Fighting Gobbler Roundtable: Will Bud Foster be the next head coach of the Hokies?


Aug 30, 2014; Blacksburg, VA, USA; Virginia Tech Hokies defensive coordinator Bud Foster before the game against the William & Mary Tribe at Lane Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Peter Casey-USA TODAY Sports

After focusing on the current state of Virginia Tech football and the status of Frank Beamer, the Fighting Gobbler roundtable discussions take a look down the road for the next two days starting with a look at the end of the Beamer era no matter when that will be.

Today, we take a look at whether Bud Foster should and will be the replacement for Beamer in Blacksburg?

Foster had been in Virginia Tech for a long time and seems to be the one guy on the staff that will be a serious candidate whenever the Beamer era. Now, let’s take a look at the opinions of our staff on this big question for the future.

Dwight Lester

Is Bud Foster going to be the next head coach of the Hokies?  The answer to the question is a big yes sir.  The reason for this being the answer is who else would be the best choice for Whit Babcock and the athletic department.  Foster has been a staple in Blacksburg for years.  He has had opportunities to go elsewhere but the Hokies have made it a point to keep him safe and sound on the Hokie sideline.

They have done this in many ways including making him one of the highest paid assistants in the country.  Foster has gotten the title coach in waiting like so many other coordinators have gotten over the years, most notably Jimbo Fisher of Florida State.

For the Hokies, the idea of Foster as the head coach is best for the program.  Foster would give the stability the program would need as they change leaders.  Keeping Foster as the head coach would allow the recruits to have a familiar face in the program and could keep a lot of stellar recruits from pulling their commitments to the program.

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The only down side would be could Foster still be hands on with the defense?  I think he could by not having a defensive coordinator in the literal sense of the position, but more like a brain trust to help call plays and take some of the responsibility off of the head coach.

Torrian Gray and Cornell Brown would be great choices to fill these roles.  Both were former players of Foster’s and have shown they can be great college coaches.  The fact remains Bud Foster is for sure the front runner to become the successor at the helm of Hokie football whenever Frank Beamer decides to retire.

Joe Vitulli

Nov 1, 2014; Blacksburg, VA, USA; Virginia Tech Hokies defensive coordinator Bud Foster reacts in the fourth quarter at Lane Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

There is no doubt in my mind that if Bud Foster is still the defensive coordinator when Frank Beamer retires, he will be the next head coach of the Virginia Tech Hokies.  Virginia Tech has mas made Foster one of the highest paid assistant coaches in the nation, and given him a million dollar annuity to stay and resist taking head coaching jobs elsewhere.

Now I believe Beamer will still be around for a few years so any coronation of Foster is premature to say the say the least.  A lot can happen in a few years.  Foster may finally get that well deserved head coaching position elsewhere.  However, he is without a doubt the heir apparent to the NCAA active wins leader, Frank Beamer.

As for if he should be the next head coach, I think the answer here is also in the affirmative.  The sexy uber successful college football coaches like Urban Meyer, Nick Saban, Pete Carroll, or Chip Kelly are never coming to Blacksburg.  The market and program is simply too small for them.  Virginia Tech could try and find the next big time coach that is a coordinator somewhere in the SEC or Pac-12 but the realistic chances of that happening are slim.

They could also try a recently fired college or NFL coach on the rebound and hope that he could resurect his career, but why would they want a piece of that circus.  One of the most important recruiting pitches VT has is that the coaching carousel doesn’t stop in Blacksburg.

They are not hiring and firing a new coach every two years like some programs.  The coaching staff that recruits you will be the same one you graduate with.  The continuity of action is therefore best served by hiring Foster when Beamer retires.

Tim Thomas

There is no doubt in my mind that Bud Foster should definitely be one of the top candidates for the job when Beamer retires. Personally, I believe that Foster could do a very good job as the next head coach of the Hokies with Foster bringing more of a fiery personality than Beamer. However, there are some other top coordinators that should also be considered to make sure that Foster is the right guy.

Personally, I don’t think Whit Babcock will just go to Foster and that is honestly a good thing for the program because the Hokies should actually make sure that Foster is the right guy whenever Beamer does retire. Good sentiments need to not be a factor in this with the focus being on the interview process, coaching style, vision for the program, coaching ability, and recruiting prowess.

Foster seems like someone who would check off very well in these regards while keeping Foster would also preserve the family environment that Beamer has built. Torrian Gray would likely slide into the defensive coordinator role but Foster could still have a heavy involvement in calling defensive plays.

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However, the Hokies should not just hand Foster the program when Beamer retires without interviewing some other candidates. Foster seems to have the potential to be a very good head coach but he might not be the best person for the job.

Foster should be the guy if Babcock thinks he is the right guy and there are only a few guys that might be better candidates than Foster that the Hokies could likely get. However, Babcock might just have the money to pull off a bigger name than expected if Foster isn’t the guy.