Virginia Tech football (currently) reminds one of this little gem: “You become what you accept…” which is one of the better idioms I’ve encountered in the last handful of seasons of the game of Life.
The Hokies are at a place where palliative or holistic approaches may fix pain— tho’ modern era p.c. crowd of Pure Chickens or cuckness seldom fixes problems. Hospice need not apply after what happened @O.d.u. last campaign. Nor after the quad-butt-kicking, we took slumping our way home prior to a rivalry streak and a bowl-streak saving rather valiant set of last-ditch final stands; plural indeed. That’s life on the edge gents. Although life on the edge does tend to cut both ways. As you need to fish or get off that pot and stop edging along before you rip your self to shreds. 2019, however, opens with at least a semi-edgy game on tap up on Chestnut Hill. And then the cultural retest game vs. 7-5-7 (now) stalwart O.d.u. at home and then an under the Hill contest later on after that. Nonetheless, where is this V.Tech football culture in -thus far- a relatively tame off-season in R.A.T.T. terms? Read on, to find… out!
Thugs need hugs…
Don’t believe me? Just ask Frank.
Don’t believe that? Just ask Frank’s… kids!
The real Q. is... what A. will you get... if you ask Fu's, kids?
As last season (2018), the very same names kept coming up over and over and over as behind the scenes stinks went —player(s) and Staffer(s), alike. And quite frankly, with some of them? You and Will’s TOS do not wanna lean in and take a big whiff of what my little eye did spy.
Because it is like defusing a bomb after Dresden has already gone off. And although never a farmer professionally or even part-time… even I know that there is no need guarding the barn after the horses have all run away. (i.e., sum or at least a good deal of these names are now somewhere else… although so is some rather smart talent and a very sporting amount of playar gridiron experience itself).
As a recall, my name is clearly beside you side-up with and ride with players in only about 5% of player vis-à-vis cultural and/or coaching spats. Most of the time it is indeed the pedestal baller crying: “wolf” when the coaching staff is the one actually filled with K9 or fang-D.N.A.
Or in other words… if the participation trophy don’t fit, you must acquit.
Nevertheless, a couple of staffing names kept coming up over and over last campaign and a couple of those of names are now campaigning somewhere else. So maybe; just maybe, a few of last years players -be they currently here, or not- did actually have something stuck in their cultural or coaching ethos, craw.
Maybe… as even publically dropping a “maybe” bomb is pretty damn rare. Tho’ rare is how I like my crow men, so here goes nothing…
Either way… I am sure of one thing… and I sure hope this thing has been dialed down a scosche or at least one full cultural reinforcing “decibel.” Top-down volumizing is what I mean for clarity Hokie fans.
As you need not be a member of a classic rock-n-roll band to know that “VOLUME” is the cheapest trick of them all.
And that’s something that Frank -to his Hall of Fame credit- learnt and ratified very early on. Kids with a missing father, a missing mother, raised by a guardian, raised by an aging grandparent, raised by an older Aunt/Uncle (or by even a younger one); or jus’ plum raised by themselves per their typically smoked up and beat-down drugged-out peer group out on the street(s)… are at best from a Freudian gender role model imbalanced environment. Again; that’s the very best-case the glass is 45% full scenario and in the worst case -the glass is busted- as in twice empty as patristic or matristic role models go. And if they are from that particular Nobody Cares Cul-de-Sac and born into rookery and/or basically from a family tree where all limbs are severed?
They are far far far more used to “VOLUME” than you or I.
Vastly. Entirely. Thoroughly. As their ears and (sadly), their hearts-n-minds have long ago learned how to tune all of that out. The streets are a deafeningly “loud” place right now where lung-power and pure unbridled anger tend to rule— be that via verbal bluffing or via the self-aggrandizing goto card of packing cold hard steel. (i.e. how many of today’s knucklehead ballers carried or still carry a hand-cannon?) Because when you do it does embed a sense of safety every bit as much as it can make you feel like Kevin Costner and Sean Connery or: “Untouchable”. St.Linus bless, although easy to discipline and/or control this type of streety security blanket does not one make.
Nevertheless, their hearts-n-minds are indeed susceptible to the one thing they’ve never had… or should I say never: “heard”?
As you are playing right into their streety cultural game when you “yell” at them. Hell’s-bells, they’ve been yelled at for most of -if not for all of- their entire lives. ~20 decades worth of scream and you and your uppity you toe my cultural-line my way verbal sparring matches way don’t even stand a chance. You are the visiting team on their Street. As nobody has ever won a fight or an argument in the history of history itself. (as both create a clinical textbook residue… typically a negative or revanche one… file that one away…)
Nobody has won any of that every bit as much as nobody has ever defeated a… hug.
