Virginia Tech’s Top Crunch Time Drives

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Virginia Tech
This dramatic Bucky Hodges touchdown came in front of a national audience on Black Friday in 2014. (Ivan Morozov)

Clutch drives to close games are some of the most memorable moments for college football fans.  Today we’ll relive Virginia Tech’s best “crunch time” drives of the Bowl Streak Era. 

OXVT compiled the videos and ranked the drives, so if you disagree with anything, you know where to go with your complaints!

No. 10: Virginia Tech at UNC, 2018

Who can ever forget UNC’s fumble at the Virginia Tech goal line, and the Hokies’ subsequent drive to beat the Tar Heels in Chapel Hill? 

No. 9: Virginia Tech at UVA, 2015

The Hokies found themselves trailing 20-13 as Frank Beamer faced UVA for the final time.  A loss would have meant the end of the bowl streak, the end of the winning streak over the Hoos, and a defeat in Frank Beamer’s final game as head coach.  Michael Brewer and Isaiah Ford made some clutch plays in the comeback.

No. 8: UVA at Virginia Tech, 2014

The 2014 matchup between the Hoos and the Hokies played out similarly to 2015.  The Hokies found themselves trailing late in the game before Michael Brewer made a huge throw to Bucky Hodges to get Virginia Tech in scoring position.

No. 7: UVA at Virginia Tech, 2018

Stop us if you’ve heard this before.  With the bowl streak on the line, the Hokies found themselves trailing in-state rival UVA late in the fourth quarter.  With a 7-4 Cavalier team up against a 4-6 Tech team, this one was finally going to go in favor of the team from Charlottesville, right? 

No. 6: Virginia Tech at Syracuse, 2000

Michael Vick had 15 carries for -46 rushing yards against Syracuse…before the play that iced the game.  Not much has ever gone right for the Hokies in the Carrier Dome, and most of this game wasn’t pretty, either.  However, Vick broke off a run late in the fourth quarter that Virginia Tech fans will always remember.

No. 5: Pitt at Virginia Tech, 2000

With Michael Vick injured and facing a Pitt team that was just beginning to give the Hokies trouble every season, Dave Meyer orchestrated a drive that kept Virginia Tech’s National Championship hopes alive for one more week.  Ronald Moody made one of his six career catches on the drive.

No. 4: Nebraska at Virginia Tech, 2009

Outside of one long Ryan Williams run, Nebraska’s defense had dominated the Virginia Tech offense behind future first round draft picks Ndamukong Suh and Prince Amukamara.  While being wrapped up by Suh, Tyrod Taylor got off a deep ball to Danny Coale against blown coverage that is one of the most famous plays in Tech history.  He found Dyrell Roberts in the back of the endzone several plays later for the game-winning touchdown.

No. 3 (tied): Miami at Virginia Tech, 2011

Logan Thomas and David Wilson put the team on their backs during the 2011 contest with the Miami Hurricanes, particularly in the final drive of the game.  It wasn’t without drama, however, as Thomas scored on a run up the middle on fourth and short.  This was one of the more spectacular endings to a game in the history of Lane Stadium.

No. 3 (tied): Virginia Tech at Georgia Tech, 2004

Who can forget this comeback during Virginia Tech’s inaugural season in the ACC?  Clutch touchdown passes from Bryan Randall to Eddie Royal and Josh Morgan, plus Randall’s hurdling of a Yellow Jacket defender, will always be fond memories for Hokie fans everywhere.

No. 2: Virginia Tech at UVA, 1995

After throwing three interceptions earlier in the game, Jim Druckenmiller, according to Bill Roth, “engineered the greatest comeback I’ve ever seen.”  Druckenmiller’s pump fake fooled future NFL safety Percy Ellsworth, and he hit wide receiver Jermaine Holmes in stride for the touchdown.  The day was capped with an interception return for a touchdown by Antonio Banks.

No. 1: Virginia Tech at West Virginia, 1999

Tops on OXVT’s list is Virginia Tech’s dramatic come-from-behind victory over West Virginia in 1999.  The Mountaineers had taken the lead late against a heavily favored Hokies team, but Michael Vick led the Hokies down the field on a game-winning drive, and Shayne Graham’s 44-yard field goal kept Tech’s National Championship hopes alive.

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55 Responses You are logged in as Test

  1. I was at the GT game. Their fans were already leaving the stadium thinking they had won. It was half empty as we pulled it off.

