After what has been a tumultuous week for the Hokie basketball program, there finally seems to be a light at the end of the tunnel. According to multiple reports, Virginia Tech has hired former Wofford Terrier head coach Mike Young to replace Buzz Williams, who left Blacksburg for Texas A&M this past week. Young has spent the last 12 years as the head coach at Wofford and will be looking to continue some of the success Williams found in recent years.
Young, the 55-year-old Radford native, has been well known as one of the best coaches in the Southern Conference, winning the league in five of the past 10 years and winning 20 games in all but four of those years. He is responsible for every tournament bid in school history and his ability to grow a program into a successful one is reminiscent to what Williams did the past few years at Tech. Overall, Young brings a lot to the table as a head coach on and off the court that Tech fans should be excited about.
Young’s ability as a player development specialist is going to be extremely valuable to the Virginia Tech program. On his program-best 30–5 campaign this past year, the team was led by senior stars Fletcher Magee and Cameron Jackson. Both were unranked and relative unknowns coming out of high school, yet this past year, both players earned All-Southern Conference First Team honors. With the losses of seniors Justin Robinson, Ty Outlaw and Ahmed Hill plus the possible exits of Chris Clarke, Wabissa Bede and Nickeil Alexander-Walker, the Hokies will have to depend on the development of their underclassmen if they wish to find success in the ACC.
Young’s system should help to make it an easier transition for the returning players, as it mirrors what Williams has run the past few years.
Young uses a motion offense to run players off screens and create a lot of opportunities for open threes. He also coaches effort and intensity on defense as evidenced by Wofford’s conference-best 65.6 points allowed per game this past season. Virginia Tech ranked third in the ACC in both three-point percentage and defense last season.
Young looks like very good coaching hire by Athletic Director Whit Babcock and he should help the Hokies not see too much of a step back from their historic success this past year. If he can recruit at a high level and continue to develop the players already on the roster, Young will feel the love of the Virginia Tech fanbase. With 299 wins on his coaching resume, Young will look to earn his 300th with the Hokies this fall.