Will the Mountaineers bring the trophy back with them from Blacksburg?
Written by Morgantown magazine staff
Tonight’s game in Blacksburg, Virginia, continues a historic football rivalry: Since their first meet-up in 1912, our Mountaineers and the Virginia Tech Hokies have played more than 50 times. WVU dominates the series with a 29–23–1 record.
The game got a little more interesting in 1997 with the introduction of the Black Diamond Trophy, sponsored by Rish Equipment Company of Bluefield, West Virginia. The Mountaineers won the teams’ most recent game, in September 2021 at Mountaineer Field, so they’re defending possession of the trophy this year.
Boost your Virginia Tech cred before tonight’s game with these tidbits:
- Virginia Tech—Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University—is a world-class land-grant university founded in 1872, five years after WVU.
- VT’s sports teams used to be the Fighting Gobblers. They’re now known as the Hokies. What’s a hokie? Well, their mascot since 1981 has been the HokieBird, an orange and maroon turkey with a cardinal-like head.
- The “black diamond” celebrates the region’s rich coal heritage.
- WVU dominates the teams’ entire series but, since the trophy was introduced, Virginia Tech has taken it in seven of the 11 games played.
- VT’s homecoming game is Saturday, October 15, against Miami. A longstanding VT homecoming tradition is the game-ball run: During homecoming week, members of the Army ROTC Ranger Company run the game ball around campus for 100 miles, encouraging everyone they pass to touch the ball for good luck. The ball is run into the stadium during a ceremony on the day of the game.
If you’re on the road today to VA Tech, be sure to check the online Lane Stadium Fan Guide and the 2022 football parking map. For the student tailgate scene, head to Center Street east of the stadium—or look for a less rowdy atmosphere in Lots 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 nearer the stadium.
And if, instead, you’re tailgating at home, you’ve just got to go with the turkey legs and chicken wings.