Tech Thoughts part II: coach Fu’ is a good coach; it’s Tech that sucks!

St.Nikephoros bless and intercede! (Patron of… plagues)

Virginia Tech football… to 2020 A.D. be… or not to be?

Personally? I do not have access to this answer in early July 2020.

I -same as Coach Morpheus- do know however that: “…the answers are coming...” I just don’t know what the right/best answer is? Or what will be left/worst-case wise as well? Nevertheless, Eye do know that there are a few topics that we can dabble in be they more parts 2020 or 2021 germane. What with everyone now a pocket-sized immunologist— viral prolix need not apply to recruiting and overall program escape-velocity calculations. So, once more into the breach we go… and may the Good Lord keep everyone safe be they more parts blue or more parts, red. And happy 244th @Uncle Sam!!!

Qb(1a) splatter:

Recall the last time any top-down hints were Pivotally dropped… (Pivot=C.f.l. for Qb, recall) … well, that would be back when a certain O&M big-whistle certainly bemoaned a certain (returning) Qb1’s lack of “dedication to the process“. As his so-called: ‘dad-bod’ was cardio and pulmonary challenged or Slusher Beach unfriendly indeed.

Well, the word around the 2020 camp-fire is that an ex-Quack-attack Qb -who enjoyed the finer passing-reputation around the 2019 campfire- is now the fastest (rushing) Qb1 potential on campus! That really should fire you and your takeout order of {sic: Oregon} duck a l’orange right on 6′ social-distancing up!

And for my meager 3¢ in the penny for your thoughts quarter-bounce game of life? It really sucks that BAX did not get that 2020 showcasing -possibly pressing- his Hooker for work springball look.

Owens Dining Hall food for thought: …may St.George Bless! (tho’ can you afford a Qb1 B&W chemistry change, now?)

Because it is a rare rare thing when our top-kick says anything about his given arms-race. So, you know that when he does, he serially means it from the bottom of his O&M heart. As Fu’ may be a lotta less than warm-n-fuzzy things, tho’ a liar is surely not among ’em. And the word around the Jamerson campfire is that there were more than a couple of peeps/sources who were most anxious to see if/when BAX mighta mounted a rather pressing Qb1 depth-chart move during this now canceled 2020 springball.

Eye do not know if any truncated/regulated August Camp will afford him enough room -much less enough time- to go full-court-press on the Qb1 spot here? Although I will say for the record… if the formerly nearly fulltime 2019 dinged-up or outright dented HenBoss is 2020 insalubrious again?

Do not die of shock if BAX gets his hand on the Qb1 reins and never looks back.

(much less never lets go…)


Q on the other hand is something of a Qb1 X-files episode at the moment. As both Coach Mulder and Coach Scully alike; confirm that QVT is suffering from developmental-abductee -esque ‘missing time’ at the moment. As right about now woulda been his (potential) prime-mover timeslot. Let Corny and Fu’ work their magic as Qb-whispers and see just how much movement (or not) they could project/expect from him with a full passing check-up from stem to stern in our now virally defunct Spring Ball 2020.

…just like a Viagra shortage, this spring has not been very hard-on our back-up Qb’s

As this past spring was the most important to his development and/or advancement shelf life. As in… now woulda been the best possible time for the likable and well-mannered QVT to take a Qb1 step forward.

Though now? Not so much— as his development has stagnated.

And this could not have come at a worse time for the kid with the highest possible on-campus Qb1 (potential) physical ceiling, and yet the lowest developmental Qb1 careerist floor thus far. As one could potentially argue that it was springtime 2020 or never here. What with Hooker possibly poised to be a 2019-2021 starting Qb1 and everyone else pretty much caught in a lockdown depth-chart Pivotal squeeze.

To be clear… there is no bad QVT news here. Not a negative whisper or vibe to be found. The fact that there is no news is not a good thing and you can be learning-curve positive of this.

Rbs: (part III)

Eye kinda like this bunch is all I will say right now… well, that and they might just be a good Fu’fensive fit. And that might just juxtapose more than a few All Charmin Conference D’s in 2020, (Coach God willing of course).


