We continue our recruiting rewind series here at SI Hokies, as we evaluate current contributors to the Virginia Tech football team, review their recruitment, and evaluate which current Hokies recruits draw similar comparisons.
Next up is junior defensive back Chamarri Conner.
Conner was listed as 6’0’’ 193 lbs. coming out of Trinity Christian Academy in Jacksonville, Florida. His 247 composite ranking finished at .8975 and he was the 317th-ranked prospect in the country by 247 and the 24th-best safety.
His offer list was pretty impressive with the likes of Michigan, Florida, South Carolina and Michigan State, in addition to the Hokies. He never wavered much in his recruitment and seemed to be a strong Hokie commit throughout after he gave his verbal pledge to Justin Fuente and the coaching staff.
His high school film shows him playing way above his listed size. Conner lined up all over the field in high school and had some very diverse tape that showed a complete football player with a knack for defense.
The film shows him lining up as an outside linebacker, tracking the ball carrier on the edge with collisions that are jarring. He was even shown in a three point stance coming off the edge of the line in some cases as well.
Conner's best qualities are showcased in the secondary tracking down and delivering unwelcomed wallops to receivers and running backs. Some of the blows he delivers would bring Tech fans back to the days of Kam Chancellor. Conner has shown similar versatility at the next level as a Hokie as well.
At the collegiate level, Conner has not lost that tracking ability one bit. One of his greatest assets as a defender is closing down gaps and delivering vicious hits. He is a player that opposing defenses will need to plan for and opposing skill players will lose sleep over the day before they see him.
Recent recruit comparison: 2021 3-Star VA Safety Jalen Stroman
Stroman is currently a verbal commit for the Hokies in the 2021 class after committing to the program in late May. Much like Conner, he is listed at 6’1’’ 190 lbs. He will add some weight to that frame under Coach Hilgart and the strength staff as well.
The physicality of Stroman is what makes this comparison so striking. Stroman, like Conner, has played all over the field in high school, but has been seen most often as a safety.
In the box, Stroman fills a hole and plants the running back. In the secondary, Stroman is also someone who receivers must be aware of, as his hits are impressive. Like Conner, he shows the same ability to track down the receiver or ball carrier and finish with a strong tackle.
Stroman may be used similarly to Conner because of his versatility and body type that provides him the ability to be used all over the field. Expect Stroman to come in and gain size and improve on his technique, but Hokie fans will come to love his versatility and hard-hitting mentality at the collegiate level.