UVA Football Program Gaining Momentum Heading into Clash with Florida State
The University of Virginia football program is gaining momentum.
The 'Hoos are ranked 25th in the AP poll this week, the earliest in a season Virginia has been ranked since 2005.
"Definitely earned our way in," says UVa safety Brenton Nelson. "But just like last year when we earned our way in and lost that game so we can not let it get to our heads this time."
The student section was packed for Friday night's game against William and Mary. Over 10-thousand kids showed up, the largest Wahoo student turnout in 11 years at Scott Stadium.
"It was jammed," says UVa coach Bronco Mendenhall. "I usually pay attention before the game and then they have to be pretty loud for me to notice during the game and I noticed, not only their section but the grass hill at the end. It just looked like this is starting to take shape."
On Monday, Virginia's Joe Reed was named the ACC Specialist of the Week. He had two touchdowns in Friday's 35-point win over William and Mary including a kick return 100 yards for a score.
Reed says, "Being able to make something happen and show that I really trust my blockers."
Up next in Florida State. The Seminoles are coming off a 1-point win over Louisiana Monroe in overtime.
Florida State scored 45 points in the win and coach Bronco Mendenhall says FSU is fast and dynamic.
"And they have a tremendous history of having great football players and great football program,' says UVa quarterback Bryce Perkins. "Definitely one of the handful of teams growing up that you say that team is great. When I was a kid, doing the little chant. It's going to be definitely a fun one."
Virginia is a seven and a half point favorite for Saturday's game.
"We have to be at our best, we have to be prepared to go against them," says UVa offensive lineman Eli Hanback. "They're a very talented team. No matter what they've been through. They can play and win any game they play in."
Virginia will be aiming for its first 3-0 start since 2005.
The ACC announced on Monday that Virginia's home game on Saturday, September 21st will be a 7pm kickoff televised by ESPN2.
It'll be the first time in UVA football program history the 'Hoos have started the season with 4 straight home games.