Frank Beamer shares retirement plans in one-on-one interview

(Matt Gentry/The Roanoke Times via AP)

BLACKSBURG, Va. — Frank Beamer has had a few days to let things settle in after announcing his retirement Sunday. It’s now sinking in.

“Yeah. I knew all along that the one thing I was going to dread was the people you miss the most and that the coaches and the players and telling them and getting through that. And it was.”

Coach Beamer reiterates, after 29 seasons as the head coach at Virginia Tech, the time is right.

“Anytime you’re in the public life there’s a difference of opinions and I’m well aware of that. It just seems like there’s been more here lately, should I stay or should I go, when’s the time? And I just don’t like seeing Tech people divided.”

One of the most respected figures in college football and beloved in Blacksburg, Beamer doesn’t take all the credit for the changes to Hokie football under his tenure.

“It’s what we’ve built,” he said. “I’ve been fortunate to have a lot of coaches and a lot of great players through here and you just don’t do it by yourself. When looking around and seeing the things that our supporters have helped us build. You know there’s not a state dollar involved with that. It’s all private money that supporters of the program have given. It puts us in a position to compete.”

He takes great pride in his program and what he’ll leave for Virginia Tech’s next coach.

“I think it helps administration here. Now they can proceed to find a really good coach and that’s also what I want. I want to see the program continue to grow and get bigger and better.”

With just three games left in the regular season, Beamer’s focus he says, remains the same. Concentrate on what you can control, he said.

“I’ve always told my coaches put your efforts toward what you can control. What we can control is the football team and coaches and how we play and that’s the only thing really.”

His players. His community. They’re now working to send him off in style as they lobby ESPN’s College Game Day to bring it back to Blacksburg for his final home game.

“I’d love for them to be here anytime a game day comes. It’s great for the university if you play well in a game. It’s great for recruiting, it gets Virginia Tech’s name out there. You do interviews with a lot of people on campus. I’ve always been a Virginia Tech guy and Game Day will only help that.

Beamer is now getting behind the #GaneDay4Frank push which spread through social media.

“While I try to help out by encouraging, hey if you come will treat you good, and we will. These tech fans will treat them great.”

Beamer expects retirement to treat him well.

“Well, the first thing I’m going to do is figure out what time I’m going to tee off that day,” he joked.

He plans to spending time with his grandkids and his wife.

“I’m not a guy that says OK, this is it and there’s nothing else. I’m fortunate I’ve got quite a few things that I look forward to. I’ve got a wonderful wife we can spend some more time together. I’m not sure she’s all in favor of that but…” he laughed. “We’ll do some traveling.”

Traveling, perhaps one more trip to a 23rd consecutive bowl game.

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