Editor's Note: A lot of Hokies are feeling frustrated today after all the recruiting misses and this sums most of it up. We'll never endorse any of our coaches to be fired, but as long as their goals remain to recruit the best players in Virginia and win a National Championship then they must step up and do that.
A few weeks ago I was at work having a conversation with an Oregon alum who was fired up for his upcoming trip to Arizona.
He wore Oregon gear to the office literally two weeks in a row, and who could blame him? I was oozing jealousy.
If my beloved Hokies were preparing for that trip to the desert, you bet your ass I would have been wearing my maroon and orange until my coworkers told me it was annoying. Then I would have ordered those Wes Worsham pants and worn those on top of what I was wearing already.
Said coworker asked me if I was going to the Orange Bowl. I replied that I wasn't and told him that I was honestly tired of the January trip to Miami. I couldn't believe I actually said that. We were ACC Champions again. It was Tyrod Taylor's last game as a Hokie. It was cold as balls in New York and probably much warmer in Miami.
I sounded like one of the spoiled asshole kids on 'My Super Sweet 16.'
But as I watched the game from my New York couch (with a stomach virus, so I actually vomited during the game), I was kind of glad I didn't spend a ton of cash to see Tech get its ass handed over. I was there for Kansas. I went up to Boston College twice. I drove to Jacksonville for Florida State. I flew to Charlotte for ECU. I've had enough of traveling to Tech losses.
However, I still was annoyed that I didn't WANT to go to Miami.
But it's been making sense lately. Why? I was vindicated by a bunch of 17-year-old kids who also didn't care that Mr. Nice Guy Virginia Tech was playing in the Orange Bowl after another year of dominating the conference.
Let's face it: Our recruiting this year does not match our success on the field in 2010 or the years preceeding it. And I think the overall approach is the problem.
But it's clear that conference championships and BCS bowls aren't enough for the elite.
Look at the names that passed us by, particularly the ones in the state of Virginia. Curtis Grant, Travis Hughes, Demetruis Nicholson, Dominique Terrell, Landon Turner, Clifton Richardson (by the way, that's the state's six best players), Quinta Funderburk, etc.
They're not buying what the coaches are selling. Most of those kids didn't even give Tech serious consideration. We struck out big on the biggest names on the table.
Schools like Virginia, North Carolina and Clemson usurped us even though their product has been far inferior to ours as long as these kids have been playing football.
The ability to walk into a living room and show all of our success on the field isn't enough. Mr. Nice Guy who wins a lot isn't enough. And, yes, I understand Tech isn't for everyone.
So, how does it get fixed?
This is going to be tough for some of you to hear. Yes, you, guy who posts "I, for one, can't wait to welcome the 20 kids who WANT to be Hokies!" Shut up. Go log on to Beamerball.
Changes need to be made. If you're not pulling your weight, adios.
I said earlier that these kids need to be told things they want to hear. And what do they want to hear? For starters, many want to see the field early -- and not in the 4th quarter against our annual ass whipping of Marshall or in game six because everyone else is hurt. They want to be on the field now, like Percy Harvin was at Florida. Not like Ryan Williams.
They want to be winning those big games against Boise State, USC, Alabama, Auburn (traveled to all four of those, too), etc. They want to be in Heisman races, running up the scoreboard, getting on SportsCenter, etc. And, no, this does not mean we need to become some punk program. We can change our identity without changing what Frank Beamer stands for and expects from his players.
We're not doing things to put ourselves in serious consideration as a top football program. We have plenty of wins, but we strangely remain a stiff-arm's length from the Ohio States, Floridas, USCs, etc.
It's time to change the approach to recruiting, playcalling, attitude, etc. It means saying goodbye to people who redshirt blue chip recruits because they can't 'grasp blocking.' I'm talking about you, Billy Hite. You redshirt Ryan Williams. You seriously did that. What are you bringing to the table, hoss? Who have you brought into the fold?
It's not just Hite. What about you, Mike O'Cain? WHAT HAVE YOU DONE? I could have done as good as job as you developing Tyrod. The kid was a winner from day one. And I sure as hell could recruit better than you.
Adios, Curt Newsome. It's been one joke OL after another. And the best part about your hire a few years ago? Your solid ties to the Tidewater area. Laughable. But because I'm pretty sure you're not going anywhere, I can't wait for you to inherit a whole new class of tight ends to turn into out-of-place linemen.
Bud Foster? You can stay. But start recruting more. You want to be a head coach one day -- learn what it takes to hit the road and recruit your ass off.
If your name wasn't mentioned, you can stay. Especially you, Coach Gray.
If I could sum up the approach I long for, it would be in the four-second clip from 'Independence Day' below:
If you don't know what that means, then you're the guy that's OK with us missing on players because we have 20 kids who want to be Hokies.