Before the questions started firing his way about the upcoming monster series at No. 3 North Carolina, Virginia coach Brian O'Connor had to take one concerning Tuesday's 17-3 rout of VCU.
Was it about the Cavaliers' red-hot lineup? No.
Was it about the slick fielding skills of new shortstop Nick Howard? Check again.
Was it about the first start of the season for Whit Mayberry? Nah.
O'Connor had to address the boos. Yes, the 10th year skipper with over 450 wins to his name got a negative reaction from the Davenport Field crowd of 3,162 on Tuesday night when he went to the mound to pull 6-foot-9 lefty Brett Lisle after facing one batter in the eighth inning.
Keep in mind, the Wahoos were up by 12 runs. And he got booed.
Here's O'Connor's honest and comical explanation:
"I did tell Coach [Karl] Kuhn and Coach [Matt] Kirby, though, before I walked out there, I said, ‘You realize if I take this kid out of the game right now, the whole stadium’s going to boo me.’ I don’t know what it is with Brett Lisle, their affinity for him. Maybe because he’s 6-foot-9, he’s a sidearm left-handed pitcher, I don’t know. But I didn’t worry about that.
“Brett Lisle threw over the top. Four weeks ago, we dropped him down to sidearm to give him a chance to compete and thought maybe he might be able to get a few left-handed hitters out. That was the situation. It was the start of the eighth, there was a left-handed hitter leading off and I said, ‘We’re going to have him face one batter and then we’re going to go to [David] Rosenberger.’
“I am happy that our fans are that passionate that they still know what’s going on enough to boo me for taking a pitcher out. And I will tell you, I have been booed at times for taking a pitcher out too early or bringing in a relief pitcher that they didn’t think I should bring in, which is fine. That’s part of the job.”
Lisle, a redshirt freshman out of Colorado, has faced four batters in two appearances this season — both against VCU. He's yet to allow a hit.