Renewed Rivalry Between WVU and Virginia Tech Stirs Up Old Memories
The renewed rivalry between West Virginia and Virginia Tech bring lasting memories and great traditions to fans.
MORGANTOWN, W.Va.–Rivalries are great traditions in sports.
Since joining the Big 12, the West Virginia University football team has been without that bitter rival.
First, Virginia Tech left the Big East for the ACC, ending one rivalry. Then Pitt and the Mountaineers left for different conferences, ending another.
For the first time since 2005, WVU and the Hokies are meeting. It is a battle between bordering states, one which is often confused for the western part of Virginia.
Down the road in 2022, the Mountaineers will square off against the rival 77 miles up the road.
Both the Backyard Brawl and the battle for the Black Diamond Trophy have significant meaning to sports fans.
“It’s always good to renew old rivalries,” Carol Shoaff of Wheeling, W.Va. said. “Since joining the Big 12 we haven’t had a good rivalry yet. Although, I wouldn’t want to see more than one of those teams per season as our conference schedule is quite challenging to add too many in one season.”
Those rivalries brought many lasting memories to fans.
For Robert Hawk of Emerald Isle, NC, his favorite memory was when the underdogs knocked off one of the top teams in the nation.
“In 2003 when we beat up on Marcus Vick led and ranked No. 3 ranked Virginia Tech,” Hawk said.
He is referring to the night the Hokies came to town and were upset 28-7 under the lights at Milan Puskar Stadium. Rasheed Marshall had a stunning 93-yard touchdown pass to Travis Garvin and the WVU defense stood tall against Vick.
Tammy Wade of New Martinsville cherishes the 2002 win over the Hokies but for a reason other than a memorable big time win.
“The 2002 win is my favorite memory, she said. “Maybe not the best or biggest but that was a point in my life where I’d really become a serious college football fan, so that one still sticks in my mind.”
And for James Sinsel of Harrison Township, Michigan, it wasn’t just one game but the series in general.
“My favorite memory of the series is the aspect of how both teams would get after each other with respect and dignity,” he said. “The hard fought games really made Big East football great to watch.”
No matter what game or what the reason behind the memory was, rivalries are good for the heart. The showdown at FedEx Field renews a rivalry that fuels a passion for many.
Hopefully, it creates memories for the younger generations, who missed a lot of good football between the two teams.
Photo Credit: Jeff Ruff, BGS