Saturday, September 23, 2006

Postgame notes

A few quick postgame notes....

My take: There's no arguing a victory on the road against a Big Ten opponent. UConn's defense looked fantastic, and could be better than it was a year ago. From the defensive line to the linebackers to the secondary, it was an A effort for the D. The passing game left a lot to be desired. UConn's receivers are having problems getting open, and D.J. is having problems getting them the ball. The Huskies can't run on every down and rely on the defense every game. The passing game must improve.

Briefly...

D.J. sprained his left wrist in the first half, the same one he injured last year. Neither he or Randy Edsall made it sound like it was serious, but it concerned Edsall enough that he questioned whether Hernandez could handle snaps in the final series. As a precaution, Matt Bonislawski took the final snaps. It might be something to watch.

Ryan Henegan is out of Randy Edsall's doghouse. He started and played well Saturday. Great job by Ryan. Now if we can just get him to work on his interview skills.

Darius Butler will be an NFL player. He has the speed, skills and athleticism. And as Chuck Banning of the New London Day pointed out, opposing teams are avoiding throwing the ball Butler's way more and more.

Terry Caulley was awesome on Saturday. It didn't take Indiana long to figure out the Huskies were going to run on every play. The Hoosiers were loading up the box, waiting for the run. Caulley still averaged five yards per carry, and hammered it 31 times for the game. Speaks volumes about him, and the offensive line as well. Caulley said Matt Applebaum has become the emotional leader of the line. "You hear his voice, and it's a rush. You think if he feels we can do this, you just want to feed off it and do big things pounding the ball."

I couldn't have been less impressed with the entire Memorial Stadium experience. This is Big a Ten football program? The announced crowd was over 27,000, but I would have guessed it was more like 15,000. Granted, the weather didn't help the situation. But the place was dead. No atmosphere at all. The operations in the press box were about as bad as I've seen, too. Division II programs are more hospitable.

Indiana plays Ohio State in four weeks. Pray for the Hoosiers.

13 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

This was about as bad as it gets when it comes to wins.

You could really make a case that UConn is the worst team in the Big East right now.

September 23, 2006 11:58 PM 
Anonymous Alex said...

Chip,

I love your blog, but you seem to be a afflicted with the same disease that Kevin Nathan is. Sorry but, how much more open do the recievers need to get? DJ is totally inaccurate and Edsall calls time outs at ridiculous points in the game.

You and the other UConn sportwriters need to show some spine and start questioning the abysmal playcalling and just accept that DJ will never be a dropback passer. He is Keron Henry II.

September 24, 2006 9:45 AM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your defense is nice, but you may want a passing attack eh?

September 24, 2006 9:48 AM 
Blogger Chip Malafronte said...

Alex,

Edsall was asked about the playcalling. He said it was conservative because when UConn went up 14-7, he felt he could play the field position game because the defense was dominating Indiana and the offense was obviously having problems. You can read it in my game story at www.nhregister.com.

I believe I did question the passing game in my post (and in the game story), something about it leaving a lot to be desired. D.J. is struggling, no one questions that. It's not all D.J., either. Often, the receivers can't get off the line of scrimmage or create any separation.


Don't get me wrong, I don't mind criticism. Just keep in mind I do write more than what is on this blog. The hardcore news and notes is in our publication. The blog is simply a way to provide more info that doesn't get into the New Haven Register or on our website. I look at it as a fun thing to do in the downtime. I will never use this forum to rip players a new one based on poor performances. These are still college kids, and to do so would be completely unprofessional. I'll leave that to you.

I guess the point is, don't make sweeping generalizations based on what you're perceiving here. Criticize away if you feel, just know there's more to the story than just the blog.

So keep reading and commenting, Alex. I love the feedback.

And I have absolutely no clue what Kevin Nathan disease is.

September 24, 2006 10:20 AM 
Anonymous fairfieldhusky said...

We are all wondering what happened over at SNY yesterday? At 3:30 they did their intro for the game, and showed UCONN and Indiana on the field warming up. Next, they went to a commercial, and never came back to the game again. They decided to show other programming even though the Register, and their web-site advertised they were going to show the game. What happened??? My cable company does not have the other channed which showed the game, so we completely lost out. We all would have liked to have seen a rare UCONN road win.

