Pieces

As Hokie fans are already aware, there have been some new puzzle pieces added to an already crowded board. Below is a table of the coaches showing their old and new positions.

Coach Where They Were Where They Are Now
Billy Hite Associate Head Coach/Running Backs Coach Administrator in Athletic Dept for Football
Shane Beamer Recruiting Coordinator at USC-e Recruiting Coordinator/Running Backs Coach
Jim Cavanaugh Recruiting Coordinator/Outside Linebackers Coach Recruiting Coordinator & High School Relations for Football
Cornell Brown Defensive Line Coach in the CFL Outside Linebackers Coach
Kevin Jones NFL Career Offensive Graduate Assistant

So let's look at how the new pieces fit, and where the old ones have been moved to.

After 33 years of coaching at Virginia Tech Billy Hite is moving off the field and into the offices. It's not a secret that he hasn't been the strongest recruiter, but he did do a lot of Frank's organizing and administrative work, as well as coach a lot of damn good running backs. His new job is now half of his old one, keeping Frank's house in order. This should be a less stressful position. Shane Beamer takes over as running backs coach, a position he coached for one season at Mississippi State. He's inexperienced for this job, but not only has he been mentored by Hite, who is still around, but he will get a lot of help from Kevin Jones. Jones, the former number one prep player in the nation, steeped with NFL experience couldn't have come back to Blacksburg at a better time for the Hokies. Shane will join Stinespring and Gray as the best recruiters on the staff and likely will be in charge of the Carolinas and other parts of SEC country.

Speaking of the SEC, moving Jim Cavanaugh to recruiting coordinator and high school relations in the program is a genius move. Cav is well respected for his no b.s. approach. He will handle official and unofficial visits as well giving more time to high school coaches who he already has a strong bond and familiarity with. Taking his spot on the coaching staff is Cornell Brown, a former All-American defensive end at Virginia Tech. This is his first collegiate coaching job, but jobs as a defensive line coach in NFL Europe and the CFL to go along with his NFL playing experience make him a natural for the job. Much like Shane, if he has any questions he can easily talk with Cav up in the offices. Brown has no formal recruiting experience, but his personality, resume and being a Virginia local makes the Richmond area look like a great fit.

It appears Frank took a good look at the changing landscape and convinced AD Jim Weaver to come off some money and create two more spots in the football offices. By doing so he moved two good coaches in jobs they were already doing and hired two younger and more diverse guys to turn up the wick. Shane Beamer is going to bring SEC recruiting to Tech minus the over-signing and cash under the table.

To Recap:

  • Separated staff admin jobs from coaching and hired capable people to run them. CHECK.
  • Added a couple of recruiters to the fold: CHECK.
  • Got younger, more energetic, fresher: CHECK, and CHECK.
Contact the editor about this post anytime by phone: (703) 646-1931 or mail: 3057 Nutley St Suite 633, Fairfax, Virginia 22031.

Comments

Money...

VT traditionally has operated under a light recruiting budget (in comparison to most other big-time schools) but Beamer always got the money he requested for recruiting. I have heard him say that if Beamer ever requested a larger recruiting budget, he would get it. Keeping those costs down is likely what allowed Beamer to make the moves he made.

However, in addition to funding these two additional positions, I suspect that Shane, in his overhaul of VTs recruiting "business plan" (and make no mistake, Shane will be behind the overhaul) will get Pops to request some additional funds in the recruiting budget.

Good article.

good read

will share with the 7 followers of @hokiebarek who dont already follow @thekeyplay

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some adjustments

not only in recruiting strategy, but apparently scheme. a base 4-3 heavy, whip turns to more of a true OLB, but i expect a lot of nickel too in passing situations. that will help with recruiting disadvantages about scheme.

a very, very interesting spring coming.

Defensive adjustments would be amazing

Would love to see us go with Tariq Edwards and Dominique Patterson being moved to the new whip/will type linebacker. I'd like to see us play more linebacker type players at outside linebacker instead of strong safety type players there.

The nickel defense worked well for us this year and with the way our DB recruiting/development has been going with Gray we should have quality depth to employ it with confidence.

I think having KJ on board is going to be huge in terms of helping us land a top running back this recruiting year. It's one thing to say a successful guy went through the program, but quite another actually have him coaching you up.

As far as recruiting territories go, it makes sense that Brown would take over Richmond/Peninsula/Fredericksburg from Cav. Hite was in charge of the I-81 corridor, which has very talented cops, but that seems like more of a tailor made area close to home. It would be nice to see Shane comb the SEC, and Carolinas like you said BCO, but I'd like to see what he could do in the 757. I don't know if that would be helpful or counter-productive to Newsome's efforts there.

any word on KJs responsibilities

I was surprised by this actually, it didn't get much press, and I thought he was just hanging out and finishing shool. The 1-2 punch of Hite/KJ should help ensure we don't get any "drop off" in performance due to the fact that Shane hasn't coached that position very much, in fact I would expect things to get better if thats possible with all the help around.

Also big time shot in the recruiting arm too.

right now

i am worried coach cav might not stay in the position. he still wants to coach and his pride is hurt a bit. stay tuned.

From Doug Doughty

I HAVE SPOKEN to Cavanaugh, whom I’ve known for more than 30 years. I know he’s hurting. Let’s leave it at that.

...

SHUMAN SHARED A STORY involving Cavanaugh and a former Fork Union defensive lineman, Jim Davis, who signed with the Hokies in 2000 and later was named the top defensive lineman on the 2004 ACC championship team.

“I picked up James Davis at the Richmond airport [after a recruiting visit] and he had a Tennessee jacket on,” Shuman said. “His parents were happy. I’m getting a little serious. It was Cavanaugh, Tennessee, Mississippi, Virginia. They’re all coming in on Friday for one last pitch.

“We had a 15-inch snowstorm. Cavanaugh was up in New Jersey. He drove all the way through that snowstorm. I think they were closing the roads; they were pulling him over and telling him to get off the road or else.

“He was the only coach who made it in that day and James Davis looked at me or I looked at him, too, and said, ‘Dude, this guy just risked his life for you. You need to go to Virginia Tech.’

That's doing work right there.

my info

did not come that article or from TSL ... from a source who is pretty close to the parties involved.

Word.

Posted it because it corroborated what you said.