USA Today: Time to declare end of JF era

Is it now a question of when, not if, Virginia Tech moves on from Fuente?

https://amp.usatoday.com/amp/6164509001

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Beamer lost 3 straight home games twice in his career. Fuente has done that 3 times in 6 years. It's time

Beamer went 2-8-1 in 1992, his fifth year as coach.

His record after six seasons was 24-40-2.

Then he went on to become the winningest coach in Division 1 football.

I'm not saying we should keep Fuente, but Beamer had some tough times initially.

Beamer was forced to make uncomfortable changes to keep his job. What has Fu done to change up the offense?

No questions, major changes have to be made. But we're probably past the time where he gets to change out his OC and get two more years.

That time has passed. Fu should have fired Corny and replaced Wiggins (when he left for Alabama) with a real WR Coach a few years ago. There is no way we can just install a new OC now and improve things. It's time for a complete rebuild.

"Give me a fuΒ’king beer", Anonymous Genius

Duh! We're at the point where he gets to clean out his office and spend Christmas at home with the family rather than worrying about recruiting.

Also, Beamer took over the clear #2 school in VA when George Welsh was in his heyday. Fuente took over the #1 program with UVA being a mess and all of the P5s just being ankle biters. Beamer was a Hokie. Fuente is not. Beamer was personable. Fuente is standoffish and runs a closed program.

Fair point. I counter with this. In his 7th year Beamer won 9 games and the schools first bowl in 7 years and second ever as a new member of a big East that was tougher than todays ACC. I'm beamers 9th season beat Texas in the Sugar Bowl. You see that trajectory with Fu? After signing 2 straight poor classes? I don't - at all.

You see that trajectory with Fu?

Sadly, I do not.

Beamer is nowhere close to winningest D1 coach, he is 6th if you count his Murray St days. Still 120+ behind Paterno

Beamer was the winningest ACTIVE coach in D1 football when he was still coaching.

And if there were any justice in the world, Paterno's record would be expunged of all victories attained after Sandusky's misdeeds were reported to him.

If there was any justice in the world, Ped St would have gotten the SMU treatment.

I been here since day 0.

Yes yes yes, would love to leg this 100 times.

"... I think he played his nuts off. And you can quote me on that shit."

The starting point of the program at these two points in time was vastly different

Absolutely.

And Beamer turned out to be a lot more special than most people realized.

I remember watching his first game vs UVa. It was in Charlottesville. It was at the end of the game, and VT scored. An extra point would tie the game (back when ending in a tie was possible), but instead of kicking the extra point, VT went for two points.

They didn't get it, and it meant VT lost the game. But I remember thinking even then, this guy doesn't play to tie, he plays to win.

Balls

Free Hugh

Context is key here:

Beamer had to deal with the mess left by the previous VT Headcoach, Bill Dooley, for NCAA infractions. Also, VT at that time was an independent. The starting point for Justin Fuente was miles better than Coach Frank Beamer.

Go Hokies!

Context IS key.

Dooley got VT football working, and competitive. He cut a few corners to do that, and he got a lot of mileage out of it. He may have cut corners at UNC, too, but didn't get caught there.

Expectations were a lot different for Beamer, and he was cut a LOT of slack. I'm glad he was, because he took the VT program he got and made it a Top-25 program.

No question, that Beamer did a lot more with a lot less.

It is pretty clear that cheating has always been worth it in NCAAF unless you are SMU or Washington and those happened a long time ago. Cheating has been pretty consistently worth the risk

Free Hugh

With this NIL shit, there's really no reason to cheat anymore, really. At least the kids are probably going to start unionizing.

I been here since day 0.

Yeah, they don't have to cheat anymore all the teams who have cheated for decades have the power system in place that now rewards them for all the cheating they've done over the years. People think the gap is closer with NIL, it's widened and it's not even close.

Go for it

People think the gap is closer with NIL, it's widened and it's not even close.

I disagree - shit will be wild for a few years, but it will calm down. No one wants to spend $800k on Spencer Rattler, just to see him benched.

The teams that were 'cheating' before NIL, for most part, were giving 4-figures or less to players. Only 5-stars were making big money.

Twitter me

The difference is these big schools have the boosters and money to make that mistake and overpay someone who doesn't pan out and it won't cost them, the non elite schools don't

Go for it

And we're living in 2021 where that same legend of a coach gets shown the door for losing a step, many top level coaches have to leave due to ..."issues," and a national champion coach is only given the courtesy of finishing the year

It's a completely different climate

I'm still figuring this out.

