Virginia Tech backup quarterback Mark Leal has decided to leave the program to pursue a professional opportunity, the school announced Tuesday night. With the Hokies on a bye this week, Leal met with Coach Frank Beamer on Tuesday to inform him of the decision.
The redshirt senior, who already graduated with a degree in sociology, appeared in 11 games during his college career, completing 34 of his 57 passes for 411 yards, three touchdowns and two interceptions.
Leal was the team’s primary backup under center since 2011 and saw a significant amount of action when former quarterback Logan Thomas left last year’s Sun Bowl against UCLA with a concussion. But Leal struggled in relief, throwing two interceptions in the 42-12 defeat.
Texas Tech transfer Michael Brewer then beat Leal out for the starting job ahead of the 2014 campaign. Despite Brewer’s up and down play this season, Leal had only seen limited action in three games. He threw a late touchdown pass in Virginia Tech’s 30-6 loss to Miami on Oct. 23.
With Leal gone, redshirt sophomore Brenden Motley will become Brewer’s backup going forward as the Hokies (4-5, 1-4 ACC) try to recover from a three-game losing streak and keep their 21-year bowl streak alive. Motley was atop the team’s quarterback depth chart following spring practice, but he missed much of the preseason recovering from a back injury.