Cavalier Corner

February 2019

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FEBRUARY 2019 21 BY BRAD FRANKLIN N OT LONG AFTER THEIR heartbreaking 34-31 overtime loss at Virginia Tech Nov. 23, Bronco Mendenhall stood in front of his team ahead of its appearance in the Belk Bowl at Charlotte and explained that they would be practicing on Christmas Day. If there was any dissatis- faction at the news, none showed it. "I explained that the best gift I could give them was to work them harder than their op- ponent," he said following the team's 28-0 postseason win over South Carolina. "They embraced that." That capper helped it end up being ex- actly the sort of season the Wahoos had hoped. For the first time in a decade they qualified for a bowl game in back-to-back years, and the Belk Bowl also marked the first time in nearly a decade and a half they returned home with a postseason victory (the 2005 Music City Bowl). After winning just two games in Menden- hall's first season, UVA wrapped his third with eight wins and year four looks even more promising with a slew of experienced starters coming back for the 2019 season. "Our team worked tirelessly from our last [game] to this one, and we clearly weren't satisfied with our loss to Virginia Tech," Mendenhall said after that win in Charlotte. 2019 VIRGINIA FOOTBALL SCHEDULE Aug. 31 at Pittsburgh Sept. 6 William & Mary Sept. 14 Florida State Sept. 21 Old Dominion Sept. 28 at Notre Dame Oct. 11 at Miami Oct. 19 Duke Oct. 26 at Louisville Nov. 2 at North Carolina Nov. 9 Georgia Tech Nov. 23 Liberty Nov. 29 Virginia Tech GIANT STEP FORWARD UVA's 8-5 Campaign Was Capped By Hard Work, A Decisive Bowl Victory And Optimism For The Future Quarterback Bryce Perkins and wide receiver Olamide Zaccheaus celebrated UVA's first bowl win since 2005. PHOTO BY MATT RILEY/COURTESY UVA

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