CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (CBS19 SPORTS) -- There was little doubt in Bryce Perkins' mind, trailing 24-17 to Florida State in the fourth quarter Saturday night, how Virginia was going to finish because of a very simple motivation.
"I hate losing, like I really hate losing," Perkins said after the game to reporters, "Any means necessary, I didn't care what I had to do to win the game, I was going to do it."
After an uncharacteristic first half with two interceptions, Perkins responded going 17-19 with a touchdown pass and several key plays in the fourth quarter, including one two-point conversion run that had Bronco Mendenhall asking "How do you stop him?"
"We're not growing the program at the rate we're growing without Bryce Perkins," Mendenhall added, "He plays within the system really well and he plays outside the system really well and we need both."
Mendenhall even handed Perkins the hammer postgame to "break the rock", but the senior said it probably should have gone to running back Wayne Taulapapa, who scored three touchdowns."
"We just couldn't find him," Perkins said laughing.
Whether fans believe that or not, it was Perkins who rallied his teammates down the stretch.
"Bryce is very calm, very rarely does he ever panic," senior receiver Joe Reed said, who caught Perkins' lone touchdown pass, "He's just matter of fact and tells us what we need to get done and we do it."
Perkins has now thrown four interceptions through Virginia's first three games, nearly half the amount he threw all of last season. But Perkins' confidence never wavered as he lead the Wahoos comeback.
"Anytime that I stepped on the field, I came with that mindset that regardless of what happens we're going to end this drive with a touchdown," Perkins said.
Virginia is off to their first 3-0 start since 2005, but Mendenhall says none of that is possible without No. 3.
"Without him we don't win," Mendenhall said.