Hello! Welcome to the season where nothing counts but we still get pissed off about the same things all the time! In a season (year?) that has been so weird it seems like I wrote it, it's good that we have some of the same reliable things for that sense of normalcy. Like just when we all thought the offense was going to carry a terrible defense, WAKE FOREST! But just when you thought all hope was lost, the Hokies have a NEW opponent this week so there's FINALLY some insightful, knowledgeable, HARD HITTING content on this website. THAT'S RIGHT, after only seven (7) years of being conference-mates, Virginia Tech is finally playing Louisville in a conference game! This will be the Hokies first meeting since Bud Foster attempted to murder Hunter Cantwell and we witnessed the stomp that birthed the Glennon era. Good times!
I think the sign accurately captures what we're all thinking. Why, Louisville?
1. Oh god, I thought Joe finally got rid of these. Why?
A. We're back, baby! Because the PEOPLE DEMANDED IT1. Look, when you lose to Wake Forest, you need someone who is willing to give you the cold, hard truth. Someone who can point out where the defense screwed up and what they did well. Someone who's not afraid to point out that you should think about blocking your opponent's best defender and not keep throwing the ball to one of their least-best defenders. And that person is French. But you should also start learning about the Hokies' NEXT opponent so you can start thinking about all the ways they can blow THAT game. Well, that's ALSO probably French, but I'll tell you things you probably never knew and never knew you never wanted to know.
2. Here we go. What are you going to teach us?
A. For starters, Louisville is in Kentucky, in a city called Louisville. The first colonial settlement there was made on Corn Island, which in intervening years slowly eroded until it was fully submerged below the surface of the Ohio River, where it became an impediment to shipping traffic. When the settlers shifted their houses to the mainland, we were at war with the British and therefore weren't allowed to name things after British places or the monarch's level of sexual experience (or lack thereof), so they decided to name the place after the hated enemy of the British. While this sounds badass in theory, they ended up naming it after the French king. In true ignorant American fashion, they didn't actually speak French, so they pronounced it "Lewis-ville" for more than century, and when they found out the correct pronunciation, they retconned it that they had named it after the Lewis and Clark Expedition.
Nothing much happened here for decades; Lewisville grew as a shipping hub due to its location, but didn't REALLY take off until Walt Disney decided to monetize his cartoons by building a theme park to sucker millions out of thousands of dollars each. He held a nation-wide competition for cities to put forward the best case to host his planned Disney park, and Lewisville went ALL IN, baby. They went back to the original pronunciation of Lew-e-ville, convinced sister city Clarksville, IN across the river to rename themselves Deweyville and promised to resurrect Corn Island and name it Huey Island. As part of the bid presentation, they hired a bunch of locals to dress up and act as the characters, including nearby resident Robert Schnatter, who was under the impression he had been hired to perform as Scrooge McDuck. When he showed up and they handed him a little sailor outfit with no pants, he angrily realized he was actually playing DONALD Duck and got HAMMERED before the performance. Stories around his profanity laced tirade against Disney, Kentucky, the Navy, and local pizza restaurants are legendary in Louisville and are largely credited with the city losing their bid to build Disney World. Clarksville immediately changed their name back, and Louisvillagers were so mad they got the Army Corps of Engineers to come in and blow up Huey Island.
As part of the bid, they had started up a school for mascots and character actors and now didn't know what to do with it, so they just left it open and kept teaching people how to express emotions without talking while wearing giant animal heads. That school is now the University of Louisville!
See, the bird is clearly expressing happiness at hugging the little boy. Wait, why isn't it a duck?
3. Why do I feel like we're not done with part of that story?
A. Next time, spoiler alert everyone, dude.
4. Sorry. So, how do they football?
A. Sometimes well, but not when you'd expect it! Did you know Johnny Unitas went there? They won 12 games over his four year career. Did you know Lee Corso coached there2? That goofball won 9 games his last year there and, actually kind of impressively, tied a bowl game a couple of years earlier. Remember Lamar Jackson? He won a Heisman Trophy, but they were only able to finish above .500 in the conference once while he was there because they had no defense and were coached by a drunk motorcyclist. Have you heard the joke that is Charlie Strong's Texas coaching stint? Louisville finished in the Top 15 with him TWICE with 11 and 12 wins and won a damn Sugar Bowl. So, Louisville needs a lovable but non-threatening coach to be good, not an all-world quarterback.
