Monday, December 31, 2007

Edsall looks ahead to 2008

Here's what Randy Edsall's New Year's Eve teleconference wrought:
  • The offensive line needs to be more physical, and Edsall likes his three soon-to-be redshirt freshmen. Gary Bardzak, Mo Petrus and Mike Ryan could well unseat one or two of this season's starters. "Those three guys bring toughness to the football program," Edsall said. "I mean physically. We need to come off the ball and be more physical. Some of our starters may be passed by the redshirt freshmen because they're tougher right now." No names were mentioned, but have to think Mike Hicks and Dan Ryan will need to step it up in the spring. Maybe even Will Beatty.

  • The UConn media watched Wake Forest's Kenny Moore and couldn't help but wonder how badly the Huskies could use a playmaker like that at wide receiver. The UConn receivers had a tough go this season because they couldn't get open or dropped too many passes. Quarterback Tyler Lorenzen rarely threw the deep ball this season, not because he doesn't have the arm strength (did you see him wing that one pass 70 yards in the air in the Meineke Car Care Bowl?) Edsall, who hinted at his disappointment in the receivers earlier in the month, finally said things need to get better at the position. "I don't think we've gotten the production out of the WR position," Edsall said. "We have to do things schematically to go vertically. We have to develop a vertical game." Kashif Moore is a guy who Edsall has noticed, and could surpass a regular in the spring.

  • Lorenzen is still the starter at quarterback, but has plenty to improve upon, Edsall said, or he won't hesitate to use another QB. His decision-making needs to quicken up, for one.

  • Edsall thinks the defense will be fine. Danny Lansanah, who's put in yeoman's work the past two seasons, leaves a hole. But it's a hole Edsall thinks can be adequately filled. Jarrell Miller is certainly a candidate. Greg Lloyd will help, too.Personally, I think the guy to keep an eye on is C.J. Marck. Kid looks like he can play the game. Edsall said he's also got some ideas on changes in the secondary he hasn't even mentioned to his staff yet.

  • Edsall isn't anticipating any incoming recruits who will enroll in January. He was also unsure on the number of scholarships still available. Guess there may be some changes coming.

  • No surprise, but Edsall said Tyvon Branch is the team's best pro prospect and is looking good to be drafted. He's been invited to the NFL Combines in February. Donald Thomas is a draft bubble guy who will certainly be a free agent signee. He's still a novice to this game, and has a lot to learn will plenty of upside (can't believe I just used that cliche.) Previous injuries will likely hold Dan Davis back, but Danny Lansanah may get a look despite his lack of overall speed. Larry Taylor could also make a club, though Canada might be an option, too.

I'll have some more updates this week. Until then, have a safe New Year, everyone.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Do you cover UConn football recruiting? If so, any idea who UConn has received commitments from?

January 02, 2008 9:49 AM 
Blogger Chip Malafronte said...

bunch of guys you've never heard of and whose names you won't hear again for at least two years.

But seriously, the top recruit so far is an OL named Jimmy Bennett from the DC area. He's 6-8, 270. Big catch. The coaches are VERY excited they landed him. Also, a RB named Jordan Todman, who rolled up over 5,000 career yards in Mass, could turn out to be a steal.

January 02, 2008 12:27 PM 
Anonymous Tony Occhineri said...

Chip, let me give credit to where it is due. Yes Uconn did alot better than anyone thought. On the other hand losing 3 out of the last 4 shows they need to beat good teams, also the co-champs of the little east were beat pretty good by the 5th place team in the ACC.

January 02, 2008 12:30 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

keep those updates coming

January 16, 2008 10:28 AM 

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