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Hokies react to Chick-fil-A Bowl

In the beginning of the year, many people in Blacksburg thought that Virginia Tech would be basking the glow of a Bowl Championship Series selection at this point in the season. Although that has not happened, the Hokies' players said Monday that they were looking forward to playing Tennessee in the Chick-fil-A Bowl on Dec. 31 in Atlanta.

"We are excited to play them," linebacker Cody Grimm said, "and we just have to go play our heart out."

The Hokies (9-3) finished the season with four-straight wins after back-to-back losses in October crushed their hopes of a third consecutive ACC championship. The Volunteers (7-5) have won four of their last five games, and on Monday, five of their players were named first- or second-team all-Southeastern Conference.

"It definitely factors in a little bit," Grimm said of each teams' hot play, "but bowl games are different. You have that break in between that is a month long where you are not playing football and practicing every day. What we need to do is just come back and try to pick up where we left off, and try to do everything as quickly as we possibly can."

The meeting between Virginia Tech and Tennessee is one of the most sought matchups for football fans of both programs. The schools are separated by a 230-mile drive and their teams have discussed playing at a 160,000-seat auto-racing stadium. The Hokies and Volunteers have not played each other in the past 15 years. Tennessee has a 5-2 record in the series.

"I didn't know this was going to be as big as it was when it comes to the fans," Hokies quarterback Tyrod Taylor said of the dormant rivalry. "I'm looking forward to this challenge."

Correction: An earlier version of this post incorrectly referred to Virginia Tech as Virginia.

By Mark Viera  |  December 8, 2009; 10:00 AM ET
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"The meeting between Virginia and Tennessee is one of the most sought matchups for football fans of both programs."

So, does Virginia TECH play Tennessee before or after Virginia?

Posted by: NHOBX | December 8, 2009 10:41 AM | Report abuse

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