One Saturday in November

It's that time again. Once again Virginia Tech and the University of Virginia will battle for the Commonwealth Cup tomorrow. Though not quite reaching the importance of the 2004 game, tomorrow's contest has far reaching implications. If they Hokies win, they're likely going to a BCS bowl. Here's a post I wrote before the 2004 game on one role sports play in society:

A War To End All Wars

Edit: A pretty good article in USA Today on the rivalry:

"It's split down the middle pretty good in Virginia on whose side you're on," UVA senior defensive end Chris Long says. "I grew up in Charlottesville a big UVA fan. But I have a lot of friends at Tech."

That's not unusual. Sometimes students at one campus have romantic interests at the other. Newman, the ardent Tech fan, dates Adrienne Miller, who goes you know where.

"It's a classic love-hate relationship," Newman says. "I love Adrienne — and I hate UVA."

Such splits are common across the state among siblings, best friends, even faculty with joint appointments. These affinities and connections explain not only the rivalry but why UVA emerged as Tech's greatest supporter in its moment of greatest grief.

"Our families overlap," Virginia President John T. Casteen III writes in an e-mail. "The differences are small stuff. Bonds of mutual purposes, overlapping populations and mutual respect for the work that people do in both places are the more important bonds."

Tech President Charles W. Steger (also responding by e-mail) refers to mutual respect as well. "The University of Virginia, by most measures, and I would concur, is the finest public university in the nation," he writes.

What — no trash talk? Isn't this rivalry week?

"The chief theoreticians behind the modern athletics rivalry are sports writers and people who sell T-shirts," Casteen writes. "Among persons with less obvious motives, and with more important things on their minds, this athletics rivalry is more jocular than serious."

"Oh, it's serious," says Long, 0-3 against Tech in his career. "You try not to make it too big. You just want to get the W." That's why he is expected to play, even with a nasty case of strep throat.

Edit: VT beats UVA. All is right with the world.

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Congrats on the Win

With respect to the article, I was at a Twins game a couple summers back. I had written about David Dellucci's rare medical condition in the independent program that employs me and got complimented by an employee of the Rangers sitting in the row behind my friends an me. One of my friends mentioned that, in addition, I went to UT. The Rangers employee informs me he went to (Texas) A&M, that he hates (the University of) Texas (at Austin), gives me the stink eye and moves seats a couple innings later.


Yeah, the rivalry in Va is a lot friendlier these days. We're all related to each other these days.

Good ole Kienbock's; seen a couple of cases in my day.