Virginia Tech has signed a letter of agreement to open the 2004 season against USC in the Black Coaches Assn. Classic, Virginia Tech's athletic director said Monday.
Jim Weaver, however, said formal contracts could not be signed by either school until the BCA and the game's promoter settle on a site. FedEx Field near Washington, and Giants Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J., are under consideration for the game that would be played Aug. 28.
USC signed a letter of agreement last week.
"Virginia Tech and USC believe it's going to happen," Weaver said. "It's just a matter of the promoter making an announcement."
Daryl Gross, a senior associate athletic director at USC, said he agreed.
"It's a done deal," said Gross, who handles football scheduling.
Virginia Tech plays California in the Insight Bowl in Phoenix on Dec. 26. Weaver said the Hokies are looking forward to opening next season against USC, which is ranked No. 1 and could win a share of the national title with a victory over Michigan in the Rose Bowl.
"They have great tradition,' Weaver said. "We think it's a great opportunity for our program."
Virginia Tech's first experience in the BCA game was memorable. The Hokies were on the field at home against Georgia Tech on Aug. 27, 2000, but a violent thunderstorm swept through the area seconds before kickoff, forcing the game's cancellation.
"The referee was just about to blow the whistle and signal the kicker when lightning broke loose," Weaver said.
Freshman running back LenDale White sat out much of practice after twisting his left knee. "I don't think it's going to be too serious," said White, who was scheduled to be examined by a team doctor Monday night.... All-American wide receiver Mike Williams returned to practice after spending Sunday's workout doing punitive conditioning drills for being absent Saturday. Williams failed to return from Florida in time to attend a midday practice. "It's amazing that after all that rolling and tumbling that he could have fresh legs, but he looked pretty good today," Coach Pete Carroll said.... Carroll was selected by the Maxwell Football Club as coach of the year. Carroll will be honored at an awards dinner in Atlantic City, N.J., in February.... USC will hold its annual football awards banquet tonight.