Fucruiting 1o1… (part I of II)

…per Chris Coleman Managing Editor and one man Sally Port of

Virginia Tech was the only school in the country with less than $100 million in athletic department revenue to sign a Top 30 recruiting class in 2019.” {emphisis NOT added}

Justin Fuente’s 2018 class ranked No. 24, and his 2017 class ranked No. 26 according to the 247 Composite.  According to the actual 247 rankings, his first three classes ranked as follows…

  • 2016: No. 42 (tinfoil or leftovers from Frank’s final campaign)
  • 2017: No. 16
  • 2018: No. 21
  • 2019: No. 29
  • 202o: No. 74 (with a nadir of No. 93!)
  • 2021: (so far…): Even prior to decommits, plural; we were only No. 41 nationally. (a point ranking Δ=31 points, or ~about two full clusters of a negative recruiting descent!) (UPDATE: per the Tx Wr de-commit: we are now at No. 51 in the nation).
  • (and yes, Eye know, this delta *should* narrow as our class grows/expands, tho’ will our national ranking rise-up or not?)
  • As it had better… as you’d best be north of Top-30 at a minimum if you really wanna post-season or 10-win have any R.A.T.T. shot at this or that!!!) More reproofing below…

So, do you see a line-of-best-fit, regression or 4-squares type of trend up above, gents?


Now, here at, where we actually perform real-live pensive 36-hours of calc’ and stats gone orphaned analysis?

(and after a Fu’rious set of cross-tabbing my way thoroughly through all D-1 men’s
football national rankings…)

might wanna read these parts slowly, and thrice!

We see upon further inspection… that D-1 men’s college football does not change as severely after you descend south of the Top-40 in national recruiting terms. Meaning…

  1. the variance or Delta (Δ=statistical rate of change) between the haves is far greater than between the have-nots. (i.e. the have-nots are harder to parse or separate/differentiate if you will; believe it or not.)
  2. or, in other words… coaching the verb and so-called ‘player development’ are paramountcy raised to the paradigm power once you descend anywhere near or further south beyond the rather cosmopolitan or likely bowling Top-50 college football national recruiting schools! Truly. As on-paper Talent really starts to polarize more than a °Fu’ degrees once you cross the ~No. 47 barrier. And it really gets tripolar once you approach the Bottom-80 teams. To be direct… you are not real far from being really outcome gone once you and Coach Madonna strike this pose and are no longer Top-47… or: en gridiron “Vogue”.
  3. The caveat being… depending upon which clustering statistical technique you select… there are several groups of homo-talented or similarly-talented teams south of the Top-50. Four or to six by any technique. This is indeed a textbook splatter diagram tho’ it is not quite the proverbial shotgun blast. More like a can of spray-paint at just beyond short-range on a wind-free day.

Or in another words… the D-1 teams south of the Top-40 -and nearly assuredly the teams south of the Top-50… will have a very hard Top-30 row to hoe. Most likely… extremely.

As the talent Delta (Δ) differs by not less than 40-ratings points at that stage. And at that stage, you are beginning to cross the… even v.Lombardi could only do so much (here) traditional manufacturing equation…

inputs (talent) –> processing (coaching) ⇒ outputs (or win total)


At the very Top, however… observe that talent ratings points Delta (Δ) differs by not less than a staggering ~100-recruiting rankings-points from 1st in the nation to 30th in the nation!

The Bottom-30 however… witnesses that that talent rating points Delta (Δ) differs by not less than a far more modest ~45-ratings-points from 100th in the nation to 130th in the nation. And beyond that, you are on far worse than a D-1aa slippery-slope.

(meaning: the bottom half of the college football have-nots is vastly more adhesive than the Top-30 is in pure objective ratings scaling or variability terms).

i.e.e. NOW is the worst time in the history of “ever” itself to be ^here^ as any remaining Boise State or Frank Beamer Cinderella upward bound Great Escapes are on national talent-based lockdown if not outright regional quarantine indeed.

Because… even as things stand a bit 2021 improved… even sans DD who “knows” Auburn… V.Tech is still a mind-boggling more than 220% behind the 2021 D-1 recruiting alpha (i.e. Alabama) when taken as a science-fact index.