Beamer also inherited scholarship reductions his first two seasons, thanks to Bill Dooley. That had to have affected his record in the early years.

If Fuente had inherited something similar, I could see an argument for giving him more time.

Edit: Posted under the wrong comment. My bad.

Yep. Was there personally for 3 years of that. VT was notorious for playing a solid 3 quarters of football, then don't show up in the 4th. Now, we apparently wait until the last 5 minutes or less to do the same.

So I guess that's progress, of a sort.

HTHokie93

If you don't want to recruit clowns, don't run a clown show.

"I want to punch people from UVA right in the neck." - Colin Cowherd

Beamer took over a program that was on probation and had no consistent history of winning at a high level.

I think you could make an argument that this was ideal from an expectations perspective.

Beamer proved that winning was possible, but it wasn't quite ingrained as "expected". So he got a lot more leeway in season five when he went 2-8-1, although things were heating up.

Fuente, on the other hand, took over after a legend. Of course they paid him accordingly, so results are expected.

So the expectations of Fuente should be higher

Free Hugh

And are.

Not saying it's you, but a lot of people keep comparing the year X of both coaches tenure. Fuentes make or break should have been X/2

Free Hugh

Dooley also cheated by giving out extra scholarships. Beamer took over with sanctions where he was allowed 10 less scholarship players. I bet Beamer could have killed it earlier on if he had 114 scholarship players like Dooley instead of 85 (when 95 was the max allowed).

Recruiting matters!!! That was 2 years of classes of 15-17 players when other schools were recruiting 30. Beamer was allowed to dig out of the hole. Fuente is being allowed to dig a deeper hole.

Your citing of numbers with no context is disingenuous at best and stupid at worst.

Your citing of numbers with no context is disingenuous at best and stupid at worst.

I believe I offered some context. And I did it without being a jerk.

We can debate the various effects of sanctions, but Beamer got a lot of leeway over the sanctions, and he got a lot of benefit from VT taking an interest in football, where previous VT administrations had not.

If you're going to try and make the case that Dooley didn't do more good than harm for the program, I'm going to say you're wrong. He took VT, a program that had only been to one bowl game in 1947, to three bowl games, and he won one of those.

I said he cut a few corners. Not sure what you're trying to debate, even.

Beamer arguably did things the right way. But he also had a pretty understanding fan base, that cut him some slack when he needed it.

Well, even if the fan base didn't cut Fuente slack, the AD did last December.

I think Whit and a lot of the fan base cut him some slack, but it's not unlimited.

If you're going to try and make the case that Dooley didn't do more good than harm for the program, I'm going to say you're wrong. He took VT, a program that had only been to one bowl game in 1947, to three bowl games, and he won one of those.

I said he cut a few corners. Not sure what you're trying to debate, even.

Beamer arguably did things the right way. But he also had a pretty understanding fan base, that cut him some slack when he needed it.

None of this is accurate and you've tried to sell this bill of goods before.

Here are actual FACTS if anyone cares to read:

https://www.thekeyplay.com/comment/341317#comment-341317

Spoiler: Dooley very bad for VT. Beamer very good for VT, but was nearly kicked by admin/fans that did not cut him slack when needed.

(just a note to say ppl might have to scroll down a bit to see your comment -- i did at least)

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller

thx! fixed now.

Reading through your comment (which I love every time I see it, by the way), can't help but notice this part

the 20 scholarships lost in 1988 and 1989 would have belonged to redshirt seniors, true seniors, and redshirt juniors in 1992, players that would have added valuable depth and leadership to a Tech team that routinely coughed up games in the last five minutes of that season.

We are in a similar boat now, with teams that are routinely coughing up games in the last few minutes. However, the reason we are doing it isn't because we lost some 20 scholarship players, but because our recruiting starting a few years back bottomed out and those are supposed to be the players we are supposed to be relying on late in games now.

This is my school
This is home

We have a lot of 4* players playing on this team right now. BB, Tre, Tayvion, Payoute, King, Mitchell (obvi he's hurt), Dax, Artis, Williams, Garbutt, Conner, Hunter (hurt). Probably a few more I failed to mention. We have just been terrible at developing our players, and then recruiting did really bottom out in 2020 and 2021.

Our starters are fine.

Its our depth that has taken a massive, massive hit. And that's a direct result of the shit recruiting that we've produced in recent years.

