CHARLOTTESVILLE, NOV. 16 -- Virginia Athletic Director Jim Copeland announced today that the Cavaliers football team would turn down an Independence Bowl bid if it were offered because of a conflict with the school's examination week, seemingly leaving all of Virginia's postseason hopes pinned on the All-American Bowl.

Virginia's 20-17 triumph over North Carolina on Saturday after overcoming a 10-point fourth-quarter deficit raised the Cavaliers' record to 6-4 and seemed to guarantee that a victory in this week's regular-season finale at North Carolina State would bring an Independence bid.

Scouts from both the Independence and All-American attended the North Carolina game, with the Independence showing a particularly keen interest in the Cavaliers. "They've got my vote," Independence representative Bill Moffett said after the game.

But snags arose quickly. The Independence date, Dec. 19 in Shreveport, La., falls during Virginia's exam schedule (Dec. 14-21).

"The Independence Bowl does not look like a possibility from our standpoint," Copeland said. "It would be very tough for us and our kids . . . A change in the exam schedule is up to the instructors, the academic side of the school, and we won't even pursue that possibility."

Virginia officials had to deal with a similar situation in 1984, when Hall of Fame and Citrus Bowl officials reportedly showed interest in the Cavaliers, and decided to turn down any bids that conflicted with exams. But the Cavaliers had the Peach Bowl to fall back on that season. Virginia beat Purdue, 27-24, in the lone bowl appearance in its history.

"I'm in complete agreement about not playing in a game that conflicts with exams," Coach George Welsh said. "We had the same situation once when I was at Navy {in 1980} where we decided to play in the Garden State Bowl, and it was a terrible distraction. It just didn't work out, and it was a complete embarrassment for the program." Navy lost to Houston, 35-0.

The All-American (Dec. 22 in Birmingham) now seems Virginia's best shot. All-American representative Jess Miller called the Cavaliers "a long shot" Saturday, but Georgia, reportedly the selection committee's top choice as a host team, now seems bound for a bigger bowl. According to Bill Oakley, the public relations director for the All-American, its list now includes Virginia, Brigham Young, Colorado, Wyoming, Texas Tech, Minnesota and North Carolina.

Copeland said the Birmingham date -- the day after exams conclude -- wouldn't prevent Virginia from accepting a bid. He said he also had been contacted by the Peach Bowl, Jan. 2 in Atlanta, and Bluebonnet Bowl, Dec. 31 in Houston. But officials of those two games indicated Virginia is low on their lists.