The defensive staff is filling out and being rearranged a bit. The Hokies made to hires to the 2020 coaching staff. Darryl Tapp, former Defensive lineman and his era’s leader has joined the staff as a Defensive Assistant; and former Minnesota defensive coordinator and head coach Tracy Claeys is hired to coach the linebackers.
Tapp looks like another quality pickup from the long list of former Hokie football greats who are starting to populate various staff positions on the team. Tapp joins Pierson Prioleau, Justin Hamilton, and Jack Tyler on the two major portions of the staff. Tech also has quite a few former players in Graduate Assistant roles. Bringing former players back to help run the program is going to be an interesting move. Tech might not be a grand presence on the NFL playing field (with the exception of defensive backs) but there are quite a few former players who are holding down coaching jobs in both the pros and college. (Sounds like fodder for an article in the off season.)
In addition to the Darryl Tapp hire, it looks like Jerry Kill’s influence has helped to bring some Division 1 coaching chops to the Linebackers in the form of former Golden Gophers DC and HC, Jerry Claeys. There are some decidedly mixed reviews on the hire given his career decisions and paths, but two things that he does bring are a large body of work, and familiarity with Kill. We’ll see how this works out with Hamilton, and if he survives Ben Hilgart’s coaches’ fitness program. (rumors are that it exists... no confirmation... but even Bud’s in better shape... and Fuente can still sling it...)
There are a few more positions left to fill, but the word is that Fuente and Babcock are reconfiguring the staff, and some of the old positions won’t be filled, and some new positions will appear with changes in responsibilities to cover the differences.