Yeah, Al Groh's gone. After several years of it almost happening, Craig Littlepage finally pulled the trigger and ousted Groh from his seat as UVA's HC.
And, perhaps unknowingly, it gave Debbie Yow precedent for buying out Ralph Friedgen.
The similarities are difficult to ignore. Groh, like Friedgen, was an alum. They were hired in the same year. They both had a $4mil buyout.
In the past six years, Groh has won 36 games. In the past six years, Friedgen has won 35. In the past six years, Groh's had 3 losing seasons. In the past six years, Friedgen had 4 losing seasons. Both have been to three bowl games in that span.
Both programs are regarded as having it pretty good with their coaches. Both are from New York, though I'm not sure of the relevancy of that. Both have had the worst seasons in recent memory at their respective Universities.
Groh has had a worse record over their tenures, but not by much. And in a what have you done for me lately college world, Groh's been a little bit better.
Should we take it as a sign? Just saying, there are a lot of similarities in the two situations, and don't think that's lost on Debbie Yow.
If Maryland does go the same route, Maryland and Virginia will likely be competing for the same coaches. While Maryland has a different option 1A - Brian Billick - they'll share many of the same candidates: Mike London, Al Golden, and Charlie Strong, namely.
Groh and Friedgen weren't quite used as yardsticks for each other, but I'd be surprised if the two upcoming hires weren't.