At 7-3 and riding a three-game win streak entering this week’s match-up at Florida State (7-3), the Virginia football team earned a decent chunk of votes in the most recent versions of both the Associated Press and USA Today/Coaches’ poll.
Virginia garnered 26 votes in the AP poll, which unofficially* put the Cavaliers at No. 28 in the nation. Virginia earned 24 votes in the USA Today/Coaches’ poll, which was good for No. 29. Who would have guessed that at this point in the 2011 season, the Cavaliers would be receiving more top 25 votes than last year’s national champion, Auburn (10 AP votes; 0 USA Today/Coaches’ votes)?
* Unofficially, because the rankings stop at No. 25. This is to say that Virginia gained the 28th most AP votes and the 29th most USA Today/Coaches votes in the country.
Coach Mike London said Sunday he pays little mind to the AP poll. He is a voter in the USA Today/Coaches’ poll, though the rules stipulate he is not allowed to vote for his own team.
“You know me, I don’t put a lot of stock into a lot of things that are written,” London said. “We just play the game, and other people can write what they want and things like that. Obviously, it’s other people’s opinions and things like that, but in the end, we just line up and play football.
“Where we’re at, in the stage of our team, we’re just trying to get better and improve from last week’s performance and minimize those mistakes and those things that we’ve had a chance to look at … that can cause you to lose. We’re just going to try to take care of ourselves and not worry about what you’re reading.”
Florida State, which has won five straight games, is ranked No. 23 in the AP poll and No. 22 in the USA Today/Coaches’ poll. …
Also Sunday night, London said he formally submitted to the ACC an objection to the pass interference call that was made against senior safety Corey Mosley on a play in the second quarter of Saturday’s 31-21 win over Duke.
The Blue Devils faced fourth and goal from the five-yard line with 9 minutes, 22 seconds remaining in the second quarter. Mosley batted down Duke quarterback Sean Renfree’s goal line pass attempt, but was flagged for pass interference on the play. The Virginia sideline erupted in anger. Safeties coach Anthony Poindexter flailed his arms, jumped up and down and screamed as he made his way roughly 10 yards onto the field. Duke scored a one-yard touchdown run two plays later to take a 14-7 lead.
“I’ve looked at it, and in my opinion it wasn’t” pass interference, London said Sunday. “It’s unfortunate that who called it, the way it was called and the timing of it, you know, it’s just one of those things that happened. … After looking at it myself, I just think it was a call that shouldn’t have been made.”
London, who said he has not yet heard back from the conference office but expects to at some point Monday, said the referee in the back corner of the end zone was the one who made the call. …
Those of you who attended* Saturday’s game or watched it on television from home may have noticed the, shall we say, contentious postgame handshake that took place between London and Duke Coach David Cutcliffe. The disagreement seemed to regard the hyper-physical nature of the game and some of the post-play actions that players on both teams committed in the latter part of the contest.
“I’m not going to get into that,” London said Sunday. “It’s just one of those exchanges that coaches have afterwards. He expressed an opinion, and I expressed an opinion, and that was that.”
* Here was Saturday’s announced attendance: 45,733. That’s a lower total than was announced at the North Carolina State game (46,030), which was a lower total than was announced at the Georgia Tech game (47,692) the week before. To review, a team that is bowl eligible for the first time since 2007 and is in contention for a berth in the ACC title game sold its fewest number of tickets for a home conference game this season on Saturday.