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Second Year Profiles: Connor Wingo-Reeves

Wingo-Reeves saw a lot of action at FB last year. That experience will come in handy this year, as he's the only FB on the roster with playing experience. With an inexperienced QB and a senior RB, the Hoos are likely to rely heavily on the ground game this year. Wingo-Reeves experience last year will come in handy there.

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

After playing both LB and TE at Monacan HS in Midlothian, Wingo-Reeves was recruited mostly as a LB. While his offer list wasn't very impressive, he was getting looks from most of the schools in the area including VT and WVU. All of these schools were recruiting Connor as an OLB. He committed to the Hoos and when the recruiting class was announced last February, Wingo-Reeves was a LB/FB. The Hoos had 2 other FBs on the roster. One was Vincent Croce, who had been a prized DL recruit in 2011. The other was senior walk-on Billy Skrobacz, who had seen time at the position in 2012.

Of course, LB was also a deep position, with upper-classmen starting at all 3 positions. Behind those 3 were talented players who were already in the program. Playing time at LB didn't look very promising for Wingo-Reeves.

So where would Connor end up? Having him at spend a redshirt year at LB made some sense, with a number of the Hoos' LBs leaving after 2014. LB is undoubtedly a more important position than FB. But, the Hoos didn't have a natural FB on scholarship, and once Skrobacz left, they'd be left with just Croce, who is only learning the position. This was likely the key factor in the decision to start Connor at FB.

Wingo-Reeves saw action at FB right away. He ended up playing in all 12 games, seeing action on offense and special teams. Skrobacz started 7 games at the position. In the other 5 games, there was no starter at FB. Skrobacz, of course, is gone now. That leaves Wingo-Reeves as the only experienced FB on the roster, and the likely starter. On the season, Wingo-Reeves had just 1 reception for 4 yards. He did not have a carry. However, he performed very well as a lead blocker. Not surprisingly for a former LB, he hits hard. When he runs into a hole and throws a block, the defender tends to stay blocked.

With a lot of depth at WR, there may not be a starting FB for most games. The Hoos may begin with 3 WR sets. Then again, with a senior at TB, an unknown commodity at QB and a young OL, FB may be a key position for the Hoos this year. Wingo-Reeves' playing time last season could be a big boost to this years' offense.