7-5 overall, 3-5 conference, 5th ACC Coastal
Against the spread
6-6 (4-2 home, 2-4 away, 6-4 grass)
4-7-1 (1-5 home, 3-2-1 away, 3-7 grass)
+.25 per game
2005 Season Summary
Al Groh took over for George Welsh as head coach of his alma mater for the start of the 2001 season as the Virginia administration felt that he could get the Cavaliers to the next level.
Highly regarded recruits translated into minor bowl results
Welsh's record in his final four seasons was 29-18. Groh's record in his first four seasons was 30-21 with three consecutive minor bowl appearances beginning in 2002. Groh had the reputation as a top shelf recruiter but his highly regarded recruits translated into minor bowl results.
Exposed as a pretender in 2004
Virginia had a strong and encouraging start in 2004 with five consecutive blowout wins, covering the spread four times, before a showdown at Florida State in a game that was to put the Cavalier football program permanently on the map as a national contender. Instead, however, UVA was exposed as a pretender in 2004 as FSU clobbered the Cavaliers 36-3. Virginia went on to finish 8-3 straight up and 6-5 against the spread before losing to Fresno State in the MPC Computers Bowl. UVA was clearly overvalued as they got the cash in just two of their final seven games.
The Cavs had huge holes to fill
Seven Virginia players were drafted by the NFL in the off-season which demonstrated that the Cavs had huge holes to fill entering 2005. Groh had constantly put together top-25 recruiting classes but was yet to have that translate into championship success. UVA entered the 2005 season with potentially more questions than answers.
Mixed signals to gamblers to start the season
Virginia opened the 2005 season as whopping 34.5-point home chalks against lightly regarded Western Michigan , winning 31-19. This was followed by a very close call at Syracuse in a 27-24 win as 7-point chalks. The Cavaliers finally played a complete game as 23.5-point home chalks in a 38-7 win over ACC doormat Duke. Virginia sent mixed signals to gamblers to start the season standing at 3-0 straight up but 1-2 against the spread.
Next were back-to-back ACC road games at Maryland and Boston College . The Cavaliers were a 3-point chalk at Maryland against the struggling Terrapins, but lost a 33-45 shootout. This was followed by a 17-28 loss at BC as 7.5-point dogs. Virginia had been clearly overvalued to start the season as proven by their 1-4 mark against the spread.
More mixed messages
Next was a home date against Florida State as the Cavaliers were now a bargain 6.5-point home dog. UVA got the upset in a 26-21 win but there were more mixed messages the following week as they lost 5-7 as 1-point chalks at North Carolina , obviously suffering from a FSU hangover. Virginia now stood at 2-5 against the spread, with no assurances of a bowl.
Inconsistent ways continued.
There is nothing like a home game against the Temple Owls in order to get back on track, which is what Virginia did in a 51-3 win as 35-point chalks. This was followed by a dangerous game against fellow up-and-down team Georgia Tech. UVA was installed as a 3-point chalk, based mostly on home field, and they got a much needed win and the cash 27-17 to now stand at 6-3 straight up and 4-5 against the spread.
With a two game winning streak there was optimism as rival Virginia Tech came calling as a 7.5-point road favorite. The Hokies were coming off an embarrassing home loss to Miami and were ready for blood as proven by their 52-14 win and cover. Virginia next traveled to Miami where they were installed as 17.5-point dogs in a 17-25 loss/cover as UVA's inconsistent ways continued.
One more surprise
In their bowl against Minnesota , UVA was a 7-point dog and pulled off a 34-31 upset win for one more surprise in 2005. Groh's pattern of fielding wildly inconsistent teams continued as gamblers just shook their heads.