A few days ago, during the final hours of the search for a new Memphis head football coach, I was listening to local host Gary Parrish discuss the situation on his 92.9 FM / ESPN Radio show.
Parrish was discussing the various candidates for the Memphis job – specifically sitting head coaches. Memphis was rumored to have interest in guys like Todd Monken of Southern Miss and Jeff Brohm of Western Kentucky. Parrish correctly made the point that it’s very difficult to get a sitting head coach to leave their current job – unless that coach is unhappy with his boss or perhaps with some other aspect of their current situation.
I’m an interactive listener, so I shot Parrish the following Tweet:
@GaryParrishCBS Don't tell Whit Babcock that it's hard to get a sitting head FB coach. Or are you suggesting Fuente and Bowen had probs?
— Jay Brenner (@_bballjones) December 3, 2015
Whit Babcock, of course, is the current Athletic Director at Virginia Tech.
Whit Babcock had just hired Justin Fuente away from Memphis.
Within the hour, Memphis announced the hiring of Mike Norvell and I forgot all about this meaningless tweet.
Until tonight, when I got a notification on Twitter that someone had “liked” the Tweet.
That someone: Virginia Tech Athletic Director Whit Babcock.
See for yourself:
So I guess Whit Babcock “likes” that he was able to lure a sitting head coach away from Memphis. That much seems obvious.
He ought to be proud of his hire. Fuente is one of only 4 sitting FBS head coaches to voluntarily change jobs this off-season.
What isn’t as clear is whether or not Babcock “likes” the idea that Fuente and Bowen had problems.
I also wonder how Babcock came across the Tweet in the first place – I guess he probably searches Twitter for his name. Makes sense, him being a public figure and all. Or maybe he was checking Gary Parrish’s mentions. I doubt that.
Let’s hope, for Bowen’s sake, that Babcock was simply giving thanks for someone recognizing that he did his job quite well during this go-round on the coaching carousel.