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  Tech ran for 260 yards against a North Carolina team that allowed 108 rushing yards combined in the first two weeks. "He's becoming a really really good blocker just downfield, sealing edges," Tech running back Khalil Herbert said. "Makes it easy for me to run around. Shout out to the guys in the tight end room. They're doing a really great job." That was on display when Mitchell created the room Herbert, who leads all FBS running backs with 149.7 yards per game, needed on an 8-yard touchdown in the second quarter. Herbert bounced to the outside as Mitchell drove defensive back Ladaeson DeAndre Hollins back 5-yards from the line of scrimmage with an impressive pancake block. It was a play Mitchell might not have been able to make early in his career.

"I'm still learning as I go on about how to block and the right techniques, just being able to block well is something I really wanted to get better at for a long time," Mitchell said. It wasn't a skill he was required to use much at Union High School where he spent most of the time on offense with the ball in his hands. He said it was a "big transition" once he first got to Blacksburg, and it's still a point of emphasis two years later. "It's very important, being both is going to be the next step in my development as a tight end," Mitchell said. "It's something that coach (James) Shibest stressed to us tight end, we got to be able to be both. Before we got out and catch (the ball), we got to be able to block and help the run game. It's very important for me to continue to develop that part of my game." - Roanoke Times

(DS#9 TE) Jr/2022 TE James MitchellVirginia Tech
News Source: Roanoke Times



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