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Hokies and Heels and Sam Howell fashion tips

By Justin Cates | October 09
Sam Howell Blue Steel
Sam Howell has his arms wide open to welcome the Hokies to Chapel Hill (Courtesy: North Carolina Athletics)).

Virginia Tech and North Carolina have developed a healthy dislike for one another in recent years. It was bound to happen as the games have been close and the two programs routinely battle for recruits. Everyone knows each other and the programs have, shall we diplomatically say different approaches?

The Hokies are all about grit and the #HardSmartTough branding while the Tar Heels have become media darlings thanks to the flash of the Jordan brand and the connections of former ESPN talking head Mack Brown.

Speaking of the Jordan brand, Carolina quarterback Sam Howell is featured on this week's episode after a possibly ill-advised photo shoot featuring fancy shoes and all the spiked hair you can handle. I'm not one to make fun of another man's hair as my hairline is in full retreat, but distressed jeans are fair game in my book.

The marketing department missed an excellent opportunity to make a "Blue Steel" reference — especially given their colors — but that's why I'm here.

Justin Fuente will put his 4-0 record against the Tar Heels on the line this week and it's anyone's guess who suits up on both sides as rumors continue to swirl about Covid-19 related availability.

Let's just hope Whit Babcock makes it there and back safely.

Give this week's episode a watch as we look at Sam Howell, Tech-Carolina, Miami-Clemson, and review some weird Hokie memorabilia.


My Dad graduated from Tech in 1981 and I’ve been attending Virginia Tech sporting events since I first moved to Blacksburg in 1988. I myself graduated in 2008 with a Communication degree. During my time as a student I was the Sports Director for WUVT and helped establish and run Planet Blacksburg, an independent student-run news website. I’ve since written for numerous publications including SBNation, Inside The ACC, and Sports Illustrated's AllHokies. Currently, I host The Justin Cates Show in addition to other contributions here at Sons of Saturday and various other sites as the need arises. I now live in a fortified compound in upstate New York with my wife and numerous animals. The smell of popcorn makes me think of Cassell.

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