'Your papers, please' must never be heard in America
Independent voices from the TWT Communities
Players on the Rutgers football team know Virginia Tech for a number of things, from its onetime special teams prowess to the Hokies' current run of 20 straight bowl appearances. But Tech's players are fearful they've developed a new, less flattering reputation.
Something was missing.
Logan Thomas didn't live up to expectations during his junior season Virginia Tech's football team, but that hasn't squelched chatter that the Hokies' quarterback might leave school early for the NFL.
Cody Journell kicked a 29-yard field goal with 4 seconds to play, and Virginia Tech beat Virginia 17-14 Saturday to qualify for a bowl game and win its ninth straight from its in-state rival.
Sometimes in football practice, junior cornerback Antone Exum just wants to ask the Virginia Tech offense to give him a minute.
Torrian Gray's voice sounded horse and raspy.
Veteran players lamented the lost opportunity to perform for fans. Coaches complained of missed evaluation time, especially for the backups. But Saturday's cancelation of the annual Virginia Tech spring football game because of storms apparently did little to dampen recruits' enthusiasm for the Hokies' program.
When Virginia defeated Texas in the 1995 Sugar Bowl, offensive coordinator Bryan Stinespring remembers the jubilant mood in the locker room, punctuated by the coach's speech.
The Saints weren't the only team playing hard-nosed football in New Orleans on Sunday. Across town, Virginia Tech conducted a high-energy afternoon workout at the NFL team's suburban practice facility in advance of its Sugar Bowl clash with Michigan on Tuesday night.
While many of No. 9 Virginia Tech's players expressed little interest in Virginia's fate today at Florida State, quarterback Logan Thomas offered a contrary opinion.
The week of the Virginia Tech-East Carolina game last season, redshirt freshman Antone Exum approached defensive backs coach Torrian Gray. Exum, a backup free safety, felt troubled by his mental lapses in practice, and uncertain about his readiness to play a major role in Tech's nickel package against the Pirates.
"It bothers me just for the fact that since I've been here, we haven't won a bowl game yet," junior cornerback Antone Exum, a former Deep Run High School star, said. "And we've kind of gotten stuck with the stigma of not being able to win the big game. This is definitely a big game. Rutgers is a talented team."
'Man, is anyone else going to talk?'