coming out of high school, but Fuente noted that it isn't Payoute's straight-line speed that his impressed him the most.

"The ability to not just be fast, but to play fast is what gets some young players," Fuente said.

"Playing fast and doing what he's supposed to be doing is what he's started to figure out," Fuente continued.

Given Virginia Tech's current wide receiver situation, expect Payoute to play a major role offensively this fall for the Hokies. He will likely emerge as a legitimate option opposite of junior wide receiver Tre Turner and should see the field quite a bit throughout the 2020 campaign.