Found September 08, 2012 on Fox Sports Carolinas:
CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA -- There is no quarterback controversy at Virginia. None whatsoever. That doesn't mean Michael Rocco has the job secured for the rest of the season, because if the read on Phillip Sims' breathtaking potential is accurate, he will eventually learn the playbook enough to justify a more viable shot, especially if Rocco struggles. Rocco struggled some in Saturday's 17-16 victory over Penn State at Scott Stadium. Enough so that coach Mike London replaced him with Sims with 1:22 remaining in the third quarter. In Rocco's previous possession, he fumbled the snap, giving Penn State the ball at UVa's 29-yard-line, its fourth worst starting position of the day. The other three were also courtesy of turnovers, one of which was an interception thrown by Rocco in the first half. Redshirt juniors can't get away with making such mistakes for long, and that had to go through London's mind when he decided to give Sims a chance. Sims transferred this past offseason from Alabama, where he nearly won the starting job a year ago. He applied to the NCAA for an eligibility waiver because a parent is ill and he wanted to come back to his home state to be closer. The NCAA allowed it. But Sims looked like anything but his reputation during the six snaps he took. He was tentative -- probably tight -- and closed his second series with a fumble that Penn State recovered at UVa's 17. The Nittany Lions converted their only field goal of the day several plays later to take a 16-10 lead. Rocco came back in on the ensuing possession, and 12 plays and 86 yards later, Virginia was ahead 17-16. "No player likes to come out of the game," London said. "They want to play, particularly when you're competitive, and Michael is competitive... At that point in time, right after the mucked snap, I just wanted him to get on the sideline and look at the game a little bit... And what a confidence booster for a guy like that to manage the team and manage the win." The final drive immediately found UVa in a 3rd-and-5 situation following a sack of Rocco. But a 9-yard pass to tailback Perry Jones kept alive the drive. Then, on 3rd-and 16 from its own 22 and following yet another Virginia penalty (10 on the day for the Wahoos), Rocco hooked up with tight end Jake McGee for 44 yards. "Rocco scrambled out of the pocket, he put it up, and I somehow came down with it," McGee said of the long play that put UVa in position to win. "I don't know how I came down with it, but it stuck." Penn State was flagged for pass interference, but obviously London declined and the Hoos were in business. Six plays later Rocco found McGee just inside the end zone setting off an eruption in Scott Stadium. It doesn't get any easier for the Cavaliers. They head to Georgia Tech next weekend and then to nationally ranked TCU. If Rocco plays well in those games he may further secure the job. If not, Sims will probably get a chance to play. But for now, it's Rocco, and given the circumstances surrounding the game-winning drive, that makes sense.

Cavaliers' late touchdown beats Penn State, 17-16

Michael Rocco took his benching in stride, then returned and left no doubt that he's Virginia's quarterback. The junior hit Jake McGee on a 6-yard touchdown pass with 1:28 to play Saturday, giving Virginia a 17-16 lead against Penn State that held up when Nittany Lions kicker Sam Ficken's missed his fourth field goal of the game - from 42 yards. ''We stubbed...

Missed field goals doom Penn State

Virginia's Michael Rocco hit Jake McGee on a 6-yard touchdown pass with 1:28 to play Saturday, and Sam Ficken's fourth missed field goal of the game - from 42 yards at the gun - preserved the Cavaliers' 17-16 victory over Penn State. The loss in new coach Bill O'Brien's first road game hurt the Nittany Lions just as much, if not moreso, than their defeat last...

Virginia-Penn State: Report card

The Virginia Cavaliers edged out Penn State in a tightly-contested thriller. Andrew Jones offers his grades.

UVA: Lions Lose 17-16 Heartbreaker to UVA

Virginia's Michael Rocco hit Jake McGee on a 6-yard touchdown pass with 1:28 to play Saturday, and Sam Ficken's fourth missed field goal of the game — from 42 yards at the gun — preserved the Cavaliers' 17-16 victory over Penn State.

Penn State drops heartbreaker at Virginia, 17-16

The start of the Bill O’Brien era has been one to forget for the Penn State Nittany Lions. Virginia quarterback Michael Rocco led a last minute drive that produced a touchdown to Jake McGee to put the Cavaliers up 17-16 before a last second field goal attempt by Penn State’s Sam Ficken that sailed wide left to give Virginia the win. For the second time in two weeks, Penn State...

Cavs scrape by unfortunate Penn State team

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. --- As Sam Fickens fourth missed field goal attempt of the afternoon sailed wide of the goalposts with no time left on the clock, Virginias football team poured out onto the field in celebration of a 17-16 victory over visiting Penn State. Virginia won, but it didnt really deserve to. But neither did Penn State. Both clubs were self-destructive all afternoon...

Penn State Football: Just Another Sad Day in (Un)Happy Valley

Another Saturday, another game for the Penn State Nittany Lions. For many players on the team, taking a trip away from State College was just what they needed with their stress filled season. Upon arriving at Scott Stadium in Charlottesville, VA, most players were fully prepared for their game against the University of Virginia. On Penn State's opening drive, there were visions...

ACC Week 2 awards: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly.

The Good: Slowly Gaining Respect. Let’s face it the ACC has a long way to go before changing their national football perception. Years of poor performances in BCS games, and the lack of a nationally elite team for over decade will do that. With that said, there are subtle signs the tide may be slowly turning. Which conference has the most teams ranked in the top 13 in both the...
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