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Latest twist in Virginia coach search: Elliott about to take job?

uva footballOK, so, now the news is, there’s a plane scheduled to depart Oconee County Regional Airport at 3:45 p.m. today for Charlottesville.

Maybe Tony Elliott left his pajamas behind. Or maybe he’s taken the Virginia football coaching job.

Elliott, 42, the current Clemson offensive coordinator, was interviewed in Charlottesville on Wednesday, then returned to South Carolina on Thursday, where he told a reporter that he had a decision to make, implying that he’d been offered the Virginia job.

In the meantime, Virginia AD Carla Williams reportedly interviewed Michigan offensive coordinator Josh Gattis, 37, Thursday night.

Elliott appears to have been the first choice for Williams since the job came open last week with the surprise news that sixth-year head coach Bronco Mendenhall was stepping down.

Mendenhall, who will coach the team through the Fenway Bowl game later this month, was 36-38 in his tenure in Charlottesville, which included the program’s first ACC Coastal Division championship and Orange Bowl berth, both coming in 2019.

Virginia was 9-5 in 2019, but slumped to 5-5 and 6-6 regular seasons the past two years.

Elliott, who has a degree in industrial engineering from Clemson, has served as the offensive play-caller on the staff of Dabo Swinney for the past seven seasons, the first six of which saw Clemson compete in the College Football Playoff, winning two national championships during that time.

Story by Chris Graham

augusta free press
augusta free press