September 24, 2006 11:03 AM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"And I have absolutely no clue what Kevin Nathan disease is."

Blind faith.

On WTIC he initially described DJ's performance against Wake as "great".

September 24, 2006 1:19 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"You and the other UConn sportwriters need to show some spine and start questioning the abysmal playcalling and just accept that DJ will never be a dropback passer. He is Keron Henry II."

Spineless is an anonymous poster calling out the media, the coach and the quarterback. Don't get lost in the irony "Alex".

September 24, 2006 7:49 PM 
Anonymous Alex said...

Dear Anonymous,

Your own post is incredibly ironic in and of itself.

Thanks.

September 24, 2006 10:58 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not really, Alex. I'm just pointing out how foolish that post made you look.

Manny Ruiz, Hartford Connecticut

September 27, 2006 9:11 AM 
Anonymous Alex said...

Dear Manny "Anonymous" Ruiz from Hartford,

Get real Manny. This is the internet and pretty much everyone is anonymous by neccesity. What do you suggest we do here? Post our Social Security numbers too? Other than journalists, nobody with any brains and decent employment is going to post something on the net with their real name these days.

This is the the role journalists play in our society. They are supposed to ask the tough questions because we either don't have the time to do it ourselves or don't have access.

There's nothing foolish about what I said. For years we have been reading articles by a bunch or kool-aid drinking CT sportswriters who are afraid of being critical of Edsall and his staff. Afraid of questioning why so many players quit the program, afraid of questioning why it is that after all these years we still don't have I-A caliber kicker, why we failed to bring in a serviceable QB during the Orlovsky years... Why we seem to have more blocked kicks and punts than any other team in football...

Sheesh I'm not asking for the guy to resign, because on balance Edsall has done a great job, but there are some areas that have been neglected and we're losing games because of it.

It would be nice if journalists would start asking some of these tough questions. It's nice to see a few are heading in that direction.

Sincerely,

Alex

September 27, 2006 7:59 PM 
Anonymous Alex said...

"Don't get me wrong, I don't mind criticism. Just keep in mind I do write more than what is on this blog. The hardcore news and notes is in our publication. The blog is simply a way to provide more info that doesn't get into the New Haven Register or on our website. I look at it as a fun thing to do in the downtime. I will never use this forum to rip players a new one based on poor performances. These are still college kids, and to do so would be completely unprofessional. I'll leave that to you."

Chip,

Don't take this the wrong way because your articles in the paper are great. But the product you publish here is far more entertaining and informative. There are many people that look forward to seeing what you have to say and they look here first.

September 28, 2006 12:54 PM 
Blogger Chip Malafronte said...

Alex,

I appreciate that (I think). I try to make the blog fun as well as informative. As long as you guys keep reading and commenting, I'll make the effort to keep it up on the blog. However, I can safely say the stories in the paper are far more informative. Often, I'm just paraphrasing on here.

Just to clarify my earlier comment, I was trying to make the point that the blog is merely a supplement to what goes in print. My first responsibility is to the paper and the subscribers. If you had read my game story, I don't believe you would be making the comments you are. No one is getting a free pass with the press. Again, reread my Indiana game story, the articles from the Marvin Taylor incident or the recent QB change. Did you see the comments made by coaches/players?

Matt Nuzie was swarmed after the Wake Forest game by cameras and writers asking tough questions. To his credit, and he has earned the utmost respect from me for this, Nuzie handled it like a true pro. He stayed until the last reporter left when he could have easily not shown up for the press conference or pulled a Barry Bonds and responded with one or two word answers.

If you're not reading the paper, and not just the Register, that's fine too. But don't condemn me, or any of the other state reporters when you're not at the press conferences to hear what's being asked. If you follow what's written in the papers, you'll see the tough questions are being asked and responded to.

Once again, thanks for the feedback Alex. Don't hesitate to email (cmalafronte@nhregister) or call me at the office (789-5656) any time.

September 28, 2006 1:57 PM 
Anonymous Alex said...

Message received.

Thanks for putting up with me:)

September 28, 2006 2:04 PM 

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