Twelve years is a long time to let a rivalry rest. So long that most of the players at VT were younger than 8 years old the last time they met. According to Cam Phillips, when Fuente asked the team who knew anything about the VT-WVU rivalry, nobody raised their hand.
This isn't just a dusty trophy for older fans. These teams have slugged it out a few times when it meant something, and both teams have gotten a piece of each other. There was the Miracle in Morgantown, where VT had to score in the last 1:15 in order to remain undefeated in the regular season and make it to the National Championship game.
The games in the early 2000's were epic, where either VT or WVU were ranked in the top 10 and the other had the opportunity to cost the other their ranking. The last meeting between the two teams was in 2005, a season where VT cost WVU a perfect season in order to get the Black Diamond Trophy. It's been in Blacksburg ever since.
While VT currently has the Black Diamond Trophy, people have to know the history in order to appreciate the significance of it. The Black Diamond Trophy will be up for grabs when these two teams meet this year, as well as in a home-and-home series in 2021 and 2022. In this year's match, both teams have something to prove. I'm just not sure they realize it yet.
I'm guessing the winning team will be the one whose players take the time to look at some old video, which should provide the inspiration to dig just a little deeper at some point in the game when they need to.