In a select few cities in America, college football is king. You can’t go anywhere in the surrounding vicinity without being reminded of where you are.
Blacksburg, Virginia, home of the Virginia Tech Hokies, is one such town. Sure, not everyone in Blacksburg and its surrounding areas are Hokie fans, but try going to a grocery store or the mall without seeing individuals of all ages wearing Virginia Tech gear.
There are many other ways to identify Hokie fanatics. Let’s take a look at 10 ways you know you’re a Virginia Tech Hokie fan.
At every Hokies home game, a wildly popular Metallica song plays as the team exits the locker room onto the field.
The fans all rise to their feet, jumping up and down, singing the words to “Enter Sandman.”
Perhaps I am writing with a bit of a bias, but Lane Stadium’s atmosphere is a tough one to top. And “Enter Sandman” is a perfect way to begin a fall Saturday in Blacksburg.
On a consistent basis for the past 15 years, Bud Foster has been the best defensive coordinator in the country.
Generally, when a coordinator has success, his next progression in his coaching career is head coach. Foster, has had opportunities, but not to the level you may imagine. Lesser-known programs have reached out to Foster and he has often declined.
Other schools like Florida, Georgia and South Carolina have tried to pry Foster away to be their defensive coordinator. Foster always refuses and gets a nice pay bump.
Virginia Tech fans often say Foster should be a head coach. But, in the same breath, they all exhale when spring practice rolls back around with Bud still in Blacksburg.
If you are from Southwestern Virginia, chances are you were taught the “Hokie Pokey” in grade school.
The song and dance are often performed at Virginia Tech games with the crowd singing along with the band. It is a ritual for Hokie fans, even though some may be embarrassed to admit it.
If you look into your closet and you see a mixture of maroon and orange, chances are you are a Hokie fan.
While the Hokies have worn various uniform combinations, their main colors have been maroon and orange. Whether you wear a Hokie polo to work or a “We Are Virginia Tech” shirt out to dinner, you are a hardcore Hokie.
Most Virginia Tech fans possess an entire wardrobe of Hokie gear. If you are on those people, you are a Hokie fanatic.
Have you ever watched the Hokies play a road game from your television? And, did you notice the amount of orange and maroon in the stands?
Hokie fans travel among the best in the country and have been known to take over opposing stadiums. Chances are, as a hardcore fan you have made the trek to Charlottesville or down to Tobacco Road.
As a Hokie, Michael Vick may have been the single greatest player in school history. It isn’t just about numbers; Vick’s impact on the school will last forever.
Even throughout Vick’s public embarrassment with dogfighting, he remained a popular figure in Blacksburg. When Vick left in 2001, many Hokie fans bought Vick’s Atlanta Falcons jersey.
When he returned to the NFL in 2009, Virginia Tech fans continued to buy his jersey. Regardless of how he is viewed nationally, his popularity in Blacksburg never waned.
Regardless of any mistakes made, Frank Beamer is a local hero. He grew up close to Blacksburg, played for the Hokies and returned to be head coach 26 years ago.
When he assumed the role of head coach, the school was floundering. However, in his sixth year on the job, the Hokies went to a bowl game and haven’t looked back since.
Whenever something goes wrong, fingers generally begin pointing to the offensive side of the ball, and coordinator Bryan Stinespring.
Right or wrong, if Beamer makes a questionable decision, he always gets a free pass. That usually happens when you’ve built the program.
When there is a critical third down at Lane Stadium, the crowd begins shaking their keys in unison. Hokie Nation defines this as a key play. This may not have originated in Blacksburg, but it has become synonymous with Hokie fans.
So, if you’re watching a football game at home and you’re hoping for a defensive stand and, without thinking, you begin shaking your keys, you know you’re a Hokie fan.
Have you ever been somewhere and had someone ask you, "What is a Hokie?" Sure, it has happened to anyone and everyone at some point to a Virginia Tech fan or alumnus.
For those wondering, the term Hokie has nothing to do with a turkey. Hokie was a term coined in 1896 by a student as a cheer in a spirit competition. The name stuck, and a few years later a football coach coined the term, “Fighting Gobblers.” Therefore, you have its origin and why some wonder if a Hokie and a turkey are the same thing.
Ok, technically that isn’t the correct spelling. But, whenever you watch the highlights on ESPN, they often refer to Virginia Tech, as "Vah Tech." This annoys Virginia Tech fans as a whole.
Does ESPN or other news outlets refer to Georgia Tech as something else? No, they are Georgia Tech. The media tries to get creative and shorten Virginia to "Vah" and that isn’t the correct pronunciation.
For instance, when you abbreviate the University of Virginia, it is UVA—each letter is pronounced. So, when Virginia is shortened, it is V-A. But, it is still Virginia, not "Vah." How hard is it to say Virginia Tech? That’s right, not very.