Monthly Archives: November 2013

2013 Virginia Tech Top 5 Football Teams

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2013 Virginia Tech Top 5 Football Teams

The Virginia Tech football program has been around since the late 19th century, and they turned themselves into a perennial contender in the mid-1980s after decades of toiling in mediocrity. They finished fourth or better in the Big East Conference every single year from 1993 to 2011. Here is a collection of the five best Virginia Tech football teams of all time.

#5 1986

In head coach Bill Dooley’s final year with the team and one of the University’s final as an conference independent, the Hokies were able to put together a 10 – 1 – 1 season, capped off by a 25 – 24 victory over the NC State Wolfpack in the Peach Bowl. Running backs Eddie Hunter and Maurice Williams combined to create a two-headed monster that was nearly impossible for opposing defenses to stop. Dooley left the team at the end of the season, paving the way for Frank Beamer.

#4 1995

Beamer took a few years to get his feet set in Blacksburg, and once he did the team started rattling off winning seasons on a regular basis. The first banner year that Beamer put together was in 1995, when the team finished first in the Big East and compiled a 10 – 2 record after losing the first two games of the season at home. The campaign ended with an 18-point victory over the Texas Longhorns in the Sugar Bowl, and the exposure gave Beamer valuable recruiting leverage.

#3 2009

Virginia Tech continued to post 10 and 11 win seasons following the departure of Vick. The 2008 team was a standout group, and even though they placed third in a very competitive Atlantic Coast Conference, they came up big down the stretch and defeated a very talented Boston College team in early December and a stacked Cincinnati Bearcats team in the Orange Bowl on New Year’s Day.

#2 2000

2000 was superstar quarterback Michael Vick’s second year with Virginia Tech, and it was a year in which the Hokies had the attention of the entire sporting nation. Vick absolutely laid waste to drastically overmatched defenses over the course of the season, running for over 600 yards on just over 100 attempts and firing darts into the hands of wide receivers during various rollouts. The Hokies also played a hard-nosed, scrappy brand of defense, benefiting from blocked punts and field goals on a regular basis.

#1 1999

Of all the great squads led by Frank Beamer, the single greatest was the 1999 team. The season was Michael Vick’s first with the Hokies, and it was the single biggest and brightest year for Virginia Tech football and the city of Blacksburg in the history of the institution. Beamer built the program into a respected force, but it was the talent and highlight reel play of Vick that catapulted the team from the middle of the pack to an elite force in the NCAA.

Virginia Tech Football Local Traditions

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 Virginia Tech Football Local Traditions

Fans of the Virginia Tech Hokies football team are some of the most passionate, loyal and vocal in all of college football. Blacksburg is a tightknit community that cares deeply about the success of their beloved Hokies football team, and a handful of traditions take place every Saturday during football season. A few of them were created in the last few decades during the team’s rise into a perennially successful national power. Here are the top six Virginia Tech football traditions.

The Lunch Pail

The Virginia Tech lunch pail is a symbol of defensive toughness. The thoroughly worked-over pail looks like it could have been used on a daily basis by a coal miner in the early-1900s. It was actually the creation of defensive coaches who wanted to bring a tangible symbol of the team’s toughness to campus. It can usually be found on the sidelines during home games and in the locker room before and after the affairs. The hand-painted ‘VT’ on the front side of the leather casing further establishes the blue-collar charm of this simple piece.

Team Walk

The football team is very accessible to the tens of thousands of fans that pack Lane Stadium for every home game. One of the biggest testaments to this is the Team Walk, a tradition that takes place beginning about two hours before kickoff. The entire team, coaching staff, dance teams, color guard squad and cheerleading squad are led by the marching band on a short journey from the athletic complex to the home team locker room.

Let’s Go Hokies!

This pregame chant gets everybody in the building wearing Virginia Tech colors or merchandise pumped up and ready for kickoff. While members of groups associated with pregame rituals are on the field conducting their business, opposing sides of the gigantic block-shaped stadium seating sections bellow alternating yells of “Let’s go!” and “Hokies!” The internal competition amidst the crowd perfectly foreshadows the on-field competition.

Enter Sandman

This tradition involving one of Metallica’s most celebrated songs was born around the turn of the millennium. The University made several improvements to Lane Stadium in the spring of 2000, and additional digital technologies that were unleashed to a thrilled crowd during the home opener included the song Enter Sandman. The reception was amazing, the atmosphere was bonkers and a brand-new tradition was born.

3rd Down Key Shake

Not exactly unique to Blacksburg, but it is a clear demonstration of the football savvy and passion of the fans in attendance at any given game. The entire student section and many in attendance take their keys out of their pockets leading up to every 3rd down play, shaking them vigorously in support of the VT defense and creating a metallic twang designed to disorient the opposing quarterback and unify the fans in attendance.

Skipper the Cannon

Skipper is a beautiful 19th century cannon that would be a local museum if were not given the prized honor of firing off an empty round to commemorate every Virginia Tech touchdown. No scoring drive is complete without a thunderous boom echoing throughout Lane Stadium. Furthermore game night is complete without a trip to a local watering hole for a few strong cocktails. Pk’s Bar & Grill, Big Al’s Grille & Sportsbar and Sharkeys are all within a mile due north of the field.