A hard head is an asset in football, but the Virginia Tech Hokies seem to be taking the whole thing literally. They'll be debuting ''Hokie Stone'' helmets for Thursday night's game against Georgia Tech, designed after a type of rock mined near the campus and used in many of its buildings. Alternate uniforms are all well and good, but are these helmets more brick than marble? We recognize that metaphor was a bit strained. It's obviously more shale than anything else.

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