For the first time in more than a decade, the Battle for the Black Diamond Trophy will return this fall on college football’s opening weekend at FedEx Field between the Virginia Tech Hokies and the West Virginia Moutaineers. This game had been slated to be played on a loaded Saturday slate headlined by a huge showdown between the Alabama Crimson Tide and Florida State Seminoles.
However, that is no longer the case.
Virginia Tech vs. West Virginia has been moved from Saturday to Sunday night with this being the second game to move to Sunday night on college football’s opening weekend is the past several days, joining Texas A&M at UCLA. Kickoff will be at 7:30pm and the game will be nationally televised on ABC, marking the second-straight year ABC has shown a Sunday night college football game on Labor Day Weekend after Notre Dame at Texas last year which drew some of the biggest ratings of the year.
This Sunday night appearance will be the second years time in the past three years that Virginia Tech has not opened its season on Saturday.
This is a great publicity move for both programs as they take advantage of the open Sunday window to get a nationally televised game that will be heavily talked on that Sunday leading up to the game. This is also a great publicity just purely based on the number of people that could be watching this game as last year’s ABC Sunday night primetime game on Labor Day Weekend, Notre Dame-Texas, was the second most-watched regular season game.
Of course, Notre Dame and Texas are two of the biggest brands in college football, but Virginia Tech has done quite well in the past in primetime on the opening weekend for ESPN/ABC and having a rivalry game should also help ratings for what is a fertile national TV spot.