November 29, 2010

Coach goes in-depth on Thourogood

Athlete Lafonte Thourogood made his selection on Saturday following Virginia Tech's 37-7 win over Virginia. The Virginia Beach (Va.) Ocean Lakes prospect evolved this season as a quarterback and Hokiehaven.com caught up with his coach for a bit more on his decision and what he will bring to Blacksburg.

"His relationship with Marcus and Randall and even guys not on the team around the area he knew, Lyndell Gibson and Tony Gregory who is from the same neighborhood," Ocean Lakes head coach Chris Scott said. "He's got a lot of those ties, but I think those were aspects of his decision that were good and positive, but not necessarily the reason why he picked Virginia Tech.

"He didn't make his decision based upon knowing this guy on the team or all my boys are going there, at the end of the day he made a decision for Lafonte. He made sure he was comfortable. That's not to say they had nothing to do with it, but they weren't a big reason either. The biggest reason for Lafonte going there was it was the best fit and he wants to be an architect. That's one of their best fields there. He also wants to be a college quarterback and they are going to give him every chance and opportunity to do that."

So, what kind of player is Virginia Tech getting?

"You know, I think the most important thing for those who follow Virginia Tech and a big thing Frank Beamer preaches is that everybody wants big, strong, fast athletes. Lafonte fits all of those for his position. Most of all and most important is that he is a great character. This is a guy that spent time before Thanksgiving at the elementary school reffing the bowl game. He is a great character and a great representative and ambassador for the university. He's a leader of all students and what athletes should be. Obviously, he has good grades and wants to successful, it's not all about football.

"The big thing on top of him being big, strong and fast is that he has a strong arm. He is a student of the game. With the football he can do it with his arm and legs. He's shown more and more of being a seasoned guy with his arm and when a play breaks down, he can take it the distance. He's an explosive player all the way around and can be a home run on the field and off."

Despite playing in just seven games, Thourogood evolved as a quarterback over the course of his senior year.

"I think the biggest thing this season that you always hear coaches say is that he was a student of the game, he always has been," he said. "He put in the classroom time to get better and got better at studying coverages and all that. He's improved his accuracy and understands where to put the ball versus certain coverages. He really found out how teams play him. Overall, his mental ability was improved, he applied that this year and it was huge for us as he got other people involved."

Though he's improved significantly, Scott understands Thourogood still needs to work on a few things.

"There is just a natural progression from being a college player, it's not the same as a high school player," he said. "All those things he learned will help him, but he's got to continue to be a student of the game and continue to work on his throwing to make sure he can make the college throws. The windows are going to be even smaller in college than high school and he's got to prepare for the speed of the game and adjust to that."

With that, Scott added some final thoughts.

"Just overall, I'm proud of him and happy for him," he said. "He took his time and did all his research on different schools and handled it in a respectful way. He's progressed to have the opportunities he does and he earned them all. Now he can go on and help make another program successful.

"What he does is win, he wills his team to win and I'm just happy he gets a chance, he earned this."

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