Foster staying at Va. Tech
UPDATED | 7:50 p.m. Virginia Tech defensive coordinator Bud Foster is staying in Blacksburg.
The Hokies added a level of stability to their program by offering Foster, who has been approached by several schools about their defensive coordinator openings, a financial arrangement Monday that he said would keep him in place at Virginia Tech. Athletic Director Jim Weaver said that Foster would be given an annuity package if he continues to coach the Hokies over the next five seasons.
“We just feel strongly that if Bud’s going to be a defensive coordinator,” Weaver told reporters, “there’s no need for him to be a defensive coordinator any place other than Virginia Tech.”
The terms of the deal have not been finalized. Foster, who has been Frank Beamer’s defensive coordinator for the past 15 seasons, said the package would not include any assurances about becoming Virginia Tech’s next head coach.
“Coach Beamer has been extremely good to me,” Foster said. “I want to ride this thing out with him. We’ve been doing this along time together and there’s not reason to stop there, and let’s finish this thing. It’s a good deal all the way around. I’m extremely pleased.”
In recent weeks, Georgia Coach Mark Richt made the most serious overture toward Foster about the Bulldogs’ opening at defensive coordinator. Foster said Urban Meyer of Florida and Jimbo Fisher of Florida State also called him about the defensive coordinator vacancies at their programs.
The Hokies' players interviewed on Monday night were unaware that Foster was being pursued by other schools. Some said they first learned of Foster's communication with Georgia, which has been reported by news outlets earlier Monday, when Beamer told the team after practice that Foster would be staying at Virginia Tech.
"I'm glad they kept it away from us so we could just focus on this Tennessee game," cornerback Rashad Carmichael said of the Hokies' opponent in the Chick-fil-A Bowl on Dec. 31 in Atlanta. "You love playing for Coach Foster -- just the energy he brings and the tradition he has and everything he brings to the table for himself. It's fun playing for a guy like that."
It is not the first time Virginia Tech has sweetened Foster's financial arrangement to keep him in Blacksburg. In December 2007, for example, Foster received a raise of more than $50,000 after declining South Carolina Coach Steve Spurrier's offer for him to become the Gamecocks' defensive coordinator.
Foster's annual compensation, which is more than $400,000, will not change under the new arrangement. But if he remains at Virginia Tech for the next five years, he is guaranteed an annuity to be announced at a later time.
"We’ve put a lot of time and effort into this place," Foster said of Virginia Tech, "and I feel good about where this program is and the hard work we put into it."
Foster, considered one of the nation’s top defensive coordinators, has been in the mix for head coaching openings in the past. He has been selective about job openings in previous years, saying that he would prefer to leave for a Bowl Championship Series program.
Foster said he would want to become a head coach if the right opportunity came up, preferring to land at a Bowl Championship Series school. But on Monday, he said taking a coaching job elsewhere would “be hard to do right now, unless they’re going to come up with a lot of money.”
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