A UVA Reunion: Cavaliers matchup against Anae and Beck in Syracuse
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (CBS19 SPORTS) -- The last time Brennan Armstrong saw his former Virginia offensive coordinator Robert Anae and quarterbacks coach Jason Beck, they were wearing a different shade of orange and blue.
"It'll be fun, exciting, get to see them again, probably say high to them before the game," Armstrong said on Saturday, "But it's just another game."
Anae and Beck both ended up in Syracuse on Dino Babers staff following Bronco Mendenhall stepping down and Tony Elliott taking the reigns. But both Elliott and Babers are playing down the outside noise of the reunion.
"The only challenge that I had to my guys, because they do have relationships with those individuals, is let's not make it bigger than what it needs to be," Elliott said, "It's all about the game. Let's focus on what we can control."
"It's an emotional game when you've got your old family and you're in front of them again," Babers said, "And those kids are going to want to prove something as well that 'hey I'm all grown up, I can ride this bike without the training wheels without you being here."
Despite the familiarity between UVA and the Orange attack, Elliott does not plan to change their preparation this week, like picking the mind of Armstrong, but the scouting report is already extensive on Anae's scheme.
"We've got the whole book and from what we've heard it's that if he has a system and he trusts in the system and I know they've done a nice job there scoring points," defensive coordinator John Rudzinski said, "So there's a lot to work on this week schematically and then we'll have to be great fundamentally."
"There's a lot of similarities, slightly different," senior defensive tackle Aaron Faumui said, "But you can kind of see what they ran over here, so we kind of got that feeling of what they're going to run, we're still going to have a game plan that we're going to execute on Friday night."
Elliott never met Anae, who returned to Hawaii shortly after the coaching change, and only spent limited time with Beck during the transition phase in December, but can see their philosophy and impact in their former players.
"It was more kind of just go make plays, we're going to focus more on the play aspect, where my approach is more off of the timing, the design of the play, the progressions of the reads, the balance on offense," Elliott said, "So they did a great job with what they did. They found a way. I think it helped Brennan [Armstrong]."
But the hugs and heartfelt talk can wait till the late hours of Friday night.
"It's a game, I'm not really too worried about that," junior wide receiver Dontayvion Wicks said, "I'm just focused on going out and get the win and we can talk after."