This is my school
This is home

Agree depth is an issue, but even our starters haven't really developed. Tre is basically the same player he was in 2018. Devon Hunter who was an elite recruit is going to wind up being a non-contributor. Dax is basically the same player. Tisdale has regressed. So on and so on. Players have just not been getting stronger and progressing through their career. And then as you mention beyond them there is zero depth.

There are multiple layers to the problem we have

1 - Starters don't develop year over year. What we see is what we get.

2 - Recruiting has bottomed out and we just don't have nearly the depth we used to because of it.

3 - Because our depth sucks, our starters are asked to do too much. This leads to a higher injury rate.

This is my school
This is home

VT was also an independent in football for those first four years,, other independent tams at the time were FSU, Miami, Syracuse,,South Carolina, Notre Dame, Pitt, Penn State,, WVU, and those were all top 40 teams.in power ranking (as opposed to polls.)i
in 1987 ,VT lost to #10 Clemson(10-2),, UVA(8-4), Syracuse(11-0),, South Carolina,(8-4) East Carolina'(5-6), Tulane(6-6), Kentucky(5-6), WVU(6-6), #3 Miami (12-0), and beat Navy(2-9) and Cincy.(4-7)
(poll ratings there).- and opponents overall records in parentheses)

1988 3-9 overall but 4 losses were to top 10n teams(Clemson, WVU, South Carolina an FSU

1989 6-4-1 overall but 3 losses to top 20 teams, (Clemson, FSU, Virginia) and a win over #9 nWVU in Morgantown

so 11-22-1 over first three years
Exemplary results? no; good mix of good/bad teams? yes; -upward trjectory? yes

but the whole 1987 season was played under the cloud of NCAA investigation and penalties were announced in mid season-late October.

yes next 3 years were 6-6,5-6, and the horrible 2-8-1 (but 2 of those losses were to #! 'Miami, and #9 Syracuse, the tie was #21 NC State and of the losses, only 3 were by more than 1 score(Miami by 20, WVU by 9 and Syracuse by 19,- the other losses were by 3,4,1, 1, and 3 but changes WERE made in 1992 and the bowl streak started the next year

so similar but not same as the early Fu years

From the 2018 VT-uva game-"This is when LEGENDS are made!"

One thing about that '91 season was that we were ahead in the 4th quarter in all the games we lost by 1 score or less and maybe one of the other ones. We gave away so many games that year, similar to how we have given games away this year.

The current players have the ability to win those games next year.

The current coaches do not

Never Forget #1 Overall Seed UVA 54, #64 UMBC 74

*duplicate*

A couple of thoughts on what makes Virginia Tech a good landing spot for a great hire.

1 - Our need for a change isn't based on something from a tabloid or because of a laundry list of violations. Our Hokies aren't surrounded by scandal. No coach wants to come into a rebuild with that. Penn State got lucky with James Franklin and are also a true blue blood in college football and their budget shows it.
2 - While I agree with the articles point that Tech is an odd area to recruit to, with the changes made for student athletes to be paid for their likeness, there are many creative ways to attract taken now. If you have the right head of recruiting, who not only knows how to talk to recruits, but to also leverage this new revenue stream for them, we can get talent to VT.

VTMidge

PSU got Bill o'brien first

Missed that. So there is hope? Lol

VTMidge

It's tough to follow a legend. Jimbo did it, Ferentz did it. To a lesser extend RichRod did it.

Zook, Solich, Kiffin, Gibbs, Prince, Kiffin again, RichRid, Moeller, Peekins, Dubose, and a ton of others failed replacing a legend.

I can see how SWVA doesn't seem like an easy place to bring high caliber players, but in all honesty few other schools don't have that problem.
OU isn't in a sexy location
Ok State, Nebraska, UF, aTm, etc.
Those with great locations that aren't setting the world on fire:
GT, UCF, USF, Miami, UTx, USC, UCLA.

This is the best, easiest opportunity for a coach to get to the playoffs. A decent coach would be in the ACC driver's seat this year with this team.

It's not about a sexy location - it's about (1) how much talent do have nearby you and (2) how close are your competitors to that talent.

Once you hit 'elite' levels (Clemson, bama, UGA, etc), you can recruit nationally, until then, you have to be targeted in your approach and win the local battles.

The frustrating thing thing is that almost every geography with a major talent pool has another P5 program equidistant (if not closer) to it than VT.

That does NOT mean VT is doomed to be a mediocre football team forever; I'm just pointing out a challenge unique to VT

Twitter me

That's along the lines of what I was saying.

It's about commiting VT to Recruiting, We have been to old school in recruiting and its time to change that too.

