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Virginia football coaching search: When could the new hire be announced?

With the news of London's ouster coming out this morning, it's time to consider the timing of the new coach.

Grant Halverson/Getty Images

Now that Mike London is out as UVa head coach, fans are wondering when the announcement of his successor will come. There's a bit of precedent here, so let's lay out the history of the past few big-time hires in the UVa athletic department.

Coach... ...left UVa on... ...and was replaced by... ...on... ...after a search that officially lasted X days.
Jeff Jones (men's basketball) March 16, 1998 Pete Gillen March 28, 1998 12
George Welsh (football) Dec. 11, 2000 Al Groh Dec. 30, 2000 19
Dennis Womack (baseball) June 10, 2003 Brian O'Connor July 9, 2003 29
Pete Gillen (men's basketball) March 14, 2005 Dave Leitao April 16, 2005 33
Dave Leitao (men's basketball) March 16, 2009 Tony Bennett March 31, 2009 15
Al Groh (football) Nov. 29, 2009 Mike London Dec. 7, 2009 9
Debbie Ryan (women's basketball) March 12, 2011 Joanne Boyle April 9, 2011 28

A couple things to point out. O'Connor's, Leitao's, Bennett's, and Boyle's hirings all came after the four had finished postseason competition - Oak as an assistant coach at Notre Dame, Leitao as head coach of DePaul in the NIT, Bennett in the NIT with Washington State, and Boyle in the WNIT as head coach of California. Ryan also made the WNIT in her final year. In addition, Welsh was the coach for the Cavaliers' bowl loss to Georgia, which occurred six days before Groh was named head coach.

It's worth mentioning that coaching searches often begin weeks - if not months - before changes are officially made, through back-channel communication between agents and boosters. In total, the above changes took an average of just under three weeks to complete. Mathematically, the Gillen-to-Leitao and Groh-to-London transitions are outliers, with the Jones-to-Gillen one barely missing the cut.