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CoachMikeLondon: RT @UVABaseball: #UVABase 6 All-ACC honorees: Crockett (RP), Gragnani (2B), Howard (UTIL), Papi (OF) 1st tm; McCarthy (OF), Cogswell (SS) 2…
Mon, 20 May 2013 17:36:20
CoachMikeLondon: RT @UVABaseball: Special congrats to ACC Coach of Year @uvacoachoconnor and ACC Freshman of Year Joe McCarthy! @Mojo_JoeJoe31 #UVABase
Mon, 20 May 2013 17:36:07
CoachMikeLondon: RT @UVAjobs: Congrats to all of the new graduates of the Class of 2013! Still looking for a job? Check out our openings:
Mon, 20 May 2013 17:20:17
CoachMikeLondon: RT @Chantel_Jones29: Congrats to all the UVa grads today!! Walking The Lawn will forever be one of my proudest moments!
Sun, 19 May 2013 15:18:53
CoachMikeLondon: RT @UVAEquipment: Congratulations to all the @UVA students walking the lawn today!! #UVAgrad #alumni
Sun, 19 May 2013 11:21:01
London's Calling: From Cop to Coach
Spiders overwhelming in championship game
Virginia introduces London, a familiar face to the program
Signing Day Brings Good News for London and Co.
Beamer, London play to their strengths selling Hokies, UVa football to high school coaches
Hoos' rebuilding process gains momentum in London's second year
London has built his career on relationships
Improbable upset of Georgia Tech London's signature moment at UVa
Cavaliers have bigger ideas than just being bowl eligible
London Named ACC Football Coach of the Year
Mike London Contributes to Indoor Practice Facility
University of Virginia
West Point, New York
- 2011 ACC Coach of the Year
- 2008 Schutt Sports/American Football Monthly FCS Coach of the Year
- 2008 Black Coaches Association Male Coach of the Year
- 2008 American Football Coaches Association FCS Coach of the Year
- 2009 CAA Co-Championship (University of Richmond)
- 2008 NCAA FCS National Championship (University of Richmond)
When Mike London was introduced as the head coach of the University of Virginia in December 2009, he announced the message that he would deliver to his new players in three simple phrases: “Go to class, show class and treat people with dignity and respect.” London’s message is a simple one but it has deep meaning for many of London’s former players who credit him with inspiring them to become better people both on and off the field. While London will be the first to tell you that the off-field successes of his players makeup the highlights of his career, there has been no shortage of on-field accomplishments for the Cavalier coach and Hampton, Va. native.
Prior to taking over at UVA, London collected more accolades in two years as the head coach at the University of Richmond than most coaches accrue in an entire career. In addition to leading his alma mater to a conference title and national championship, London won coach of the year honors from numerous organizations including: the American Football Coaches Association, Schutt Sports/American Football Monthly, the Black Coaches Association, and the Virginia Sports Information Directors. The 2008 National Championship was Richmond’s first in any sport and was a particularly proud moment for London, who played for the Spiders in the 1980’s and had served as a UR assistant coach on two separate prior occasions.
A defensive-minded coach with endless enthusiasm, London has put the Cavaliers back on the right track since returning to the school where he served as defensive coordinator from 2006-07 and defensive line coach from 2002-04. After posting an impressive upset over #22 Miami in 2010, Virginia finished the 2011 regular season with an 8-4 record and an appearance in the Chick-fil-A Bowl. For his efforts, London was named 2011 ACC Coach of the Year.
London broke into the coaching ranks in 1988, spending two seasons with Richmond as the outside linebackers coach and admissions liaison. He then spent four years (1990-93) as the defensive line coach at William & Mary and was instrumental in the development of 1993 consensus All-American defensive tackle Craig Staub.
In 1994, London returned to Richmond for the next three seasons as the outside linebackers coach and recruiting coordinator on Jim Reid's staff. London coached All-American linebacker Shawn Barber, who was a 4th round draft pick of the Washington Redskins in 1998.
