London officially tabs Lambert as QB starter

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Greyson Lambert is officially Virginia’s starting quarterback.

The redshirt sophomore is listed at No. 1 on the post-spring depth chart coach Mike London released Monday. Incumbent David Watford, who started all 12 games last season when Virginia finished 2-10, and sophomore Matt Johns, who has never played in a game, are listed as battling for the backup role.

“I don’t think it was a huge surprise about how things worked out,” London said on a teleconference. “Greyson did a very good job with his on-the-field performance, his off-the-field performance, the things that we’ve asked him to do, he’s done them and put himself in position to come out of the spring as the guy, being named as the starter at this point.”

Lambert was voted as one of four captains by his teammates during the spring and was appointed by London to the 13-member player leadership council. Watford, whose leadership ability helped him win the job last season, was left off the council for a transgression that he and London have declined to reveal.

Lambert got the bulk of the work in the Cavaliers’ spring game, completing 18 of 31 passes for 220 yards with two touchdowns, two interceptions and a sack. Watford finished just 4 of 14 for 31 yards with two interceptions and three sacks, and Johns was 6 for 19 for 43 yards, also with three sacks.

Last season, Watford completed 57 percent of his attempts with 15 interceptions and eight touchdowns. His running ability also was cited as a benefit, but he averaged just 2 yards on 104 carries. Lambert played in seven games, completing just 44 percent of 75 passes with two interceptions and a touchdown.

The depth chart does have one big surprise.

Senior Miles Gooch, with just three career receptions, is listed as the starter at the Z wide receiver position, ahead of fellow seniors Darius Jennings and Dominique Terrell. Jennings has started 16 games in his career and leads the returning Cavaliers with 106 career receptions. Terrell has 60.

London gushed about Jennings during the spring, indicating that being fitted with contact lenses had made a huge difference and that he hadn’t dropped a pass. But the elusive Terrell also is a threat in the running game, and London said he’s a “selfless” player who will be used in many ways.

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