Virginia Tech is looking for another football coach. After six years and a 41-31 record Tech AD Whit Babcock gave Justin Fuente 8.75 million dollars and showed him the door.
To be honest, I can’t say I feel sorry for anyone who gets almost nine million dollars not to work. I love my job, but if you want to offer me half that I’d be happy to walk away. Heck, I‘d take a million dollars if I was still allowed to stand on the sidelines at the high school football games.
While the money certainly eases the pain, Fuente most likely will uproot his family when he finds another job. His kids will leave their friends and he’ll have to buy another house, and you know how real estate prices are going these days. Can you get a brick ranch with two bathrooms for eight million?
My question is, what would he be doing right now if not for a couple plays this season? Let’s say Tech scored on first and goal from the one at West Virginia, then held on to beat Notre Dame in Blacksburg. They should have won both of those games, and if they had then maybe they don’t lose to Syracuse and Boston College. I’ll give you Pitt, because that was a butt kicking, but the attitude would have been much different for those other former Big East schools.
If Tech wins those four games they’re sitting at 9-1 after the Duke game, and there’s no talk of firing Fuente. In fact, they’re looking at a big time bowl, a top 20 ranking and a shot at playing for the ACC championship. At that point it doesn’t matter how much Fuente didn’t relate to the ex-players or whatever touchdown club he didn’t speak to. He was going to be back.
And the difference is, not scoring from the one and not stopping a late drive for a field goal.
Such is life for a football coach. I’ve always said, in the eyes of many you’re only as good as the last game. Or, the last game you should have won.