CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - The Virginia football team should be in its second week of spring practice.
The Cavaliers were scheduled to start last Tuesday, before games and practices were wiped out by the coronavirus pandemic.
UVA will return eight starters on defense next season, but rising senior linebacker Charles Snowden says, there is a catch.
“I think it’s kind of like the thing we had two years ago," says Snowden, "where we said, ‘We’re only losing Juan (Thornhill), Tim (Harris), and Chris Peace,’ but those were three of our best players. So again this year, we’re losing just Eli (Hanback), Bryce (Hall), and J-Mack (Jordan Mack), but again, three of our best players.”
Snowden says the loss of spring practice makes it harder to fill the leadership void.
“Springtime is a big time when you see young guys step up," says Snowden. "Start to really make a name for themselves. Everyone just kind of works. It’s our first introduction without the leadership from last year, so the spring time is when we all come together, and you see who will step up and be the leaders for the next season.”
Snowden says the Cavaliers’ success last season has added benefits.
“That extra week that we got in the ACC Championship definitely mattered,” says Snowden. "The bowl practices, having a later bowl, definitely mattered. All those days matter. It obviously is not helpful not having a spring, but those practices, looking back, are than much more valuable.
If everything goes as scheduled in the fall, Virginia will open the 2020 season against Georgia in Atlanta on September 7th.