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Old 11-09-2003, 08:26 PM   #1
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Default Tech Fails Once Again

I don't even know why I'm suprised anymore. For the third consecutive season, the Virginia Tech Hokies were a preseason top 10 team for many publications across the country, and, for the third consecutive season, they have choked in Big East play. This is further proof VT has been one of the most overrated programs in college football the past 4 years (and this is coming from a Hokies fan). I'm begining to think that a curse is brewing in Blacksburg, ala Boston and Chicaqo. I just don't get how a team with as much talent as Tech can lose to an average West Virginia team one week, destroy the # 2 team in the nation the next, and, the week after, lose by 3 to a Pittsburgh team who had only recently cracked the Top 25. I really wonder what Frank Beamer's pitch to recruits' is, maybe something along the lines of " You'll get a solid education, a chance to play your freshman year, and the oppurtunity to play in an unsatisfying non-BCS bowl game!!".

Kevin Jones breaks the school record for single-game rushing, scores 4 touchdowns and has nothing to show for it but a big fat L (and more Heisman consideration....which is always nice ). Frank Beamer can't keep up this quarterback rotation. He needs to stick with one guy, and that guy should probably be Bryan Randall. Vick did a decent job, but I just don't think he's ready yet.

Pitt still has Miami and West Virginia (if WV beat Tech, they can handle Pitt), so theres a chance they'll finish with the same conference record as VT, but unless Miami slips, they'll be the Big East rep in the BCS.
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Old 11-09-2003, 10:20 PM   #2
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I don't think they're in the sane class as Chicago or Boston (who is?). I think it is more of a product of a quarterback controversy. To contend, you shouldn't be deciding on your QB more than halfway through the season. The QB is the one position you need solidified.
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Old 11-10-2003, 01:42 AM   #3
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J, there's no curse in VT. In past years, they've had injuries and the like to hang their hats on when the late season swoon comes. I think it comes from not having the toughest coach on the block. Sure, Beamer's great, and has done a miraculous thing in Virginia Tech, but, when it comes right down to it, the nicey-nice father figure types soften down the stretch, and the teams thusly come apart.

Let's also not overlook your accusation of overratedness. That's HUGE. The consistently reach the top ten feasting on division 1-aa and should-be-division 1-aa schools in Sept and Oct, and find themselves falling over the meat of their schedule in November. That weak early schedule may also play a part in the team not having the guts down the stretch...

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Old 11-10-2003, 01:53 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally posted by MountaineerDave
when it comes right down to it, the nicey-nice father figure types soften down the stretch, and the teams thusly come apart.

Dave
Huh?!!?!

Yeah, Tommy Lasorda and Jim Valvano didn't accomplish much.
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Old 11-10-2003, 02:08 AM   #5
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I'm stretching, Kevin, work with me. Of course players' coaches CAN work, especially in players' sports like baseball and basketball...

I'm saying that unless you have the absolute best athletes on the field day-in day-out, you can afford to be buddies with the players on the sidelines. Tech, being Tech, doesn't have the luxury of the best athletes every time they take the field, and thus require a tougher mental attitude than many players' coaches usually emanate in public.

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Old 11-10-2003, 02:27 AM   #6
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Yes, but this suggests that the Ditkas and the Knights are better than that the nicey-nices, and I'm sure, for some players, they are. Certainly Vince Lombardi is exhibit A.

But (sticking to football), Ditka ended up going down in flames, and John Mackovic's players munitinied on him, and they were terrible to boot.

The problem is, everyone is motivated differently. Some players respond and excel under the drill sargeants, and get sluggish under the nice guys. Other people (I think I would be one of them if I was a serious athlete) rebel/protest against the humiliation/dehumanization/abusive approach of a drill sargeant, and excel under a nice guy because there's no coach-related tension or stress, and a lot of people perform better, including (if not especially) in crunch time when they are having fun/relaxed/peaceful/whatever. I can't quite go all the way with you in the notion that, at the end of the day, the toughie is better to have than the nice guy (or vice-versa either).

I think this is one of the trickiest things about being a head coach in any sport, to find out how to motivate each individial player....and hardest in football (more players). I think that's also why when you look at the head coaches of all sports, pro and college, the recent champions usually have coaches that are hard to firmly put in either camp, because a balance has to be reached.
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Old 11-10-2003, 02:56 AM   #7
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Okay, then, lemme be specific, if you won't play along, Kevin.

