So as you’re well aware, the Hurricanes have a game Saturday against the Virginia Tech Hokies, as Miami looks to get back on track for the 2019 season. Although it may be hard to get hyped up for a game between two struggling 2-2 teams, but for me, Va Tech is a game that I grew up on, a once great rivalry that has been forgotten over the years.
Now as many of my readers know, I'm a little bit younger for a Canes fan and wasn’t around for the 80s’ and the rivalries against Notre Dame or Penn State. I was also very young for the 2003 Fiesta Bowl versus Ohio State, so my distaste towards them isn’t as strong as others. Though when it comes to the Hokies of Virginia Tech, that was a game I looked forward to each year, and a team I dislike as much as anyone.
Many Canes fans hate Notre Dame, Penn State, etc.— Optimistic Canes Fan/Excited Heat Fan (@hurricanesmarsh) September 30, 2019
For me, Va Tech is right behind FSU and UF for rivals
Every season, it seemed that whenever Miami and Va Tech played it was a monstrous game, with huge implications that would determine each team’s year.
In 2000, the undefeated Hokies, ranked #2 in the country, came to the Orange Bowl to face off against #3 Miami. A hobbled Michael Vick couldn’t do anything, and an offensive attack led by Ken Dorsey drove Miami to a 41-21 win, dashing any national title hopes for Tech.
Then in 2001 and 2002, Miami needed to get past the Hokies in order to reach the national championship game, and Va Tech was the last team on their schedule each season. In both years, the Hurricanes found a way to win and punch their ticket to play for the title.
From 1999 to 2005, in five of the seven meetings between these two schools, at least one of the teams were ranked in the top five.
In 2003, it was the Hokies that upset #2 Miami, and ended the Hurricanes 39-game regular season winning streak and 27-game winning streak in the Big East, in front of a riled up crowd in Blacksburg.
2004 was another heartbreak, when quarterback Bryan Randall and the Hokies clinched the ACC title, with a 16-10 win in the Orange Bowl over the Hurricanes. Though the following year in 2005, #5 Miami upset Virginia Tech, ranked third in the nation, in Blacksburg, 27-7. It remains one of the biggest wins in the post dynasty (after 2002) era.
In 2009, Jacory Harris and Miami had no shot in a rain-soaked Lane Stadium, as Va Tech destroyed the #9 Canes 31-7.
Even in 2017, Miami hosted the Hokies at Hard Rock Stadium, and both teams were in the top-15. The Hurricanes were wearing their black jerseys for the first time, and the home crowed responded, filling the stadium and being rowdy all night long. The Canes defense swarmed throughout the game, the offense made some plays, and Miami won 28-10.
This Atmosphere was electric! Bring it Back October 5th . We need and want yall to have our backs ! https://t.co/SMD5RnG7tG— Tre “Savage” Hill (@TreSavage94_) September 26, 2019
Yes, the rivalry has definitely died down a large amount, and with the exception of 2017, both teams have been under-whelming anytime they’ve met post-2010.
Last year, Miami went to Blacksburg, with both teams going through disastrous seasons, and blew out the Hokies 38-14.
Now while this Saturday may not feature a battle of top-10 teams, that doesn’t mean it’s not a big game for both programs. Miami has a chance to get the ball rolling once again as do the Hokies. Also, the Hurricanes can notch their first three-game win streak over Va Tech since 2000-2002.