And let’s keep it real here folks… how do you defeat something you’ve never had?
(i.e. something that all glaring jerky street-hubris aside, something that you actually; crave)
As hinted at above the same names kept coming up and over and over and over and Frankly speaking -pun very much intended- where there is that much smoke there is bound to be some fire.
As yes, a little to some yelling or textbook Threat or Coercive power does have its points and it does have its place. (in particular in a Terminal Contact sport and/or mortality based vocation… i.e. in the Military, Police, Firefighting, coal-mining, et al). Because if you don’t get their attention there, there may not be a next, time.
Nevertheless, Coercive Power is unanimously ranked or rated as the lowest (or the worst) of the five classical bases of power.
(why? because it wears peeps longitudinally down the longer/or the more often you use it– and for the fact that you MUST use it (i.e. you simply must make good on a “threat/punishment”; eventually). Because if you do not crack someone with that whip; literally, you’re flogging your very own threat— which has no teeth if you never actually bite-down… mmmmK?)
Now, last year we saw what a culture of “yell’ looked like— and eventually what it smelled like too. Well, until Fu’ -in a stroke of rescue-animal last second cultural genius- brought in two new and very referent power based respected voices (the recent Sam Rogers and the older Cornell Brown) to say or reinforce his same old things a brand-spankin’ new way.
As his same old voluminous things had just gone a nearly culturally belly-up 85 points for vs. 170 points against during an o for four jaunt that culminated in a nearly culturally-killing let go the rope and spit the O&M bit 22-52 pistol-whipping the ‘rong way up @Pitt. (a game where numerous Hokies went Owens Dining Hall and cardinal sin loafed on plays or simply took entier plays entirely off).
That I have never O&M seen before gents. Even the lowercase Beamer Big East teams were still rock-throwing whores whereas the 2018 team spent most of late October and a good sized chunk of November simply throwing-up.
And do recall… at that stage, we had already run off what few true lead-pipe hit back when they got hit alpha-dawggs that we had. Then the lockeroom and even Fu’s piously well-intended cultural mantra of #HardSmartTough went from tried and true to tired and through.
If only there was someone Fu’ could call?
Someone who is the pioneer of not only a Special Teams revolution, someone who figured out how you family and therapy thugs first, second, third …last? When you are on top, in the middle or on the bottom. You codify them and treat them the same. You treat thugs to hugs.
As the post-2018 season, and the pre-2019 seasonal reports, hints, and vibes all say… that Fu’ has tried to move closer to the team. He is watching (per classical textbook Hawthorne Effect) and he is participating (classical leading from the front); right there in the trenches with the troops in the off-season weightroom Schema & Culturalization campaign his own self.
That at least showcases proximity and proximity typically showcases caring. Whereas the end game pic’ @Pitt only showcased… distance.
Sports -unlike your family-reunion and/or inlaws- IS the one place where you can actively “choose family”.
We call it recruiting and then we call it culturalization once on campus.
Yes, Fu’ has to be his own man… he need not be -and prolly cannot be- the next grandpaw Frank. However, he does need to be closer to his team. As caring -same as leading- is best demonstrated top-down where (legitimate) emotional gravity and lockerroom chemistry or gravitas is always on your side.
Robb Stark: “How Can a man still be brave when he’s afraid?”
“That is the only time a man can be brave.” Ned Stark
Because no matter how much your lungs try… yelling them down will never equal loving them up.
And the risky, volatile, hard to manage, although downright talented thugs that a Virginia Tech…
-unlike a Clemson/Alabama- has to afford and/or has take… thugs need hugs, too!
Don’t be too phobic of moving at least a little closer to them Justin.
@Virginia Tech you two needs each other!
And unlike screaming at thugs?
Hugging thugs is actually the braver thing to do. 💯
Fu‘ –the Gestalt Theorist 1o1?
(mid-script: come take a cyber bow BlackwaterHokie for putting me onto this, scent!)
Prior to Fu’s Memphis arrival… believe it or not, the Tigers were actually a semi-respectable football recruiting program… and when viewed through an American Athletic Conference lowercase mini-me mid-major prism? They managed to separate the wavelengths on their available talents and their outright recruiting takes pretty dang well. Check it out…
- 2009 Memphis national recruiting ranking=65th
- 2010 Memphis national recruiting ranking=71st
- 2011 Memphis national recruiting ranking=77th
After Fu’ arrived, however… he caught no Tiger(s) by the tail and when based upon his recruiting rankings alone, you have to wonder out loud how he lived to tell the tale?