A slightly old posts

I'm once again so hoping this disappears in the very near future with a new Coach

From my previous research -
Boise State in 5 years
2 Four Star recruits = 3 First RD picks, 18 Total Drafted Players. Overall Record 64-15

Arkansas in 5 years
28 Four Star recruits = 2 National Award Winners 26 Total Drafted Players. Overall Record 43 33

VT in 5 years
1 Five Star and 25 Four Star recruits = 2 First RD picks, 18 Total Drafted Players. Overall Record 51 - 29

Even staying local and being old school didnt help as we sure have missed out

In the just 2 years

The trendlines on that graph are disastrously misleading. I'm not sure if anybody honestly believes that Alabama's recruiting was absolute garbage before the 21st century, but that's what that trend line would seem to imply.

Unfortunately the team scoring over at 247 was completely overhauled a few years ago, so those class rankings have since moved around a bit as well.

The 247 Composite data before 2010 is pretty unreliable anyways.

247 didn't exist until 2010. And the data they backfilled into their composite over this time, well, let's just say they didn't do a real good job.

For example, if you wanted to build a recruiting database that uses current 247 composite methodology back to 1980, and just started using the composite data once you hit the start of the 247 composite in 2002, you'd end up with graphs that looked like this:

Where a simple substitution and conversion using Rivals scores [(Score x 4) + 70] shows how much more consistent Rivals data has been over this same time period:

Now the Alabama score seems to show a pretty stable decline from about 2000-2005, which is unfortunately when your graph starts. There's a pretty distinct reason for that- Alabama was in some pretty hot water, tip-toeing around the death penalty, and this is perhaps one of the darkest periods in that program's history.

Clemson had two of their worst recruiting classes in program history in 1999 and 2004, so that might also explain why their trendline would seem to indicate they used to be a pretty insignificant recruiting school before 2000, too.

Don't use trendlines if they're telling you a straight-up fiction. Alabama wasn't trash before 2000 -they won a National Championship as recently as 1992 and were already an established blue-blood.

I feel like this is the hill on which you have chosen to perish

Onward and upward

Yup.

I love stumbling into a conversation about play on the field that involves statistics. I don't even have to participate- it's just fascinating to see the layers of data people come up with, the context of the data become unravelled, and the conclusions people draw from it. We get that a lot on this site, and it's great.

French puts out a wealth of information on film reviews. Even in the comments, it's fascinating to see the things people catch as well. And there are a lot of people on this site that have been growing into some pretty perceptive watchers of film because of that guy.

Conversations on uniforms and cake or pie are subjective. As they should be.

Recruiting discussions tend to irk me. They're too often based on either no data ("Coach Hufflepuff can't recruit"), an anecdote or two ("What about those muggles he signed at Gryffindor?") or when there's data present, it's too easy to select key in on corrupt data to make a point (using an AD as an example to make a point about the power held by head coaches. Or relying solely on a glitch in pre-2010 data to make a point).

In this case I didn't see that happening- I saw trendlines that didn't belong and I spoke up. (I gave my usual spiel about being cautious about using composite data pre-2010, but that's just an FYI for anybody who's actually gotten up to the level of interest to use data on the subject.)

Apologies for being long-winded. But I do intend to introduce data into recruiting discussions where I think it's available and warranted.

Insult Hufflepuff one more time, I will mess you up

Outside it's night time, but inside it's LeDay

OU and OK State are each an hour away from the 24th largest city in America. Nebraska hasn't recruited well in decades. UF is in a state with lots of talent.

Other than GT (academics) and the G5 schools the other recruit quite well.

UCF and USF are currently G5, GT is always going to be little brother and has high academic standards, Miami, UT, and USC still bring in incredible talent, UCLA is probably the only good example in that list

Free Hugh

We have the easiest path of any major conference to the playoffs. We have a once rabid fan base that has withered away due to how shitty our program is now (thanks Fu!). If we hire the right coach we are set up to succeed.

We need to hire some ace recruiters and start landing top talent again. Maybe if we retain key players for more than a season or two we can develop some good players and continuity as well...

"Give me a fuΒ’king beer", Anonymous Genius

This kills me to say. I love Frank Beamer. I named by dog after him. But I can't help think that we'd be a different place if Beamer had retired a few years earlier. The program was on the down swing when he retired and it might have made a difference for the next coach if the program hadn't dropped off towards the end. I really think this would have helped on the recruiting trail. And we would not have ended up with Fuente because he was still in the early years at Memphis.

I've always thought that.

But this is also a bit of hindsight being 20/20, and we owed Beamer the continued opportunity until he decided it was time to go.

