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Eli Harold Ready For Breakout Season - NBC29 WVIR Charlottesville, VA News, Sports and Weather

Eli Harold Ready For Breakout Season

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Sophomore defensive end Eli Harold Sophomore defensive end Eli Harold

The wait is almost over for the Virginia football team and its fans, as the Cavaliers will take the field for their first practice of the season on Monday.  

Sophomore defensive end Eli Harold is expected to have a big role for the UVa defense this season.

The six-foot-four, 230-pound defensive end played in all twelve games as a true freshman last year.  

Harold was third among defensive lineman with 36 tackles.  

He had seven tackles for a loss last year, which is tops among returning players, and also had a couple of sacks.  

Harold was Rivals' top-ranked player in the Commonwealth in his high school class, and even after a strong freshman season, the defensive end says he has a lot to prove.

"I'm just ready to show the world what I can do," says Harold.  "'He's too small.  He's not big enough.'  I've been criticized my whole life.  I love it.  It's fuel to my fire, and I'm just ready to punch somebody in the mouth, man."

Harold says he's looking to build on last season, and is counting on a strong performance from his teammates on the defensive line.

"I think it's going to be a big breakout year for me, but it's not all about me," says Harold.  "With those other three guys on the defensive line, if they don't do good, then I'm not going to do good.  I just think we're going to shock the world this year."  

The Cavaliers open up the season at home against BYU on August 31st.

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