JHam is new DC

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GAP FIT BABY LET'S GOOOOOOO

The Orange and Maroon you see, that's fighting on to victory.

Zohn and Mitchell gone.

In Sam Rogers we trust.

Shouldn't this have been the part 3 thread?

Also, this part:

Fire up the former player as CB coach wheel of destiny.

The Orange and Maroon you see, that's fighting on to victory.

Mitchell and Burden not returning. Will be interesting to see who replaces them.

Is there a reason why?

There's been some rumbling that Burden was not doing the greatest job..

Mitchell I'm a little surprised by since the CB's have played well 3/4 years and the the bad year they were totally inexperienced.

Our secondary was torched in the UVa game.

Our secondary was safeties were torched in the UVa game.

FIFY

Is it basketball season yet?

Wasn't just our safeties who were getting torched.

It was for the most part. The corners played very well in that game minus the one busted coverage where Chatman (I think) was supposed to be playing cover 3 and instead stayed short.

Is it basketball season yet?

Yes, safeties got torched, but it was more due to how we had to play Perkins. After the first two series Dax and Ashby never dropped in coverage....they stayed about 5 yards from the line. This means our safeties were having to cover the ENTIRE middle of the field on an island. Guess wrong on them going for the sticks and big time play ensues.

The safety play this year as a whole was extremely better than last year. That isn't even debatable.

I agree 100%. I was just making the point that the "secondary didn't get torched" necessarily. The corners played very well.

Is it basketball season yet?

Got beat by 5 seconds. Guess it's time to start drinking.

Honestly very surprised, but happy for JHam and the players to keep a familiar face at the helm.

This should make a lot of people very happy. And a few people who thought we were going to hire Nick Saban for DC will be disappointed.

Plenty of coaching turnover, lots of space for new coaches, retaining the character of the team. Foster still around for advice.

Need to step it up on the recruiting end.

Wow. Great for JHam! But I admit I'm a little shocked. Keeps continuity of scheme though which should be great for the next few years. If we were leaning on JHam all along I'm also surprised we made such a last minute push for Odom.

I'm thinking Odom was just too good to pass up, if available.

But this is clearly what was being planned all season.

Let's gooo! Time to see what he's got. 🦃

Really happy for Hamilton and the LPD!

Sucks we couldn't get Odom, but I'm excited to see what a young, energetic, and completely healthy Foster disciple can do with his defense!

And I think Bud will do more behind the scenes stuff then he would've done with an outside hire.

Yes,that's the Hokie Bird riding a camel. Why'd you ask?

Underwhelming, but not surprising in my opinion ....also Mitchell who was probably our best assistant on D is gone after the job he did with Farley and Waller this year? Ummmm what?

So many details we won't and likely ever know. It very well could have been a mutual decision regarding Mitchell.

In Sam Rogers we trust.

Was going to comment the same thing once I read he was gone....Seems like a weird fire based on the performance/praise the DB's got

Surprised to read this take when Mitchell got roasted on here more than any defensive assistant prior to this season.

The Orange and Maroon you see, that's fighting on to victory.

To be fair I wasn't someone who roasted Mitchell over coals last year...I thought he did good work every season here other than the year he had two freshmen starters at CB.

After Waller and Farley, our secondary fell off a cliff.

JHam's the man, and it's his call, I suppose.

Chamarri Conner has entered the chat

No, I *don't* want to go to the SEC. Why do you ask?

We don't love dem Hoos.

Chamarri Conner has just laid the chat out

So TG for DB coach? /s

That would be awesome but he's making $450k this year at UF. Depending on what JHam's contract looks like, are we going to be willing to pay him enough to leave UF?

Well with Mitchell leaving, we have JHam's spot and Mitchell's open. Could just combine to make DB coach a position again like TG was previously.

Way too much work to be DC + Corners + Safeties coach

Was saying Hamilton could just be DC and hire a DB coach for safeties and corners. Could also hire a standalone LB coach now.