Now R.A.T.T. ask yourself… just how much coaching the verb and playar development does it take to rightfully upset 220% of ^that^? (or to even stay within a respectable 2-3 full scores?)

Aye, I stand by my headline... tho' context is king here!

Coach Fu’ (and even Corny) are good coaches. It is Virginia Tech that Power-5 (P5) sucks!

We are right at the bottom of Power-Five-Conference pretty much everything no matter which quintile you choose. (read: stadium-capacity, raw attendance, revenues, and now recruiting rankings to boot). This compared to recently being near the P5 bottom in everything (as Chris told you) not named recruiting. Where we -to our enormous credit- did (somehow) manage to punch at least one or two weight-classes north of our weight. (this is bloody rare this side of the Smurf Turf folks, virtually to the point of unique).

Tho’ just two or three disgruntled ex-baller twitter thugs; and four recruiting S.N.A.F.u.’s on the incoming talent lifeline -that we for nearly two nonpareils successfully pigskin decades clung too- and the entire O&M Golden Era whole shebang is now threatening to truly unravel right before our very Eyes. (as in… we won’t be fixing/increasing: stadium-capacity, raw attendance or revenue rankings anytime soon). Right?
…oh do we need a Talent ‘reup’ ^here^! Like a dead man needs a coffin!

So, you tell me down below in effusive (NO TOS) terms… just how do you keep up with the jones when the P5 jones’ have mo’ and you have naught?

Or in other words (times two)… once you “lose leverage” and downwardly depart the national recruiting Top-30, in the quad-playoff era, and with so much poaching ongoing over in the 757, with Mack the knife carving North Carolina up —how exactly do you get any getback on that?!?

As Fu’ did get his initial ‘new car scent’ recruiting bump. Nonetheless, he now appears to be on the verge of a declining well south of the necessity of the Top-30 national recruiting slump.

mo’ recruiting crosstabs, conclusions, confu’sions, and mythperceptions (Part III):


35th vis-à-vis 57th

You really should memorize ^^^these^^^ two digits for…

Fu‘ture, reference!

R.A.T.T. ...Virginia Tech's football recruiting will do what from here on out?

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26 Responses You are logged in as Test

  1. Eye see it. We recruit very well for out budget. Hence, significant improvement requires money

    1. That would be a decent $ized help.
      Indeed. (maybe even, very).


  2. I would really like to understand what the hell you have to say but you are “too cool for school” and cannot write for shit!

        1. 👍

          haha, yah.
          Roger that.

          (’cause when Eye get to say P.A.T.T.y cake things? Well, everyone can read it just fine).


          1. No, actually I can’t stand your “writing” no matter what point you are trying to make.

            It’s disappointing as you are clearly knowledgeable but your attempts to “B 2 clever” ruin the experience of trying to understand what in the world you are saying…

            every… single.. time.

  3. Champagne taste on a beer budget rarely works out over time. I’d say we have gotten more out of less for about 2.5 decades and counting. I really do attribute a fair amount of this success to the uniqueness of Da’ ‘Burg and the positives that are a part of Hokie Nation. OTOH, to expect elite level results with the assets we have available if not realistic. Of course the origination of the term FANatic should help explain the current chasm between what real and desired. We will have our moments of glory, but barring some gigantic influx of continuous cash for athletics, being a pain in the side of the big boys on any given Saturday is where we will exist.
    BTW, I think we got a “steal” in FU and his staff, enjoy while they are here.

    1. “Champagne is just Ginger Ale that knows somebody.”
      –Hawkeye, M*A*S*H 4o77th

      Pretty much.
      And true… ain’t no gar-ron-damn-tees that…
      Coach Next >>> Coach Fu’.


  4. Let go finally the memories of our brief flirtation with the elite crowd 20 years ago. The top 20 schools (the elite) would be doing us a favor if they broke away into their own no holes barred conference. Let them spend themselves into oblivion.

    The remaining P5 schools and the G5 schools form a new division and have an annual playoff similar to FCS. More importantly this division would implement cost control limiting coaching staff headcount and salary, recruiting spending and other measures. Then with a more level and level headed playing field VT can strive to be among the best of this division. (The JMU of this division.)

    Not a popular viewpoint I am sure.

