First, some history. Leading up to the 2005-2006 school year, something called the Commonwealth Challenge was contrived to keep track of head to head results between LOLUVa and Tech in varsity sports. The idea was to give credit to the school with the most successful athletic program, not just the one who could win the Commonwealth Cup for football. The Challenge only lasted two years as it was cancelled in the wake of the 2007 shootings.
Fast forward seven years and just as many VT football victories over LOLUVa to 2014 and the Challenge was resurrected as "The Commonwealth Clash." I can only imagine the organizers watched year after year as the wahoos' losing streak worsened and felt that they needed something to officially recognize the "one trick pony" argument their fans default to.
There is an alternative theory about the origins of the Clash. The first year of the competition took place the fall following Whit Babcock's hire. The thinking is that Whit pushed for its creation so that his department wide rebuild could be well documented. There is absolutely no evidence to point to this, but, as you'll see, it's certainly doing the job right now.
Anyway, back to the 2014-2015 season. Apart from the yearly thrashing of LOLUVa on the football field, it did not go well for the Hokies. After a good showing in indoor track, the only bright spot of the year was sweeping LOLUVa in baseball (which was actually a big deal since they later won it all) which was not nearly enough to make the clash competitive. Final score: 15-7, LOLUVa.
2015-2016 didn't go much better. LOLUVa won 14-7. At this point, all the hoos down in hooville reveled smugly in their obvious superiority outside that one pesky saturday in November. The Clash was confirming what they always knew: that Tech would never be able to compete when it really mattered.
Well, screw them. In the 2016-2017 academic year, Tech owned the fall, only missing out on points in women's soccer and men's CC (they tied in men's soccer). LOLUVa made up some ground with women's basketball and women's swimming and diving, but only managed to split the point for men's basketball due to Tech's 2OT defeat of the cavs at Blacksburg. Tech then rattled off a string of early spring victories culminating in getting the point for softball in early March, bringing the total to 9-5 in favor of the good guys.
Given that the hokies had never gotten more than 7 points, this could have been a victory in and of itself, but Hokie Nation wanted the win. First team to break 11 points would win outright and in the case of a tie, the school with the most ACC championships in qualifying sports (sports that both schools play at a varsity level) would win. Unfortunately, spring sports is where LOLUVa really dominates. Tennis, Golf, and Women's lacrosse are about as froufrou LOLUVa as you can get. Predictably, LOLUVa swept these, along with men's baseball (albeit by way of a 1 run win in extra innings) to pull ahead 11-9.
The only remaining events were outdoor track and field for the men and women. By seeding, LOLUVa should have walked away with the men's side and the women's side would have been a toss up. But all the wahoos needed was a single point to maintain their death grip on the clash title. Welp, on the women's side, Tech came from out of nowhere to dominate and outright win the ACC championship.
On the men's side, LOLUVa had this one wrapped up until two fateful events. First, their top triple jumper posted a distance good enough to win the gold only to have it declared a foul after protest. His next two jumps were also fouls. So an athlete who was set to put up major points for the cavs dropped a big ole 38-0 bro-esque goose egg. Even with that, LOLUVa was still sitting in first place. Then came the men's 4x400 relay. Tech grabbed bronze over Pitt by 1/100 of a second. The points from that finish were enough to propel Tech to a 1 point win over LOLUVa to take the ACC championship.
Let me say that again, Tech just needed to place better than LOLUVa on both the men's and women's side and instead they won the whole damned thing (cue major league gif...)
Of course, this just took us to a 11-11 tie, but remember the tie breaker? Well, LOLUVa managed to post as many relevant ACC championships as...
a) fans at their spring game
b) # of times Jerod Evans, Michael Brewer, Logan Thomas, Tyrod Taylor, Marcus Vick,
Bryan Randall, and Grant Noel lost to LOLUVa, combined
c) # of 11 win LOLUVa football seasons
d) all of the above
(psst, the answer is d)
Tech, on the other hand, won the ACC in wrestling, Men's Indoor, Men's outdoor, and Women's outdoor. If my math is correct (and since I did not go to LOLUVa, it probably is), that means we tied in points at 11-11 and won the tie breaker 4-0 (sorry wahoos, your field hockey ACC title doesn't mean squat here). So, in its third year of competition, the Commonwealth Clash title goes to Virginia Tech.
You may now commence fam-ing.