Virginia Tech starting redshirt-junior defensive end TyJuan Garbutt is not with the team for the start of fall camp.
Garbutt, who was expected to be one of the anchors for the Virginia Tech defensive line this fall, is back home dealing with a family matter. Garbutt remains enrolled in school and a member of the football program, but it is unknown if he will play this season for the Hokies.
"Tyjuan Garbutt is not with us right now, as he's home tending to a serious family matter....it's not COVID-related and certainly not injury or discipline-related," head coach Justin Fuente said during his first media availability of the season on Friday.
Rumors had been swirling for weeks about whether or not Garbutt would be available for the start of fall camp, and now it appears he will not be with the Hokies for at least the immediate future.
Losing Garbutt is significant for a Virginia Tech defensive line that is already searching for impact difference-makers. A rotation of Garbutt, Emmanuel Belmar, and incoming graduate-transfer Justus Reed was expected to give the Hokies proven depth at defensive end for the first time in a couple of years.
Now without Garbutt, the Hokies will lean much more heavily on Reed, and especially Belmar, than previously anticipated. In a COVID-impacted season where depth is pertinent, the Hokies now have less proven depth at one of the most important positions on the defense.
Garbutt started in all 11 games that he played in a year ago, recording 31 total tackles, 3.5 tackles for loss, and one sack.