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Tako Tuesdays: A First Date with Virginia Football

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Oregon's first mistake was ordering seafood stew and garlic bread. Terrible combo if you're hoping to make out with someone for the first time.

Scott Olmos-USA TODAY Sports

Oregon fans got a pleasant surprise this past off-season when Virginia and Oregon agreed to a home-and-home series, with the Ducks traveling to Charlottesville this upcoming Saturday. Looking back through Oregon's past football schedules, I noticed a number of things:

  • We've played Nevada and Fresno State like a thousand times.
  • We should start playing Big Ten teams again. A lot of Ohio State and Michigan State in our past; let's do that more! Maybe in 2014, 2015, 2020, and 2021...
  • The ACC is nowhere to be found.
Oregon played Wake Forest in the 1992 Independence Bowl, and again in the 2002 Seattle Bowl. Other than that? Nothing. Oregon has never played a regular-season game against an ACC opponent. That ends Saturday.

With Oregon and Virginia having no history against each other, it seems fitting to take these two out on a first date, so they can get to know each other better.

---

OREGON: Hi Virginia, it's nice to meet you!

VIRGINIA: Yeah, nice to meet you too, I've heard a lot about you! Man, that is an eye-catching suit, what's it made of?

OREGON: Oh, just a high-tensile strength, superlight blend of nineteen different fabrics.

VIRGINIA: What makes it shimmer like that?

OREGON: Moon rocks, mostly.

VIRGINIA: Seems like a good use of that resource.

OREGON: So when did you start playing football?

VIRGINIA: 1888, though we didn't start going by the name Cavaliers until 1923. You?

OREGON: 1894. What were the early years of Virginia football like?

VIRGINIA: Well, we're one of the premier universities in the country, founded by Thomas Jefferson, and so the early years were spent playing schools of our status like Yale, Vanderbilt, and Johns Hopkins. What about you, were you guys playing universities like that?

OREGON: ...does the University of Puget Sound or Oregon Agricultural College count?

VIRGINIA: Um, sure! I bet those schools have some merit. Maybe not the prestige of the schools I used to play, but, you know, some merit.

OREGON: So your state was part of the Confederacy, huh? What was that like?

VIRGINIA: It was...busy, though school stayed open during the war, and remained intact and violence-free throughout the 1860s.

OREGON: Well that's good. And then after the war, you started becoming more forward-thinking?

VIRGINIA: Oh, totally! We've been giving scholarships to black players for almost 45 years now!

OREGON: 45 years, huh? We had two African-American players in 1927.

VIRGINIA: It's not a competition, okay?

OREGON: I'm sorry, that was rude of me. So what's your football history like?

VIRGINIA: Oh, we've been competitive in football for nearly all our existence! In the 1940s and 50s we were one of the best teams in the country, and we've had some recent success with former coach Al Groh and former QB Matt Schaub.

OREGON: What are some of the bowl games you've won?

VIRGINIA: Well, Virginia did not participate in postseason play for nearly all of the 1950s, 60s, and 70s, because University president Colgate Darden took issue with NCAA policies, and believed college athletics detracted from the academic values of the university.

OREGON: Were you a founding member of the ACC?

VIRGINIA: No, the ACC played one season before admitting us into the conference. Did you help found the Pac-12?

OREGON: Yep! Oregon, along with Oregon State, California, and Washington, founded the Pacific Coast conference in 1915. We're the second-oldest conference in the country, behind only the Big Ten.

VIRGINIA: Wow, how old school of you!

OREGON: So, what's the deal with Scott Stadium?

VIRGINIA: Built in 1931, it's the oldest stadium in Virginia. It's got real grass, so our Cavalier mascot can ride into the stadium before every game.

OREGON: Wait, you've got an actual cavalier?

VIRGINIA: Hell yeah we do! He rides in on a horse, and he's got a sword and a cape and everything!

OREGON: Okay, that's pretty cool. We've got a customized motorcycle, but the driver doesn't have sword. Man, we should get him a sword!

VIRGINIA: But why would he need a sword?

OREGON: Do you really need a reason to have a sword?

VIRGINIA: Um, no?

OREGON: Damn right no!

VIRGINIA: I suppose not. Well this has been fun! I'd love to do it again sometime!

OREGON: Sure, how about Saturday?

VIRGINIA: Sounds great!

OREGON: Let's get some BBQ and have some drinks!

VIRGINIA: Totally, and who knows? Maybe I'll show you my place.

OREGON: Nice. Then I can show you how fast I am!

VIRGINIA: ...that doesn't sound fun at all.

OREGON: Not for you maybe.