By Alex Koma, sports staff writer
Note: As part of the Collegiate Times’ coverage of Virginia Tech football, we’ll be breaking down the 2012 football roster every weekday until March 28 when the Hokies begin spring practice.
Weight: 165 pounds
Position: Defensive back
2012 Year: Freshman
High School: Creekside
Tookes is a newly recruited defensive back for the Hokies, hailing from Fairburn, Georgia.
He was born in Atlanta and attended Creekside High School, where he earned a variety of accolades and put up good numbers.
As a junior, he picked off three passes, and returned all three for touchdowns, and followed that up with a stellar senior year. In his final season, he finished with 55 tackles and 14 pass break-ups, as well as six blocked punts.
His achievements earned him a spot on The Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s All-Met team, in addition to national recruiting attention. Rivals listed him as the 25th best cornerback in the country, and the 34th ranked prospect in the state of Georgia.
Tookes committed to Tech in February 2011, and was recruited by the Hokies’ secondary coach, Torrian Gray.
Coach Jim Cavanaugh compared Tookes to Jayron Hosely in his ability to create turnovers and act as a true “cover corner.”
The coaching staff was also particularly impressed with his talent on special teams, and is excited about his ability to contribute to that unit.
With Tech’s limited depth at corner, it is likely that Tookes will see a lot of work this summer. Players like Kyle Fuller and Detrick Bonner should occupy the top spots at the position for the foreseeable future, with newcomers Donaldven Manning seeing time as backups.
Tookes can absolutely be an asset on special teams right away. He has some ability as a return man, but is particularly valuable in punt coverage.
The Hokies have a long history of recruiting players that can block punts and kicks, and Tookes should be able to contribute to that legacy right away.