Jeff White, virginiasports.com
CHARLOTTESVILLE - The University of Virginia football team opened the 2010 season against the Richmond Spiders at Scott Stadium, and quarterback Michael Rocco was in uniform on the home sideline that September day.
Back then, though, Rocco was a true freshman who would not make his college debut for another three weeks, and his uncle, Danny, was head coach at Liberty University.
UVa and UR meet again Saturday at Scott Stadium in the season-opener for both teams, and much has changed in each program since that 2010 game. Michael Rocco, a 6-3, 225-pound junior, is about to make his 14th straight start for the Cavaliers, who are coming off an 8-5 season, and Danny Rocco, a former Virginia assistant, is set to make his debut as the Spiders' head coach.
"It's going to be fun, and it's going to be competitive, and that's what it always is in the Rocco family," Michael Rocco told reporters Monday afternoon at John Paul Jones Arena.
About 45 minutes earlier, third-year coach Mike London had released the depth chart for his team's opener, and it confirmed what had become evident over the course of training camp -- Rocco is ahead of the Cavaliers' other quarterbacks: sophomores Phillip Sims and David Watford and true freshmen Greyson Lambert and Matt Johns.
Rocco "has the best grasp of the offense right now," London said. "To start a game, he's the guy we feel most comfortable with right now because of what he knows -- knowing the systems, the schemes and knowing the players that he'll be throwing the ball to or handing the ball off to.
"He's done nothing to lose his position. He's improved. We talked earlier about his leadership, his knowledge of the offense."
You can hear Rocco's appearance on the Best Seat In The houes at WINA.com's podcast center.