Frank Beamer wasn’t afraid of making news this week.
Between his weekly teleconference with local reporters and his weekly appearance on the “Tech Talk Live” radio show, Tech’s head coach made headlines with several comments.
Beamer’s most controversial statement came regarding Alabama’s quality as an opponent.
"This is the best team we've ever played,” Beamer said Monday on “Tech Talk Live.”
Fans and analysts alike have challenged that particular assertion in the days following the broadcast.
While the Crimson Tide is undoubtedly a quality opponent due to their status as defending national champion, several other teams could claim that title.
The Hokies have faced several eventual national champions, like Miami in 2001, Southern California in 2004, LSU in 2007 and the Florida State team that beat Tech in the national title game in 1999.
All of these teams could’ve been the best team the Hokies have faced — yet Beamer can’t seem to find any weaknesses in the Tide.
“Haven’t found one yet,” he said. “I don’t think they have a weakness. I think they’re just as solid as the day is long.”
He also had kind words for Alabama quarterback A.J. McCarron.
“His intelligence, I’d say, that’s probably about as good as you get,” Beamer said.
Due to this high praise for the Tide, it’s understandable that the Hokies might be intimidated, but the team isn’t backing down.
“Maybe it’s my background, coming from wrestling with coach [Kevin] Dresser,” center Andrew Miller said. “One of his main sayings is ‘Never take a backseat to anybody.’ And that’s something I never do.”
Quarterback Logan Thomas is similarly confident about the season’s prospects.
“I can’t put words in y’all’s mouth or whatever, but I think y’all going to see a different team than you are used to seeing here at Virginia Tech,” Thomas said. “I think y’all are going to be writing about a chance of us having a superior season.”
Depth Chart Answers
Beamer also provided a few answers on injuries and position battles over the last few days.
He noted that running back J.C. Coleman was still “questionable” for the season opener after spraining both ankles in fall camp.
Coleman seems confident that he’ll be ready to play against Alabama, but the coaching staff is undoubtedly still cautious.
Beamer also observed that receivers D.J. Coles and Charley Meyer are each struggling with injuries. Coles is still dealing with nagging knee injuries, while Meyer is suffering hamstring problems.
Additionally, Beamer shed some light on the team’s special teams positions.
Rover Kyshoen Jarrett will be the top punt returner, while cornerback Kendall Fuller will back him up. Wide receiver Demetri Knowles and running back J.C. Coleman will handle kick returns.
However, Beamer offered no answers on who would win the starting job at defensive end between Dadi Nicolas and J.R. Collins.
“All those guys, they’re going to end up playing quite a bit,” Beamer said. “When we’ve been able to alternate people in there, that’s when we’ve been a pretty good football team. So we feel good about that spot.”
Athletic director Jim Weaver turned some heads during “Tech Talk Live” when he announced the date for the Hokies’ game against Ohio State in 2015 would be changing.
The match in Lane Stadium was originally slated for Sept. 19, but Weaver said it would now be televised on ESPN as part of “Monday Night Football” on Sept. 7.
The game will be on Labor Day, recalling memories of the Hokies’ games against Boise State in 2010 and Georgia Tech in 2012, which also occurred on the holiday.
Weaver continued to avoid questions about which school will replace Wisconsin on the schedule in 2016 and 2017, yet noted that "nobody will be complaining” once the opponent is eventually announced.