Editor's Note: Edited and bumped to the front. Let's sack up and blow our lungs out in the Terror Dome tomorrow night.
After the loss to Miami, I didn’t know what to write about. There was no ACC championship hope, no ten win season. Everything was gone. I was planning on writing about how a big matchup against Florida State could help us get to 10 wins; how we were going to be playing in Charlotte; how this was a big Thursday night matchup against FSU. All of that is gone. Pretty much all hopes for this season are gone. People have given up, and rightfully so. So why am I writing? I’m writing because I remembered we still have a Thursday night game in Lane Stadium.
The Hokies rose to prominence by actively seeking out the Thursday night spotlight as ESPN expanded into the weekday college football concept. The fans have adopted playing on Thursday night as a vital component to the identity of the program. The campus essentially shuts down for the game. The entire town of Blacksburg revolves around Thursday night games. Heck, Blacksburg High School even gets a half day because there’s a game. Every year, as Hokies, we cherish the opportunity to go out on a Thursday night and show what we’re really made of in front of a true nationwide audience. This year is not what we expected. This year isn’t the Hokies. One thing that’s certain though, Hokies show up on Thursday nights. I don’t care what’s happened this season. This game means a lot for our pride. Are we going to crawl in a hole and hide? Or are we going to fight on our home turf and make ourselves proud? Are we going to represent Lane Stadium how it should be?
I have witnessed incredible things in Lane Stadium; things I can’t explain. Comebacks, blowouts, but never have I seen our team give up. They will come out fired up. Lane Stadium is our playground, and we don’t share any of our toys. We come out with the mindset of domination. We smack the opponent, pin them to the ground, and don’t let up. That’s what Virginia Tech does.
50-7: That’s our record in Lane Stadium since joining the ACC. 6-2: Our record on Thursday nights since joining. 211-112: How much we’ve outscored the opponent in the last 8 years on Thursday nights. Pretty favorable numbers, right? 14: How much we’re predicted to lose by. No one is giving us a chance. That number, however, is automatically erased when the team steps on the field. I have seen it too many times, Tech as the underdog at home. You know how we respond? We fight, we dominate. A lot of times teams come into Blacksburg as the favorites, and end up getting crushed. 26-7, our victory over #10 Clemson in 2006. 31-7, our victory over #2 Miami in 2003 and #9 Miami in 2009.
Lane Stadium on a Thursday night is a magical place. For those of you who haven’t witnessed it in person, you’ll be amazed. For those of you who have, you know what it’s like; you know how it should be. Thursday night games shouldn’t be taken for granted. Students only get a chance to go to four of them their entire college career. Only 4. Make it count. Be as loud as you’ve ever been before. Never give up. Make everyone proud, make our players proud to play in Blacksburg, give them confidence.
Players feed off the energy in Lane. The louder the environment, the greater chance we have of winning. The players respond to the crowd, having 66,000 fans supporting you gives you the belief you can do anything, it gives you hope, and that’s exactly what our players need tomorrow. Players cherish these moments; to go out and prove what their made of. They elevate their game to another level. A level the majority of us didn’t think they could play at.
We hate Florida State. I know so many people who are still scarred from the National Championship game. There is nothing I would love to do more than beat them as a top ten team on a Thursday night with the ENTIRE country watching. I would love to kill them. We’ve sucked this year, but we can help blur this season with a win tomorrow. It’s still a night game in Lane. It’s still FSU. It’s still a top ten team. We still want to pull off an incredible upset.
I don’t care the matchup. Who it is, what they’re ranked, who they’ve beaten, how much better they are than us, what the spread is. We’ve got a night game in Lane. That’s all that matters, and that’s what will help us get a victory.
We come together on Thursday nights. The Hokies of old will come out tomorrow night. The new fans, and the old, will unite to create an unbelievable environment. Be loud, be proud, support your Hokies like never before. The time is here. 11.8.2012. Witness, and be a part of the unimaginable.
“Does it get any better than Thursday night in Blacksburg?” No Rece Davis, No it doesn’t.