If you thought I wasn't immature enough to pull this one out despite Petrino no longer coaching at Louisville AND this incident not happening during either of his tenures at the school, well, welcome first time reader!
5. So...do they have either one of those things?
A. I don't think anyone's going to be calling Malik Cunningham an All-World quarterback, although playing Florida State apparently will make anyone LOOK that good3. As for Coach Satterfield, he seems nice, he coached at App State previously and was on staff when they beat Michigan. But he was their safety hire after they missed out on Jeff Brohm and ultimately, I kind of forget he's there, which is probably not helped by the fact that Virginia Tech NEVER PLAYS LOUISVILLE.
6. Well then. What's the rest of the team like?
A.. Seemingly not great. They beat Western Kentucky and conference doormats Florida State4, but lost to Pitt and got blown out by powerhouse...Georgia Tech? Oh god, this is going to end terribly.
7. Roster check?
A. I'll say one thing, you always know you're playing a school in the south when the opposing team trots out guys named Tutu, YaYa, Thurman, Roscoe, Rodjay and Greedy. They'll line up Monty "Montgomery" Montgomery at ILB, and potentially Marqui Lowery at CB, who dropped the 'S' from his first name because that shit is pretentious. They are planning on throwing MULTIPLE Bradens at the Hokies, as well as Tom Clancy character Clayton Six. Finally, and I'm sorry for bringing this up, but I only noticed DB Jack Fagot, whose middle school years must have been a living hell, because they put a giant red ear next to his name that gives you the phonetic pronunciation (fuh-GO) while simultaneously highlighting "HEY, COME GET A LOAD OF THIS GUYS NAME".
8. Striving to hit new lows this season, I see. Who do they football against most passionately?
A. So they've got a big rivalry with Cincinnati, which actually makes me like them a bit because I have grown to loathe the Bearcats. The rivalry draws on their proximity, and the fact that they have been in four different conferences together over the years. They haven't played since Louisville joined the ACC, who seems to jump conferences like Bobby Petrino jumps jobs. The coolest part is that they play for a Keg of Nails, which sounds AWESOME, but if you really think about it, they took something really cool, a keg, and took away the best part. Plus, lol, Louisville must've left the original Keg on Huey Island or something, because they lost it and had to make a replacement.
Louisville also has a rivalry with Memphis, but I'm not on board with this one, since Wikipedia tries to hype it up by citing a shout out in a 2008 Sheraton commercial about rivalries and that Louisville holds a winning streak since 2004, a feat that's less impressive when you realize that spans...four games.
Finally, we come to Louisville-Kentucky, the Governor's Cup. You may be familiar with this game as the least memorable part of SEC rivalry week because Kentucky is atrocious at football. You are probably MORE familiar with the basketball rivalry, but a buddy of mine from Kentucky explained that lots of people he knows down there actually root for both teams except when they play each other, which made me wonder what it would be like to root for LOLUVA against ANYONE and then I threw up in my mouth. Also, there's no football rivalry! They've only played 32 times! They took a SEVENTY YEAR BREAK from playing each other! I'M NOT MAKING THAT UP. THAT'S NOT A RIVALRY. Hey, William & Mary are in the same state as Tech, do they have a rivalry with them? Nope.
9. Huh. I feel like it says something about you if no one cares enough to hate you.
A. Oh, someone cares that much. Let me tell you a little story. Until recently, Louisville played in Papa John Stadium, named after a local entrepreneur who quietly amassed a fortune selling mediocre pizza paired with liquified butter. Trusting that no one would see the connection if he dropped his last name and started calling himself Papa like he's a damn smurf, John slowly infiltrated the school by donating millions until they put him on the Board of Trustees and renamed the stadium after him. Then, to maximize the embarrassment to the school, John took a page out of the book of his old man, ROBERT SCHNATTER (dum dum DUM!), last seen running around in a sailor shirt with no pants. John got absolutely wasted in public multiple times and dropping N bombs on conference calls. And Louisville got mentioned in ALL the news reports. All of this was an elaborate ruse to exact revenge on the school and city that had humiliated his father, leveraging John's strengths as a racist douchebag!