From 1997-2000, London served as defensive line coach at Boston College where he helped lead the Eagles to two bowl appearances. While in Boston, London mentored standout defensive tackle Chris Hovan, a three-time All-Big East selection and an All-American in 1999. Hovan was a 1st round selection of the Minnesota Vikings.
London first came to Charlottesville in 2001 as an original member of Al Groh’s staff and led the Cavalier defensive line for the next four years. From 2001-04, a UVA defensive lineman led the ACC in tackles each year. During this time, London coached 2002 ACC Freshman of the Year Darryl Blackstock as well as Chris Canty, a 2004 All-ACC selection and 2005 draft pick of the Dallas Cowboys. The Cavaliers attended a bowl game each year from 2002-04 and over this same time London recruited three consecutive nationally ranked classes as the team’s recruiting coordinator.
After a season as the Houston Texans’ defensive line coach, London returned to UVA in 2006 and over the next two seasons helped the Cavaliers defense achieve tremendous success both as a team and on individual levels. In 2006, UVA ranked 17th nationally in total defense, allowing just 289.5 ypg - the fewest at Virginia in 27 years. In 2007, the Cavaliers ranked 6th in sacks (3.3/game), while allowing the NCAA's 19th fewest rushing yards (106.9/game) and the 16th fewest points (19.7/game). Overall, the unit ranked 23rd in the country and helped Virginia to a 9-4 record and an appearance in the Gator Bowl.
During his second stint in Charlottesville, London also added to an already impressive list of former pupils. In 2006, London worked with Freshman All-American Jeff Fitzgerald and All-ACC selection Chris Long. Long followed up his impressive 2006 campaign with one of the greatest seasons in Cavalier history in 2007. In addition to being a unanimous All-American selection, Long was a finalist for the Lombardi, Lott and Nagurski Trophies, and was the winner of the Ted Hendricks Defensive End of the Year Award. Long was the 2nd overall pick in the 2008 NFL Draft by the St. Louis Rams and became the seventh player coached by London to be drafted in the NFL.
In 2008, London was named the 33rd head coach in Richmond history. After compiling a 9-3 record during the 2008 regular season, London led the Spiders on a storybook ride through the postseason en route to Richmond’s first national championship in school history. Richmond won four playoff games by going on the road twice to knock off traditional FCS powers Appalachian State and Northern Iowa before defeating Montana 24-7 in the title game. At season’s end, Richmond standout defensive end Lawrence Sidbury was selected in the 4th round of the NFL Draft by the Atlanta Falcons adding yet another name to the list of star defensive linemen who have flourished under London’s coaching.
Under London’s direction, the Spiders put together another solid year in 2009. After opening the season with a win over Duke, Richmond spent most of the year playing as the #1 ranked team in the country and racked up a state record 17 consecutive wins dating back to 2008. The Spiders finished the regular season with a 10-1 record and a share of the CAA conference championship before losing to Appalachian State in the quarterfinals of the FCS playoffs. In all, London guided Richmond to a 24-5 record in his two seasons including five postseason victories.
In his first season at helm of Virginia, London’s team produced a 4-8 record but achieved a number of milestones that showed positive progress. The 2010 Cavalier offense ranked third in the ACC at 404.8 yards per game after finishing last in 2009 at 269.6 yards per game. Senior Marc Verica led the league's fourth-best passing attack, finishing with 2,799 yards in the air, marking the third-best season mark in UVA history. Wide receivers Dontrelle Inman and Kris Burd became the first UVA wide receiving duo to each total a minimum of 40 receptions in a season. They also recorded over 600 yards receiving, also a program first for a wide receiver tandem.
Keith Payne led a much-improved rushing attack that featured two of the ACC's most productive runners. Payne led the ACC with 14 rushing touchdowns, 16 total touchdowns and an 8.7 points per game scoring average. Honorable mention All-American Chase Minnifield anchored the UVA defense in 2010, earning first-team All-ACC honors. Minnifield’s two interceptions helped spark the Cavaliers’ upset of No. 22 Miami, giving UVA its first win over a ranked team since 2008.
