Virginia Tech cornerback Jermaine Waller won’t play against Wake Forest | Virginia Tech

Jermaine Waller

WINSTON-SALEM — Virginia Tech cornerback Jermaine Waller won’t play on Saturday against Wake Forest. 

Waller made his 2020 debut against North Carolina, but missed last week’s game against Boston College. He had a lingering foot injury that limited him in the preseason, but coach Justin Fuente said his absence last week was unrelated to that injury. 

“First of all this is not what kept him out for a long time throughout the offseason and fall camp,” Fuente said. “He desperately wants to play.”

Fuente was optimistic about Waller’s status — “I think he’ll be good to go this week” — but he ended up on the list of eight unavailable players that Tech announced an hour before kickoff. The only other player on the two-deep on the list is safety J.R. Walker, who is listed as Divine Deablo’s backup at safety.

Waller was named to the Jim Thorpe Award preseason watch list, the award is given annual to the nation’s top defensive back. He was honorable mention All-ACC in last season with 13 passes defended and three interceptions.

Tech started true freshman Dorian Strong and Brion Murray at cornerback last week. Strong leads the team with three pass breakups. Armani Chatman also rotated in while Illinois State grad transfer Devin Taylor moved from corner to free safety. 

Mike Niziolek is the Virginia Tech football beat writer for The Roanoke Times. Follow him on Facebook and Twitter.

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