10. Simply diabolical. Anyone else interesting from the school?
A. Well, we've already hit the football highlights AND Bobby Petrino. They produced Sue Grafton, of the "K is for Killer", "V is for Vengeance", etc book series, who, sadly, died before she could get all the way through the alphabet, stopping at "Y is for Y Skinny Post". Other than that...Diane Sawyer dropped out of their law school?
If we expand to the city of Louisville, things get a little more interesting. Louisville produced Zachary Taylor, the only U.S. President to die in office of diarrhea caused by excessive cherry consumption (thus far). The city also blessed the world with Muhammed Ali the GOAT, as well as Jennifer Lawrence, and was where Welshman Evan Williams started his distillery. Louisville tries to claim Edwin Hubble, the guy the telescope is named after, who lived there for a hot minute, but if we're playing by those rules, we're sticking you with Tom Cruise as well, who is listed because his parents were from there. Colonel Sanders died there, after becoming famous for getting in a shootout over his chicken and providing fried chicken that does a great job of reminding everyone that Popeyes is much better.
11. Oh, speaking of Popeyes, should I get food in Louisville?
A. You probably shouldn't go to Kentucky, because they aren't going to let you into the game. I mean, you can GO, if you enjoy the architecture and facade of poorly named stadiums, your choice. If you DO go, word on the street is you should eat at Hammerheads. Let's hear from ace reviewer Andrea:
If you are dining solo don't waist your time with this place. They will not allow one person a table. I had heard great things about this place and was so excited to try it. I mean a giant shark above the door, that's amazing ! Well my enthusiasm ended when I was given a table by the hostess who then made me get up and move to the bar saying I am not allowed a table since I was alone. That did not sit well with me but i moved to the bar. I sat there for a few minutes looking at the menu, slowly losing my appetite as I was rather angry the more that I thought about the way I was treated. I am a paying customer that deserves the same treatment as 2 or 4 people dining ogether.. I am also a very good tipper so that waitress that told the hostess I couldn't have that table, your loss!!! This is discrimination!!!! I will be telling everyone I know to avoid this place when in Louisville. There are too many other incredible places around that treat solo diners in a respectable manner!!!
Ooooh, where to start. I felt a bit bad for her until the "discrimination!!!!" bit, now we're going to unpack this. If you've ever waited tables, singles are often the worst tables and I would bet money her concept of a good tipper means 15%. Even if she tips 30%, it's simple math; that waitress is doing roughly the same amount of work to get a little more than half the tip. Oh, and I looked up a picture of the front of the restaurant, the shark is not amazing. Let's go to Kent, he actually ate and didn't spend the whole meal angry about being an incel:
Best lamb ribs i have ever had.
For whatever reason, I, a human adult, realized that sheep are vertebrate animals, and therefore have a spine and likely a ribcage, but never actually made the leap that you could go to a butcher and buy THE RIBS. Yes, I am familiar with rack of lamb, but I never really thought about that as something akin to a slab of ribs, but NOW I CAN'T STOP THINKING ABOUT SMOKING LAMB RIBS.
12. And do they barbecue?
A. DID YOU NOT READ THE PREVIOUS ANSWER. Google says the best BBQ in Louisville is Momma's Mustard, Pickles & BBQ. Yes, I too was initially put off by the combination of Mustard and BBQ, thinking this an abomination from South Carolina, but it turns out it's that her mom made mustard and pickles all the time in Kansas! That seems weird, is that a Kansas thing? And also, her mom didn't teach her how to smoke, she learned after she bought a food truck so that's kind of a misleading name. Anyway, let's hear from Gary, who starts out by throwing shade at the whole city:
Not your average Louisville area bbq. While I have noticed that Louisville bbq joint owners suffer a sever identity crisis when it comes to flavor, these guys clearly know what they are doing. The flavor of the meat is clearly pronounced and the sauce completes the picture, job well done. Although I don't care for the decor or music, you forget about all that when you take your fist bite. Try the wings, try the ribs, and make sure you try some of the best ranch I have ever had!
