Monday, November 30, 2009


Coming as no real surprise to anybody, least of all head coach Al Groh, the University of Virginia fired Groh after nine seasons at his alma mater Sunday, ending a tenure marked by his inability to beat rival Virginia Tech.

(However, had he been judged by his ability to beat North Carolina, he’d still have a job and a raise).

Groh’s dismissal came less than 24 hours after the Cavaliers (3-9, 2-6 ACC) lost 42-13 at home to the No. 11 Hokies, finishing their worst season since they were 2-9 in 1982. It also was their eighth loss to the Hokies in Groh’s nine tries.

Speaking of the Hokies, how long will it be before long-time assistant Bud Foster becomes part of the speculation regarding the Hoos next head coach? Now, that would liven up the rivalry.

Appropriately, athletic director Craig Littlepage said nice things about his former head man, "There is not a coach in the college game who has worked harder than Al Groh in trying to build a football program. Football is his life and he dedicated himself to the university and to our football team. We are grateful for his service and for his commitment to his players and his coaching staff.”

The 65-year-old Groh told The Associated Press by telephone that it had been a “wonderful day” because of the number of players and coaches that got in touch to show their support.

Cavaliers players lined up all the way down a long hallway in the McCue Center, where the football operation is housed, waiting for a chance to meet with Groh individually after being informed of his dismissal, and Groh said the outpouring from them was “very gratifying.”

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