The Virginia Cavaliers are an absolute train wreck. There is no other way to put it, and anyone who saw their 31-3 lost to Duke would be forced to agree. Virginia is last in about every statistical category in the ACC, and with games left against Maryland, ECU, Clemson, Wake, and Va Tech the Hoos are guaranteed to go bellow 500. There’s a distinct chance that they will not win three games. Now with a team in such turmoil one has to ask where is the blame to be placed? And the blame has to be placed on head coach Al Groh. He has done nothing with this program since the day he took over, and bellow are the top reasons that Mr. Groh should be relieved of his duties as head coach of the Virginia Cavaliers.
His 1.6 million dollar annual salary. This salary places Groh within the top 15 of highest paid coaches in the NCAA. Not bad if he has the same coaching records those men on that list. However, outside of Tommy Bowden of Clemson, no one has underachieved while making more money than Al Groh. If you do this math, Groh will pull in about 470k per win this year, and that’s hoping he can get to 3 wins.
· He claims the 2008 season is a rebuilding year. Al Groh has been at UVA since the 2001 season that means he has declared three rebuilding seasons in his tenure at UVA, 2001, 2006, and 2008. Seriously, every two years is a rebuilding class? A solid program should have to rearrange parts not build the entire program from scratch every time a player graduates.
· 32 players drafted or signed free agent contracts to the NFL. That’s a lot of a talent for a team that has never finished better than losing the Gator Bowl. However, 32 NFL caliber players and yet 9-3 is the best Groh could do. That tells me it is not the players fault but the coaches who are not able to implement a solid game plan.
· The inability to pull the top recruits within the state. Every year, Virginia Tech beats UVA in the recruiting battle. Tech manages to go out and sign the top quarterbacks and receivers in the state of Virginia. Groh settles for what is left. This is largely due to Groh’s inability to motivate kids, and his poor people skills. The glum and quiet routine works for Bill Belichick because he does not have to sit in a player’s living room and explain to his mama how he will take care of her son. Al Groh has to do exactly that, and his northern attitude sucks, and detours many of the traditional southern families he must visit while recruiting.
· Disciplinary and academic problems. The UVA program has lost 10 players since the conclusion of the 2007. That includes two, yes two, starting quarterbacks. The reasons for dismissal include not being academically eligible, UVA is an elite institution and players must go to class (the kids at Vandy do it). The also include arrest on DUI and drug charges (starting QB Peter Lalich). And getting arrested at a gay bar for stealing beer (explain that one to your parents). All of these incidents are completely unacceptable and embarrassing to a very proud school with proud traditions. It is obvious that Al Groh has no control over his players.
· His record against rival schools. For not being a powerhouse football team, UVA has plenty of rivals, four to be exact; Virginia Tech, Florida State, North Carolina and Maryland. Al Groh is a combined 10-16 against his rival schools. Included in that is a 1-5 record against FSU, 1-6 against Va. Tech, 3-3 against Maryland and 5-2 against UNC. Unacceptable.
The bottom line is Al Groh has sucked the life out of the University of Virginia football program. And as long as he is head coach, the program will continue to flounder and transform into the laughing stock of not only the ACC but of all college football. Groh must go.