This is what I was thinking. Assuming JHam is going to be paid less than Bud was, that frees up some cash to bring in coaches, as well as the departure of Mitchell on the defensive side.

Maybe this frees up enough cash to cover TG for both DB groups, but as you said we also need to bring in a dedicated LB coach, since that was Foster's group.

We also have Tyler and Prioleau on staff, maybe they move into those roles.

I'll eat crow if it happens but why the hell would Torian come back if it wasn't to be DC? Makes no sense.

I'd gladly take Tyler for LBs and maybe Loren Johnson as the DBs coach if we can get him.

With so many starters coming back next year it's a perfect year for Bud and Wiles to mentor JHam

VB born, class of '14

Scuttlebutt on 247 is that a ton of staff shakeup coming. Possibly a Kill-type hire or Co-DC coming in to help JHam. Should find out in the next several days. Apparently we are going young and recruiting-heavy. Sounds like Wiles could be out. Going to be a great staff around JHam from the sounds of things.

I wonder if we could go with Grantham and TG from UF. Grantham could be Co-DC and take the linebackers, while Gray takes the secondary. That could fill out the entire defensive staff. And also probably break the bank.

Zero chance that happens unless UF fires their entire staff.

Or maybe we could get Saban and Belechick as co DC's??

Yes! Now we are TALKING! We gotta stop thinking of ourselves as being a second tier destination!

Don't forget Coach O to replace Corny.

My 2019 Season Challenge: only comment with Star Wars memes. (completed as of Nov. 29)

Oh shoot I had assumed we were going to reanimate Bill Walsh - did we decide to go in another direction?

Once LSU got the 1 seed, things changed.

My 2019 Season Challenge: only comment with Star Wars memes. (completed as of Nov. 29)

I think you forgot the /s !

Please, no Grantham.

Signed,
Someone who hasn't forgotten his stellar (/s) work at Georgia

No, I *don't* want to go to the SEC. Why do you ask?

We don't love dem Hoos.

Are you kidding?

That's the rub, isn't it? I could imagine that Torrian might come back in a lateral move if he was paid more or wanted to just be back here again. A bit of a stretch, but hey, a horse can dream can't he?

hey, a horse can dream can't he?

We'll have to take your word on that.

a horse can dream can't he?

Of course, of course.

My 2019 Season Challenge: only comment with Star Wars memes. (completed as of Nov. 29)

Well there is the answer. I wonder if he was the backup plan and Odom is going to Memphis. It is a bit surprising Burden is gone since he had recruited well recently.

"I'm too drunk to taste this chicken" - Colonel Sanders via Ricky Bobby

Unless Zohn was looking to move on anyway. He was the only holdover from Beamer's offensive staff, and his name has been popping up in connection with openings at other schools.

Zohn will wind up at ODU in some capacity, probably OC

I don't know much about VT's assistant coaching salary structure but I wonder if this meant that a Barry Odom type was too expensive of a hire? No idea, but I'm excited for Hamilton.

On the other hand, wasn't Zohn one of the better recruiters? Wonder who we go after to replace him and Mitchell. I'd like to see either someone with VT ties or someone without Fuente/Cornelsen ties. Get some new coaching blood in here.

Not really sure how to feel about this. Obviously tempered my expectations already when Odom was announced to be the lead candidate for HC at Memphis, but I didn't expect us to go the JHam route this soon.

Could definitely be a great hire longterm, but he is very young and P5 is a tough place to cut your teeth as a DC.

Chris, thoughts on Zohn? Kind of concerning that he was one of the few that could recruit and now he's headed out.

There had been smoke about Zohn being tied to other jobs like ODU. Personally, I think Zohn was a good but not elite recruiter. Hopefully we get someone to replace his 757 connections, but I think it's not outlandish to safe we can reasonably make a hire that is both an improvement/status quo as a recruiter and a better position coach.

As far as how this affects us specifically in the 757, we would need to ask someone who really knows that area well.

Would make sense for Zohn to become an OC at ODU, especially if Shane Beamer gets the HC job.