- 2012 Memphis national recruiting ranking=92nd
- 2013 Memphis national recruiting ranking=90th
- 2014 Memphis national recruiting ranking=78th
However, then, after he started to actually win @Memphis with a sharp looking 10-win 2014 season which he followed up with a nearly as serrated nine-win 2015 effort his national recruiting ranking R.A.T.T. did this…
- 2015 Memphis national recruiting ranking=77th
- 2016 Memphis national recruiting ranking=61st
(including some bum of an Rb named: Darrell Henderson!)
(who was only 1st-team All-Amerian as a sophomoric Rb just last year!)
- 2017 Memphis national recruiting ranking=56th* (mostly a Fu’ class)
Q. How did Fu’ turn such small-market basketball school’s football recruiting rebound?
A. Coaching the (verb) is how.
Proof of concept if you will.
The only O&M caveat being; Fu’ is on a Hokie descent. Whereas he was on a Memphis ascent from day no.1.
Or in other words… this modest or lowercase 2019 SOS (strength of schedule)?
It could not have possibly happened to Virginia Tech and to
Coach-Fu’ at a better time men.
And if Fu’ can rally the troops culturally back to winning itself?
As history says his recruiting will indeed follow where his VicTories; lead.
Here are my Top–5 reasons to be impassioned about the 2019 Virginia Tech football season in a chronologically particular, order…
- @Boston College: (4 PM, ACC Network | 110th in returning production): let’s see… round no.1 of Fu’s fourth season gone year no.1 cultural reboot… “ding“! That plus we are all gonna find out in prolly 30 minutes or less, maybe even ≤15 minutes or maybe in just the first few Flying Eagles 2019 series of offensive-football just how much plug-n-chug help all these off-season JuCo Dt’s (defensive tackles) have brought to the all-time worst/flattest batch of Bud Lyte’s formerly low-water mark of a 106th nationally ranked run-defense upfront. Gonna be a lotta questions answered by the best Rb (running back) in the A.c.c. this season P.D.Q. folks. And they are gonna be answered early, often and late. (not to mention that A.J. Dillon + his back-up (David Bailey) = just south of 220v worth of 500 lbs.! And now when you mix in the can run 229 lb. Qb1 (‘tony Brown) and their pretty decent jet-sweeping Wr (Benji Glines, 6′2″, 225 lbs., r-Sr.) and his very impressive 380 yards rushing last year… you have a whole helluva a lot for our newbie Dt’s to grow into in a hurry. What with a still whispered to be hurting De, Ho.Gaines questionable on the edge for this debuting 2019 season opener.
Additionally, Boston College ranks 110th in the nation in returning production (whereas we/Virginia Tech is a near shocking 11th best in this total team return metric)! i.e. we do actually bring a lot back —and with only seven that’s (7) 2019 seniors? We are gonna bring even mo’ 2020 back. So right about now or at least before 2019 closes for business would be a good time to grow-up and fill-in the ranks. As there are not that many built-in 2019 excuses per the aforementioned Charmin schedule and there will be even more experience and therefore even fewer excuses come 2020.
Nevertheless, and in 1-hole conclusion… as we all saw last time right here, the Boston College defense figures to start out so-so, to middleocore; if they even start out at that. On the other hand… the same can be said of the possible final incarnation of Bud Bøck. Because if this lunchpail halt-unit starts out 2019 average? They have actually come a very long 2018, ways.
Or in other words, someone’s offense is gonna have to go ahead and win this one and show out as each O is facing a modest stop-unit definition— be that via carrying the day (BeeCee) or per winging the night away (Ry’ on wheat).
- O.D.U. high-noon, ESPNU | 111th in returning production): the cultural rematch or should I say the cultural retest 2019 round no.2: ‘ding’! And yah; a certain Wr (Wide Receiving) transfer -who once upon a time (had) planted some 24060… Roots- may wanna go Kumha Kinte upside our now at least semi-fierce Old Dominion Tidewater bragging rights head! Did I mention the fact that this was the Upset of the Year in all of D-1 men’s football for 2018, yet? Did I mention the fact that this one is a potential candidate for Upset of the Decade for the 2010s, yet? Did I mention the fact that the Monarchs crowned lowly Va.Tech via chasing our O&M court-jesters off of THEIR football field over in the Norfork area post-game (see: pic)? Which one could dare say caught my tape-breaking eye indeed and prolly bent a few Hokie bird feathers upon entry to boot.
