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What Tony Bennett Reportedly Told His Virginia Players During Timeout

tony bennett looks onto the court during ncaa tournament

COLUMBIA, SOUTH CAROLINA - MARCH 22: Head coach Tony Bennett of the Virginia Cavaliers looks on in the first half against the Gardner Webb Runnin Bulldogs during the first round of the 2019 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament at Colonial Life Arena on March 22, 2019 in Columbia, South Carolina. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)

Virginia shocked the college basketball world last year when it became the first No. 1 seed in NCAA Tournament history to lose to a No. 16 seed, falling to UMBC in the opening round.

Tony Bennett's team is back in the NCAA Tournament this year, again as a No. 1 seed. And, once again, UVA is struggling.

Virginia is trailing Gardner-Webb, 26-14, at the under-8 timeout in the first half.

The college basketball world is already freaking out.

"I'm not superstitious but I'm sitting in the same seat on Fast Break that I was a year ago when Virginia lost to UMBC. This can't be happening again, right??????" Andy Katz tweeted.

"Nantz just said it's been almost 40 mins of game time -- between this game, and the UMBC one -- since Virginia held a lead against a 16 seed."

"It’s still early, but the million dollar question: At what point does Virginia tighten up if they are down in this one?" Jeff Goodman asked.

The answer: It's already happening.

Bennett had a simple message to his players during a timeout midway through the first half.

CBS sideline reporter Tracy Wolfson said Bennett told his players they have to be "confident." He then pointed to his head and said "it is all mental."

The longer Gardner-Webb leads, the more mental this becomes for Virginia, which really isn't built to make big comebacks.

Virginia and Gardner-Webb are playing on truTV.