At least he's got a familiar support structure at VT, with Wiles still on staff and Bud still behind the scenes in some capacity. (If nothing else, he's on speed dial.) I imagine it'll be easier than if he got hired at some school as DC.

This is home! Love the hire! Start jumping! Go Hokies!

"Take care of the little things and the big things will come."

Wow. Major scoop for free over on 247 on the hire. Dabo was after JHam? Possible former player in play for an opening, and more changes likely coming on O...

Link?

Having a conversation with you is like a Martian talking to a Fungo.

#JustinTime

Ehhhh i don't know how to feel about this

Frame by Frame
Death by Drowning
In your own, In your own
Analysis
Step by step
Doubt by numbers
In your own, In your own
Analysis

I hope Hamilton is prepared to add some of his own ideas and wrinkles to the scheme and not simply try to "call it like Bud would call it". While I certainly appreciate the continuity, I also see the need for fresh (dare I say groundbreaking) ideas like Bud brought to us a couple decades ago.

Gotta give Fuente credit here, taking a chance on a young coach from the Bud Foster tree. J Ham must've crushed it this year! Congrats!

They ask you how you are and you just have to say that you're fine when you're not really fine.

Glad to have a Hokie in charge of the LPD. Hopefully he's able to build on what we have and what we've done over the past seasons, but obviously a bit nervous. The good and bad is he knows the type of legacy he is following. It's a lot of pressure but also a big opportunity.

Did Zohn fall out of favor? That Campbell news was kind of interesting since from the snippets I saw on here he was the reason why BC didn't commit during his OV. Wasn't Zohn one of, if not the, top recruiters for us? Is he made more expendable since we're reaching past the state of VA?

Did anyone see the Mitchell change happening? CBs looked really damn good this year compared to last season.

Minimal transition. This is a move for a 2020 run. I like it.

We need a home run CB coach hire.

"I liked you guys a lot better when everybody told you you were terrible." -Justin Fuente

The LPD is here to stay. Keep it in the family.

Gobble Till You Wobble

I'm assuming he takes CB/Safeties which could be the reason of Mitchell departure. Maybe bring on Jack Tyler as LB coach?

Bringing in Captain Jack would be a no brainer move to LB corach. Keep Wiles at DL/consigliere, Tyler at LB, Hammer at Safeties and I'm assuming either Mitchell is leaving because A) He's pissed he didn't get the DC job or B) Hammer is bringing in his own guy at CB (Brandon Flowers???)

Who is playing Safety next year anyway..Devon Hunter..is Diablo coming back next season?

is Diablo coming back next season?

I keep seeing this, but I'm not sure he would even get drafted. He would test out really well at the combine, but he hasn't had a great career (it hasn't been terrible), and he REALLY struggles in coverage. He needs to have one full healthy season where he refines his coverage skills IMO

Is it basketball season yet?

Is there such a thing as de-Hilgartification? I love the Devil (lol, take that out of context), but he's too big to play FS now.

If he moves to ROV, then it's all good.

No, I *don't* want to go to the SEC. Why do you ask?

We don't love dem Hoos.

I've had this thought, but he'd still be responsible for TE & Slot (occasionally)... His coverage skills are really bad.

Is it basketball season yet?

Yeah I'm curious who he will bring in to run the ILBs.

He can certainly probably bring in someone like Brandon Flowers or another former great VT CB to help run the CB group.

The ILBs is where I'm curious to see who will take over.

He played with Xavier Adibi who is making his way up the coaching ranks.

I know I'm just throwing our former players, but I honestly don't know who else he would bring in.

What's
Important
Now

If Bud likes the hire, I like the hire.

That said. We need to add in recruiters to the positional coaches on D and hope that Bud's tutoring skills are as good as his coaching.

LOL 247 is melting down right now.

Fanbase: we want former player coaches!
also fanbase: No not that one!

VB born, class of '14

If we got Bruce Ariens to replace Corny I think they would still be upset.

We want _______! No not that one!

It's amazing how much Hokie fans on the internet and my 4 year old son have in common.

