Virginia Tech (0-0) will open its 2014 season against in-state opponent William & Mary (0-0) of the FCS Saturday at Lane Stadium/Worsham Field. Kickoff is set for 4:05 p.m. Craig Minervini and Ray Bentley will have the call for ESPNEWS.
• Saturday’s game will be the 63rd football meeting between Virginia Tech and the College of William & Mary, with the Hokies leading the series, 40-18-4.
• The two schools met every year for 40 straight seasons between 1945 and 1985 and each year for 14 consecutive years between 1929 and 1942.
• Tech and William & Mary were members of the Southern Conference together from 1936-64. In that span, the Hokies posted just a 10-15-2 mark against the Tribe in conference play.
• The last nine contests have been held in Blacksburg with the Hokies winning all nine. Tech has won the last 10 in a row - and 12 of the last 13 - against the Tribe.
• Thirteen straight games (1929-41) were played in Richmond. The two also played in Richmond in 1945, 1947, 1972 and 1977. The series has also been played in Roanoke (1906, 1959, 1961 and 1969) and in Norfolk (1975).
• Virginia Tech has won its home opener in 24 of Frank Beamer’s 27 previous tries as the head coach. The only teams to have beaten the Hokies in their first home game of the year during Beamer’s tenure are James Madison (21-16; 2010), Boston College (20-14; 1995) and Clemson (22-10; 1987). The Clemson game was Beamer’s first at the Tech helm.
• The Hokies did not lose their first home opener until the 1948 season. Tech went 54-0 in its first home games of the year before dropping a 13-0 decision to George Washington University to start the ’48 season.
• The Hokies did not have a home game in 1893 and did not field teams in 1943 and 1944.
Strong in September
• Tech has a 71-12 mark in September dating back to the start of its bowl streak in the 1993 season, including a 32-7 mark over the past eight seasons (2005-2013).
The Opening Act
• The Hokies are 18-9 in season openers during Frank Beamer’s tenure as head coach, winning 13 of their past 18.
50 Years at Lane
• William & Mary has a special tie with Blacksburg as the Tribe played the Hokies in the first varsity football game at Lane Stadium on Oct. 2, 1965 with the Hokies winning 9-7 despite only the west stands and the center section of the east bleachers being completed for the game.
• The first game played in Lane Stadium was a freshman game contested on Sept. 24 that featured Frank Beamer on the roster. Saturday marks the start of the 50th season of play in Lane Stadium.
In Select Company
• Saturday’s matchup will mark a milestone as it features a pair of head coaches who now coach at their alma mater (Frank Beamer of Tech graduated in 1969 and Jimmye Laycock of William & Mary graduated in 1970), and a pair of coaches who are members of an elite coaching club, one that includes coaches to win 200 or more games at one college.
• Currently, only 10 current or former FBS/Division I-A coaches, as well as only 36 coaches at all levels, are in this group. Two of those 36 will be on the sidelines today as Beamer, in his 28th year in Blacksburg, has 228 wins at Tech (266 total) and Laycock, in his 35th year in Williamsburg, has 222 wins.
• The two are long-time friends who were on the same coaching staff at The Citadel under Bobby Ross.
• A pair of familiar faces will be on the opposing sideline Saturday coaching for the Tribe as Kevin Rogers and Kevin Lewis return to Blacksburg. Rogers, who is his second season as the Tribe’s offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach, was Tech’s quarterbacks coach from 2002-05.
• Lewis, who is in his first season as the Tribe’s defensive line coach, is a 2005 graduate of Virginia Tech with a degree in history and was a three-year starter for the Hokies. He helped the Hokies win the 2004 Atlantic Coast Conference Championship and appear in four bowl games.
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