The Sunday Sampler 2011 – Indiana

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Mike Rocco led the Hoos on a touchdown drive at the end of each half.

The Virginia football team needed every point and every second of Saturday’s game to shake Indiana 34-31 in Bloomington. So it’s fairly obvious that two touchdown drives late in each half played a key role in such a nip-and-tuck outcome.

The Cavaliers orchestrated two half-ending touchdown drives of more than 60 yards that produced 15 total points. The first half scoring march covered 66 yards in 7 plays. The game-tying drive near the end of the game ate up 77 yards on 15 plays. Interestingly, the two drives had a lot of similarities in formations and play calls as the Hoos picked apart the Hoosiers in critical situations.

Virginia coach Mike London said that beat-the-clock type drives feature things that the quarterback and offense are most comfortable with and can execute consistently.

“I think you try to have some similarities in what the quarterback feels comfortable in as far as formations and plays. We’re always asking the quarterbacks what are their favorite plays on these particular downs and things like that,” London said. “Sometimes when you’re in kind of a hurry-up mode, rather than doing a lot of shifting and motion and all of that, you try to play to the strength of the quarterback’s arm, play to the strength of the formations that you show, and play to the strength of the passing routes. I just thought that Michael did a good job in handling all of that and being very, very efficient as he moved the team down the field.”

The Sunday Sampler takes a closer look at the two drives.

Late First Half Drive – 7 plays, 66 yards, 2:57

The Cavaliers took over at their own 34-yard line with 3:19 on the clock. After an incompletion the on the first play, here’s the drive breakdown:

  • Ace alignment with 1 running back in the backfield; 2 wide receivers split out right, 1 wide receiver split out left; 1 tight end. This play was a simple misdirection run where Kevin Parks
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