August 10, 2013

Beamer Putting Last Season Behind

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It's been said multiple times at this point. Change had to be made with Virginia Tech after a 7-6 season, it's worst in 20 years. New coaches were brought in and the mindset and culture within the program changed.

Now three weeks from taking on defending national champion Alabama and righting the Hokies' ship, coach Frank Beamer is ready to get on with it. He's ready to move on and fully put last season in the rearview mirror.

"There's different ways to coach it," Beamer said. "I don't think there's any particular one way that's exactly right. I think the coaches that we brought in are very out there, very moving around and very vocal. I think that's probably helped pick up the tempo of practice. I've liked the way things have gone so far and again, I always wanna make sure, the coaches we had were good coaches, these guys are good coaches. That wasn't the deal. The deal was we needed some things different, I thought."

All three coaches hired, Scot Loeffler, Jeff Grimes and Aaron Moorehead, were brought in on offense, bringing about plenty of change on the offensive side of the ball. And there have been some hiccups in getting that offense installed, but Beamer is pleased with the progress.

"I like what we're doing, I like how we're doing it," he said. "Now, it's to be able to function on Saturday. But I know we're really working hard to get there, so I'm pleased."

One uncertainty is with how senior quarterback Logan Thomas adjusts. After a disappointing season, Thomas had three interceptions in the spring game, but is making progress in a positive manner this fall.

"I think he understands, this is his team, he's more take charge," Beamer said. "Logan handles things really well and how he handles taking charge. I think he does it in a good way, a very natural way. He has great respect for the players, a high degree of respect and it's just a natural thing, I think."

But aside from Thomas, there's plenty of other uncertainty, on both sides of the ball.

"The inside three people on the offensive line are pretty well set," Beamer said. "I think who plays tackle, that's yet to be determined. Those practices, for tackles, we needed to be more consistent there, there's no question about that. I think the receivers are kinda sorting themselves out. The Carlis Parker kid, the (Deon) Newsome kid, who's a true freshman, they're gonna get some opportunities. That's sorting itself out. At corner, that's just Antone (Exum) getting hurt in a basketball game. We didn't plan for that, but injuries are a part of football and it gives someone else an opportunity."

Three weeks is a while, but not that long. But it's all Beamer has left to get the Hokies prepared for redemption.

"We understand there's a real thin line between being ok and not being ok," he said. "You've gotta play every play, prepare for every team. It's hard to win football games. All those things became very clear to us last year."

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