Posted by ESPN.com's Heather Dinich
Virginia Tech lost six starters on defense, yet defensive backs Kam Chancellor and Macho Harris agreed this group will actually be faster than last year's, which was fourth in the nation in total defense.
"The coaches even said that," Harris said. "This group can float. They can run. We've got a bunch of guys who are young, hungry, they'll do anything to get on that field. We've got a bunch of guys who are working each other out, getting each other better. I just can't wait."
Defensive coordinator Bud Foster said his biggest concern is "right up the pipe" with the defensive tackles and linebackers. Defensive end Orion Martin is the only returning lineman who started every game last season.
Virginia Tech has two senior starters at linebacker, including Brett Warren, who played when Vince Hall got hurt, and Cam Martin, who started 13 of 14 games after moving from free safety.
"That's a young group, but it's a talented group," Foster said. "I like what I see from those guys but at the same time the learning curve is going to be pretty significant."
The one thing everyone seems to agree isn't a problem is speed.
"I think we could be faster," Chancellor said. "I was looking at the secondary, linebackers, defensive line -- I think we can be faster than we were last year, the whole defense. We gotta do what we gotta do to be a powerhouse school."