    1. Perhaps conference alignments remain as they are for all other sports and this proposal would be a football only arrangement.

      1. Kinda like how Boxing needs a Super-Heavyweight weight-class?
        (so the 70’s looking heavyweights don’t get, maimed?)

        Well, you sure had a fresh-take. +several for that.

        (tho’ my best guess is some of D-1 bottom-heavy contracts (downward) into D-1aa)
        As the cost of doing business is never gonna decrease in any Pay-Off,
        I mean playoff, era.


  5. Believe it’s time to Pump the breaks and in your best Keith Jackson imitation, scream “…Whoa Nellie”…

    For nearly 3 decades have been told that the ‘Bud Foster Defensive System’ made VT unique, ‘one gap system’ bridged the talent gap and that if only we had a super duper ‘Offensive System’ then we’d be able to complete for the big boy hardware….

    But now you say to compete at P5 its all ‘bout them Jimmys & Joes 5* and less about system. Hmmmmmmmm. Why hire an Offensive System man with non-dynamic personality? Or was Mr Teel correct in assessing VT non chalkboard role was bigger than Fu britches could hold?

    Section 7 says ‘it’s about who you are and who you are not’ understand & you’ll learn to win with what you got vs lose cause what you don’t have.

    Fuente in all his 63% winning % glory has yet to define a football identity for VT in 4 yrs. Maybe just maybe the talent for the ~3 decades that came to VT, were part understanding of what you got at VT…ie ball control, PHYSICALLY aggressive Defense, opportunistic special teams, downhill running attach, deep recruiting roots into the VA pipeline ( Cav & Stiney), and offense that depended too heavy on individualism and of course part leadership continuity.

    VT new O has yet to complete a season without putting QB1 on the X-ray table due to run Forrest run mentality. Defense even with the same seasoned captain at the helm became less aggressive and in the post Stroman era, catching a punt became a sign of relief.

    So to counter punch your thesis, maybe cultural fit and understanding who you are vs what you don’t have…could be the unsolved mystery of what happened to VT football. Dukebacle was more of player revolt than the 2018 long list of refugees.

    Or as EYE has said before, look to the roundball’s leader’s results in 2 and you’ll witness from a person who knows who VT is….

    Let’s Go…Hokies!!!

    1. I love your comment “and offense that depended too heavy on individualism…”. This so defined the narrowness of Stiney’s OC playbook and frustrated me for years, reminding me what an awful decision CFB made in placing him in this position.

      1. That’s fair. Not untrue at all.

        Tho’ it was super-hero type individualism.
        Or build an O around one VHT, stud.

        Frank was actually quite good at that.
        Tho’ Fu’ has never enjoyed that: (i.e. a Wilson, Tyrod, Williams, et al).


    2. grate post/efforting…
      …here goes!

      But now you say to compete at P5 its all ‘bout them Jimmys & Joes 5* and less about system.

      Yes. Yesteryear? You could out-coach a fallen Big East Miami. Tho’ A.c.c. coaching is better today overall as well. Macro’ environment is less 2020 tolerant of smoke and Mirrors.

      Hmmmmmmmm. Why hire an Offensive System man with non-dynamic personality? Or was Mr Teel correct in assessing VT non chalkboard role was bigger than Fu britches could hold?

      Fu’ coach >>> Fu’ the G.M.
      May Saint David Bless– he’s prolly right.

      Fuente in all his 63% winning % glory has yet to define a football identity for VT in 4 yrs.

      ^^^this^^^ part is only true cause he tried at least 2 maybe 3 (fake) I.D.’s thus far.
      Early on was look the other way with Sam and Evans as Duck Pond shore-patrol M.P.’s.

      Then he got too strict and the team went flat.
      Then he loosed up post-Duke a bit and things went better.
      Will the real Fu’ identity please stand up, please stand up!


      1. Spot on! It’s why I learn something every time in invest in thy craft.

        Cultural fit may be the saving grace along with Clovid’s stoppage of free spending athletic departments.

        Really good article & commentary!

        Let’s Go… Hokies!!!