Click here to destroy wall.

247 and meltdowns go together like Clemson and ACC Championships. Inevitable.

In Sam Rogers we trust.

If only we could fire unrealistic fans.

Or complacent ones

Recruit Prosim

But those are the realistic ones!

247 reporting Wiles is out too.

Can you put up a link? I don't see anything about Wiles.

There is literally an entire thread over there with a ton of replies that is entitled "Wiles"

I think we already knew (or at least figured) that he would leave with Bud.

No, I *don't* want to go to the SEC. Why do you ask?

We don't love dem Hoos.

"Leave"

Recruit Prosim

Wait wtf, did he fire Wiles?

There's a reason he wasn't listed in the original announcement, like Mitchell and Burden whose departures are effective immediately.

Who and when was the last time the Hokies had an offensive coordinator that wasn't getting skewered by the fans?

I think Lefty had a bit of a grace period between being hired and actually coaching a game.

1999 and 2000 probably.

VTCC '86 Delta Company, Hokie in Peru, Former Naval Aviator, Former FBISA, Forever married to my VT87 girl. Go VT!

Corn in 2016 maybe even 2017

What's
Important
Now

The 247 backlash alone is worth this hire. I am a huge fan in every way

I don't like this hire at all. I'm sure he is a solid coach and a great guy, but he's only been around 6 years.. His only other "coordinator" experience is at a D2 school... His other coaching experience before coming here was VMI.. People are giving credit to Fu for getting the young up and comer but where are examples of that working out for defensive coordinators? Most successful young DC's have a whole lot more experience than this and elite talent and or coaching staffs. How exactly is this a better hire than Torrian Gray? I'll try to remain positive and maybe I'll get surprised but I really don't see this working out in the long run.

Only reason I can think of that it's a better hire than Torrian Gray is that Torrian may have turned us down.

Allegedly was interested and was never contacted

Recruit Prosim

"That move was slicker than a peeled onion in a bowl of snot." -Mike Burnop

Fake news, he wasn't interested. I wish he was because that's who I would have loved to land. However, I think if we put a good recruiting staff around Hamilton we will be fine, I do also get the concern from some fans about his lack of experience.

Go for it

let's put it this way, it's a better hire because Hamilton got Foster's recommendation.

(please draw your conclusions about whether that means Gray got a recommendation from Foster, or not)

There's a reason why we kept hearing his name as a likely top candidate for the role. With Odom now likely to take a head coach position, it just meant our original plan got to be realized.

If Bud trusts this then I like it. Now we have to surround him with elite recruiters so we can continue moving forward.

With that said, there is absolutely a chance this blows up. JHam has shot up the coaching ranks in a hurry. That could either be good or bad, but I'll lean toward it being good. Bud basically hand picked the guy to be his successor. He sees something in him that I trust.

King Alum of the House Hokie, the First of His Name, Khal of the Turkey Legs, The rightful Heir to the Big Board, the Unbanned, Breaker of Trolls and Father of Gritty

The reason that I am upset with this hire is that it is extremely lazy and extremely safe to our coaches.

Target 1) Guy who used to work for Fuente (who for the record I would have been very happy with.

Target 2) Meh, just promote the internal guy who has 6 total years of coaching, who's position group underperformed this year, and who was hired by this staff

It's so lazy. We have cash to flash. We have an exciting roster of defensive talent. This hire was apathetic. If JHam was the best hire available, fine, but we didn't even look beyond one other guy, probably only because of his existing ties to Fuente/Memphis.

The corporation I work for is one of the largest in the world and we feed on competition. Every year our staff is ranked by management. The best performers get money thrown at them, the weakest links are out on performance plans and fired if they don't provide measurable performance improvements. We poach talented, experienced individuals and welcome the diversity. It's honestly disgusting to see our football program run like friends club instead of a business.

Recruit Prosim

Agreed. I think a lot of people like this hire bc it's one that feels comfortable. Not sure how anyone could look at a blind resume and experience and feel confident that this is going to help us knock off Clemson and win the ACC or compete for a NC.