FRANK BEAMER WILL NEVER WIN A NATIONAL TITLE, and that failure will be because he is a player's coach, and is not tough enough to prepare his team week-in/week-out. Whether that's his coaching or recruiting is a question that one can raise, but, I assert that he will not accomplish the feat.

(I harken to Don Nehlen, late of WVU as of 2000, who on multiple occasions had 5,6,7, and 8 win starts, only to flop over the final month. The most discouraging was 1984, when the Mountaineers accomplished a task WVU'd not done in 26 years: beat Penn State. The win over PSU left WVU 7-1. The Mountaineers proceeded to finish the season 7-4, with losses to: Temple, Rutgers,and Virginia. Perhaps the most notable part of that story is that Temple, Rutgers, and Virginia all finished that year with winning records. Sure, Nehlen DID lead the team to two undefeated years, but in 1988, it was against a cupcake schedule and the Mountaineers were out-toughed and out-run by the '88 Irish (Tony Rice, Jerome Bettis, possibly even a kid by the name Watters ran for that Irish team, but I'm fuzzy, honestly; in 1992, the Mountaineers didn't have the best athletes around, as they won several games that could easily have been lost, and got completely waxed by Spurrier and company.)

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Old 11-10-2003, 02:37 PM   #8
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I don't think Beamer will ever win a National Title at Virginia Tech either. He had his chance in 1999, when the Hokies played a very soft schedule, and were beaten quite soundly by the Criminoles in the Sugar Bowl.

Maybe Beamer could have gotten Va Tech to another BCS title game had Va Tech stayed in the Big East and played soft out of conference schedules, but I doubt they even would then. Now that Va Tech is going to the ACC with the likes of 2 Florida schools now to contend with plus a conference championship game as well, their chances have now greatly diminished.

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Old 11-11-2003, 12:34 PM   #9
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I'm very disappointed in them.
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Old 11-11-2003, 05:43 PM   #10
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happens...
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Old 11-14-2003, 05:14 PM   #11
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WARNING: The following is a draft of an article. It is long.
I welcome feedback.

Quote:
Originally posted by KevinBeane
Yes, but this suggests that the Ditkas and the Knights are better than that the nicey-nices, and I'm sure, for some players, they are. Certainly Vince Lombardi is exhibit A.
Actually, Exhibit A is Gil Dobie.

Gloomy Gil, a member of the College Football Hall of Fame, was the most hated man in football, but also one of the most successful coaches of all time.

He began his head coaching career at North Dakota State (previously ND Agricultural College) and went undefeated for two seasons before being hired by the University of Washington, where every one of his teams were undefeated. Dobie went 58-0-3 at UW, but even his own fans hated him.

After those eleven straight undefeated seasons, Dobie coached at Navy, where he went 17-3, and then to Cornell, where he had three more undefeated teams (1921-23) before going JoePa at the end of his career and finishing with a .780 winning%.

But Dobie never praised players, forbade them to speak during meetings, and criticized them so cruelly that Bob Knight probably would have pitied the players. Besides "Gloomy Gil", he was also known as "The Sad Scot", "The Dour Dane", and "The Apostle of Grief". Dobie's Washington teams eventually came to be known as "The Sun Dodgers".

He "deplored any form of individualism" and constantly put down his players. He told QB Wee Coyle (1908-12), who went 25-0-1 for Dobie, that he played like a man "devoid of brains".

"I was always scared of him," Coyle admitted later. "There were no smiles, no handshakes, no slaps on the back...nothing but a pair of black eyes coldly peering out of a dark face."

Dobie once told his star QB, "I wouldn't even let you play if I didn't have so many cripples." Addressing the team as a whole, he proclaimed, "You are the dumbest, clumsiest, rankest collection of so-called football excuses I've ever seen."

Now THAT is the opposite of a player's coach.

Last edited by Brad O.; 11-14-2003 at 05:36 PM.
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Old 11-14-2003, 05:37 PM   #12
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Wow....too bad we can't create a time machine match between his best team and John Gagliardi's.
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Old 11-14-2003, 06:06 PM   #13
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You get brownie points for mentioning a D-III coach (I used to play in D-III), but Dobie's teams were D-I, so I think the Johnnies would be in trouble. Unless we're talking about Gagliardi's 1976 or 2003 team against the 1912 Sun Dodgers without any adjustment for era, in which case I don't think the old boys would have much of a chance.
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Old 11-14-2003, 07:18 PM   #14
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I didn't really take those things into account, I just put it out there as a ultimate bad guy vs. ultimate good guy coaching battle.
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