Virginia Tech and coach Justin Fuente mutually parted ways on Tuesday, ending his tenure with the Hokies after six seasons. Co-defensive line coach J.C. Price will work as interim coach for the rest of the season.
“We sincerely appreciate the contributions that Coach Fuente made to our football program and the positive impact he made on our student-athletes during his time at Virginia Tech,” athletic director Whit Babcock said in a statement. “While it is never easy to make a change, I believe in order for our football program to attain the type of sustained success that is expected at Virginia Tech, the time was right for new leadership of our football program.”
The Hokies went 43-31 in Fuente’s time in Blacksburg and are 5-5 this season. Virginia Tech climbed as high as No. 15 in the AP Top 25 after a season-opening win over then-No. 10 North Carolina, but lost five of seven games after a 2-0 start, including three consecutive home losses to Notre Dame, Pittsburgh and Syracuse.
Virginia Tech went 19-8 in Fuente’s first two seasons, winning 10 games in his first year in 2016, when he was named ACC coach of the year. But the Hokies are 10-11 over the past two seasons and haven’t been ranked higher than 12th in the AP poll over the past six years.
Fuente was hired to replace Frank Beamer, who coached the Hokies from 1987-2015 and led them to seven conference championships in a College Football Hall of Fame career.
Virginia Tech must win one of its final two games against Miami or Virginia to clinch bowl eligibility.