January 29, 2015
ACC releases 2015 football schedules
Five home games against 2014 bowl teams highlight Hokies' slate

BLACKSBURG – Six home games, including five against teams that played in bowl games this past season, highlight Virginia Tech’s 2015 football schedule, as the ACC released the football schedules for all its teams on Thursday.

Ohio State, the defending national champion, serves as the headliner of the Hokies’ slate. Tech and the Buckeyes open the season on Sept. 7 – Labor Day – at Lane Stadium. The Hokies’ upset the Buckeyes 35-21 in Columbus, Ohio, last season, which marked the Buckeyes’ only blemish.

Virginia Tech’s home schedule also features games against Furman (Sept. 12), Pittsburgh (Oct. 3), NC State (Friday, Oct. 9), Duke (Oct. 24) and North Carolina (Nov. 21). The Hokies play road games against Purdue (Sept. 19), East Carolina (Sept. 26), Miami (Oct. 17), Boston College (Oct. 31) and Georgia Tech (Thursday, Nov. 12) and they close out the season at in-state rival Virginia (Nov. 28).

In non-conference action, the Hokies played East Carolina in 2014, dropping a 28-21 decision at Lane Stadium (the Hokies, though, own a 13-6 advantage in the series). Virginia Tech will be meeting Purdue for the first time, and the Hokies last played Furman in 2008 (a 24-7 win).

Also, NC State comes on the schedule in place of Wake Forest. Virginia Tech and the Wolfpack last played in 2010, a 41-30 Virginia Tech win in Blacksburg.

In all, nine of the Hokies’ 12 opponents played in bowl games this past season and five teams were ranked at some point during the 2014 season (Ohio State, East Carolina, Georgia Tech, Duke and North Carolina). Two (Ohio State and Georgia Tech) finished the season ranked in the final Associated Press poll.

Virginia Tech, which has played more Thursday night games on ESPN than any other FBS program (29), will continue that trend this season in 2015 though the Hokies will not be playing a home Thursday night game. Tech travels to Georgia Tech for a Thursday night contest on November 12, 2015.

“The ACC and ESPN are aware of our desire to continue to play a Thursday night game in Lane Stadium annually, if possible,” Tech Director of Athletics Whit Babcock said. “The Thursday night options available to the ACC, in reality, were only weeks 5, 8, and 12, but with our slate of opponents for those weeks (Pitt, Duke, and North Carolina, respectively), at least one of the teams in each game would have had extra rest, which is not allowed by ACC scheduling parameters. We want to have the best opportunity to win and, in the case of week 5, it was important to us that we host a Saturday game on full rest following two consecutive road non-conference games. I am hopeful, though, that we will return to the Thursday night game rotation in 2016.”

As with the 2014 schedule, Tech will play a Friday night game, with this one being against NC State on Oct. 9. Last season, the Hokies beat Virginia 24-20 the day after Thanksgiving.

“The ACC television contract with ESPN calls for five Friday night games per season,” Babcock said. “Typically, if we are assigned by the ACC and ESPN to take a Friday night home game, we would prefer to play that on a holiday weekend, such as Thanksgiving, like we did last year against UVa, so as to not conflict with high school football and to make it a bit easier on our fans travel-wise. This year, however, both Virginia Tech and UVa received regular-season, non-holiday Friday night home games as part of the rotation.

“I’m confident, but not certain, we will rotate out of that cycle next year, perhaps for the next two. We will enjoy the night game opportunity this year versus NC State and the national broadcast spotlight for the Hokies on Oct. 9 and hopefully our fans can now plan well ahead to be there. Our desire ideally is to play our home games on Saturdays and a Thursday night, if possible, moving forward. We also value greatly our partnership with ESPN and the tremendous exposure they provide. We understand the complexities of scheduling. In general, I am pleased with our conference schedule in 2015.”

The ACC Championship Game will be played in Charlotte, North Carolina, at Bank of America Stadium on December 5, 2015.

Game times will be made available as the season approaches, with weeks 1-3 being released in May and weeks 4-13 released 6-13 days prior to each game. Start times are contractually determined by television broadcast partners. If any 2015 home games are not selected for TV, Tech will likely choose a kickoff time of 3:30 p.m.

The full Virginia Tech football schedule can be found here http://www.hokiesports.com/football/schedule/. The composite schedule for all 14 ACC teams can be found at TheACC.com.

Renewal applications for Virginia Tech season ticket holders will be available beginning on March 2. The deadline for fans to have their renewals in for season ticket orders to the Virginia Tech Athletics Ticket Office is April 6. If any season tickets remain available after the priority renewal deadline of April 6, then the Ticket Office will offer them for sale to the general public on or near April 20.

Those wishing to receive “Early Bird” renewal incentives are asked renew by March 30 at 5 p.m. Details for this exclusive offer will be included in the renewal/new ticket order information.

Those who were not season ticket holders in 2014 but wish to receive 2015 ticket information can sign up here http://vthoki.es/SeasonTix.

Tech head coach Frank Beamer, the current active FBS wins leader with 272 victories, will be entering his 29th season in Blacksburg. The Hokies, who return 16 starters (eight on both sides of the ball) and 100 percent of their scoring from last season, will be looking to extend their streak of bowl appearances and winning seasons to 23 straight.

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