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College football changes will have economic impact on Virginia Tech community

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Virginia Tech head coach Justin Fuente celebrates after his team scored against Kentucky in the first half of the Belk Bowl NCAA college football game in Charlotte, N.C., Tuesday, Dec. 31, 2019. (AP Photo/Nell Redmond)

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) – According to a study done by the Virginia Tech Office of Economic Development in 2015, $47 million of the $140 million tourism dollars spent in Montgomery County occurred because of Virginia Tech football.

“I have always said football season and fall season around here, with the combination of football everything else going on with student movement, is like summertime at the beach for us,” said Lisa Bleakley, Montgomery County Regional Tourism Executive Director. “It is our time.”

With the announcement that the Hokies’ ACC home schedule will be only five games this season, the pinch is being felt, especially if crowd sizes are also limited as anticipated.

“Right now, we would be at the end of freshman orientation, so that is not there,” Bleakley said.  “We will get some of that business back off of the Virginia Tech and Radford move-in and there are other sports that both universities bring into the area. But there is no denying when you look at the numbers that Virginia Tech football is a huge contributor to our overall economic impact.”

Virginia Tech will play Boston College, Clemson, Miami, NC State and rival Virginia at home and travel to Duke, Louisville, North Carolina, Pitt and Wake Forest.

The dates for the Hokies’ home schedule, which could also include a non-conference game, have not been announced. 

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