Go re-read those quotes again, and ask yourself who's steering the ship? It's not wildly off-base to say that this new staff, which has struggled, is just as much Oliver's creation as it is London's.
Evidence suggests that Oliver has a history of this type of interference. As the Roanoke Times pointed out in January, Oliver's interactions with London are pretty similar to how Oliver interceded in Al Groh's football program in 2008. According to Groh, the administration forced him to make assistant coaching changes after a 5-7 season. Groh brought on a new offensive coordinator and special teams coordinator for 2009. Virginia promptly went 3-9 with the new assistants, and Groh was fired in November of that year.
"That's the general manager," Groh said, referring to Oliver. "They're like a pro organization in that respect."
Let that sink in. Groh was ACC coach of the year in '07 and one win away from the ACC title game. He had a bad year in '08 and is forced to change assistants. The team is a complete mess in '09. London wins ACC coach of the year in '11. He has a bad year in '12 and changes assistants. The team is a mess in '13. That's a pattern.
1) Virginia went 4-8 last year. Evidence suggests that Oliver interceded and ostensibly led wholesale staff changes. Virginia is 2-7 currently and could finish 2-10 in 2013.
2) Virginia went 5-7 in 2008. Evidence suggests that the athletic department interceded, forced Groh to change staff, and Virginia went 3-9 the following year. Groh lost his job.
3) Oliver has worked on "beefing up" the schedule of a program that arguably needs wins, not big-time opponents.
4) Oliver often shows ownership of the program in public.
Jon Oliver has been at Virginia for thirteen years. He's done some great things when it comes to fundraising and marketing for the football program. The "Building of the Program" series is one of the coolest things Virginia has had promotion-wise in years.The indoor football facility is top-notch. Oliver should be commended for those efforts.
But evidence suggests that Oliver has also worked closely making decisions with the Groh football regime and now the London regime on both personnel and scheduling. And both of those regimes have underperformed expectations. That underperformance should raise significant questions about Oliver's oversight of Virginia's most valuable and expensive athletic property.
With the poor results the program is now facing, the administrator in charge deserves just as much scrutiny as the head coach. If London fails with his new assistants, Oliver shouldn't be left unscathed.