The biggest problem with a hire like Odom would have been would he have stuck around long enough to achieve that anyways? But the big thing with Hamilton is the players love him, they will play hard for him, and he's gonna be an immediate recruiting upgrade over Bud, something that we've been lacking for quite some time now. I'm not head over heels about the hire but I'm definitely not deflated about it, let's give him some time

Go for it

That's weak minded thinking. We hire the best available. If they leave for a better job, that means our defense was playing well.

Wiggins influence is still felt through our team. Our WR room is great. It's bad for business to only what to hire people you are comfortable with or who you think want to stay forever

Recruit Prosim

How do you think we hired Wiggins in the first place? You are contradicting yourself

I agree with this. I don't want to work at a company where I will be static for my 40 year career. I want to go some place where I'm promised professional growth or good exit ops.

That said, JHam being promoted could make us more attractive to young coaching talent; they could view VT as a place where they can rise quickly if they prove themselves.

Twitter me

Wouldn't it be better to be a place that's attractive for proven talent?

Recruit Prosim

The biggest problem with a hire like Odom would have been would he have stuck around long enough to achieve that anyways?

This is a very good problem to have. If Odom was the pick, and he performed so well that he went to another team in a few years as a HC that means that he's doing a great job.

It's a sign of a successful program.

I found TKP after two rails from TOTS then walking back to my apartment and re-watching the 2012 Sugar Bowl. I woke up the next day with this username.

I don't disagree with this take. My points above are simply about someone trying to explain why this was done without facts and assuming decisions were made based on short term success as some sort of problem. I hope we are so successful that our coaches are getting offered opportunities. To your point - sign of success.

The biggest problem with a hire like Odom would have been would he have stuck around long enough to achieve that anyways?

So you're essentially saying Odom would have been too good of a coach to hire, and therefore we shouldn't do it. I disagree with that and that train of thinking. Odom getting another job would indicate he was doing well. Have a buyout clause in his contract if he leaves in 2-3 yrs, keep Hamilton on staff, and we're in the same position 2-3 years from now and Ham has a couple more years of experience.

It's not that simple, fact of the matter is Odom was holding out for a head coaching job now. Secondly let's say we hire Odom he comes in recruits players for his 3-4 system then leaves in 2 years and we go back to a different system, then we've essentially wasted 2 years of recruiting and gotten even farther away from having a consistent defense. I agree with getting the best possible, but you also have to get the best possible that MAKES THE MOST SENSE.

Go for it

You are certainly entitled to your take. I also work and run a large organization within a very large corporation and would say that a football program and large corporations aren't much alike.

I admit there is risk to this hire (big risk to bring in someone new and unfamiliar with current scheme and personnel too) however, I think your take is lazy. Why would you assume that this is some boys club and that JF and everyone else involved doesn't understand they are hinging their success to JHam's ability to be successful? For them to win, he has to win in various ways - culture, recruiting, prep, staff assembly, game planning etc. also, if he wasn't ready why put him in a position to fail? Last, why assume that everyone else wants the job? Just because we have a job to offer doesn't mean the other side wants it - does that make us lazy? If going through the process brought us back to JHAM as the best based on VT's specific present situation then let's roll. See Wisconsin coach that has been referenced several times by Bitter and Coleman.

To be clear, I'm not saying all of these things happened. I'm simply saying your take ignores those possibilities and assumes laziness and that comes across as mainly cynical when you don't have any facts to support the lazy claim.

If going through the process brought us back to JHAM as the best based on VT's specific present situation then let's roll.

This is basically what I said. The problem is that this isn't what happened.

Recruit Prosim

Back up the claim - how would you know?

And those are typically the most toxic companies. You a ranked by how buddy buddy you are with management. Or you don't have to be good just better than the bect guy, which then why would I help that person? Oh I am not seen as a team player? Well I help them by pointing out a huge flaw in their work late in the project instead of when I first found the flaw at the kickoff of the project. This way I can look really smart saving the day at the end and make some one else look bad.

