Andy Bitter

Andy Bitter is the Virginia Tech football beat writer for the Roanoke Times. Andy began covering the Hokies in October 2011 after spending three years covering Auburn for the Columbus (Ga.) Ledger-Enquirer. His eventful time on the Auburn beat included a coaching change, a Heisman Trophy winner, the school’s first national championship in 53 years and the poisoning of the school’s iconic oak trees.

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A few details about the new video board/sound system being installed in Lane Stadium

2.20p scoreboardLane Stadium and Cassell Coliseum are getting new video boards and sound systems before the start of next season, Virginia Tech's Associate Director of Athletics for Internal Affairs Tom Gabbard said Wednesday.

Gabbard gave some more details to the plans, which I wrote about for Thursday's paper. Here are some quick hits from my conversation with him Wednesday ...

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-- The video boards will be high-definition LED display. The Request for Proposal for Lane Stadium is currently out. That project is the priority, since the football season comes first. Bids are due March 1. Tech hopes to pick one on April 1. Construction won't begin until after graduation. The board is expected to be done by Aug. 1.

-- The one in Lane Stadium will be 48.2 feet tall by 108.2 feet wide. The current one, built in 2005, is about 28 feet by 38 feet. "This will dwarf it big-time," Gabbard said. The structure itself won't be much larger than the existing one, however. The video board will just be a larger portion of it.

-- Take this list for what it's worth because of the source, but the project would put Tech's video board as the eight-largest nationally of college stadiums.

-- Tech looked at a couple of boards around the country in modeling this one: Michigan State, Ohio State, Auburn, Wake Forest, North Carolina and some professional ones.

-- Why upgrade? "It's a lot of keeping up with the Joneses," Gabbard said. "And as you know, this business is many times a facility battle on who has got the greatest, latest. So when we put the boards up originally we weere very competitive and better than most in our conference. And now in the conference North Carolina has done a good job. Wake Forest has done a good job. So we need to keep moving forward."

-- The cost for to upgrade the board at Lane Stadium is about $3 million. The sound system is about $700,000. Upgrading the studio to support all of the new technologies will be about $800,000 for both Lane and Cassell. IMG College, which does Virginia Tech's sports network, is paying for it.

-- The Cassell board will be significantly larger too. Gabbard didn't have an exact size yet because the Request for Proposal for that project isn't out.

-- Gabbard said there's still no update on the indoor football practice facility. There's been lots of talk about sites to review, but nothing has been decided yet. "We’re going to do it," Gabbard said. "I just don’t know where yet."

Posted to: Facilities

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Lots of money while the kid down the street in Appalachia goes to bed with bad teeth and hungry, but hey "those replays will look even bigger now honey".

Most of the football players wear mouthguards

Most of the football players wear mouthguards to protect their teeth so you won't even see them.

What a waste of money

40,000 of our neighbors are going to be out of work, but hey, they can all go down to Lane Stadium and see the big new video board.

That's $3.7M Virginia Tech was able to come up with (given that IMG will pay the other $.8M) to fund a video board that is used what? 12 times a year?

What a disgrace. Talk about lack of priorities in higher education.

But then again, it is Virginia Tech, the "higher" in higher education refers to their cannabis intake, not their education.

Higher Income than UVA

Guess all that pot smoking works out for the Hokie grads as they have a higher income average than their counterparts to the north east.


IMG is paying for the whole thing. You're sounding a little envious. Perhaps VT sent you a rejection letter? Time to get over it.


The football program generates millions of dollars a year in revenue. I for one have no issue at all with them re-investing in their stadium. It's not the University's job to provide for the people who are poor or jobless. It's not the government's responsibility either. I do have issue with my tax dollars going to provide for people who can't seem to understand the concept of birth control and are having kids they can't afford with several different men. But then again, how else are Democrat voters made?

....So Well Said

ACCylumBeard that was so well put it brings a tear to my eye! As a VT grad and Conservative, I commend you on putting the facts out there. Well until the genius 'eggsammidge' chimes in. Anyway, the Dems or "Low Information" voters should be loving what the genius is doing now.....the sequestration was HIS idea! Go Hokies and Lord help this nation. Going to probably get 11 million new Democrat voters for life here shortly because of our emporor!


Your comments disguist me. Shame on you for making such a blanket statement about my beloved alma mater. Who are you to say such things about people you dont even know? I can conclude many things:
1) Your highschool sweetheart left you for better options at Virginia Tech.
2) You are drinking the same kool-aid as "Eggsammidge"
3) You are a closet boo-hoo-hoo who envies any and all things Virginia Tech
4) You fell out of bed last night, bumped your head and are having accute bouts of psychosis.

Either way, your opinion is jaded and not worth the gig space you are taking up on this website. Go play somewhere else Mr. Sour-pants.

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