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Frank Beamer tops list of ACC coaches under pressure

Coming off a 7-6 season, the Hokies and coach Frank Beamer are aiming for more wins in 2015. Jeremy Brevard/USA TODAY Sports

At the ACC Kickoff, it appeared that three years of on-field struggles and offseason throat surgery had taken their toll on Virginia Tech coach Frank Beamer. But as the Daily Press' David Teel writes in his terrific profile, Beamer has a clear passion to get the Hokies turned around before he steps aside.

From the Daily Press:

Never the delusional type, Beamer realizes a new administration led by President Timothy Sands and athletic director Whit Babcock cannot, and probably will not, abide further regression.

"I understand that," Beamer said. "I understand where we are, what we need to do and where we've been and where we need to get back to. But we've got capabilities. It's up to myself and our football team to get back there. ...

"If you don't feel pressure in this business, you're misguided."

So the pressure is on at Virginia Tech, and as Beamer suggests, the Hokies have the tools to meet those demands. For all the comparisons to the end of the Bobby Bowden era at Florida State, Virginia Tech's roster certainly appears to be in better shape than those late-2000s Seminoles.

Of course, it's not just Beamer facing the gauntlet. In college football, the hot seat is never much more than a bad season away, and after a relatively quiet offseason in which only one coach departed -- by choice, not by demand -- the winds of change are already stirring in ACC country.

At Virginia, Mike London has lived under this cloud for several years, and he told the Daily Press he isn't too worried.

At Miami, Al Golden touted the closeness of this year's team and said he isn't feeling any pressure.

At Syracuse, Scott Shafer remains resolute despite an ugly 2014 and low expectations for 2015.

So what will it take to cool the flames?

For Shafer, the job of building something at Syracuse is going to take more time, and most fans should understand that. It probably won't be a great year, but anything short of disaster (1-11?) should suffice.

At Miami, Golden probably should be worried. His biggest asset may be his 2016 signing class, but comments by Luther Campbell, a mentor to many area recruits, undermine that theory. An eight-win season probably warrants another year for Golden, but isn’t likely to quiet the loudest of his critics.

At Virginia, the schedule is prohibitive, but there's one obvious must: beat Virginia Tech. If London can't end the 11-game losing streak, it's going to be tough to see how he stays.

And then there's Beamer. In the end, it might not matter what the Hokies' record ends up being in 2015. Beamer clearly understands what the mission is this year, and whether he accomplishes it or not, he has always prioritized the program's needs over his own. So if another disappointing year is the cards, don't be surprised if he makes the school's decision easy.

"I'm very aware of the situation," Beamer told the Daily Press. "Me, Virginia Tech, how long I've been there, how long I will be there. And I'm very aware of -- I'm not going to be there any longer than I feel like I'm a real plus for Virginia Tech."

And if he does get back to that 10-win plateau that had been the standard for so long, maybe he'll ride off into the sunset as the man who didn't just build the program but also rescued it from the brink.