I remain amazed by people who criticize the decor of a barbecue joint; as long as the fake wood paneling isn't moldy, there aren't visible stains that won't scrub out and the screens are intact enough to keep most of the flies out, you're doing ok. As for the music, I guess I just assumed all Louisville restaurants just played My Morning Jacket all the time. And...has anyone ever noticed the ranch? It's mayo, sour cream, dill and chives, who calls out the ranch in a restaurant review?! Let's go to economist Russell:
This review will be in two parts right now it's after purchase driving on the way home with takeout...I was sticker shocked at the amount. Based upon the reviews would you say the food is good for the most part is why I even came here in the first place. I will say right now that the price that I paid for a rack of beef ribs was $32. I asked how many ribs were in the rack of ribs and she said it was four in a whole rack. That blows my mind right there considering the minimum amount of what a butcher would call a cheater rack of ribs is 8. Who can afford this on any kind of a regular or even every once in awhile. That is blowing my mind. So for 4 Beef Ribs, 1 lb of Pork BBQ, and around a pint of potatoes salad, and a pint of Mac and cheese the total is $75 and change and then I'm someone that can't help but tip so $85 total. I will finish this after eating. HOWEVER, at this point buyer's remorse is as high as can be along with great regret and cause for major concern on the food allowance for the month. Who are you 1500 people that have reviewed this place and how many are listed on the Dun and Bradstreet? Verdict is in a yes it's a big big beef ribs and sauce is good but it was mostly fat and thus did not enjoy. Mac and cheese was good, Potato salad not any good. Cornbread primo, pork BBQ was just ok. Overall, I wish I had only paid maybe $20. That price is so frickin ridiculous.
Russell is my mom when the wing place tries to charge her $0.50 for the side of ranch, although I don't think she's ever asked for someone's Dun and Bradstreet number. Russell's mind is BLOWN right now, folks, but he can't HELP but tip, like nobody had to serve him his food. For real, though, Momma's has a deal where they add 1% to everyone's bill, matches it themselves and donates it to local charities, which, respect. Which brings us to our last reviewer, Brhine, who HAS OPINIONS:
Food was great. When we got the Bill we noticed they automatically charged an additional 1% mandatory donation. We ask waitress about it and she said it was on the back of menu that they did this. Who flips over the menu and reads the small print under the kids meal. It was kinda underhanded how they go about it. If they had signs on table or let people opt out (which you can't). Why not just charge more and donate your money. Also why not list who u donate too. Basically this place is taking your money, donating it to whom they want and getting a tax write off. How many people do they slip this by without noticing. Real shady. Loved the wings. But I won't do business with dishonest people, and I don't want my money going to charities I disagree with.
Their charities include the Special Olympics, a food bank, substance abuse recovery programs, and a residential home for at risk children. SHADY AS HELL.
13. Are FAINTS still a thing?
A. Sometimes? The good news is that when the Hokies come up with FAINTs, they win! And when they don't...let's not talk about that! Also, Kendall Fuller caught a Super Bowl sealing FAINT. A SUPER FAINT.
It's so beautiful
14. What should we watch for this Saturday?
A. I'm watching for:
- Can we go back to the part of the season where the offensive line just went HULK SMASH a lot?
- Oh, and Herbert ran over and away from people, that was fun, too.
- Drunk ass Schnatters eating personal pan pizzas on golf carts. Am I confusing two different things?
- The return of tactical spurtles.
1One guy asked about it in a comment thread and I think everyone downvoted him, but HE'S PEOPLE
2If you want to remember how old Corso is, he was a college head football coach during the Nixon administration
3Gosh, that was really fun to say
4Update: still fun to say