Virginia Tech Hokies
When Texas A&M announced its intentions of joining the SEC in 2011, media and fans alike began speculating which team would join the SEC East. Missouri ultimately became that team, but before the Tigers wrecked the SEC divisional map, the Virginia Tech Hokies were the team at the center of the speculation.
Virginia Tech just made the most sense. They didn’t have a long history in the ACC. The Hokies joined the ACC in 2004 after 13 seasons in the Big East. At the time, Virginia Tech had spent most of the previous 20 years on the cusp of being an elite program. The Hokies lost to Florida State in the 2000 National Championship Game by just two touchdowns. Virginia Tech finished with at least 10 wins 13 times between 1995 and 2011, winning seven conference titles along the way.
After not joining the SEC in 2012, the Virginia Tech program went on the decline. The rise of Florida State and Clemson helped produce the fall of Virginia Tech. The Hokies have only one 10-win season since then, and in 2018 they suffered their first losing season since 1992. Recruiting has suffered as well. The Hokies had the No. 75 ranked class in 2020, a far cry from what the program had grown accustomed to.
Virginia Tech is suffering an identity crisis and a change of scenery might be the solution. The ACC is one of the least popular conferences with prospects. In the 2020 class, only five ACC teams scored at least 200 points in the 247Sports Composite. The Pac 12 had seven such schools, the Big 10 had eight and the SEC had a whopping 12 schools. With its pedigree as a newfound member of the SEC, Virginia Tech would be back on the map for elite prospects around the nation.
As for the SEC, it gains a school in Virginia and access to the valuable Richmond, Vir. television market. If Virginia Tech can return to its former glory, the SEC will have another team competing for conference titles and spots in the College Football Playoff.