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Virginia Football Recruiting: Eli Hanback signs with UVa

Eli Hanback is an OL/DL prospect who will play DT for the Hoos. He's big, he's a mauler and he's a high-motor guy. Exactly the kind of guy you want at DT.

Profile: Eli Hanback

High School: Patrick Henry (Roanoke, Va.)

Height/weight: 6-4, 270

Ranking: Rivals 3*, ESPN 3*, 247 3*

Additional offers: JMU, ODU, William & Mary

The skinny:


Eli Hanback could easily end up on the OL, but for now he is seem by the UVA staff as a DT. He's 6'4" and 270 lbs, which is very good size for a DT. Hanback is a mauler. He's not the quickest of DTs, and probably won't ever be much of a pass rusher from the inside. But he can hold his ground at the point of attack and he can also shed and make plays.

The above highlights are from Eli's junior year, courtesy of Hudl.

Despite his bulk, Eli shows very good lateral movement. He gets out quickly along the line and can string a RB along, while waiting for other defenders to help make the tackle. In HS, he played a lot of DE, but he is mostly likely a pure DT in college.

One of the reasons Eli is starting at DT is that OL requires more technique as opposed to raw strength and athleticism. And while Eli has very good strength and good quickness for a guy his size, his technique requires a lot of work.

Regardless of whether he sticks on DL or moves to OL, he's going to need at least a redshirt year to develop physically and work on technique. With several players ahead of him at either position, this should not be a problem.