The Hokies by Hokies

Send us your stories, it can be anything Virginia Tech related, and we will discuss it on the podcast.  It doesn’t have to be about football, just something tied to the Hokies and you care about.

 
 

Robbie D., Class of '05

Some stories tell themselves, others need a little context.  My father wasn’t exactly a softy.  He grew up in Weymouth, MA and spent ~40 years grinding through the restaurant business.  He worked hard to provide for my family, for me.  Unsurprisingly, he rarely held back his opinion, and growing up that could often lead to one directional conversations.

In my family, you knew who set the record for majors (Nicklaus), not college national championships (Bryant).  You knew who invented the modern sand wedge (Sarazen), not the wishbone triple option (Bellard).  I didn’t know or care about college football before enrolling at Virginia Tech; however, that sentiment changed dramatically toward the end of my tenure in Blacksburg.

In 2004, my Senior year, Virginia Tech had just entered the ACC and managed to climb the ranks during an incredible season (culminating in Frank Beamer winning ACC Coach of the Year).  More relevant to this story, a bid to the 2005 Sugar Bowl in New Orleans against the Auburn Tigers; an undefeated team that had legitimate beef with not getting a shot at the national title.

Sugar Bowl, New Orleans, BOURBON STREET?  This was a no-brainer for many Hokies; however, fiscal constraints were going to be the governor over my personal attendance.  This required a call to someone who couldn’t care less about college football.

After a personal motivational speech and a phone hand off from my mom to my dad, Bob D. was on the line.  I paced throughout a dirty Blacksburg abode while giving my father a weak pitch.  Surprisingly, he responded "you have to go, that’s once in a lifetime.  I'll buy the ticket."

The phrase is oft-used and rarely literal, but trust that my jaw actually dropped.

My father unexpectedly passed away a while back. Eyes up, part of the reason that I've become so obsessed with VT football over the years was because of that call, and that game.  Looking back, I see it as a gift, and one from a father that couldn’t have cared less about 11v11.

The blessings we receive from others are often inconspicuous.  My father unknowingly gave me the gift of the Hokies, football, and friends I would have never had otherwise…all for the cost of a ticket in New Orleans.

 

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