After a busy, excitement-filled run of four commits in four days, the Virginia Tech Hokies were guaranteed to make some news today with the release of the ACC football schedule to fill out the Hokies’ 2017 football schedule. Unsurprisingly, there were a couple surprises in this schedule that sets the Hokies up for a few marquee games that should receive tons of national attention.
IT'S OFFICIAL 🏈
The 2017 Virginia Tech Football schedule has been released… 221 days until kickoff!!
🦃 HARD • SMART • TOUGH 🦃 pic.twitter.com/XqZpZ5ZE2C
— HokiesFB 🦃 (@HokiesFB) January 24, 2017
Virginia Tech will not play a single game on Thursday night in 2017 with their bye week coming right in the middle of the season two games into ACC play and before the Hokies face any ACC Coastal opponents. Virginia Tech’s schedule sets up for a big September with two huge games against West Virginia and defending national champions Clemson while Virginia Tech also returns to playing Virginia on Black Friday this fall.
After playing Notre Dame in November in 2016, the Hokies will play all four of their non-conference games first starting with their huge showdown with West Virginia at FedEx Field followed by the home opener against Delaware, a road trip to East Carolina, and a home game against Old Dominion which will be the final prep game before opening ACC play against Clemson.
The Virginia Tech-Clemson game has all the makings of being the game of the week and national primetime game on ABC along with seeing College GameDay returning to Blacksburg especially if both teams are undefeated with this also being a rematch of the 2016 ACC Championship. On top of that, the fifth week of the 2017 season lacks any major games outside of this one with Alabama-Ole Miss being the next best game which will likely be on CBS anyway.
Having the VT-Clemson game that early was a surprise, but is actually a smart move by the ACC to make sure that the 2016 ACC Championship rematch gets the most national attention.
After that, the Hokies will travel to Boston College in a game that could be a letdown game if Scot Loeffler can put together an offense with another new QB before going on bye.
Virginia Tech’s Coastal hopes will be decided in the second half starting with the Hokies facing North Carolina and Duke in back-to-back home games with the Blue Devils being a sleeper in the Coastal next year as one of two Coastal teams returning their starting QB. Then, the Hokies head on the road for a couple of interesting road games against Miami and Georgia Tech followed by a home game against Pittsburgh.
For the second time in four years, Virginia Tech will end its regular season on Black Friday with a trip to rival Virginia for the Commonwealth Cup. While fans may not be crazy about this game being on a Friday again, there is the benefit that Charlottesville is much easier to get to than Blacksburg for fans in Northern Virginia, Richmond, and the 757.
Virginia Tech’s 2017 schedule is definitely interesting and the fact that the Hokies aren’t playing a Thursday night game is disappointing when a rematch of last year’s Hurricane Matthew game between UNC-VT being featured on a Thursday night would have made a lot of sense. It’s also disappointing to see the Hokies have 3 home game in September and only one in November though both October home games come late in October while the Clemson game is just about at the beginning of October.
Virginia Tech will be tested early with two big showdowns with West Virginia and Clemson in September while not being able to do much damage to its Coastal hopes before their bye week should things not get off to the fastest start in 2017 with a new quarterback. One positive for the Hokies is that only three of their opponents return their starting QB in 2017: Duke, Virginia, and Delaware.
The land of opportunity is there for Virginia Tech to have a big year even with a new QB at the helm as Justin Fuente’s offense should have a very strong defense that will give teams nightmares next season.
There you go Hokies, tell us what you think about the schedule below.