The Virginia Tech Hokies had a surprising coaching vacancy in late April when it was announced that former safeties coach and assistant head coach, Galen Scott, was stepping down for some very public personal reasons. It was a strange time on the coaching calendar as most positions are usually filled by that point and it left the Hokies scrambling a bit to find his replacement.
In early June, the Hokies announced they had hired Tyrone Nix to fill the void as safeties coach. It was a move that many praised due to Nix’s various experiences coaching in the SEC. Nix, 45, played linebacker at Southern Miss from 1990-93, before jumping into the coaching ranks at his alma mater. After being a position coach for a years, Nix took over as defensive coordinator for Southern Miss in 2001, when he was just 29 years of age. He would stay in that position for four years until going to South Carolina to coach under Steve Spurrier for three season. At Carolina, Nix was co-defensive coordinator.
After leaving South Carolina, Nix would become the defensive coordinator at Ole Miss for four seasons before being let go after head coach Houston Nutt was fired after the 2011 season. From there, Nix went to Middle Tennessee State for five years and in 2017 he was named an analyst on Kevin Sumlin’s Texas A&M staff.
So, while his recent coaching pedigree doesn’t sound too impressive, Nix’s experience could be beneficial. HIs deep roots in the south could help recruiting in specific states where the Hokies currently don’t make too much of an impact. Nix has had solid results at times and it’s important to note he will just be a position coach, not the coordinator. This has the potential to be a solid hire and give credit to head coach Justin Fuente for going away from his comfort zone to hire Nix.
Nix recently spoke with Hokie Sports and is excited about working with defensive coordinator Bud Foster.
My first year in coaching I had an opportunity to come up and meet with Coach Foster, and we spent a lot of time together. That was in 1995. We shared some ideas and kind of kept a relationship going from that point on, and throughout our careers, we’ve been able to lean on each other. Mostly me looking for advice or asking for his opinion. It has been great to have an opportunity to work with such a great coach, probably a hall of fame coach at some point, when things are all said and done. Just to have an input and to be a part of this staff has been great.
Nix will have several young, but talented players in his position group in 2018. Foster hopes the transition from Scott to Nix is a seamless one. Considering the timing of Scott’s departure, this was a pretty good hire by Fuente and staff.