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Hite is coach by day, Iron Chef by night

ATLANTA – Billy Hite’s mother, Louise, was a caterer. So it is only natural that he also loves cooking.

By day, Hite is Virginia Tech’s running backs coach. But by night, he is a passionate chef who is popular among his friends and family.

“Whatever you want, I can do it all,” Hite said of his cooking ability during an interview before the No. 12 Hokies’ (9-3) meeting with Tennessee (7-5) in the Chick-fil-A Bowl on Thursday. “Anything you think about. In the offseason, I cook every night at my house.”

Hite said seafood is popular in his home. And he is so good at preparing it, friends will invite him to their shore houses “because they know I’ll do all the cooking when we’re at the beach.”

Louise Hite catered events large and small, meaning there were formal arrangements and then there were the after-school meals she prepared for Hite and his friends from DeMatha High School. There was always some leftover roast beef or ham from a catering job.

By watching his mother, Hite learned to cook and developed an affinity for it.

During the weekend of Virginia Tech’s game against North Carolina, on Oct. 29, Hite had many of his college friends come to visit Blacksburg. At the gathering, Hite, who played for the Tar Heels and graduated from the university in 1974, served shrimp boats and chicken puffs, and then gave an impromptu instructional course on how to prepare those items.

“When he retires,” his mother said, “I look for him to go work in a restaurant or something of that sort.”

By Mark Viera  |  December 30, 2009; 10:45 AM ET
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