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Unlike the 2003 team, people were not sure what to make of the 2004 team entering the season.
With the departure of Schaub, people wondered if Marques Hagans could even play quarterback.
He had spent last season as a wide receiver and in his limited experience as a quarterback in 2002 lost to the Seminoles, 41-9.
Hagans, though, proved to be efficient and used the talent around him to propel the Cavaliers to the No. 5 team in the country in mid-October.
Say what you want about this team but Virginia has never looked as good as they did in the first five games of the 2004 season. The Cavaliers outscored their opponents by a combined score of 212-58.
I do not care if you are playing FCS schools, that is a remarkable number. In their first two ACC games, Virginia won 56-24 against their rival North Carolina and humbled the Clemson Tigers, 30-10.
However, the Cavaliers suffered a season-ending injury to defensive end Chris Canty and the momentum began to shift a bit for this team.
Virginia got a bit too big for their britches and found their come uppance with a humbling 36-3 loss to Florida State. While the number looms big for Cavalier fans, that game was just one of those contests you have to discard.
Even the usually automatic Connor Hughes could not connect on a field goal early to give the Cavaliers some momentum to start the game.
The Cavaliers lost three games in the regular season to the best teams the ACC had to offer, Florida State, Miami and Virginia Tech.
One small thing that was big for Virginia that season was they never lost to a team they should have beat. The Cavaliers did not throw away a game like they were used to doing in most years.
Granted, that statistic comes with a caveat, Virginia lost their bowl game and a big lead to Fresno State. However, that game has the built in excuse of the Cavaliers being hosed out of the bowl games they deserved because of exam scheduling.
The Cavaliers and their fans wanted nothing to do with that game and the result was not indicative of the team's talent level.
This team was the best Virginia had to offer. The Cavaliers combined to rush for 2,900 yards that season while holding their opponents to less than 1,500.
They made nearly half of their third downs and they had 35 touchdown in the red zone as opposed to 17 for everyone else they played.
This team surprised some people, but they showed the potential in Virginia football. Let's see if there is a team down the road that can take their place.