  6. winning in 2020 and 2021 will help right this ship. Go avg 6-2 in conference play and beat UVA and UNC both years. It will mean 9+ wins per season and we have all discussed that we can win 10+ and an ACC title when the stars align. Clemson is too good in 2020 to have a chance if their roster is healthy. But what happens if they have injuries to RB and QB and Oline all in the same few weeks? They become beatable.

    and that is why we must, play the games!

    1. Correct.

      Winning in 2020 & 20201 good and big surely kan’t hurt, right?
      (and it may be his end-game lifeline, if/when this does not pop clean enough to safely play)

      which sucks, as that’s not Fu’s fault.
      (God Help…)


  7. To your point about there being high relative peer difference at high ranks and low relative peer difference at the lower ranks of D1 but a very high difference between the sub-40 cohort as a whole versus the top 40 cohort, I would say this is the expected dynamic as you add increasingly high amounts of money to the sport in an unequal distribution. As you note that VT was the only school to sign a top-30 class while south of $100M/year. Different song but same tune, VT was in ’99 and still to this day, the least-moneyed school to play for a title in the BCS era. By the way, VT and Oklahoma State were the only programs of the last decade (2010 and 11, go figure) to win a P5 conference title while something like 20-30M/year behind the conference leader (Baylor 2013 may fit here but they are private so I didn’t see their numbers).

    Since college football has only a scholarship limit which itself is a very poor proxy for a salary cap, the effect this has is an increasingly high level of kurtosis in the distribution of programs that do anything of note. Just look down the list of teams to make the playoffs since introduced in 2014, it’s mostly the same handful making appearances every year.

    The NFL, with its draft structure and salary caps, is a much more fair structure, and thus more platykurtic, than college football, which grows increasingly leptokurtic each year. I drew a crude visualization of this using a folded distribution (since rankings can’t be negative) here:

    Without some kind of major intervention, college football is going to get more and more leptokurtic every year. 20 years ago everyone talked of how difficult it was to win a national title if you weren’t a big name (big money) program. Look at the landscape of the last 5 years, see how difficult it’s become to win even a P5 conference title if outside of that moneyed club. Give it another 10 years or so and you probably won’t even win a P5 division unless you’re lucky enough to be in a division full of the worst programs in P5.

    In my opinion, you could greatly fix the structural disparity of college football if you just scrapped the charade of the “student-athlete” altogether, no more scholarships as a proxy for cost, and just establish a fixed program-wide salary cap, players and coaches alike (so if you want be like Texas A&M and pay a king’s ransom for Jimbo Fisher (lol), this eats into your pool for how many good players you can afford). A draft would greatly help too although even baseball is getting away from drafting guys straight out of high school (and they also have a much larger formalized farm system).

    For the proverbial extra point, consider this dynamic of college football, where an unequal distribution of resources (money) is resulting in an ossified power structure that is becoming downright bifurcated and functionally nearly impossible to overcome, and potential solutions to this problem. Now think of real-world analogues to this, and potential solutions to those.

    1. whole top paragraph on distribution…
      …I knew it would look like this… tho it was more top skewed and more bottom saggy/heavy than I expected when I actually ran the numbers. (which is why you run numbers in the very 1st-place)

      +many for: “kurtosis

      the deTAILS (if you will) indeed.

      Since college football has only a scholarship limit which itself is a very poor proxy for a salary cap..

      never heard it put ^that^ way before—–>b.street
      tho’ that’s such a simple look I’ma ashamed I never saw it,—->same

      leptokurtic or not -and it could be that pointy- “aye”.
      Gonna be a bitch to crack that glass-ceiling made of Pb (lead).

      thoughtful post, very!

  8. This right here is why turning down Mike Slive and the SEC was such a mortal self inflicted wound. We’re maroon-ed here forever and we’ll continue to slowly regress into the mediocrity that Wake and NC State live in. It’s all but done. The days of being a perennial top-15 program are gone for good, I hope we all enjoyed them. We have a mediocre coach with mediocre resources.

    1. $.e.c.:
      Bingo that. Yup.
      As I can understand this way more today than I did back then.

      Playoff football in D-1 only skews this all the mo’.

      -1 or -several @me!


    2. Although who is to say VT to SEC would’ve kept VT a perennial top 15 program? The SEC has plenty of it’s own perennially mediocre [i.e. cash-strapped] programs …

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