  2. Nice job, OX… the 95 game was my favorite. Subjective choice of course, but it was the day of my Grandfather’s funeral (he had become a big hokie fan after moving here from Florida)
    Secondly, it was at UVA with the Barber twins( if you don’t know that history on how they ended up at UVA, look it up)___ lastly, we punched a ticket to the Sugar Bowl with the win, which legitimized the Freak Beamer era of Hokie football

  3. The Nebraska game in Lane was the last game dad and I went to together. He is still with us, but that game will always hold very special memories.

    Thanks OX.

  4. Two things. First. Thanks for writing this OX. Really helps a newer guy like me all the crazy-cool moments I missed over the years. Second. Why the hell do I have to go all the way to the bottom to reply to this. That sucks. I need to fix this.. lol

  5. I had some folks from Nebraska as clients who flew in for the game. After 2 times playing them, and 2 times beating them, he later told me he hopes Nebraska never schedules VT again (hoping for wins, of course for his team). Their fans (both here, and in Nebraska) were top notch though.

  6. Awesome memories. There for most of them. Most striking – the sound of Lane when there’s a good product on the field. Totally Nuts.

  7. Wow, that brought back some wonderful memories! Some people remember moments in time based on songs. I remember based on VT football games.

    Thanks for the treat! Go Hokies!

  8. In my best Bob Hope voice, “Thanks for the memories”.

    Some good, wonderful times represented there.

  9. Great list, although 1995 UVA game should have been # 1 because of how cocky their fans were. I remember one in particular pondering if we would ever be able to beat them again.

    1. no doubt that is a great win, but the magnitude of the 99 WVU game and the national title implications puts it clearly atop the list!

      1. You can make a compelling case that 99 doesn’t happen without the 95 season setting the table

  10. Thanks OX a much-needed summer IV..great job. My mind is right now.. I can see the horizon. Hokie football is coming!

    1. In the 2 years Brewer was at Tech gave his HOKIE all. He helped beat OSU at the ‘shoe. He gave up his body constantly. I remember wondering if he would even get up after a play that saw him get whacked. He won the support of his teammates and the fans.


  11. Awesome stroll down memory Lane!!!

    Can’t wait to make more & have Top 25!!!

    Let’s Go…Hokies!!
    Beat BC!!!

  12. I love how the announcer’s voice goes up an octave when Eddie and Josh made those catches against GT.

    1. Only 5; but I’ve been in Europe the last 20 years; so pretty good with the road trip involved.

  13. I blew off a wedding to see the Nebraska one; I was not allowed to blow off another one in 2011 for the Logan/Miami game 🤬

  14. Happy to have been to two of your top three (GT and WVU games). In the end zone for the GT game, I still remember my GT alumni friend saying “who is he throwing to” before we figured out that Eddie Royal was standing lone 30 yards down the field. He still swears that Eddie walked off the bench to catch that……

  15. Lest anyone forget… look at the ’95 game at UVA (#2 on the list) at about 1:55. You might be able to kind of catch the attempt trip by the Hoo’s trainer Joe Gieck, but it is a tough angle to see it.

    Here is a better view. Look for the leg in orange pants, sticking out well into the field of play for a second or so. Can’t miss it.

  16. Thanks OX. Many great memories in there. I really appreciate all the effort you put into these Hokie projects.

  17. I was fortunate to be in Morgantown for the ’99 game. You could hear a pin drop and a distant couch burning! After having seen WVU’s last score to take the lead, in the endzone right in front of our section, I had the best view of Vick’s scamper and Shayne’s winning kick!

  18. I remember the front page of the RT, after the win in Morgantown, said “Alive and Kicking!”

  19. Thank you…that had to take a lot of time to entertain us Hokies!! Thank you muchly!

  20. I still think the 95 UVA game should have been#1 because I was there. Just kidding. Great job, Ox

  21. I was bass fishing in Mexico. The town had one phone & I paid the family $5 to call my wife to find out the score. She said it was unbelievable, Tech won on a fg with no time left. She recorded the game so I got to watch it when I got back.

  22. IMO the most impressive actual drive is Willis vs UNC, 99 yards with multiple 3rd/4th and longs and it ended with a touchdown. Granted the stakes were lower than literally every other game on here so makes sense it’s only 10th.

    1. The Nebraska Game was fun. We got tickets at the last minute. It was worth every penny.
      That Bill Roth call still echos after all those years.
      Thanks Ox!

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