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Where does Logan Thomas fit for Virginia Tech?

Coming into spring practice, one of the most intriguing storylines was how Virginia Tech's talented mix of running backs would sort out. But there is another intriguing position battle that is taking shape in the Hokies' backfield.

Ju-Ju Clayton and Logan Thomas are vying for the back-up quarterback role and neither has seemed to distinguish himself at this early point in spring practices. The coaching staff hopes to have settled on a No. 2 quarterback by the end of spring practices, and the longer the competition continues, the more it raises the question of where Thomas will fit in Virginia Tech's offense.

Is he the quarterback of the future for the Hokies who should continue to get reps at that position? Or should he see time immediately at tight end, the position at which he was the nation's top prospect in the class of 2009?

Thomas, who will be a redshirt freshman next fall, came to Virginia Tech as the nation's top tight end recruit, but because of his athletic ability, was quickly moved to quarterback. He competed with Clayton last summer before being informed he would be redshirted.

This spring, Virginia Tech coaches said they hoped to see some separation between Thomas and Clayton.

So far, both players have been inconsistent. Thomas is 6 feet 6 and has a strong arm with a nice deep ball but is still rough around the edges as a quarterback. Clayton has shown a nice ability, but can be erratic at times in making his throws.

In a scrimmage on Saturday, Thomas reportedly only completed 2 of 10 passes for 30 yards. Clayton had a more impressive showing, completing 7 of 9 passes for 95 yards and a touchdown.

Mike O'Cain, the Hokies' quarterbacks coach, has said he wanted to have a clear picture of where the two stood on the depth chart by the end of the spring. The problem he is running into is Thomas and Clayton have to split practice time, and therefore neither get the repetitions necessary to work into the position and to meld with their wide receivers.

But as it pertains to Thomas, the interesting twist is that Virginia Tech may not be able to afford keeping him off the field because of his athleticism and skill. The Hokies are especially thin at tight end, so the coaches have talked about playing Thomas at tight end and that they have designed plays for him at the position.

O'Cain told the Richmond Times-Dispatch that the Hokies have "a very simple package for him that he doesn’t have to spend a ton of practice time doing, but at the same time be good enough where he can help us with the ball in his hand or making a block or whatever he needs to do in that situation.”

Where Thomas will end up in the fall remains a question mark. But the longer his battle with Clayton for the back up quarterback role lingers, the more it will raise questions about where he truly fits in Blacksburg.

By Mark Viera  |  April 12, 2010; 12:15 PM ET
 
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