No Huddle: UVA Faces Must Win Situation

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va.-- With three games remaining, Virginia football faces a must win situation on Saturday against Louisville. HooNation takes a look at the headlines ahead of the game.

It's been over 1100 days since Virginia football has won a road game. The Cavaliers will need that streak to end on Saturday, when the Cavaliers travel to face Louisville. Sitting at 3-6, UVA needs to win its final three games in order to become bowl eligible. 

"I was talking to Micah Kiser," said UVA quarterback Matt Johns, "he hasn't won a game on the road since he's been here. The first game I traveled to was NC State and that was the last game we won on the road.  I don't know what it is. There's nothing you can specifically pinpoint as to why you're losing on the road."

"These guys want to win," said UVA Head Coach Mike London. "A lot of these seniors, its their last away game. It's the last of a lot of things. We need to play better here on the road to get that road win. We need to stay together."

Pressure is On

As mentioned above the 'Hoos need to win on the road this weekend. The Cavs have lost plenty of close games this year-Pittsburgh, Miami and Notre Dame were lost by seven points or less. 

"Its been really tough to swallow," said cornerback Demetrious Nicholson. "We've been that close to winning a lot of games that people counted us out on. We just couldn't finish."

The 'Hoos have lost by eight points or less eight times since the beginning of last season. The pressure is on for the Wahoos to break that streak.

"We know we have to win out but you can't go into every game knowing you have to win, in order to go to a bowl," said senior defensive end Mike Moore. "You have to take one game at a time. Right now our priority is Louisville." 

“We’re close,” said UVA wide receiver Canaan Severin. “That’s what everyone is saying, everyone believes, and the scores do say that, but we’ve just got to turn the corner and start getting these days, and it starts Saturday with Louisville.

“Like a one-game playoff, almost. You win, you keep going.”

“We’ve talked about a singular focus,” Johns said. “If you look too far ahead, if you look at all three games as a package, that’ll hurt you. You have to take it one game at a time. This is a playoff game."

Penalty Problem

Virginia football surrendered 80 yards on 8 penalties against Miami last weekend. Four of those were pre-snap penalties. In one instance a defensive offsides penalty extended a Hurricane drive that lead to a touchdown. 

“Pre-snap penalties are a matter of concentration and knowing that we aren’t being tricky with the snap count,” London said. “If it’s loud, you have to prepare yourself for movement they might show or noise that you might hear.

“We have to be disciplined from that standpoint. It’s a matter of concentrating on the task at hand. If you can focus on minimizing those mistakes, you can give yourself a chance. It’s about being smart when approaching these pre-snap penalties.”

Depth Changes

Tim Harris is still not listed on the depth chart after picking up a shoulder injury against North Carolina. Mark Hall is also not listed on the depth chart, while C.J. Stalker is now listed back on the chart. 

Honor for Ian Frye 

Ian Frye has made 11 straight field goals for the Cavaliers this season, going 4-of-4 on Saturday against Miami (including a 48-yard FG) . Frye was named the ACC Specialist of the Week for that performance. 

“He has been a very positive and bright spot for us,” London said. “It’s a blessing in that you have a guy that when you get inside that area, he can kick field goals. But what we want ultimately are touchdowns.”

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