I always at least attempt to curb my bias when writing about the Hokies. I want them to do well, but it's useful to stay as neutral as possible.
Still, it's hard not to have a purely emotional fan reaction when asked about the old football coach.
I love Frank Beamer.
He constructed a winning program in the face of some tall odds and generally did the right things along the way. He's been the driving force behind the most important era of Virginia Tech athletics filled with major expansion in financial resources and seismic shifts in conference affiliation.
He's done so many positive things, and that influence makes the recent results on the field so baffling and painful.
We're not used to this. Sure we've been spoiled with consistent winning, but it's shocking to become mediocre in such a hurry.
Beamer and Scot Loeffler both seem genuinely perplexed as the same issues perpetuate on offense. No one is happy. No one has answers. The season has ground to a halt.
The whispers have turned to audible grumbles. Tech fans know a change is on the horizon and frustration leads them to want it now.
I don't know if that would be smart or not, but I know it will be extremely difficult.
Getting rid of Frank Beamer will be like firing Grandpa.
Father: "Listen Dad, you know I love you. Everyone does. But we feel like we have to make a change."
Grandpa: "What do you mean?"
Father: "We're going for a change in leadership. You're grandchildren have been clamoring for the move for a while now."
Grandpa: "But I built this family!"
Father: "And we're all very grateful...but the family unit is stagnating. You knew this had to happen sometime."
Of course in real life it will be Whit Babcock who has the conversation. He makes the decision and it's an unpleasant one.
Transitioning from a legend to a new coach is rarely pretty. In recent years such illustrious programs as Florida State, Penn State, Tennessee and Nebraska moved on from legendary coaches to new regimes.
Both Nebraska and Tennessee are on their third head coaches while Penn State is on number two. Only Florida State—a program that had in place the always controversial "coach in waiting" deal with Jimbo Fisher—quickly turned their transition around into real success last season.
We see great players move on, but the coach is the one constant in a successful program.