Minnifield finished the year No. 2 in the ACC and No. 6 in the nation with six INTs. Offensive lineman Morgan Moses earned freshman All-America honors by helping the Cavaliers go 13 consecutive quarters without allowing a quarterback sack. The streak began the first game Moses started for the Wahoos.
In 2011, The Cavaliers went 8-4 during the regular season, finished second in the ACC's Coastal Division with a 5-3 mark and played Auburn in the Chick-fil-A Bowl. The Cavaliers were one win from advancing to the ACC's Championship game.
The Virginia turnaround featured four games that the team won in the final seconds. Along the way the Cavaliers became the first program to ever win road games at Miami and Florida State in the same season.
For his efforts, London was recognized as the Atlantic Coast Conference's Coach of the Year. He was also selected by the Fellowship of Christian Athletes to receive its 2011 Grant Teaff Coach of the Year Award. A total of five Cavalier players earned either first or second-team All-ACC honors.
Virginia's 2011 squad ranked No. 4 in the ACC in total offense at 399.8 yards per game and rose to No. 3 in total defense at 351.7 yards allowed per game. The Cavaliers were one of just two ACC teams to be ranked in the top four of both of those key statistical categories.
The Cavaliers became the first team in the nation to win road games at Miami and Florida State in the same season and the team appeared in the Associated Press Top-25 poll for the first time since the 2007 season.
The 2011 team saw two players - CB Chase Minnifield and OG Austin Pasztor – receive All-America honors and CB Demetrious Nicholson was named a Freshman All-American. In the spring of 2012, DE Cam Johnson was selected by the San Francisco 49ers to mark the 29th consecutive season a UVa player has been picked in the NFL Draft, the second longest streak among ACC schools.
One of the first coaches to influence London's own approach to coaching had his ear while London was still a player. Richmond coach Jim Marshall was an assistant for the Spiders during London's playing career and when London decided to pick up a whistle, it was Marshall who was running the show and offered him a job working with the team's outside linebackers. London recalls that one of Marshall's greatest qualities as a head coach was his attitude towards assistants. Whereas some head coaches may discourage their assistants from bolting to positions on other teams, Marshall would always speak highly of his assistants and would offer recommendations even when it meant that he might lose the coach as a result.
When Marshall's positive recommendation led to an opportunity for London to join the staff at William & Mary, it also presented a chance for London to learn the fundamentals of recruiting under the tutelage of Jimmye Laycock. Indeed, London has become a top notch recruiter in his own right. As the recruiting coordinator at UVA from 2002-04, London produced three of the most highly touted recruiting classes in Cavalier history, all of which were ranked in the top 20 nationally. In addition to Laycock's instruction, London attributes his recruiting successes to his willingness to be open and build trust through sharing his own personal stories with recruits and their families.
On the playing field, London credits former Richmond Head Coach and current UVA Defensive Coordinator Jim Reid with teaching him the fundamentals of tough and physical play. Reid emphasized that no matter how complex systems and gameplans become, at the end of the day football is a violent sport won by tough players.
Perhaps more so than the typical coach, London's performance on the sidelines is defined by his experiences off the field. After graduating from Richmond in 1983 with a bachelor's degree in sociology, London signed as a free agent with the Dallas Cowboys before his professional career was cut short by injury. London went on to receive a degree in law enforcement from the Richmond Police Academy and served as a detective for the street crimes unit from 1985-87. London ultimately decided to trade his patrols for the coaching profession after a harrowing day in the line of duty caused him to reconsider the profession and its affect on his family.
Mike and his wife Regina have seven children, Michael, Jr., Brandon, Kristen, Ticynn, Korben, Jaicyn and Madicyn. His son, Brandon, led Massachusetts in receiving in 2006 and finished his career as the school's 2nd all-time leading receiver. Brandon was on the Super Bowl champion New York Giants’ practice squad roster in 2007 and is currently a member of the CFL’s Montreal Alouettes. Kristen recently completed a successful career as a guard on the UVA women's basketball team. London’s younger brother, Paul, was a defensive back at UVA from 1991-95.
For more information on Coach London, please click on the links to the left.
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