Ultimately, I want the program to be great, both for my joy and for the benefit of Southwest Virginia as a whole. I believe the events of the last 72 hours have damaged the chances of the program enjoying sustainable success.
Fuente didn't have the cache to do this without damaging lots of relationships. The administration looks bad because of their lack of investment in football. The players trust was shaken. VT looks like second tier because the story is "Baylor had more resources, but he stayed."
Nobody, Fuente or the administration looks good the way this has played out. And it is going to have long range consequences. Scaring folks with a game of chicken won't open wallets. Giving donors a reason to be enthusiastic and excited will. I was a strong advocate for the Fuente hire. But I am one of those folks (not an alum, but a big fan who has resources) whose support should be cultivated. And nothing about the last 72 hours makes me feel positive and excited.
Instead, if there isn't big time, controversy free winning (dominating the Coastal, winning ACC titles, being in the Playoff conversation), Fuente is now a lame duck coach. His retention is directly linked to the cost of his buyout. As it goes down, the chances of being retained by an admin he just publicly burned will go down as well. It may be next year, it may be a couple of years down the road, but the odds are completely against this freshman class graduating with Fuente as the head coach. His on the field performance to date, coupled with the personnel available make me believe it is very unlikely that we will see the dominance needed for him to have a long tenure.
That trickles down to recruiting and player development. Frankly, this stinks, and there needs to be a major effort to repair the broken trust across Hokie Nation. And there isn't a track record of this brain trust doing that effectively. So, here we are. I am bummed. I am resigned that I don't believe the team I spend my Saturday's away from the office with, that I am heavily vested in, will truly compete at a level which makes a fan be the most fun. I don't have confidence in the ability of the people who have to deliver the performance to make that emotional investment worthwhile. And, that sucks.