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January 26, 2013

Grimes, Moorehead Add Dynamics To VT

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They're perhaps the biggest coaching moves Virginia Tech Coach Frank Beamer has made in 20 years. The hope is new offensive coordinator Scot Loeffler is the man that will push his historically-average offense over the top.

Though his impact on the field is still more than seven months away, Loeffler, fellow former-Auburn offensive line coach Jeff Grimes, and former Stanford offensive assistant coach Aaron Moorehead assumedly will have an impact on recruiting right away. Grimes and Moorehead were introduced by the Hokies yesterday as offensive line and wide receivers coaches

Rivals.com Auburn Publisher Jay Tate and Stanford running backs coach Mike Sanford Jr. both gave positive feedback of the new hires, having become well-acquainted with them the past few years. While Loeffler, a former quarterback at Michigan, isn't known to be a huge recruiter- his previous track record with quarterbacks should help attract the best talent in the country to be his signal-caller.

At 38 years old, Loeffler has already worked with quarterbacks Tom Brady (whose friendship continues to this day), Chad Henne, Brian Griese, Tim Tebow, and John Navarre. Those five NFL quarterbacks have won a total of four Super Bowl rings and one Heisman.

"He's very bright, and great with one-on-one stuff. I wish he had a better opportunity to try his system here," Tate told HokieHaven.com. "I really liked both of those guys. Loeffler is one of my all-time favorites."

Grimes appears primed to make a big splash in recruiting for Virginia Tech. While at Auburn, Grimes developed dominant offensive lines that helped break the school record for total points in his first season with the Tigers in 2009. He then coached a National Championship offensive line in 2010 that saw three lineman garner individual honors, including Jacobs Trophy (SEC's best blocker) winner and Carolina Panther, Lee Ziemba.

Because of his consistent success, Tate said Auburn had Rivals.com's second-ranked recruiting class in terms of offensive linemen last year. That group boasted five recruits that were ranked four-stars or more. It may have been Auburn's best recruiting class ever in that aspect, according to Tate.

"[Grimes] does a good job of assessing talent on the line and Auburn always had great talent up front," Tate said. "I thought his scouting and recruiting played a big part in that. Although he was never really a designated recruiter, he was ultimately the guy that said 'I want that player.'"

Sanford Jr., the running backs coach at Stanford, was recruited by Grimes at Boise State as a quarterback. They have kept a great friendship ever since, and he had nothing but praise for Grimes.

"He's about as good of a person and coach as there is in this country," Sanford Jr. said in a phone interview. "Just one of those guys that puts family first, and a really good role model for young coaches and players. He's had a lot of impact on me in coaching the last few years."

Moorehead brings one of the most unique advantages to the table of the three. He's won a Super Bowl ring, a pretty easy pitch to make to a recruit. And at just 32 years old, the former Indianpolis Colts wide receiver can easily relate to the players.

"His NFL background as a player really gives him credibility with the kids that he's gonna be recruiting," Sanford Jr. said. "He has a great personality so he'll be a great asset in recruiting. He will adapt to any part of the country."

While Moorehead will certainly bring in some of the top receivers on the east coast, it can't be overstated how much of an impact he will have in Blacksburg. Sanford Jr. believes it could be the start of a prestigious coaching career.

"He's a really bright coach that articulates himself really well," Sanford Jr. said. "He has a great grasp of the wide receiver position and is a master teacher and technician of wideouts. He's gonna have a really good coaching career. We all thought he had a great first step at Stanford."

Although Virginia Tech won't reap the full rewards of each coach's recruits for a couple years, it seems as though Loeffler, Grimes, and Moorehead are more than formidable options to immediately improve the 81st ranked scoring offense in the country.


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