George Welsh's patience has run out and he's vowed to reevaluate his winless Virginia football team in the wake of Saturday night's 48-0 humiliation by Clemson.
"We're a terrible football team," the coach said, looking back on the Cavaliers' fifth straight loss. "The whole team is bad right now. We're really going backward."
After four straight winning seasons, Welsh left the Naval Academy to try to rebuild Virginia's shattered program. The Cavaliers opened the season reasonably well, losing 20-16 at Navy. Then James Madison upset them, 21-17, in Charlottesville and they've been regressing since.
"I think we were decent four weeks ago, but the team is going backward," Welsh said. "You can see it on film. We're not playing as well as we did at the beginning . . .
"We've got an offweek and we're going to have to start all over. We're going to reevaluate everything, who's playing and who isn't. I don't like to make a lot of changes in the middle of the season, but we have to."
Clemson, which had struggled to get by Western Carolina, 21-10, scored on eight straight possessions.
The Virginia players, obviously, were depressed afterward. Cornerback William Frazier, who made seven tackles, agreed with Welsh. "It's true," he said. "You can't dispute it. We . . . have gotten worse."
Bryan Hitchcock, a sophomore defensive end, represents the opposite feeling and said he hopes Welsh hasn't given up on the team.
"There is no way you can classify us as terrible," he said. "We just haven't put everything together."
Despite his success at Navy, there were doubts that Welsh could win often at Virginia; no one has in a long time. The Cavaliers were 1-10 last season and have had only one winning season (6-5 in 1979) in the last 13.