Western Albemarle's Karczewski and Miller heading to DI programs
CROZET, Va. (CBS19 SPORTS) -- Grant Karczewski grew up around Virginia football after his dad, Doug, was a captain for the Cavaliers, so the Western Albemarle offensive tackle wearing a Virginia Tech shirt on signing day was not the expected route.
"It's a team I grew up watching, it's a another team I grew up hating," Karczewski said, "Coming together at Thanksgiving for that rivalry is it's just going to feel great, just walking onto the field knowing that I have both parents behind my back."
Western Albemarle honored 15 college-bound athletes on Wednesday morning, including Karczewski and his fellow offensive lineman Kainan Miller. Karczewski will head to Virginia Tech in the fall, while Miller will attend Old Dominion, both as preferred walk-ons with plans to redshirt their first year.
"It's been a childhood dream of mine to play Division I football and when [Old Dominion] Coach [Ricky] Rahne gave me this opportunity I knew I had to take it," Miller said.
The duo have been bookends on the Warriors' offensive line over the last few seasons with Miller earning first team All-Jefferson District honors at offensive line as a junior and senior, and Karczewski a first team selection at defensive end this past season, despite missing a third of the season with a fractured fibula.
Also a skilled lacrosse player, Karczewski only started playing football his sophomore year of high school as a 6'8", 260-pound force on the offensive and defensive lines. The Western Albemarle senior picked up offers from several schools, including his dad's alma mater in UVA, but he loved the plan and fit with Brent Pry at Virginia Tech.
"I love the place, it's a great environment, great coaching," Karczewski said, "I really felt like it was home."
After redshirting their first seasons, both Karczewski and Miller have plans of eventually working their way to the top of the depth chart with the Hokies and Monarchs, respectively. Miller fell in love with the campus at Old Dominion on his visit, while being excited about the offensive system the Monarchs run and fun conference in the Sun Belt.
"It's great competition, you get to play JMU, App State," Miller said, "I've grown up watching JMU, can't wait to play against them."