Tuesday was another reminder of the speed of the college football coaching carousel. Before most of the American world went to work, Virginia Tech had announced plans to move on from head coach Justin Fuente.
The Hokies are the seventh Power 5 job to open during the 2021 season, a number expected to likely double or even triple by the time the College Football Playoff concludes in January.
It means the future of every roster has a decision to make. Jump in early come December, when most of college football recruiting wraps up, or let all of the dust settle and sign with a program the first Wednesday in February?
Matthew McCoy will opt for the latter.
The St. John's (Fla.) Creekside offensive tackle talent, in his first year buying into the position after time at tight end earlier in his career, has picked up scores of scholarship offers during the 2021 season. Double-digit tenders came in during a two-week period as the senior film at the position was released.
McCoy has tried to take as many trips as possible between new offers and programs jockeying for visiting position, so more time is needed to make sure the critical decision is met with depth.
"Going to deal with the recruiting process more after the season, things like that," McCoy told Fan Nation's Brian Smith. "So, I’m just kind of leaving that there. You know, I’ll have enough time to figure it out.”
Florida has had the semi-local recruit on campus several times this fall for unofficial visits and Ole Miss, another SEC offer he brought in, did so for the first official visit of the process for the senior.
The two shot to the top of his list after that point, though the carousel has already made an impact with each option in the weeks since. Ole Miss' Lane Kiffin and Jeff Lebby are mentioned for several open coaching jobs and Florida has already been transitional as offensive line coach, and the primary contact for the rising-recruit and UF, John Hevesy has been fired.
“Yeah, now that Coach Hevesy is gone, it was mainly him and (Head) Coach (Dan) Mullen," he said. "But pretty much, Coach (Charlie) Skalaski (Director of Player Personnel), and Coach Mullen. That’s it so far."
This week, he told Sports Illustrated nothing has changed at the top. The race is far from over, though.
December and January will provide more in-person evaluation opportunities for the 6'6", 275-pound prospect. Miami gets the next official visit the weekend of December 3 and Florida gets the same opportunity the following week. Maryland has become a player in the race and looks in line for a January visit.
A fifth and final official visit is still to be determined. Other programs, or for that matter coaches who have built a relationship with McCoy who move on to other roles, may have a late shot to sneak into the picture.
The dust settling is part of the reason one of Florida's hottest recruits won't end the recruiting process until he has to.
“Yeah, probably in February," McCoy re-emphasized. "I gotta take my visits and stuff.”