This is the 12th -- and final -- installment in a new series about Syracuse's impending move to the ACC. Previous rival profiles: Boston College, Clemson, Duke, Georgia Tech, Miami, NC State, Maryland, Virginia, Florida State, North Carolina, Wake Forest.
Syracuse's well-documented move to the ACC of course comes with a host of new friends to play with. While several are neither "new" nor "friends," still consider these posts your primer on which teams, schools, players and coaches you'll be hating from 2014 (2013?) until the next time college football decides to realign.
Our final profile reacquaints us with a familiar face; the victims of a certain Donovan McNabb touchdown in 1998. They're also running a poll over on Gobbler Country right now about their most haunting losses, including 2002's 50-42 victory for SU (hint: vote that one up). Yup, it's the Virginia Tech Hokies.
School: Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
Stadium: Lane Stadium (capacity: 66,233) | Cassell Coliseum (capacity: 9,847)
Football & Basketball Titles: 0 (feel free to laugh uncontrollably at them for this)
Notable Football Alums: Michael Vick, Bruce Smith, DeAngelo Hall, Eddie Royal, Brandon Flowers
Notable Basketball Alums: Bimbo Coles, Dell Curry, Chris SmithI'll preface this by saying that aside from Boston College, VPI was the rival I was most excited to reunite with due to my overall disdain for the program. We'll start with something entertaining: the Hokies have never won a national title! Now, you wouldn't know this information from the way the WWL and others blather on about them, but it's true. Funnier still, we actually have a winning record against them -- 9-8 in the all-time series, including 2-1 in our last three. And did you know that Tech had played in just six bowl games prior to joining the Big East in 1991?
Now, I can give head coach Frank Beamer some credit for really changing things over there, but then again, part of that's due to their joke of a schedule most years. The school is also 1-26 all-time against top-five teams. Just say that over and over to yourself and smirk. We can't hate completely though, I suppose. Virginia Tech has taken home eight conference titles in the past 20 years, and has been to the ACC title game five times since they arrived in the league. They've also won 10 games in each of the last seven seasons -- but you can refer to the link on scheduling above to clear that up.
As for basketball, the Hokies may as well not exist. Eight tournament berths in their entire existence (just one in the past 15 years) and their coach, Seth Greenberg, has kept his job for nine years despite one trip to the Big Dance and five NIT flame-outs. Best players in team history? Bimbo Coles and Dell Curry. Commence chuckling. As for the all-time head-to-head record, we're 4-2, taking the last four games of the set and never losing while we were in the same conference. Most would tell you Miami, Clemson and Virginia Tech are the conference jokes in hoops. They'd be correct.
Syracuse fans actually have valid arguments against Virginia Tech, so by all means, use them to excess. Might as well get Tech used to it now so it's not as shocking once we officially arrive.
John Cassillo authors Atlantic Coast Convos, which chronicles ACC (Plus Syracuse & Pittsburgh) football. Check out the blog, and follow him on Twitter: @JohnCassillo
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