Cavaliers Report: Playing the spoiler


Cavaliers Report: Playing the spoiler

Check back every Wednesday for the Cavaliers Report to get all the biggest Virginia headlines for each week, a recap of last week's game and a look ahead at next week's contest.

Virginia 4-7, (3-4) in the ACC

In the news

ACC Linebacker of the Week: Inside linebacker Micah Kiser was named ACC Defensive Linebacker of the Week for his performance against Duke. Kiser had a career-high 17 tackles including two tackles for losses and one sack to help lead the Cavaliers to the victory.

With 107 tackles on the season, Kiser currently leads the ACC in tackles. Second in the conference is Virginia safety Quin Blanding with 105.

Mizzell breaks record: Running back Taquan Mizzell has proven to be just as big a weapon in the pass attack as he is in the rush and now has the record to prove it. Against Duke, Mizzell caught five passes for 43 yards, breaking a school record for receptions and receiving yards by a running back in a single season.

Mizzell is now No. 3 all-time in ACC history among running backs with 68 receptions on the season and No. 2 all-time in ACC history among running backs with 671 receiving yards.

RELATED: Locksley refutes notion that overuse led to Likely's injury

Last week's game: 42-34 win over Duke

Read the recap of this game here.

After two first quarter turnovers by Duke, Virginia was able to build an early 21-0 lead and held a 42-20 lead in the fourth quarterbefore the Blue Devils mounted a comeback. UVa was able to hold on, however, and earned the 42-34 win.

Quarterback Matt Johns passed for a career-high 344 yards and two touchdowns and Taquan Mizzell had three total touchdowns of his own to lead the Cavs. Offensive coordinator Steve Fairchild even opened the bag of tricks as Johns threw a backward pass to Olamide Zaccheaus who threw to Evan Butts for a 15-yard touchdown.

UVa was also aided by a targeting call to Duke safety Jeremy Cash. Cash was ejected for a big hit on Johns and Virginia struck two plays later with a 50-yard touchdown pass from Johns to Zacchaeus. As the defense's biggest play maker, Duke struggled to recover from the loss of Cash.

Despite the fourth quarter comeback, it was a dominant performance by Virginia, their best win of the season.

This week: Virginia vs. Virginia Tech, Sat. 12:00 p.m.


Virginia will look to claim its first Commonwealth Cup in 12 years as they face rival Virginia Tech. The Hokies stand just one win away from bowl eligibility in Frank Beamer's final season. While UVa has already been eliminated from bowl contention, the chance to snap an 11-game losing streak against their in-state rival and prevent them from reaching a bowl offers Virginia the chance to still end the season on a high note.

The Cavaliers appear to be hitting their stride with their big win over Duke. Mizzell is the team's biggest weapon and Johns is playing the best football of his career. Fairchild's normally conservative offense has found a good mix of running and short passes that can help open the offense up for big plays. The Hokies rank second in the ACC in pass defense but 11th in run defense. Virginia should continue to exploit their rush attack and short passing game. This could be a big game for Mizzell.

Virginia Tech has not been able to develop much of a rhythm on offense, but they do feature major weapons in receiver Isaiah Ford, tight end Bucky Hodges and running back Travon McMillian. Virginia has struggled on pass defense this season and their best bet will be to try and disrupt the offense by being aggressive with blitzing. Quarterback Michael Brewer has been effective at times in escaping pressure, but no one would mistake him for a mobile quarterback.

Mike London's job may also hang in the balance in this game. He has not beaten Virginia Tech in his previous five attempts. A win on Saturday would improve Virginia's record to 4-4 in the ACC and would be their best finish in conference play since going 5-3 in 2011. 

MORE COLLEGE FOOTBALL: Terps could be in major jam at QB vs. Rutgers because of injuries

Georgetown gets a boost with Jessie Govan returning to school

USA Today Sports Images

Georgetown gets a boost with Jessie Govan returning to school

After testing the NBA Draft waters, Georgetown center Jessie Govan decided to return to the Hoyas for his senior season.

Govan announced his intention to return on Instagram a week before the final commitment deadline.

Returning to the Hoyas is definitely a boost to the program that will be in their second year under head coach Patrick Ewing.  At 6-10, Govan was the team’s leading scorer (17.9 ppg) and rebounder (10.0 rpg) averaging a double-double last season.

Paired alongside power forward Marcus Derrickson, the Hoyas were nearly unstoppable in the paint. Derrickson though decided to forgo his senior year and signed with an agent after the season.

Had Govan decided to leave that would have meant over 56 percent of the team’s scoring and rebounding would have departed (to graduation or professional pursuits) in a handful of months. Not the best outlook for a 15-win team that went 5-13 in the Big East.

Instead Ewing gets back his leading scorer that many believe he can mold as a young protégée. While in the draft process without an agent Govan had workouts with the Boston Celtics and the New York Knicks. Both are valuable experiences that he will bring to a relatively young Georgetown squad.

Having Govan for one more year will bridge Ewing’s second season to transfer big-man, Omer Yurtseven to his first year of eligibility in 2019. They were set up to having a walk-on and two sophomores being the only returning Hoyas over 6-6 for the upcoming season.


Future NBA prospect Omer Yurtseven transfers to Georgetown from NC State


Future NBA prospect Omer Yurtseven transfers to Georgetown from NC State

The pieces are starting to come together for Patrick Ewing.

On Monday the Georgetown Hoyas picked up perhaps the biggest (literally and figuratively) target of the transfer market, Omer Yurtseven.

From North Carolina State, the transfer from Istanbul Turkey will have two years remaining of eligibility. Due to NCAA transfer rules, he is not allowed to play for the 2018-19 season.


Standing at 7-0, the center helped power the Wolfpack to an NCAA tournament bid this past season. Averaging 13.5 points, 6.7 rebounds, and 1.8 blocks a contest, Yurstseven earned All-ACC Third Team honors in the 2017-18 season. He also touted a 58.3 shooting percentage and was not afraid to pull it up from deep either (22 made three-pointers).

NC State lost in the first round of the NCAA Tournament to No. 8 Seton Hall, but he was limited due to foul trouble with only two points and two rebounds in 14 minutes of play.

Initially, he is the option to fill the void that Jessie Govan will leave, whether that is during this offseason or next. Already the team has lost power forward Marcus Derrickson

Yurtseven will just be another frontcourt talent for Ewing with the Hoyas.

It was widely reported that he was considering playing options, both in the United States and abroad before this announcement. Easily he has the talent to go in first round of the NBA Draft whichever year he declares.

On the same day, the Hoyas also announced the signing of four-star guard James Akinjo.