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The Roanoke Times | File 2012
Though defender Antone Exum was cleared to play on Sept. 30, he hasn't yet felt 100 percent.
Wednesday, October 23, 2013
BLACKSBURG -- Virginia Tech cornerback Antone Exum is done making promises, but the senior expects to return to action this week against Duke and be in the starting lineup.
"That's the plan," Exum said Tuesday, more than eight months since he had offseason surgery to repair his ACL and a bone fracture.
"That's what I'm preparing for and all that. I'm not going to give a clear answer until I'm actually out there, because we know how that's gone in the past. But that's the plan for me to play this weekend. I'm prepared to be the starting corner come Saturday."
Exum was cleared Sept. 30, but hasn't felt all the way back, at least not enough to compete at a high level. But last week's bye gave him extra time to get to a point where he feels that's the case now.
"I'm pretty positive Exum's going to go," defensive backs coach Torrian Gray said. "I know he feels excited he's going to start the game. He's definitely preparing mentally and physically to start the game here."
Exum's return comes at a good time. Freshman cornerback Brandon Facyson suffered a concussion in the team's first practice back on Sunday when came down with an interception but hit the back of his head on the ground. He was in a green, no-contact jersey and wasn't participating Tuesday.
He and the coaches are still hopeful that he'll be able to play Saturday.
Kyle and Kendall Fuller started at the two cornerback spots against Pittsburgh, although the Hokies will use three cornerbacks in their nickel package against Duke on Saturday.