Within minutes, the chant "Let's go! Hokies!" begins to reverberate back and forth within the venue, as one of college football's most unique traditions unfolds. VT cheerleaders lead the pregame chant, alternating turns to unite the crowd as one. On the north side of the field, members of the Highty-Tighties form a human tunnel that will provide the pathway for the home team as it enters the 66,632-seat stadium. Standing in the middle of the human tunnel, the Hokie mascot tries to pump up Hokie nation as it awaits the critical moment that has come to define a home game at Virginia Tech.
Seconds later, organized chaos erupts in the student section as the metal stands in the north end zone section begin to rattle, groaning under the weight of thousands of Hokies' students jumping up and down with glee.
"Enter Sandman" has begun.
The classic Metallica song blares throughout the venue, taking the excitement and anticipation in the stands to a level that is light years away from just another Saturday in the fall. The rattling metal bleachers in the student section make the song sound like a remix, with an added beat joining the normal pulse of the Hokies' entrance track.
Tail feathers bouncing up and down, the Hokie mascot joins members of the spirit squad, who spell out "H-O-K-I-E-S" with individual flags, as the first group to run through the human tunnel as the song continues and the chaos in the student section rises. On their heels is the Virginia Tech football team, who tap the Hokie Stone on their way out of the main tunnel of the stadium and burst onto the playing field as the noise level reaches its pinnacle.
As the bulk of the football team hits the field, "Enter Sandman" comes to an abrupt end and the chaos in the student section subsides while the Marching Virginians, VT's civilian band, begin to play the "Blacksburg Bounce" and the home team finally hits its sideline, ready to fight for its place among college football's elite.
It's time to play football in Blacksburg, Va.