Home Chris Graham: Explain this one, Mike London

Chris Graham: Explain this one, Mike London


The endhalf sequence Saturday against Georgia Tech is why Mike London is not the right coach for Virginia.

Mike-LondonHere’s the scenario: You’ve got 16 seconds left in the half, you’re down one, you have the ball at the opponent’s 2, and you have one timeout.

Naturally, you assume you have three plays to score a touchdown, if you throw the ball. You might even be able to sneak in a run if you want to use your timeout, but you save the timeout for the field goal so that at the worst you walk away with three points.

You pass on first down. Something quick. A fade into the corner of the end zone. Maybe a quick slant. It doesn’t work, it takes five, six seconds, you’ve got 10, 11 seconds left and two downs.

Maybe you run on second down. At least it’s an option. You run, come up short, you call timeout, you kick the field goal.

If you pass, and it doesn’t work, you have third down at about five seconds left. Maybe you try one more play from scrimmage, maybe you go ahead and kick.

Again, the goal is to come out of that with something.

So what does Mike London do? He runs on first down. Kevin Parks gets stuffed. For whatever reason, London lets the clock run down to six seconds before calling timeout.

Naturally, he’s going to kick the field goal there. You can’t leave this scenario with no points.

Except that he runs again. Parks again is stuffed. The half ends. No points.

If it’s possible that London could screw up an endhalf scenario worse than he did the end to last year’s Virginia Tech game, he just did.

This is why UVa. has made Mike London the highest-paid football coach in Virginia.



Have a guest column, letter to the editor, story idea or a news tip? Email editor Chris Graham at [email protected]. Subscribe to AFP podcasts on Apple PodcastsSpotifyPandora and YouTube.