The college football offseason is long. The longest of any sport, actually. With no preseason games to chew on, the sport forces us to go from early January all the way until Labor Day weekend without any actual football to digest.
For those of us in the media, it can tend to drive us a bit insane.
Still, content must be produced, and if you’re in radio, well, those segments aren’t going to fill themselves — particularly when you’re hosting a local radio show. If you’re hosting a show in, say, Virginia, and a national writer swoops in to do a piece on the local program, say Ross Dellenger from Sports Illustrated, you’re going to slurp it up like it’s a water fountain in the desert.
The crux of the piece was Justin Fuente’s remaking of the Hokie program after last season’s 6-7 verdict, and WFNZ host Josh Parcell brought Dellenger on his show to talk about it. The tease he tweeted ahead of interview was, “Is Justin Fuente’s job in danger? What really went wrong at Virginia Tech?”
Four days later, Virginia Tech AD Whit Babcock answered.
— Whit Babcock (@WhitBabcock) August 20, 2019
For the record, Dellenger himself never said Fuente is on the hot seat in Blacksburg.
Hey, guys. I definitely didn't say this. pic.twitter.com/nz7m5CQ5dW
— Ross Dellenger (@RossDellenger) August 20, 2019
The thought that Fuente is on the hot seat is not a rogue one, though. In his annual hot seat speculation piece, Yahoo‘s Pete Thamel wrote this:
The buyout of $15 million assures that Justin Fuente is safe, but there are serious questions about the long-term viability of his staff. With the dips from 10 wins to 9 to 6, another mediocre season will lead Fuente and Tech administrators to some soul searching.
The fact that Babcock swooped in and definitively answered a question he did not have to answer says a lot about Fuente’s security in Blacksburg.
If only all ADs could be this forthcoming when asked this question.