Class of 2023 Recruiting Profiles: Jason Abbey
The Virginia Tech coaching staff can coach technique, but they can’t teach great intangibles. Fortunately for the Hokies, speedy Richmond pass rusher Jason Abbey has both. Abbey, a 6’4” 215 lb. defensive end, has the physical tools and talent to play just about every position on the front seven, and is ranked as the 8th best player in Virginia according to On3.
Abbey had a quiet start to his recruiting journey but it started to ramp up towards the end. Richmond area recruiter and wide receivers coach Fontel Mines extended an offer to him on March 4th, following offers from ECU, Vanderbilt, Marshall, and Kent State.
While he never visited Virginia Tech officially, he visited a few times unofficially in the spring. His last visit was to the 2022 Spring Game on April 16th, and he committed to the staff there and announced his commitment six days later on the 22nd.
Abbey helped lead the Douglas Freeman High Mavericks (Richmond) to an 8-2 record in the regular season with the two losses to Hermitage and St. Christophers. The Mavericks are led by Coach George Bland, who played football and baseball at Randolph-Macon University. If there was one place where the Hokies alumni base is the strongest, it’s Richmond, and the numbers show it: eight of the 2023 class’s signees come from Virginia’s capital city, and it is a focal point for the 2024 recruiting class as well.
Jason Abbey has the positional versatility that coaches search the country for. He has the potential to bulk up and become a powerful hand-in-the-dirt edge rusher, or he could become a rangy Sam linebacker. As seen on his HUDL, he has incredible closing speed and long arms. His experience as a swimmer developed quick hands and powerful legs to push through blockers. Brent Pry’s most well known protégé is Micah Parsons, and while comparing Abbey to him is huge shoes to fill, Abbey has the physical traits and speed to play with a similar style.
Abbey fits the prototype of a Pry era defensive end. Not a single one of the five linebacker and edge rushing signees were under 6’4” and I don’t see that changing any time soon. Abbey’s mix of speed and power gives him a very good chance to slide into the two-deep in his early years in Blacksburg.