Rare Breed

HAPPY VALENTINE'S DAY HOKIES

It doesn't matter if you're celebrating the Halmark holiday (and I hope MRSTKP doesn't read that) or singles awareness day, you can have some fun. To show how much we love you all for reading us and being part of our community, here are some Valentines from us to you.

Read this first, then come on in.

Like a good many of you who will begin your college career's today I was an out-of-state student. I was probably playing with Micro Machines when Druck hit a streaking Holmes for the go-ahead touchdown in '95, and I didn't start following the Hokies closely until I considered Virginia Tech as a college choice in '991. I saw the Hokies paste Connecticut in my first game at Lane. Like any other "first" I had no idea how to handle myself. I didn't smuggle in any airplane bottles of bourbon, I sat in the west stands, and didn't care to do the Hokie Pokie.

FAIL.

After four year's and twenty-plus football games, I kind of found my way. Here's what I learned.


photographer: Steve Tatum

1) There are no assigned seats in the North End Zone. Yes, your ticket stub may seem as if it indicates a specific place for you to sit2, but it in fact does not. Why? Because you must stand the entire time. If you're lucky to obtain tickets in the NEZ the only place you will sit over the course of a game is on a toilet seat at halftime. And in Lane Stadium, I wouldn't recommend that. Why do you have to stand the entire game? There are two reasons actually.

Foremost, more people can cram into the NEZ that way; turn those shoulders yo. It's a given that people will make their way from other sections of Lane to sit in the NEZ, because the NEZ is the best place to watch the game. That's just a fact, and it needs no explanation.

Additionally, you can be louder while standing, and your main purpose for being in Lane is to be loud when necessary (see 5). Boston College fans aren't loud, they have to pump artificial noise into Alumni Stadium. That's why I mock them when I see them wearing their beloved "SuperFan" shirts. Being loud leads to awesome things, like Kellen Winslow Jr. totally flipping his shit in 2003 and Clemson fans throwing empty airplane bottles at Tommy Bowden in 2006. Semi-scientific explanation: you can stomp the bleachers harder and project your voice better while standing.

The Rafters

Since my freshman year I've run across a wide variety of Hokies, each with a different perception of and outlook on the football program. Unknowingly, I've mentally cataloged each different type of fan I've encountered. Two days ago I read The Clans. The Factions. Defined. on MVictors.com and thought to myself that it could be fun to dump my memory banks and visualize a clear-(er) picture of our fanbase. I took great caution not to demean their brilliant post, but probably did so anyways and for that I apologize. Here we go.

Getting this loss off my chest.

Here’s the truth. We won eleven football games this season, another ACC Championship and extended the ten-plus-wins a season streak to seven. Standing on its own 2010 was an impressive campaign, especially after our disastrous start, as part of the whole, over the last seven years, it helps comprise a top ten resume. However, is that being elite? No, it’s being consistent. Consistently the best team in the ACC, but not good enough to beat a quality opponent. What’s frustrating is I honestly don’t know what’s keeping us from taking that next step.

I Don't Fear the Spear

I became a temporary Terrapins fan when I found out Florida State would advance to the ACC Championship Game if NC State lost to Maryland. Yes, I felt dirty supporting those bozos, but I wanted us to play the 'Noles. When it came to fruition I popped off my Grandma's couch, swigged a mouthful of Maker's, pumped my fist, let out a hardy, "Woo!", then showered. For me it's not about redemption of championships lost five and ten years ago, and I do realize that of the two, the Wolfpack would provide the least amount of resistance on route to the Orange Bowl.

I think these Hokies are good. In fact, right now, as of December 3rd I think this team is unstoppable. Actions speak louder than words, so I want this team to be challenged and pushed, not merrily skip to the trophy. The Wolfpack already gave us a run for our money; I'm certain we'd run them out of the stadium in a second go around. I want and got the only marquee matchup available; bring on the 'Noles.