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Around the Corner 9/1: Duke and UVA leading for TJ Power, McKale Boley first freshman to start at OT since D’Brickashaw Ferguson


Virginia Tech v Virginia Photo by Ryan M. Kelly/Getty Images

Ah yes, September in Charlottesville. Zero signs of fall and consistent 90 degree weather. Really makes you feel like football is on its way.

Jokes about this hellish weather aside, good morning and welcome to the first Around the Corner of September, 2022. Let’s jump right on in.

Notable news

Recruitment update on 4-star TJ Power — On3 Sports

UVA’s biggest target in the class of 2023 as of right now, TJ Power has attracted significant interest over the last few months. Jamie Shaw from On3 shared his intel on the status of Power’s recruitment as we have now hit fall recruiting.

This one has been a tricky one to read because TJ Power’s recruitment took a huge jump, and then things went quiet. Prior to the July blow-up, it was safe to call Virginia the leader.

Right now, this one feels like Duke and Virginia are slightly ahead of North Carolina; however, this one is not over. The longer things play out, the further away he gets from the Virginia visit. North Carolina is sitting right there.

Virginia football team will start freshman at left tackle against Richmond — Daily Progress

With UVA’s projected starter at left tackle Jonathan Leech out with a minor injury, true freshman McKale Boley will be starting for the Wahoos on Saturday. That will make him the first freshman to start at tackle for UVA since one D’Brickashaw Ferguson — who later was the fourth overall pick in the NFL draft — 20 years ago in 2002.

“As we were walking on the practice field,” UVa coach Tony Elliott said Tuesday, “someone let [Boley] know that today. One of the guys said, ‘Yeah, the last freshman to start at tackle was also the fourth pick in the draft,’ so hopefully that didn’t scare him. I’m trying to get him to calm down, not put any pressure on him.”

Eight former Virginia players crack NFL 53-man rosters — Streaking the Lawn

From the one and only Ben Wieland, we broke down the eight (plus one) former Virginia Cavaliers who made various NFL 53-man rosters after the final cut-downs following the conclusion of training camp.

Social media dive

To open our social media dive, here’s a quick highlight video of the UVA men’s basketball team’s win against the coaching staff in the program’s annual softball game. After four years of dominance from the staff, the players got their revenge.

Said Associate HC Jason Williford after the game:

And then here’s just a bit of fun student art leading into Saturday’s football season opener. Personally, I’d like to see the V-sabre logo rather than this iteration of the Cavalier. Nevertheless, pretty cool art.

Student perspective

This may seem random (or not so much if you follow me on Twitter) but there’s something special about how cheap Christian’s Pizza is. Tonight for dinner I bought three (fairly large) slices and a gatorade for a whopping $11. That’s a dang good deal and I’m surprised I didn’t take advantage of that more last year.

On a more relevant topic, now that we’re edging towards the end of the second week of classes and the first football game, I’ve decided to use this space to make a plea to my fellow students:

Come to the football game on Saturday. So what if 12:30 is a bit early, sleep in till noon then get there for kickoff. Who cares if it’s Richmond, they’re not too shabby all things considered and could make it an interesting game. PLUS, this is the first game of a new era of UVA football. When your grandkids ask you where you were when eventual National Champion head coach Tony Elliott birthed a new beginning for the UVA football program, do you want to say you slept in late and didn’t feel like making the walk to Scott Stadium?!?!

And, if that wasn’t enough, this is going to a fun freaking football team. The offense is going to be electric, the defense is set up well to get after the quarterback and make plays, and there’s going to be a good amount of winning for this squad this season. This all holds true for non-student fans as well!

Come to the game on Saturday. Don’t leave after a quarter, don’t leave after a half. Stay the duration (okay if it’s really ugly at the end I wouldn’t blame you for trying to get out early) and support what is the start of an exciting time for UVA athletics and the Virginia football program.