Posted: 9:51 am Tuesday, May 12th, 2009
By Jason Lieser
Mark Leal, the top-rated quarterback in this area, plans to be the next link in the chain between Atlantic and Virginia Tech. He gave a commitment to the Hokies.
Atlantic coach Andre Thaddies is not a big proponent of early commitments, but said Leal allayed any of his concerns.
“I have hesitation about kids committing if they’re still going through the recruiting process, but that’s his school,” Thaddies said. “He’s wanted that the whole time, so if they offer, then knock yourself out.
“I did have reservations to be honest, but he answered all the questions. He has a mom and a dad and brain-wise, I trust his decision-making ability.”
Leal (6-1, 190) completed 108 of 218 passes for 1,785 yards and 17 touchdowns as a junior in the Eagles’ high-powered offense. He has a strong arm and runs the 40-yard dash in 4.6 seconds.
Locally, he is ranked as the No. 1 quarterback and the No. 9 prospect overall. He was honorable mention all-area last season.
Leal has scholarship offers from West Virginia, Oregon, Pittsburgh and several other major programs. He is expecting to attend camps at Virginia Tech and Minnesota this summer.
Former Atlantic cornerback Jayron Hosley signed with Virginia Tech in February and has been trying to persuade his ex-teammates to follow ever since.
“That’s all he’s been doing,” Leal said two weeks ago. “He gives me every coach’s number. He’s always on me about going to Virginia Tech. He says, ‘Come join the family.’”
Virginia Tech also signed Atlantic stars Brandon Flowers and David Clowney over the past few years.