So congrats on your job at Microsoft or Boeing or whatever company you work for. I am glad that I work for a same company where we don't compete with each other because we are too busy doing amazing things together.

Have fun with your Type A rat race I guess?

The Orange and Maroon you see, that's fighting on to victory.

Your comment added nothing to the conversation about the football team. Honestly it's close to a personal attack.

Recruit Prosim

If you're going to bring your company into the discussion I'm going to call your company a rat race, because it sounds like a rat race.

The Orange and Maroon you see, that's fighting on to victory.

That tirade you raged on is all about you. You're projecting your own personal situation on the football program.

You whole narrative is based on a thing you made up: we only looked at two targets.

Rather than use terms like "wonder", "appear" or "seem", you assert your fabrication as canon and work yourself into a rage over it.

You describe a workplace with a surplus of qualified, unattached, disposable candidates, and a negligible affect of turnover.

Other than "qualified" I'm not sure any of these conditions apply to the hiring of a DC. Basically,

Your comment added nothing to the conversation about the football team. Honestly it's close to a personal attack.

Rants about his business. Business gets brought up. Hey don't talk about my business, that's personal!

More like "Hey don't talk about my business, that's irrelevant to the discussion" but yes, this.

Related my business to the football program is relevant, being condescending about my business doesn't seem relevant to Hokie sports

Recruit Prosim

I don't know why you're getting downvoted. Running a football program like a friends club is how you need someone like Jerry Kill to eventually come in and help you right the ship after going 0-2 in your conference.

I found TKP after two rails from TOTS then walking back to my apartment and re-watching the 2012 Sugar Bowl. I woke up the next day with this username.

POTD I saw in the heaping mess and hilarity on 247: What if Kill tells Fuente he needs to fire Fuente?

Why would you bring in Jerry Kill if comfortable is your why in the first place? Maybe the reason isn't that and just needing experience, different perspective, new ideas etc.

I hear you, but I admire the humility it took to bring in Kill. To me it sends the signal that this is about winning and creating a quality sustainable culture above all else - including relationships, comfort level etc. it doesn't mean it's going to work, but it does mean they care about the right things for the right reasons.

The moves made since Kill came in verify that. NewQB, staff changes, running game changes and more to come.

Maybe you bring in Jerry because one of your friends is really good friends with him?

Running a football program like a friends club is how you need someone like Jerry Kill to eventually come in and help you right the ship

Isnt Kill part of the friend's club?

"Coach [Jerry] Kill, I've known for some time, coached in FCS football against him and then I moved on to TCU. Me, him, and Coach Patterson are very close friends, so we continued our relationship through that time."

🦃 🦃 🦃

I'm not sure that hiring a young up and comer without much experience is something I would consider the "safe" option for a coach potentially in a make or break season. Could it be that he sees a high level of potential in Hamilton and trusts him based on what he's seen? After all, if he fails spectacularly, Fuente is likely done. The "safe and comfortable" narrative doesn't make any sense given the context here.

Agree with you that it can be viewed as lazy. However, I'm ok with it since I firmly believe Bud has helped groom him for this, albeit in a short time frame. Bud will more than likely be around to help. I also think JHam is pretty damn smart. You don't play four different positions in college if you don't have a good head on your shoulders.

Thank you for reminding why I hate corporate America so much. I'm glad you enjoy it because it sounds awful to me and is a main reason I'm an entrepreneur and fishing guide. I don't make much money (yet) but damn I love being a fishing guide.

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

I'm in no way looking down on how other people want to approach their career or lifestyle. Fishing sounds awesome. I'm just saying that I don't approve of our football team being run that way.

Recruit Prosim

Chill out. A lazy hire would be selecting the most overrated highest priced guy that internet posters think is worthy. Instead he had months to evaluate and think about the situation and chooses not a friend from Memphis but a young guy that Bud had to bend his ear over to get hired in the first place. This could make or break Fuente and you write it off as lazy with no evidence.

You have probably not been with your corporation long enough to realize the good ol' boy network that almost definitely exists.

