The Daily Press of Newport News, Virginia is reporting that Virginia Tech Defensive Coordinator Bud Foster has been contacted about the University of Georgia Defensive Coordinator's position. This follows Jim Donnan saying (I just can't bring myself to use the word "reporting") on 680 The Fan this morning that Frank Beamer told him that Foster had spoken with Georgia. Also, the University of Georgia Athletic Association plane travelled to Danville, Virginia on December 7th, and Danville is not that far from Blacksburg*.
I for one would be ecstatic if Foster were announced for the job. He's done more with less for longer than just about anyone in BCS Conference football. Plus his defenses set his up to be "The Anti-Willie": spates of turnovers, tons of pressure and a hard-nosed approach.
Until a slightly down performance this season, Foster's defenses had been among the most consistently excellent in the country, finishing in the top 10 in both total defense and scoring defense every year between 2004 and 2008. They led the nation in total defense in 2005 and 2006. This year's unit gave up more than 26 points (roughly the average allowed by our defense) only once, in their season opener against Bama. Prior to that, Foster's offense last gave up more than 30 on September 8, 2007 to soon-to-be National Champs LSU. That's the kind of consistency I could definitely get behind.
While some would say "yeah, but he did that in the ACC . . ." I would reply that Foster has consistently contained pro style, triple option and spread attacks stocked with talent similar to his. He's certainly utilized talent better than his competitors at Florida State and Miami.
Bud Foster, seen here not being Willie Martinez. Which seems like a good start.
All that being said, there are probably a dozen other folks who can say they've been contacted at this point, so too much excitement would be very premature. Getting the right guy is going to require choreography on par with executing a lunar landing. While there's a popular perception that Foster (who's been in Blacksburg for 23 years) would never leave, he has previously expressed interest in head coaching positions at Illinois (before its unfortunate Zookification), NC State (before they hired Tom O'Brien) and at Memphis as recently as a month ago. If Damon and the gang were willing to seriously outbid Virginia Tech, I think it could get done. Foster currently makes $402,000 per year, but Virginia Tech would almost certainly be willing to pay more to keep him. The question is how much they could pay if Coach Richt says, with no trace of hesitation, "this is the guy, let's go get him." Stay tuned.
*Yes, this is true. I've been following the flights via tail number. Stop looking at me like that. It's a perfectly healthy pastime.