NCAA Sports

Virginia Cavaliers: CFN College Football Preview 2021

College Football News Preview 2021: Previewing, predicting, and looking ahead to the Virginia season with what you need to know.

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– What You Need To Know: Offense | Defense
Top Players | Keys To The Season
What Will Happen, Win Total Prediction
Virginia Schedule Analysis
– Virginia Cavaliers Previews
2020 | 2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015

2020 Record: 5-5 overall, 4-5 in ACC
Head Coach: Bronco Mendenhall, 6th year, 38-26 (129-75 overall)
2020 CFN Final Ranking: 45
2020 CFN Preview Ranking: 31
2019 CFN Final Ranking: 31

Virginia Cavaliers College Football Preview 2021: Offense

The defense was the bigger problem in the 5-5 season, but the offense needed a little while to get things going. It averaged 423 yards and 30 points per game, but it was way too inconsistent and wasn’t nearly explosive enough. On the plus side, though …

The offensive line wasn’t bad. The ground game wasn’t amazing, but the Cavaliers led the ACC in fewest tackles for loss allowed and wasn’t bad in pass protection.

All five starters are expected to return in a good-sized group around Chris Glaser, a 6-4, 305-pound guard who got an honorable mention All-ACC nod. They all have to be good because the backfield is very, very thin.

Wayne Taulapapa is a decent quick back who led all the RBs and was second on the team with 395 yards and five scores. Now the Cavaliers need Ronnie Walker and sophomore Mike Hollins – a talented option who sat out last year – to rise up and be a meaningful part of a rotation.

Brennan Armstrong might not be the flashiest quarterback in the ACC, but he’s a good runner and a decent veteran who threw for over 2,000 yards and 18 touchdowns. Now he needs to be more consistent and more accurate after only hitting 59% of his passes and giving 11 picks.

He led the team with 552 rushing yards and five scores, but backup Keytaon Thompson – a former Mississippi State transfer who’ll work at receiver – is the more dangerous option on the move.

Thompson caught seven passes as a 6-4 physical receiver, but he’s a complementary target. Leading receiver Billy Kemp is back after catching 67 passes for 644 yards and a score as a short-range pass catcher in the slot, and Lavel Davis is back on the outside after averaging 26 yards per grabs with five scores.

Tight end Tony Poljan is done after catching 38 passes, but the Cavaliers have options including help from the transfer portal. Oklahoma State’s Jelani Woods is more of a big blocker who can catch.

– What You Need To Know: Defense
Top Players | Keys To The Season
What Will Happen, Win Total Prediction
Virginia Schedule Analysis

NEXT: Virginia Cavaliers College Football Preview 2021: Defense

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