- @Miami (TBD | 86th in returning production): aaaaaahhhh yah… think this kid might want a little something-something wif’ us? This, kid, does, not, like; us! He does not seem to like much of anything for that matter and neither does his (current) club. However, he sure did love dropping the gangsta signature swagg of: “Da U!!!” right upside our collective VT.edu graduation ceremonial heads whilst receiving his Fighting Gobbler undergraduate diploma just last month. In case that is not transparent enough for some of you… it is entirely apparent to me that Hill pretty well hates our living guts. And he might just hate Hilgirth and/or Fu’ even more than that. Hill is gonna “plum git after us” and unlike @O.d.u., he’s coming to hydrate on our blood. And that’s just his pregame chug. As this kid is temperamental on a good day… never mind if he finds himself motivationally: locked, cocked and ready to rock. Bet the over on Hill’s sack total on any Vegas Prop line blind, (now). Thank me, (later). (and you can prolly bet the over on his personal-foul total and surely his pure potty-mouth S-talking and jaw-jacking total in this one). This kid may be an idiot… tho’ he will be a hyper-critically motivated idiot and he’s a very dang talented edge-rushing idiot either way. As you R.A.T.T. gotta give a ready to play Hill this round 10-8, maybe even 10-7 if he remains eligible and plays the full entire 60 minutes sans ejection? Time=tell on that one as well…
- @Notre Dame 2:30, NBC (97th in returning production): the fighting-Irish under “Touchdown Jesus” on national-TV. ’nuff said, right? How ’bout the fact that they pretty much are a consensus Top-10 nationally ranked D-1 preseason football team? That, and you’d have to think they will prolly want a little 2016 getback on Fu’ here, too.
Now that being said, this is about as green-wood a N.Dame hosting squad as you will see with just about half the 2018 Irish O and D are gone in 2019 terms. So now is as good a shot as we will ever get to upset them 548 miles nor-by-nor-west over at the other “Havard of the Midwest” at So.Bend.
- @U.Va. (ABC or ESPN | 55th in returning production): African-American Friday… and guess hoo’s coming to Thanksgiving Day dinner+1? Oui oui! The team you love to hate? The team hoo-has to be positively chomping at the bit to host us over in gay paris where they may never get a better shot at stopping the (potential) ~5,844-day streak or at starting a ~365-day streak of their very own. Because as things stand right now… uva has been standing down and bending forward at the CNN.blue.libby.lib.Tee.Jay.wigged.out.waxed.lawn waist for what? Since the K/T boundary? Since the Civil War? Or since an eon or so +/- a decade give or take? Yah; something like that, or at least since 2003 more or less. As the mighty-mighty Hokies are 20-3 all-time in Commonwealth Cup contests. Bettcha did not (precisely) know that one; did yah? Yah, me three on the “me neither”… although I do know that Virginia Tech holds the third-longest active winning streak against a conference rival in college football. There is that, and there is also a 95% winning percentage vs. the cavaliers since MV1 truly nationally jump-started the whole O&M shebang his own self.
As Virginia Tech has truly owned, pwned and basically ad-hoc pimped all things C’ville hooVa ever since. To take all of that the final step furthest of all, according to my 36 hours of McBryde Hall calc’ and stats? There have only really been four or five years where “pimpin’ ain’t easy” or the issue was in any true measure of pre-game doubt. As 2/3rds or .667 of the fifteen game win streak VicTories have been decided by not less than 1.5 full plays!
Hooever, and on the other hand, the wahoos have not always laid back and enjoyed it, as they have played triumphant V.P.I. to within a ½ play one outta three times during the Commonwealth Cup streak including last years overtime thriller. And as we all know…
p.s. Re: Returning Production: Over the last five years, 35 teams have returned at least 80 percent of their production. 28 of them (80%) improved, and 17 (or 49%) improved their adjusted scoring margin per game by at least six points. Last year’s Top-10 teams in returning production saw their win total increase by a combined 25 games, from 45 in 2017 to 70 wins, in 2018.
Coach Fu's cultural is R.A.T.T. where... right now, heading into August Camp 2019???
- R.A.T.T. let's wait and ask 2020 and/or 2021 b.street. (42%, 41 Votes)
- P.A.T.T. I like where this cultural is going b.street. A mellow off-season seems to agry. (40%, 39 Votes)
- N.A.T.T. I do not like where this cultural is going b.street. A soft 2019 proves nothing. (18%, 17 Votes)
Total Voters: 97