Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Tuesday review

Here's a sampling of what happened on Tuesday:

  • Not a lot to expand upon with the quarterback situation from what I posted earlier other than the fact that Frazer officially has "a head injury." Guess that's better than those paranoid NHL coaches, who designate everything as either upper body injury or lower body injury. Have a feeling this will probably be a game-time decision (at least for everyone outside the players, coaches and medical staff), but we'll hold out hope that Edsall will let us know on Thursday.

  • Dave Teggart will start on Saturday over Tony Ciaravino. Teggart has practiced as the starter since Sunday. Teggart was a little stunned because he walked into the cafeteria expecting to get a drink and leave, but was greeted by about 10 reporters waiting for him. Now, we had made an interview request for him earlier in the day, but apparently he hadn't even gotten word of that. He had the look of a deer caught in the headlights for a moment.

  • Edsall on the decision, "All through the preseason, and the first part of the season, we kick those guys and we chart them, Those two guys are very close. There's not much difference at all. Tony's performance last week, we feel David should have the opportunity to be the field goal and extra point kicker this week. It's no different than any other position. ... David overall has a little stronger leg. We're 9-of-15 with Tony. I told Tony he has to take this the right way, that if David doesn't do his job the right way his opportunity will come again. He's upset that the opportunity's not there, but he understands why it's being done."

  • Teggart is a solid all-around athlete from an athletic background. His father was a kicker and soccer player at UNH (New Hampshire, not New Haven) and David was one of the top kickers in New England as well as an outstanding third baseman. He chose UConn over Boston College. Teggart said his long in high school was 48 yards, but now he's "comfortable" with any kicks 55 yards or in.

  • Edsall really likes Johnny McEntee as a quarterback. The possibility of McEntee, a walk-on from Servite High in Fullerton, Calif., being the backup QB on Saturday is because he earned the job. Casey Turner, like McEntee a true freshman, simply hasn't performed as well at the position so far. "He's got a quick release, and has a lot of poise and command." He comes from a strong high school program. Two of McEntee's high school classmates are now playing at USC.

  • I mentioned it earlier, but no chance for D.J. Hernandez to go back to quarterback. Unless, that is, there's an Ace Ventura: Pet Detective situation where a crazed, transsexual, ex-kicker turned chief-of-police orchestrates the kidnapping of Frazer, Endres, McEntee, Turner and Jonathan the Husky mascot because someone failed to put the laces out on a key field goal 10 years earlier.

  • The wide receivers continue to improve. One issue with the current crop, Edsall said, is that they are either very young to the college game or had little experience playing the position before coming to Storrs. He cited several examples: Kashif Moore is a redshirt freshman. Michael Smith is a true freshman. Brad Kanuch is in his third year, but was a running back/defensive back in high school. He's also still not quite himself after injuries torpedoed his spring and preseason practice seasons. D.J. is a converted quarterback only in his second year as a receiver. Ellis Gaulden has been plagued by injuries for his entire career. Marcus Easley doesn't have a lot of experience.

  • Edsall is excited about Kashif Moore's potential. He has outstanding speed, and is becoming more consistent as a route runner. Edsall says he still needs to improve his strength, which translates more to his blocking than anything else. More recruits like the current true freshman redshirting the season, Brian Parker and Gerrard Sheppard, will help. Both Parker and Sheppard played receiver in high school, and have potential.

  • Edsall said he heard back from the Big East Conference supervisor of officials regarding the offensive pass interference call against Martin Bedard that cost UConn 15 yards prior to Ciaravino's missed game-winning field goal. He declined to comment on what the final verdict was. "It's not appropriate (to comment) according to the Big East criteria," Edsall said. "If I was able to (comment), I would."

  • Edsall responded to the comments he made Sunday about it not being important if the media or fans understand what the coaches are trying to do with the play calling. "After every game, I beat myself up more than you guys could ever beat me up, in terms of what we do," Edsall said. "Believe me, I want to be as perfect as we possibly can. After every game I sit down and analyze every call, every thing that we do. And every coach is the same way. And you're going to find out is that every game you say is there something I could have done differently? Of course. As a coach, you're always going to critique yourself more than anyone else is going to critique you. ... I would hope you understand there are certain things that go on with this program that we're not going to give out. That's no disrespect to all of you or all of our fans. Fans want to win, and they want to win big, and when they don't they get upset. Just like we do, but we get more upset because we got more invested in it."

  • In honor of his new number, offensive lineman-now-part-time-tight end Dan Ryan will be legally changing his name to Dan Ocho-Ocho. That's not true. But Ryan is contemplating wearing a throwback Norwich Navigators baseball cap to represent his hometown, similar to the custom-designed Atlanta Braves cap worn today by defensive end Julius Williams (hometown: Decatur, Ga.).

  • In addition to being the most popular man in Willimantic, an aspiring weatherman and occasional 1950s street hood, WTIC-1080 radio man Wayne Norman is also an experienced apple picker. If the rumors are true, he can bullseye a garbage can with a Granny Smith from 60-feet, 6 inches.


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