While NC State-Virginia may not be the most-hyped or anticipated matchup on this weekend's ACC docket (that honor would probably go to UNC-Clemson or Georgia Tech-Miami), there will still be plenty to watch for in a contest that will feature a Virginia program that appears to be on the upswing and a Wolfpack squad that is equipped with multiple playmakers. This series has provided plenty of drama recently, as nine of the last thirteen meetings between these two schools have gone down to the wire. NC State holds the edge in the overall series 33-21-1, though the clubs have alternated wins in the past six meetings. It should also be noted that the visiting team hasn't won in the series since 1999.
All the action will unfold at Scott Stadium, the 61,500-seat cathedral that sits on the University of Virginia's Grounds in Charlottesville, VA. Constructed in 1931, it is the oldest active football stadium in Virginia and is the 27th largest university-owned college football stadium in the country. The stadium offers a picturesque view of the Blue Ridge Mountains and specifically Monticello Mountain out of the south end of the stadium.
Part of the allure of the stadium involves the longstanding traditions it boasts. Perhaps the most fondly held one is that of a Cavalier, mounted on horseback, that rides into the stadium with the football team to the chorus of "The Good Old Song" as orange and blue fireworks go off. Another unique feature of Scott Stadium is the "Adventures of Cavman," which takes place on the large video screen a few minutes prior to kickoff. In this computer-generated skit, the mascot of the opposing team causes trouble on the Grounds of UVA, then is slayed by the Cavalier in dramatic fashion as he rides to the stadium, to a raucous reply of applause from the crowd.
Tailgating on the Lawn is another great University of Virginia gameday tradition; Thomas Jefferson's academic village has long been known as the best place to take in pre-game festivities on a beautiful autumn day. And although the "Guys in Ties, Girls in Pearls," tradition has faded a bit, the popular anecdote still provides the unofficial dress code at Scott Stadium, as many Virginia fans prefer to keep it classy on gameday. Most fans still enjoy the pre-game inside the stadium above all though. Watching the teams warm up, mingling throughout the concourses with the all the UVA faithful, swaying arm-in-arm while belting out the words to "The Good Old Song" after the UVA Marching Band performs their awesome show, and spelling out U-V-A after their "Go Hoos Go" chants are all traditions that Virginia fans hold dear to their hearts.
With a UVA student body hungry for their first bowl appearance since the 2007 season and a potentially dangerous NC State team coming into town, the atmosphere at Scott Stadium will be at a fever-pitch come Saturday. This game has all the makings of becoming another riveting, anything-goes thriller. Don't miss any of the action at 2:30 PM CST Saturday!