Yep. If he had retired at the end of, say, 2012? Who knows. The truth is, like Vtkey said, he deserved to go out on his own terms, and he wasn't ready then.

21st century QBs Undefeated vs UVA:
MV7, MV5, LT3, Braxton Burmeister, Ryan Willis, Josh Jackson, Jerod Evans, Michael Brewer, Tyrod Taylor, Sean Glennon, and Grant Noel. That's right, UVA. You couldn't beat Grant Noel.

I think that's fair take, butttt:

  1. It still would've been tough to follow a legend like Frank
  2. It still would have been tough to find the right coach (just because college football hires are really hard to get right, even in the best of circumstances)
  3. There was a LOT of turnover in university leadership prior to Frank leaving. Stegar AND Weaver both stepped down in 2014 after being in their respective roles since 2000 and 1997.

Bullet #3 is particularly interesting... Do you think that Weaver (given the stage of his career and health problems) would have to done proper due diligence when replacing Frank? Do you think Stegar - who underpaid faculty for years because he (genuinely) assumed everyone loved VT enough to take decreased pay (just like Frank Beamer did) - would've been okay with us spending >$3M on a football coach? While we can't say for sure, I'm quite confidence that the answer to both questions is 'No.'

I think it's easy to say that, in hindsight, VT could have parted ways with Frank earlier, and thus modernized alongside the rest of the sport instead of trailing by 5-10 years, but practically speaking, I don't think it was possible.

Twitter me

Weaver would have given the job to Bud, which may or may not have worked out.

I agree. Beamer retires 2 years earlier.
Weaver still in charge, hires a very popular choice in Bud.

Then, it would depend on Bud's hires and recruiting.
You could argue (and Foster had said as much) that he would have gone after a wide open spread offense and coordinator and put some hungry recruiters on staff.
Weaver wouldn't have had to pony up much head coach money relative to an outside hire.

Where's our time machine?

But I can't help think that we'd be a different place if Beamer had retired a few years earlier.

Booby Bowden and Beamer both had near epic status for building their schools up. Both are believed to have stayed on for to long

Bowden was told to retire. He was told he was running out of time to coach.

He was told to wrap it up. He ignored all the writing on the wall but FSU finaly moved on in 2009. After 2008 record 9–4 (5–3 ACC) and a 2009 record 7–6 (4–4 ACC)

By 2013 FSU had won its 3rd National Championship

Sure.

And look at where they are now!

With the same record as us AND a full trophy case...

To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
@BuryHokie #ThanksFrank

Agreed. In 3.5 years when the buyout is gone Whit will grow the balls to pull the trigger...

I can imagine no more rewarding a career. And any man who may be asked in this century what he did to make his life worthwhile, I think can respond with a good deal of pride and satisfaction:
β€œI served in the United States Navy"

Leg. I'm not so certain Fuente will be fired after this season. Fuente might have next season to right the ship if he offers staff changes.

Whit got his hand slapped last year for trying to pull the trigger.

The university as a whole is in a money pit post COVID.

If Whit was ready to move on, the move would have happened last week.

Whatever is going on, I'm still going to support my alma mater. But it will be very difficult for me to be invested in the football program.

TKPhi Damn Proud
BSME 2009

Has Whit ever fired a coach in any sport mid season in any of his jobs? It is atypical to do that except in the SEC or some of the other blue bloods with rabid fan bases.

Honest question here -- how many coaches has Whit actually fired? Obviously, two of his biggest hires came due to retirement (Beamer to Fuente) or other employment (Buzz to Young.)

I am not talking about just at VT or just Basketball or Football. And it's an honest question. Didn't he fire The football coach at Cindy?

Looks like Butch Jones left of his own accord and Tuberville coached after Whit left.

Oh, no, I'm with you. I wasn't offering a counterpoint, I genuinely don't know the answer.

Did a little research, of course it's hard to find data on the smaller sports, so I make no claims that this is a complete list.

The only coach I could find that he fired at Cincinnati was baseball coach Brian Cleary after the 2013 season.

At VT, he fired James Johnson (men's basketball), Dennis Wolff (women's basketball), Pat Mason (baseball), Scot Thomas (softball), all at the end of their respective seasons.

Didn't he fire Johnson to hire Brent.

Doesn't matter if it's cake or pie as long as it's chocolate.

Everything has changed with the early NLI signing period so any comparison before that on a mid season firing is comparing apples and oranges

Hokie Club member since 2017

Whit cannot afford to keep Fuente if the losses keep piling up this year. The stadium will be empty, donors are going to be pissed and will pull the plug, etc. etc. It'll be a disaster.

