Back in the 80s and 90s when I first started watching Hokie football, the Hokies I watched were absolutely fearless. They played with a constant chip on their shoulder as they sought to fight their way out of the dregs of football obscurity. Those teams didn't have the talent they have today, but everyone knew when they played the Hokies they were gonna get smacked in the mouth. They knew they would be in for a fight. Their "Lunch Pail" mentality even became their calling card for their defense, but the entire team had that mindset.
We lost it. Somewhere between our national championship run, our move to the ACC, a long sellout streak, and our stretch of 10 win seasons, we lost it.
I started out taking classes at New River. And I busted my ass there, making the president's list every semester. My goal was to transfer to Virginia Tech and finally attend the university I'd been obsessed with since my mother used to bring me to campus as a child. And, of course, get a degree from there as well.
And I did it. I was accepted, which is great because VT was the only school for which I applied. But once I was there, on campus, taking my first classes as a Hokie I almost flunked the fuck out.
It wasn't because I couldn't do the work, it was because I somehow got so caught up in getting into VT that I had let that become my goal. Not the ultimate goal of a degree from there.
I was like, "I'm here. I had arrived."
Yeah, dumbass, so you can flunk out?
Did that happen to us? Did we build our facilities, our fanbase, our team to this point and think we reached our goal? When really we have such a hard road ahead to reach our true goal?
Everyone made fun of our empty national championship trophy case. Even I grew tired of it.
Fuck it. I say bring that shit back. Put that motherfucker in the locker room with a fake trophy in, so everyone has to walk by that shit every day.
Let it taunt them. Let it fucking haunt them. Let it be the chip on their shoulder smacking them in the face saying they aren't good enough. A chip that once again says you may win the game, but not without getting smacked in the mouth for four straight quarters. A chip that we have so sorely missed for far too long.
If we haven't achieved our end goal, we haven't achieved shit. To get there we need to resurrect our past, our tradition. We need to find the motherfucking chip.