Frank Beamer may not be thinking about retirement, but that doesn't mean he hasn't thought about who will take his place.
On Tuesday, Beamer visited ESPN's campus in Bristol, Conn. and made his thoughts on a possible successor very clear.
"I've got a great staff of very competent people," Beamer told ESPN's Mark Schlabach. "Hopefully, someone from the staff will be chosen to be the next coach at Virginia Tech."
It's not hard to guess who would be at the top of Beamer's wish list.
Defensive coordinator Bud Foster, 56, has spent his entire coaching career working for Beamer, first in Murray State and then at Virginia Tech. He became the defensive coordinator in 1995 and is now considered one of the best defensive minds in the country.
Foster has spurned offers from other schools including most recently an offer to join Kevin Sumlin's staff as defensive coordinator at Texas A&M, electing instead to sign a five-year extension at Virginia Tech. At 68, Beamer will most likely retire before Foster's new contract is up, signaling perhaps that Foster is the unofficial coach in waiting in Blacksburg.
But did another candidate emerge last season?
At the end of the regular season in 2014, Beamer underwent throat surgery that kept him away during much of the team's preparations for the Military Bowl and off of the sidelines for the game. In his stead, associate head coach Shane Beamer took on much of the responsibility of leading the team.
Shane Beamer, 38, has been with Virginia Tech since 2011 as the running backs coach. The team certainly seemed to respond to his coaching in the Military Bowl as the Hokies crushed Cincinnati 33-17.
"I can a make case for both of them," Beamer said. "Certainly, they're both viable. I think Bud is the best in the country at what he does, and he certainly deserves an opportunity. I think Shane is very good at what he does. He understands the details of being a coach. I think he understands the details of what it takes to be a good head coach."
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