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Trying to gauge where Brennan Armstrong’s head’s at

brennan armstrong
Virginia QB Brennan Armstrong. Photo courtesy UVA Athletics.

Brennan Armstrong didn’t sound as committed to next year at Virginia today as he did last week.

He’s still saying all the right things – that he is impressed with new head coach Tony Elliott, that he’s still trying to keep the core of the offense together.

You could hear the hedge in there, though.

First, on Elliott: “I’ve talked to him. We had a few meetings already, obviously, with the team meeting, and then I just sat down with him kind of talked about the offense, and you know, where that’s going to lead,” Armstrong said. “You know, he has the credentials. He’s been there, done that, coached the best of the best. He knows what a championship team looks like. I think he’s a great fit for us. I think, just, kind of know, this next step for this program is kind of neat. So yeah, I’m excited to see where he takes it.”

That sounds … great, actually.

Then, in response to a question on what next year’s offense might look like: “I think if we have the players here, you know, the coaching is the coaching but, you know, the players are the players. They’re the ones going out and playing and so, you know, whatever, however that looks, I think if I can keep, you know, whatever the players look like, that’s the most important to me. I think having the players here to whatever scheme he wants to do, I think that’s going to be the most crucial part,” Armstrong said.

That’s where the hedge starts to enter.

Next, to recruiting his teammates to get as many to stay as possible: “Just saying, um, you know, we’ve been here for a long time, like, why would you want to go, you know, there’s unknowns at other schools. There’s knowns here, you know, if there’s a new coach, there’s still knowns here, you’re very cemented here compared to other places,” Armstrong said. “So, just kind of helping them, asking them if they want to play with me one more year, so maybe that can swing them one way or another, you know, try to get a lot of guys to just come back and just see how see how, see what their responses are

“That makes my decision harder depending on what people do,” Armstrong continued his line of thinking here. “So, there’s a lot of moving parts. And like I said, I’m trying not to think about all that right now. Just because we have a game, and I’ve been pretty focused on that. But yeah, there’s a lot of moving parts with that. And that’s why decisions haven’t been made yet.”

Now you’re with me, I assume.

His “decision” gets “harder” if teammates decide to leave.

Not knowing the future is “why decisions haven’t been made yet.”

Last week, I would have put Armstrong at about 99 percent as far as whether he was coming back or not.

I’d still have the number pretty high, but nowhere near 99 percent.

Maybe … 75 percent?

Armstrong has paperwork in with the NFL to gauge where he might go in the 2022 NFL Draft, and a decision to make once he gets that word back.

And yes, he’s still getting himself ready to play in the Fenway Bowl next week.

If he was already committing himself to the NFL or, god forbid, the transfer portal, you’d think he wouldn’t risk injury in the bowl prep or the game against SMU.

Armstrong, by all accounts is all in for the bowl.

“I’ll just keep leading right now,” Armstrong said. “I mean, I’m focused on the present right now. And so, I’m trying to lead this team to a, you know, a win, to send Coach Mendenhall and the seniors off, and just to spring into the offseason. You know, whether I come back or leave, you know, having a win into the offseason, that’s a great, it’s a great feeling. You know, you don’t want to go into the offseason with a loss. We did that last year, and it wasn’t fun. So, just kind of focused on that right now.”

There it was again – the hedge. “Whether I come back or leave.”

I can’t see him going into the transfer portal, though if the name Brennan Armstrong were to end up there, damn, he’d have every coach in America texting him within milliseconds, though there’s no guarantee that the grass will be greener.

I also can’t see the NFL paperwork telling him that he’d be better than a possible late-round pick, which would be a big risk to take if you’re BA.

But if he loses his O line and receivers, is either the portal or the NFL any more of a risk than staying put?

It’s a fair question.

Story by Chris Graham

augusta free press
augusta free press