The 6-foot-4, 290-pound Mitchell is the third linemen in the class, joining Eric Gallo of Holland, Pa., and Tyrell Smith of Ramsey, N.J. 247 Sports ranks him as the No. 21 player in New Jersey, while Rivals has him 23rd.
Paramus Catholic coach Chris Partridge described Mitchell as an intense, “fireball of energy” who “kind of runs around and gets everyone going.”
He’s started for Partridge at right tackle the last three years, but Partridge expects him to be on the interior in college, either at guard or center. Partridge said Mitchell’s athleticism is his best trait, a pattern for Jeff Grimes recruits so far.
“He can run, first and foremost,” he said. “He’s a kid who can run with anyone. He’s straight ahead, moves really well. His feet are good. He can jump. He’s an overall athlete, especially for his size.”
While Mitchell played last year at 6-foot-2½, 265 pounds, Partridge said he’s up around 6-4, 290 pounds following an active offseason.
Mitchell has been a Virginia Tech fan for a while, even though his dad, Russell, was an Ole Miss offensive lineman from 1980-82. Ole Miss had shown interest but wasn’t one of Mitchell’s 11 offers, according to Rivals, a list that included Georgia Tech, N.C. State and Syracuse.
“Ultimately it came down to his decision and where he felt most comfortable.,” Partridge said. “And Virginia Tech was it.”
Mitchell is the Hokies’ second commitment from New Jersey for this class, joining Smith. Before this year, Tech had only one recruit from New Jersey since 2007 (tight end Ryan Malleck). The Hokies also have several other targets from the Garden State, a departure from past years.
“They’ve been in the last couple years, but I think they kind of turned up the intensity this year in recruiting the area,” Partridge said. “More visits. Maybe they thought there was a higher talent pool this year that they’re focusing in a little more.”
Virginia Tech now has 13 commitments for 2104. They are non-binding until National Signing Day next February. Here is an updated list:
- WR Jaylen Bradshaw, 6-0, 175, Chesapeake (Oscar Smith)
- TE Xavier Burke, 6-3, 247, Lawrenceville (Brunswick)
- DB Terrell Edmunds, 6-1, 180, Danville (Dan River)
- QB Andrew Ford, 6-3, 180, Camp Hill, Pa. (Cedar Cliff)
- OL Eric Gallo, 6-2, 275, Holland, Pa. (Council Rock South)
- DB Javon Harrison, 6-2, 190, Lakeland, Fla. (Kathleen)
- ATH Travon McMillian, 6-0, 196, Woodbridge (C.D. Hylton)
- OL Billy Ray Mitchell, 6-3, 288, Paramus, N.J. (Paramus Catholic)
- DB Shawn Payne, 6-2, 180, Chesterfield (L.C. Bird)
- DB C.J. Reavis, 6-0, 199, Chester (Thomas Dale)
- OL Tyrell Smith, 6-5, 250, Ramsey, N.J. (Don Bosco Prep)
- DE Vincent Mihota, 6-4, 240, Fredericksburg (Massaponax)
- RB Marshawn Williams, 5-11, 200, Hampton (Hampton)
Here’s his highlight video from last year: