After playing each other four times between 2002 and 2011, Virginia Tech and Marshall have been growing distant.
The Hokies and Thundering Herd met in 2013, not again until 2018 and finally will clash Saturday, when Virginia Tech will visit Marshall in Huntington, W.Va. Call it the new five-year plan.
The latest installment will feature teams headed in opposite directions.
Virginia Tech (1-2) comes in reeling, having dropped consecutive games to Big Ten opponents Purdue and Rutgers.
Not much went right for Virginia Tech in a 35-16 loss at Rutgers last week, but the Hokies might have seen potential for the long term.
Sophomore quarterback Kyron Drones made his first career start in place of injured senior Grant Wells and provided a two-way threat, completing 19 of 32 passes for 190 yards and running for 74 yards on 22 carries in the loss.
Drones, a Baylor transfer, is expected to start again Saturday.
“I think there are some really good things,” Virginia Tech head coach Brent Pry said. “(Drones) made it hard to defend him. He had some nice balls and did a really nice job running the ball. He did miss a few reads that I think left some plays on the field. His decision making was pretty good. First college start, I think there will be a lot to build from.”
Marshall (2-0) enters with momentum after winning its first two games of the season against Albany at home and on the road at East Carolina.
The Thundering Herd were off last week following a 31-13 win at East Carolina on Sept. 9. in their two games, quarterback Cam Fancher and running back Rasheen Ali have delivered as expected.
Fancher is 43-of-63 passing in two games for 446 yards, while Ali has rushed for 222 yards on 36 carries and five touchdowns.
“Now that we have got two games on guys, we can start to see some consistency in production, and we can start to see some inconsistency in production,” Marshall head coach Charles Huff said. “We got to be able to make adjustments. We got to be able to coach up the inconsistencies and retain the consistencies.”