Today is Labor Day, summer’s last hurrah. For football lovers, it’s a day to be here, in our little burg.
The Ohio State Buckeyes are in town to try to avenge last season’s loss to the Virginia Tech Hokies. Not only is it the only game in town, it is, according to today’s Roanoke Times’ Andy Bitter, “…the most anticipated game in the history of Lane Stadium.”
As a native Ohioan who used to collect buckeyes on my way home from elementary school, there was a time when my adrenaline surged at the sound of the OSU fight song:
“Fight the team across the field
show them Ohio’s here,
set the earth reverberating
with a mighty cheer,
rah rah rah…”
I even remember the 1958 OSU/Michigan game when OSU won in the final seconds, 20-14. Thanksgiving break and I was home from college, Ohio University. I watched the game on t.v., screaming and hollering as if I were an OSU coed, as if I were in Columbus.
But, time passed, things changed. Now I live within sight and sound of Virginia Tech’s stadium. We can hear the roar of the crowd, see the glow of the lights, watch the fireworks.
Tailgating started before eight this morning. I passed some hearty-partiers on my morning walk. They may have had coffee for breakfast, but they were already having beer chasers. Cars with orange and maroon flags sailing have been rolling into town since yesterday. Grills are heating up, and there are likely turkey drumsticks on the menus, but not so roasted buckeyes, unless of course, they’re in the locker room after the game.
The only game OSU, the 2014 National Champions, lost last year was to VT, 35-21. Their coach has said they won’t really be national champs until they’ve beaten VT this year.
Yes, OSU has a bone to pick while they’re in town, and it’ll be a brutal match-up. OSU may have the national title and admittedly more depth, but VT has heart. I’ll be woo-hooing and “Hokie
hi-ing” from the comfort of my sofa, listening to my English husband grumble because “This isn’t football, this is a game for sissies who have to stop after every play to get further instruction…” I’ll boo him and cheer my team until I lose my voice.
First thing this morning, I put my Virginia Tech tee-shirt on. I’m ready. GO HOKIES!