After rumors swirled last week concerning the eligibility of Virginia Tech quarterback Josh Jackson, multiple outlets reported Tuesday morning that the Hokies’ sophomore starter will indeed be available when the season begins in a few months.
Jackson had his future in doubt because of an unspecified academic issue that the university was looking into. The sophomore remained a full member of the team during that period, continuing his offseason workouts as usual.
The academic matter was resolved recently, the source said, with Jackson cleared to stay on Tech’s roster. There’s no indication he’ll face any type of suspension, meaning he most likely will be the starter for the Hokies’ opener at Florida State on Labor Day night.
Josh Jackson had a big freshman year
After Jerod Evans left Tech early to pursue a pro career, Jackson emerged as the team’s starting quarterback last fall as a redshirt freshman. He started all 13 of the team’s games and threw for 2,991 yards, 20 touchdowns and nine interceptions. He also added 324 yards and six touchdowns on the ground.
Jackson showed a ton of potential, but was inconsistent with his accuracy. If he improves his completion percentage, he could be one of the ACC’s top quarterbacks in 2018.
If Jackson was unavailable, the Hokies were in trouble
The Hokies are expected to compete for an ACC Coastal title in 2018. That would have been a tall task without Jackson.
The depth chart — Kansas transfer Ryan Willis, redshirt freshman Hendon Hooker and true freshman Quincy Patterson — is largely unproven behind Jackson.
Willis sat out the 2017 season after transferring. He was Kansas’ primary starter in 2015 and split time with two others in 2016. In 16 games (10 starts) with the Jayhawks, Willis threw for 2,530 yards, 11 touchdowns and 17 interceptions during that span. He was considered the likely starter for the Hokies if Jackson ended up being unavailable.
Hooker competed with Jackson for the starting job last fall but ended up taking a redshirt year. Patterson, a four-star recruit, will arrive on campus later this summer.
The Hokies open the 2018 season at Florida State.
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