Virginia Tech has been kind to Florida in the recent years when it comes to transfers. In basketball, they gave us reigning SEC Sixth Man of the Year Dorian Finney-Smith. Two transfers from the Hokies come in this season looking to improve unproductive positions: Tight end and kicker. And while TE Jake McGee is the more heralded of the two, K Brooks Abbott could improve a kicking game that hurt the Gators more than helped.
The Bolles School in Jacksonville, where Abbott went to high school, has a tradition of excellence when it comes to athletics. They’ve won the FHSAA All-Sports Award seven straight times and 18 out of 19 years overall. Abbott contributed to that by participating in lacrosse, soccer, and, of course, football. He lettered four years in all three sports and earned some nice honors as well. In lacrosse, Abbott was named first-team all-district and a part of a district champion and final four team. He saw success on the pitch as well as the Bulldogs won two district championships and one state title. But it was the gridiron where he made his impact.
Abbott handled the kickoff duty and some field goals during his time at Bolles. In his senior season, he hit 11-of-14 field goals, including a long of 52 yards, which earned him first-team all-state, all-district, and All-First Coast selections. His season was also good enough to earn him an invite to the prestigious U.S. Army All-American Bowl in San Antonio. Abbott helped the Bulldogs to two district and state championships in his four years on the football team. He earned a nation wide No. 18 ranking by Chris Sailer Kicking and a No. 24 ranking by Kohl’s Kicking. In addition, 247Sports composite rankings had Abbott as two-star recruit, ranked as the 45th kicker, 386th player in Florida, and the 2836th player overall of the 2012 recruiting class.
Coming out of high school, Brooks Abbott decided to go to Virginia Tech, where he contributed immediately on special teams. In seven games with the Hokies, Abbott notched 39 kickoffs, averaging 61.5 yards per kickoff with nine touchbacks. His only field goal attempt, a 48-yard attempt, he missed, but he did add two extra-points. Abbott didn’t shy away from contact, racking up five tackles as well. But after his freshman season, Abbott decided to move back to Jacksonville to attend Florida State College.
After sitting out the 2013 season, Abbott decided that he wanted back in on the action. After completing his AA at Florida State College, he’s now enrolled at UF and planning to major in finance. Abbott joined the team as a preferred walk-on, but has a chance to earn a scholarship if he wins the kicking duties from incumbents Austin Hardin and Francisco Velez. He’ll be wearing number 97 for the Orange and Blue, but look for both Virginia Tech transfers to make an impact this season. Even if Abbott is flying under the radar.