CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) – Virginia’s new coach scored his first major win of his career on Monday when midfielder Brennan Armstrong said he was not thinking about a transfer.
Coach Tony Elliot met the Cavaliers for the first time on Sunday night, and Armstrong – who averaged 404 games per game for 4,444 yards in 11 games this season – the second-highest in the nation – said Elliot’s introductory press conference on Monday. then said. stay
“I think he’s doing a great program. I’m so excited to see that, “said Armstrong, who has two years left. “I do not want to transfer. It’s either here or in the NFL. ”
Elliott has spent the last seven seasons as an attack coordinator at Clemson, which includes two national titles and a stunning three-year career for midfielder Trevor Lawrence, who is the best choice in this spring’s NFL draft.
In Virginia, Elliott Bronco will take over Mendenhall, who announced his resignation after the Cavaliers finished a 6-6 regular season.
Elliott touched on a variety of topics on Monday as players, fans and alumni listened to the Cavaliers ’artificial turf training pitch under the sun’s rays.
“I’ve been looking forward to this opportunity and I’m ready,” said Elliott, who worked for 11 years as Clemson’s assistant to Dabo Svinny. “I saw how the championship culture was organized and I am ready for this moment. I chose UVA because I wanted to run a program in partnership with a university that has world-class academics.
Elliott says he expects to achieve high-level football success in a school with strict academic requirements, “because I think you have to be the best student to be the best player. Without one, you can’t have the other. complements one, and all of these skills can be transferred. “
Mendenhall and his staff will coach the Cavaliers in their first Fenway Bowl on Dec. 29 in Boston. This gives Elliott time to build his staff and watch the program from the sidelines during a training session or on video. He praised Mendenhall and his staff for their willingness to help with the transition.
Another player, Elliott, prefers to stay on the program, while center Olusegun Oluvatimi attended the press conference and said he liked what he heard. One of the three finalists for the Rimington Trophy, which was awarded to the best center in college football, entered the Oluvatimi transfer portal.
He said his teammates are already recruiting him to stay in Virginia.
Elliott said his offensive system will be tailored to the talent he needs to work with, and he said he is interested in Virginia’s offense this season, which is third with 515.8 yards per game nationwide. took place. In defense, he said he favors aggression controlled by well-hidden lighting.
In a meeting with the team, he said his first message was “finish and do it with purpose, passion and love for each other and love for coach Mendenhall and the staff”. He did not rule out that Mendenhall would retain some of his assistants.
“The journey ahead will be full of some mountain peaks and some moments in the valley, and I look forward to both because I know both are important for growth,” Elliott said.
Elliott and sporting director Carla Williams both approached Virginia’s institutions, which they lacked when Mendenhall arrived six years ago. The school has increased the number of staff and added a grass practice area, and plans to build a new building to house coaches ’cabinets, weight rooms and other services.
“The Mt staff told me I was ruthlessly honest, and I was with Tony about the objects because I think it’s so important to be honest,” Williams said.
Elliot said his work to determine his views on the program is equally important.
“Brick and mortar are good, and young people want to see brick and mortar, but we all know that this is not a house. These are the people inside, ”he said.
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