CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. — Virginia coach Mike London reviewed the tape of a 56-20 loss to Georgia Tech on Sunday with his team, urging his players to put the loss behind them.
“The biggest thing is that this is Game 3 for us, and this team is still 2-1,” the coach said. “You have to have a short memory.”
The Cavaliers will have to bounce back quickly, with a nationally televised game on the horizon Saturday against No. 17 TCU.
First, though, was breaking down what went wrong offensively and defensively in the loss.
Georgia Tech picked up 594 yards, the most Virginia had allowed since 2000, but equally concerning was the 98 yards of rushing the Wahoos had.
The offensive line struggled again, though London pointed out that the lapses weren’t evenly distributed across the line. He said tackles Oday Aboushi and Morgan Moses have been playing well.
“Oday and Morgan are doing a nice job,” London said. “Sometimes the breakdown might be on the interior, where the guards are. … We’ve got to look for ways to help them be more successful.”
Left guard Cody Wallace has missed time with an injury. London went on to say that center Luke Bowanko has also been “strong and steady” so far this year.
During a Sunday night teleconference with reporters, the coach reacted strongly to the accusation by Georgia Tech quarterback Tevin Washington that Virginia’s defenders were trying to pull his helmet off, to make him sit out plays under the new NCAA rules.
“We don’t advocate that, we don’t teach that, we didn’t even think about doing anything close to that,” London said. “To talk about trying to target a player by ripping his head off, that’s not our guys.”
Georgia Tech coach Paul Johnson had said that “it’s ironic [the helmet] only came off on the goal line in the scrum.”
Aside from the forceful denial, London spent most of the time with reporters talking about how to move on from the loss.
“We don’t try to dwell on the negative parts of the things that happened,” he said. “Basically this game is behind us, and the only thing we can do is look forward to a nationally televised game against a top 20 team on the road.”
Among the positive points cited by the coach were the special teams. Punter Alec Vozenilek was named special teams player of the game.
Kickers Ian Frye and Drew Jarrett also have delivered for Virginia this season.
With a big-time opponent awaiting, there’s not much time for the rest of the team to fix its mistakes and get ready for another round.
Read more about the Cavaliers at TimesDispatch.com