There is only 1 more home game left.

Whit is playing 4D chess here and realizes the beer sales from watching another CornFu game in Lane will offset the buyout.

If you feel the leather in your hand let it rip.

But lots more home games next year, and the years after.

True but everybody believes Fu is gone at the end of this season. Some think if he isn't gone sooner irreparable damage to our program will be done. (I don't think that)

I'm wondering if Whit is waiting until after the BC game to pull the plug. An interim might provide a small spark for attendance at the Duke game. You fire Fu now and the interim goes 0-2 on the road no one will give a shit about that last home game.

you are assuming that Fuente is able to win at least one of these. At his point even if he can, do we care? I actually think more people would rally around the team with an interim than with a lame duck, no matter 0 - 2 or not.

Actually I don't think Fuente will win either of the next two. I just think there will be a lot more initial excitement around the interim's first game, than a 2nd or 3rd game especially if team plays poorly in those games. BC game is also on a Friday so it would give the interim an extra day to prepare. All that being said I suspect the most likely scenario is Fu gets fired immediately after the UVA game.

Whit made it clear in the "year one" presser last year that it had nothing to do with money and he truly believes in Fuente as a coach. If you think he was lying on both fronts that's fine but I don't considering the tone that he spoke with. Hard to lie both with words and body language that seems congruent with those words

Hokie Club member since 2017

For the rest of the season we will see these types of articles. However, I don't think there will be a move before dec 16.

I'm also doubting Whit makes a moves after Dec 16. I think money is an issue for VT

Hokies, Local Soccer, AFC Ajax, Ravens

VT tries to keep it's programs solvent.

Which separates them from the high-stake gamblers like Maryland and Rutgers. $2.5 million is a lot of money, and so is $7.5 million. (buyout money)

I feel certain that Whit knows all the numbers in great detail, and will do what he thinks is in the long-term interests of VT athletics.

Usually if a buyout is explored/is an option, the money comes from big time boosters, not the athletic fund. And there were rumors last year that Whit had the money secured but the rug was pulled out from under him last second by the academic administration (which mightve been why Sands got boo'd during halftime of the Pitt game, amongst other reasons I'm sure).

The boosters have the money, if they want change they'll make it happen. If Sands steps in AGAIN...that might be the end of HIS career.

They'll really get after ya

The other thing people aren't getting is they're looking at this as a cost of $2.5M in a vacuum. Someone did a revenue example with beer sales at a home game. Not sure how much we make in a typical home game, but given the numbers here, it's not anywhere near those projections. However, we do get a LOT of revenue from ticket sales and bowls. The report that covers us not going to a bowl last year isn't available yet. The point being, if we lose a quarter of our ticket sales because people don't want to buy tickets to watch us lose, that's a loss of $4M per year already. If we lost half ticket sales, that's $8M. Not sure what not going to a bowl game loses us, but that could be another $1-2M. So if we didn't fire him for 4 years because of the buyout of $10M that's left, it would potentially cost us $16-36M to keep him for those same years. It's probably actually cheaper/more cost effective to pay the buyout given the potential revenue effects that essentially make it worth every penny, and I'm sure Whit knows it.

Even more reason to pull the trigger and give us an interim coach that might be able to give the team a spark and bowl eligibility.

If you feel the leather in your hand let it rip.

Sure, but who on this staff would you trust to do that?

Onward and upward

I'm in the Shibest or Tenuta camp, but I have to admit there aren't many good options on the current staff unfortunately. Is Sam Rogers available?

If you feel the leather in your hand let it rip.

Bring in Eugene Chung as Interim. Let him and Jham run it until new coach is on.

But there's only 1 home game left this season, so from a financial impact, probably better to let him go Dec. 16th. If Whit's worried about the recruiting class, that's a different story. I think Whit's the kind of guy who wouldn't want to pull a guy mid-season, or hire a guy who would be willing to abandon his team mid-season. As much as most of us are just eager to move on (including me), I think Whit will wait until the end of the season. The tough thing is they moved the early signing period up. In 2017 and 2018, it was around December 19th or 20th, meaning Whit would have had more time to announce a new coach and have them be able to cement the recruiting class. This year, the early signing period goes from the 15th to the 17th. So Whit could make an announcement early on the 16th, firing Fuente and announcing the new coach, giving the new guy almost 2 days to frantically call recruits and try to get them to sign. Or they agree to stay committed, but talk to them and possibly sign in Feb. It'll be interesting to see what happens, but my guess is we see future contracts with dates closer to Dec. 1.

