Michael Vick's VT Hall of Fame Induction draws mixed reaction
BLACKSBURG, Va. (WSET) -- Friday, September 22, 2017, will go down in history for Virginia Tech sports and for the man who brought Hokie football to national prominence: Michael Vick. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame along with several others.
"He made some mistakes, but everybody makes mistakes, and he deserves it. He played hard, and he'll always be a Hokie," said Chas DeAngelis, a VT student.
"It's great that he's going into the Hall of Fame. I used to watch him as a little kid playing out here at Tech, and... Go Hokies," said Jacob Verbrugge, another student.
But a cloud hung over the star quarterback's ceremony. In 2007, Michael Vick went to prison on dog fighting charges, and today, dozens of protesters came to show the Hall of Famer they aren't ready to let the past go.
"I spent a Wednesday afternoon a couple of weeks ago and took down everything that was Virginia Tech," said Mike Woolwine, adding he will never donate another dime to Tech.
"I honestly was in disbelief, I couldn't believe that Virginia Tech would stoop so low," said Tina Raymond, a former high school classmate of Vick's. "Growing up there, you knew what was going on, and it was going on when he was in high school, it was going on before high school, it was going on while he was at Tech."
"Yes, he went to jail and served time for something, it certainly wasn't for dog fighting," said former VT athlete Melinda Micheletto. "If you look at the qualifications for being inducted into the Virginia Tech Hall of Fame, I think it was point number three, that [the athlete] hasn't brought any embarrassment to the university, and I think that should have negated his being inducted right there."
However, the quarterback's biggest fans weren't going to let protests ruin the star's special day. They said if everyone's darkest secrets were aired for everyone to see, no one would have no room to talk.
"He's come back from it, and I think he's made up for his mistakes," said Eric Treser, VT student.
"Everybody deserves a second chance, and what he did on the field has nothing to do with what he did off the field, and that's why he's in the Hall of Fame," said another VT student, Tyler Stapleton.