Frank Beamer Made Virginia Tech Football
It is a phrase that has echoed throughout the campus of Virginia Tech in Blacksburg. Frank Beamer, head football coach of the Virginia Tech Hokies, brought the program to prominence, and for that, has become a legend not only at Tech but across the nation as well.
Beamer, 69, spent the past 29 years coaching at his alma mater. His record of 234-120-2 will leave him as the winningest coach in college football once he retires after this season. During his tenure, he's led the Hokies to four ACC titles, three Big East championships, and six BCS bowl game appearances.
Talk about an everlasting impression.
It is an impression that brought Virginia Tech nationwide attention. To many players, Beamer wasn't just a head coach. He was a father figure, a guy to whom players could relate. And for that reason, recruits often disregarded other offers in order to play for Beamer and experience a special bond that is becoming rarer and rarer these days.
Frank Beamer changed my life in the best way possible. Not much to say, but that man is and always will be a #Winner I am forever thankful— AJ Hughes (@AJ_HughesVT) November 1, 2015
I spent countless hours with that Coach Beamer perfecting my craft, not to mention all the smiles and laughter that went along with it..— AJ Hughes (@AJ_HughesVT) November 2, 2015
Football is just a game, but Beamer made it so much more.
Virginia Tech, coming off a 26-10 win over Boston College, will look to sustain its impressive winning tradition through the rest of the season. Beamer has led Tech to 22 straight winning seasons and 22 consecutive bowl seasons.
From 2004 to 2011, Beamer arguably had some of his best days with the program, guiding the Hokies to 10 wins or more in eight consecutive seasons.
And while Virginia Tech has struggled as of late, having lost five games or more in each of their past four seasons, Beamer hopes to continue his team's bowl streak. At 4-5, Virginia Tech will have to win two of its next three to keep the longest bowl streak in the FBS alive, with upcoming games against Georgia Tech, North Carolina, and Virginia.
Beamer has come a long way. Starting 2-9 in his first season with Virginia Tech 29 years ago, the Hokies won 10 games or more in 11 of 13 years from 1999-2011. By thoroughly dedicating himself to the university he loved, Beamer quickly brought a program from the bottom to the top.
Legendary coaches like Nick Saban and NFL players have looked up to Beamer, calling him one of the most iconic coaches of this era. A coach like Frank Beamer does not come along often in this day and age, and he has unquestionably left an everlasting impression on the program.
Frank Beamer.. Thank you for the opportunity to go to a division 1 college to play division 1 ball… https://t.co/MvFx8HcYIc— Kameron (@Kam_Chancellor) November 3, 2015
Frank Beamer is a college football giant.The consummate gentleman. He was an absolute pleasure. Transformed VT program.All the best to him!— Rece Davis (@ESPN_ReceDavis) November 2, 2015
Frank Beamer made my hometown area a national brand. His impact on SWVA is beyond measure. A First Class person, a Hall of Fame career.— Marty Smith (@MartySmithESPN) November 1, 2015
Congrats to Frank Beamer on one of the classiest and most impressive careers in college football history. Few have been better. Period.— Pete Thamel (@SIPeteThamel) November 1, 2015
Beamer's 277 career victories are the most of any active coach and sixth in FBS history. He is one of only 10 FBS coaches with 200+ wins at one school, with 41 wins coming against the AP Top 25 since 1995. Virginia Tech has been difficult to beat in Blacksburg with Beamer leading the way, as the Hokies have a 107-27 record (.799) at home since 1995.
Beamer's 13 seasons with 10+ wins are only behind Ohio State (15) as the most among the Power 5 since 1995. There have also been 93 NFL draftees under his tenure, and there has been a 100 percent graduation rate of seniors at Virginia Tech since 2012. That's not merely a coincidence.
The accolades and accomplishments go on and on. Beamer has simply been a joy to the Virginia Tech community over the years. The style of football he has brought to Blacksburg is one of hard hits, blocked kicks, and ground and pound offense.
It's hard to say whether he meant more to Virginia Tech or if Virginia Tech meant more to him.
Beamer led Virginia Tech to the brink of a national title in 1999. The Hokies went 11-0 and beat four ranked opponents in Virginia, Syracuse, Miami, and Boston College by an average of 44-8. Tech played No. 1 Florida State in the Sugar Bowl that year, and despite then-Virginia Tech quarterback Michael Vick finishing with 322 total yards, the Seminoles went on to win 46-29 after scoring 18 unanswered in the fourth quarter.
By hoisting Virginia Tech's football program from the bottom to the top of the college football community, Beamer put Lane Stadium and Blacksburg on the map. But, ultimately, Beamer proved successful at much more than just football. His leadership as a genuine human being is what made him so special amongst the community and thus brought a one-of-a-kind relationship with his players that enabled them to achieve their goals both on and off the field.