I would rather he terminate Fuente Sunday after the UVA game and have a presser Monday to announce the new coach.

But what does that get you? Is there rationale other than we want him gone? Don't blow $2.5M because we're sick of the guy. There's recruiting, but addressed that in other comments. But don't fire him before the 16th just because we want him gone.

It gets you 3 weeks to convince the recruits to stay with the program. I don't buy that you keep the recruits if you wait until the 16th.

You might keep the recruits, but what might the portal look like in a year?

What does that have to do with whether or not Fu gets fired before or after December 16th? The portal is open the entire off season. Players will make their decision based on their feelings toward Fu being let go and/or who the new coaches are/how they relate to them.

I don't know how binding signing day is or how quick someone can jump in the portal, so I'm thinking there might be some recruits that get locked in right as we make a coaching change but then decide to transfer out at their first opportunity.

Recruits can request release from their LOI and universities usually (always?) grant it. And those recruits would be lost whether or not we wait. It's probably more likely if the new coaching staff is rushed in right before signing day.

Don't forget that the recruits may not be what the incoming coach wants or needs for what they want to do with their playing styles. I think the recruiting class is probably the most significant factor in determining whether the fire him before Dec. 16th. Since we haven't gone through many HC changes in the past, and even when they hired Fuente, we kept Foster, so it's hard to tell from our own experience what recruits might do. There's always a chance that we could lose recruits before the end of the season if we continue to lose. If they don't commit elsewhere after we've lost a lot, given that national media is saying that Fuente's time is done, the recruits seem like they'd have shown they're likely to stick around at least to see who the new coach is. If that's the case, maybe there's not as much harm in waiting.

Gotta get over that $2.5 million. Last year, it lucked out that the date of the buyout drop coincided with the end of the season due to the COVID delay.

Look at that amount as lost money anyway. If Whit had fired Fuente at the press conference last year, he would have paid a $10 million buyout. If Whit fires Fuente before December 16th this year, it's still a $10 million buyout. Whit took a gamble last year that Fuente could turn it around. Either way, he's paying a $10 million buyout.

For all we know, whatever coach we would have hired last year would have had a yearly salary that was $2.5 million higher than what Fuente made this year.

Not sure I understand. If Whit fires him on Dec. 16th, it's only $7.5M. I understand that after the press conference last year through Dec. 16th is all the same, but you didn't address it going down after that.

Because I think that if Fuente gets fired this year, Whit's not waiting for the buyout to drop, so we're paying the $10M buyout either way.

Let's put it this way....the bulk of the coaching carousel is going to be happening in the three weeks between Thanksgiving and the buyout dropping. If Whit waits to fire him, he's basically gambling with $2.5M that the guy he wants will still be available.

Well, unless he signs him before that, but still waits to announce.

If Whit signs a new coach before the 16th, but doesn't fire Fuente, Fuente has grounds to sue for that additional $2.5 mil and make VT look bad in the process.

Really?

If, on December 10th, you sign a contract with a new coach that says "Your start date is December 17, 2021", and fire your current coach on December 16th would that be a breach of contract?

I wouldn't have known that.

I suppose that's why you need lawyers.

He's not wrong, in fact, Fuente could argue wrongful termination.

All Whit can do is have a verbal agreement in place with Mullen/Napier/Chadwell/Pry/JHam, and not in writing, b4 12/16.

TKPhi Damn Proud
BSME 2009

Can probably be in writing as long as it isn't signed.

Pretty much all the national media guys think Fuente is a dead man walking now. Contrary to some belief out there, its not like they are rooting for it to happen, creating their own narrative, or whatever media agenda narratives people come up with. It's coming from a place of an informed opinion. As in, what they know about the program from all their sources would lead them to believe there's gonna be a change. That's not the same as "100% its coming confirmed", but just that's the way the wind is blowing (wind direction can change btw).

When all the national media guys get on something like this, they're rarely wrong.

*fingers crossed*

I don't know if it's a coincidence or not, but right under that USA Today article is a headline titled: Scientists Conclusively Prove Water is Wet

That's some cracker jack journalism happening over at USA Today.

The doll's trying to kill me and the toaster's been laughing at me.

Talked to a couple of the bigger alumni donors at rivers Edge. Apparently as far as they were concerned this Fuentes last year regardless of record.

