Jana, Kemp step up big for UVA wideout corps

uva footballJoe Reed was ailing Saturday, and Hasise Dubois went without a catch for the UVA offense for the first time since 2017.

So quarterback Bryce Perkins went early and often Saturday to his new favorite weapon, Terrell Jana.

The junior had 13 catches for 172 yards total his first two years at UVA, and 31 catches for 332 yards through eight games in 2019.

The past two weeks for Jana: 22 catches on 28 targets, 254 yards.

Perkins, asked about Jana after Virginia’s 33-28 win over Georgia Tech, called the wideout “really reliable.”

“I’ve had a connection with him and know where he’s going to be at most of the time, and he makes it easy on me with how he runs the routes,” Perkins said.

Sophomore Billy Kemp is also emerging for the ‘Hoos at wideout. Kemp had a career-high four catches on four targets for 51 yards on Saturday.

Reed and Dubois aren’t going anywhere between now and the end of the season, of course.

Jana and Kemp – and sophomore Tavares Kelly, who had two catches for 54 yards, including a 35-yarder to convert a third down late in the third quarter, ahead of a Brian Delaney field goal that pushed the ‘Hoos lead to six – make the offense that much more difficult to defend against.

“It’s especially hard on defensive coordinators trying to scheme for players,” Perkins said. “The more that we can get guys going, the more difficult it’s going to be for defenses, and the more points we’re going to score.”

Kemp attributed the success of the offense the past two weeks – gaining 517 yards in the 38-31 win at North Carolina, and 413 in the win over Georgia Tech on Saturday – to increased focus.

“It was a big thing for us to get that chemistry up and move the ball more. I feel like we have been doing that, and it is really great to see,” Kemp said. “We have been building the chemistry. We just needed to get a few things in place, and it is all starting to fall into place now.”

Story by Chris Graham

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