Virginia Tech RB J.C. Coleman (ankle) out for Alabama game

By Chip Patterson | College Football/Basketball Writer

Virginia Tech running back J.C. Coleman did not make the trip to Atlanta and will not play against Alabama on Saturday night.

School officials confirmed Friday night that Coleman will miss the game due to a pair of ankle injuries -- a left high-ankle sprain and a right ankle sprain. The sophomore suffered the injury over earlier this month, but despite his guarantees for a fast recovery Coleman has been limited on the practice field all week. Frank Beamer told reporters this week that Coleman was questionable for the opener.

Coleman's absence puts a heavy load on redshirt freshman Trey Edmunds. There has been a buzz about Edmunds' potential since he arrived on campus, but Saturday will be a baptism-by-fire against the Alabama defense.

Virginia Tech's injury woes have been well publicized leading up to Saturday's opener.

The Hokies already lost starting tight end Ryan Malleck, starting whip linebacker Ronny Vandyke and redshirt senior running back Tony Gregory to season-ending injuries. Offensive lineman Mark Shuman is also currently nursing an injured knee and Antone Exum, the Hokies' All-ACC cornerback, is still sidelined with a knee injury suffered during a pickup basketball game in January.

The injuries cause serious concern for Virginia Tech fans expecting a bounce back from last year's uncharacteristic 7-6 finish. After failing to record double-digit wins for the first time since 2003, Frank Beamer made some staff adjustments, like bringing in new offensive coordinator Scott Loeffler, but the injuries have made experience an issue for the 2013 Hokies. In fact, Virginia Tech's two-deep depth chart for the Alabama game includes 13 true or redshirt freshman.

Virginia Tech and Alabama kick off their 2013 campaigns on Saturday night in the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game in Atlanta

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