This was my take for awhile. Fuente has (maybe had) the TCU job lined up at the end of the season if things went well this year at VT, or he'd be fired from VT. Either way, he wouldn't be in Blacksburg. And TCU fans were somewhat vocal about it back in September.

TKPhi Damn Proud
BSME 2009

Tcu fans in support of, or concerned?

I mean... I think he wouldn't be a bad fit at tcu, honestly.

Support

TKPhi Damn Proud
BSME 2009

that was back in September, though. How do TCU fans feel about it now?

Onward and upward

TCU fans were somewhat vocal about it back in September.

This is interesting and first I'm hearing of it. Maybe it will help Whit negotiate a lower buyout.

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

Doubt it, there was smoke in September. But Patterson is still coaching, and sort of has a right to end his tenure on his terms.

TKPhi Damn Proud
BSME 2009

TBH I'm glad VT Football still means enough for USA Today to even write this article.

Hokies United l Ut Prosim

If you play it, they will win.

"How the ass pocket will be used, I do not know. Alls I know is, the ass pocket will be used." -The BoD

Beamer also developed a plan. He innovated.
For the rest of football, special teams was just a way to transition the possession of the ball.
Frank recognized this was where he could get an advantage at a price VT could afford.

It worked.

This is going to be great for the ACC.

I dont think it's a coincidence that the 1st bad game from the defense comes the week that Fuente does not run the scout team. I also dont think it's a coincidence that the 1st week we had a pretty good offense is the week that Fuente coached it.

After all is said and done, I think it's pretty clear that Fuente is going to get fired because he refused to fire Corn two years ago. If Fuente fires or demotes Corn and brings in someone with some decent offensive capabilities, I think he gets the wins he so desperately needed to keep going.

I agree with this as well. Fuente unfortunately did not see the need to surround himself with quality assistance if he was going to be a more CEO-type head coach. It still ultimately falls back on him, because he either failed to see or did not want to see that the offense was not working under Corn and did not step in before now to help the situation. Even as a CEO-type HC, I think recruiting and overall personnel/roster management falls on the HC. Failing to recruit and develop the QB position is a major error on Fu's part.

I have had the same thought. Fuente basically stepped up to do the actual job of the offensive coordinator during the work week and that let the scout team and the defense down.

I see your point about Fuente being the catalyst for a successful defense by helping to run the scout team. You speak about Corn being fired, but it would seem that Hamilton should shoulder some of the blame if he can't get the defense ready by himself either. This just screams that we need new coaches on both sides of the ball. If our staff cannot successfully implement a game plan each week, they need to be let go. This is unacceptable, and putting the team in a bad position

Wait, Fu ran the offense last week? Didn't know that, it explains a lot.

I like Fu as a person and I believe he's a good offensive mind. Too bad it would be way too much loss of face for him to take a demotion/ self-demote to OC and get someone else as HC.

"... I think he played his nuts off. And you can quote me on that shit."

even if we won out this season, it's too little, too late.

VT '10--US Citizen; Virginian By Birth; Texan By the Grace of God.

Rick Monday... You Made a Great Play...

Romanes Eunt Domus


This graphic just plain hurts. And should be enough of a story to explain why a change is needed.

To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
@BuryHokie #ThanksFrank

All I see is a broken link.

Maybe it's the metaphor you were going for...

To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
@BuryHokie #ThanksFrank

Ouch.

I legit took one look at that and was like, man, that graphics editor sucks... they forgot VT. Then it hit me and now I have the sads again.

man, you know how shit it feels to let a graphic from the Military Bowl break your soul? @whit, pls hlp.

I would root for the Russians before I would root for Virginia.

And there's 9.5 ACC schools listed...without us.

To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
@BuryHokie #ThanksFrank

Ooof. This stings.

"... I think he played his nuts off. And you can quote me on that shit."

In the span of 5 years, Justin Fuente has taken VT from a state where it was a disappointment to play in the Military Bowl to that of a program where it is a pipe dream to play in the Military Bowl.

This is my school
This is home

DAMN! Damn. Damn. Damn.

It just hits harder when you see the things you already know to be true in print.

If you play it, they will win.

"How the ass pocket will be used, I do not know. Alls I know is, the ass pocket will be used." -The BoD

and where Blue Chip recruits don't develop.

VT '10--US Citizen; Virginian By Birth; Texan By the Grace of God.

Rick Monday... You Made a Great Play...

Romanes Eunt Domus

One must first sign a blue chip recruit in order to develop said blue chip recruit......

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

#fireCornelson NOW

I mean we got Devon Hunter

And have done nothing to advance his career.

This is my school
This is home

Bingo!