"I am probably too rational to be here"

I actually agree that J Ham wasn't the correct hire but thinking that internal competition is a better management model than collaboration is absolutely insane. If you actually believe that I've got some Sears stock to sell you back at the 2013 price.

It's quite possible an engineer mill is an improper comparison model for a Defensive Coordinator hire.

Every year our staff is ranked by management. The best performers get money thrown at them, the weakest links are out on performance plans and fired if they don't provide measurable performance improvements. We poach talented, experienced individuals and welcome the diversity.

Yeah you like this now but wait until you are deemed a weak link despite your performance and are shuffled to the back corner because you were reorg'd and your new management resents the fact your team even exists. Nearly 10 years invested into a job only to see it go tits up in the span of 18 months because promotions went to buddies of the guy who ended up on top and not because of merit.

And yeah, my company acted exactly like how you say. The money was great when I had management who cared. The second it started to go sideways, that place became a living hell. 2 months into my new job and I can honestly say it's a move I should have made years ago.

King Alum of the House Hokie, the First of His Name, Khal of the Turkey Legs, The rightful Heir to the Big Board, the Unbanned, Breaker of Trolls and Father of Gritty

By your own corporation's measure, maybe Hamilton was one of the "best performers" for reasons that aren't immediately evident on the field. I will say that I'm also skeptical, but I'm willing to give him a fair shake. I'm sure Whit had veto power over the hire and would have stepped in if he didn't feel he was qualified, and honestly that's enough for me to give him the benefit of the doubt.

Good Ole Boy network only works when the head man is untouchable (ie Beamer hiring Stiney). When your ass was on the hot seat literally two months ago, you are going to make the best hire you can possibly make. Fuente May have thought Odom was that hire, but since that didn't work out then he decided JHam was the guy. There are plenty of other fish in the sea besides JHam, so it speaks volumes that Bud vouched for him and Fuente hires him knowing the next year or two are make or break. It's also interesting while all this buzz around Odom was going on, Fuente was flying around with JHam to visit recruits in home.

It's so lazy. We have cash to flash. We have an exciting roster of defensive talent. This hire was apathetic. If JHam was the best hire available, fine, but we didn't even look beyond one other guy, probably only because of his existing ties to Fuente/Memphis.

Here's the thing about the hire: We have no idea what happened in the background. Bud announced his retirement over the summer, so obviously the staff has thought about his replacement. So of course they looked beyond one guy, otherwise JHam would've been announced earlier.
Maybe we did contact that guy from UGA (Schuhmann?), but he wasn't interested. Or Ash. Or Odom. Or any other number of candidates.
Maybe we told candidates we love JHam, so he has to stay. And maybe we already decided Jack Tyler would be the LB coach. And some candidates wanted to bring their own guys.
Maybe TG was contacted, and wasn't interested. Who knows.
My assumption...JHam was told during the season that he would definitely be interviewed, and we definitely want him to be part of the staff moving forwards, but we need to see how the coaching carousel plays out, before making a final decision.
There is way too much unknown about the search to say it was a lazy decision.

Well-said. I don't know why it's so difficult for some to understand this. I guess it's just way easier to get all enraged and call it a lazy hire.

Even though I disagree with your stance, the 12 DV's are dumb, this is productive conversation that's not inflammatory nor poorly reasoned.

Anyways, I think you under estimate the importance of cultural fit/working relationship. While I agree that JHam's resume is lacking, Fuente has worked with him for 2-3 years now, and JHam essentially has references from some of the best in the business (Bud Foster and a ton of former VT players).

Additionally, I don't think this search was lazy. We were (allegedly) in talks with Odom, Waiters, Ashe, and JHam. I (like almost everyone here) have no insight into if JHam was the first choice winning the job outright, or the only person to accept the job, or somewhere in between.

