Coogs win in largest home loss ever for Virginia Tech

Early 4th quarter scoreboard at Lane Stadium / The Bugle Yearbook

On this day in 1974, the Houston Cougars throttled the Virginia Tech Gobblers, 49-12. The 49 points allowed, as well as the 37-point loss, remain VT records at Lane Stadium.

Cougar fullback John Housman ran for 117 yards and scored twice on just 15 carries.

“I think they intimidated us to some extent,” head Gobbler Jimmy Sharpe said. “It was a long, hot afternoon.”

The local press agreed, noting UH’s incredible size for the time. “Houston…did nothing which would not be expected from a team with an offensive line which averages 260 pounds…”

Student manager Mike Brem recalls the VT game (4:22)

The Mad Dogs had not forgotten that in the 1972 game in Blacksburg, Virginia Tech QB Don Strock had embarrassed them, throwing for 527 yards (the game ended in a 27-27 tie). Despite blowing out VT the next year in the Astrodome, the Cougar defense still sought payback at Lane Stadium. UH dominated the Gobblers and did not allow a score until the backups were in during the 4th quarter. UH led 35-0 at the time.

The Newport News (VA) Daily Press noted that the Cougars came at Virginia Tech from all angles.

“Houston scored about every way a team can score, ranging from the five-yards-and-a-cloud-of-dust offense to Chuck Fairbanks’ 60-yard scoring bomb to third-string split end Don Bass, who wasn’t even on the (official) roster.”

In addition, UH defensive back Mark Mohr recovered a blocked punt in the end zone for a TD.

Tech was led by senior QB Bruce Arians who is now the head coach of the Tampa Bay Bucs. Arians was just 3/17 passing that day against the Mad Dogs.

Bruce Arians rolls out / The Bugle Yearbook


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