Thirdly, I'm curious to see the rest of staff shake ups. Given the Zohn and Mitchell departments, and rumors of Wiles leaving and further shake up on the offensive side of the ball, this could be financially smart move. If you look at what the defensive staff was making last year, and assume a 10% increase across the board, we're looking at ~$1.5-$1.75M salary range for the whole staff. That's not a huge pie to cut. I'm okay taking a riskier hire here if it allows us to address multiple other areas of need.

The corporation I work for is one of the largest in the world and we feed on competition. Every year our staff is ranked by management. The best performers get money thrown at them, the weakest links are out on performance plans and fired if they don't provide measurable performance improvements. We poach talented, experienced individuals and welcome the diversity.

First of all, Zohn and Mitchell are gone, with potentially more changes coming. We're definitely cutting out weakest links.

Moving on to some general comments on organizational behavior...
I know Jack Welch (the most overrated business leader of all time IMO, but I digress) preached this philosophy, but when I here it, I can't help but think that your hiring/talent acquisition process is incredibly inefficient. If you have to cut the bottom 10% of people each year (I'm not sure what percentage your company does, but I believe that what GE has famously done for decades), then it seems like your company is being lazy when it comes to vetting people on the front end or failing to mentor people once they come into the company. If you hire or mentor better you could decrease turnover and HR costs, while performing at the same level. Also - that's not to say that you should never fire people, but doing it on an annual basis is dumb. Hire slowly, fire quickly - if someone isn't a fit, you typically know pretty quickly.

Finally, there's a difference between a competitive and a combative culture. Amazon has a competitive culture where everyone drives each other to get better. GE has a combative culture, where one's person's success can literally lead to another person's downfall (because GE fires on a percentage annually). Organizations that make annual cuts tend to fail in the long term. Adam Grant (professor at Wharton, probably the world's foremost expert on organizational psychology) has done some interesting research on companies that use the GE model. He's not a fan.

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I'm honestly wondering if the hire is based on the perception that Fuente *might* be a lame duck coach, which is what I was afraid of happening in September.

If the coaching world sees the program as in decline, and a coach that is likely on the hot seat, why would you take the position when the situation is a no-win?

I'm not upset about this hire, it all is what it is, but it's in my mind, a head-scratcher. But at least schematically, nothing will change with the defense and the personnel for the 2020 season.

The real test for Fruente will be whom he hires as assistants for the newly vacated spots. Get good hires there, then you know that a good foundation is being laid. More head scratching choices then we might have a problem. Time will tell, but...but.....congrats the JHam, gotta be an awesome thing for him.

I don't think this happened in a vacuum. This coaching staff very clearly thinks extremely highly of JHam and is all-in on fast-tracking him to stardom in the coaching circuits. The only thing that was going to put a wrench in these plans is if the defensive guru that just lost his job as the Missouri head coach wanted to be the DC here, and if not for Memphis essentially offering him their job, he probably would be here.

The way JHam is rising, and the rumors that he was the one basically running the defense from the Duke game on, as well as the rumors that Bud essentially hand-picked him to be his own successor, it sounds a lot like how guys like Lincoln Riley and Dabo Swinney shot up the ranks. Now, I'm not at all saying that he's going to be that kind of a coach here, but it certainly seems like we are trying to set him up to have the opportunity.

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the rumors that he was the one basically running the defense from the Duke game on

Oh yeah? If true, that's pretty awesome. Hopefully this will be the start of a new dynasty on defense.

Some of y'all have zero trust in Bud Foster; which is strange.

I'm disappointed nobody has asked the most important question about this hire being a Bud Foster disciple:

Can JHam stop a mobile QB?

Can JHam stop a mobile QB?

Can anyone stop a mobile QB? Have you seen the NFL lateley? any team being able to account for a dual threat QB is the toughest thing for a defense to accomplish. You add an extra blocker when your QB runs, and if the defense is in man to man- hence blitz mode, the d backs are not looking at the QB. The QB can see the field and beat 1 or 2 people and he is off to the races. So, no , I don't think J Ham is able to stop a mobile QB, and neither are the multi million dollar NFL D coordinators.

So Bud is almost in a Jerry Kill type situation with the defense still? Interesting.