Sunday, December 07, 2008

Take off! To the Great White North, take off!

Some notes from our Sunday call:
  • If you don't think UConn is happy to be stuck with the International Bowl, think again. The school will receive $1.1 million from the Big East for its berth in Toronto. That's $1 million for the payout and $103K in travel allowance. Last season, the payout was $1.15 million.

  • To clarify, the International Bowl payout is $700K. But the Big East pools all of the money its member schools receive, along with television money, and divide it up accordingly based on the standings. Cincinnati's payout for its BCS bowl is $2 million, plus a travel fee. Pittsburgh is getting $1.5 million plus a travel fee.

  • Both Randy Edsall and Jeff Hathaway said Toronto is where they anticipated going, even before the Pitt game. Hathaway said Ken Hoffman's plan of switching his selection for Toronto into the Motor City Bowl was likely only if Rutgers was the pick. Ball State's loss quashed that idea, and Rutgers wanted to be in Birmingham to face NC State. Hathaway said part of the reason was because UConn has already played in the Motor City Bowl.

  • The official invitation to the International Bowl came this morning around 11:30 a.m. Jeff Hathaway said he was in church when he felt his cell phone vibrate. He checked the caller ID, saw it was Ken Hoffman, and discreetly made his way outside to take the call and accept on UConn's behalf.

  • UConn players, coaches and administrators will avoid concerns about passports by flying to Buffalo, and then taking a bus the remaining 90 minutes or so to Toronto. I've heard you still need a passport to do this, but, apparently not.

  • The team is on break this week for exams, and will also get to take a break for Christmas on the 23rd. They are due back in Storrs the 26th for practice, and will fly out on Dec. 30.

  • Tyler Lorenzen will hang on to the starting job for the International Bowl. "We can end that one right there," Edsall said when asked if the competition would be opened up again.

  • Cody Brown was invited to play in the Senior Bowl, the Texas vs. the Nation All-Star Challenge and the East-West Shrine Game. Darius Butler got an invite to the Senior Bowl and the East-West Shrine Game and Will Beatty got an invite to the Texas vs. the Nation All-Star Challenge. Cody and Darius will choose which they'd like to participate in, but Edsall expects both to play in the Senior Bowl for certain.

  • The website is live with any and all travel and ticket info for fans. Tickets for the game are $40 and $30. UConn has been given an allotment of 10,000. Fans who can't make the game are encouraged to buy them and donate them back to UConn, which will distribute unused tickets to Toronto-area charities.

  • The Jan. 3 bowl date essentially gives the Huskies an extra spring practices. There will be 15 leading into the game, and Edsall said he's set aside 5-to-7 to give his true freshmen who are currently redshirting additional work.

  • Edsall expects Greg Lloyd and C.J. Marck to be back and playing in the bowl. He said the same of suspended Andre Dixon. He also said there's a "very good" possibility of Darius Butler being healthy enough to play.


Anonymous Sean O said...

Fyi Chip, the state department delayed the requirement for a passport to get into Canada until June 2009. I forget the reason for the delay but that's why UConn is driving in from Buffalo.

Good news for the UConn bowl. I will assume there will be plenty of Buffalo fans there.

December 07, 2008 5:59 PM 
Blogger Chip Malafronte said...

Thanks, Sean.

Buffalo is expected to bring many fans. The MAC champ usually goes to the Motor City Bowl, but an exception was made because of the proximity of Buffalo to Toronto.

December 07, 2008 6:31 PM 
Anonymous Wil said...

I heard that Beatty is also going to the Senior Bowl.

December 09, 2008 6:46 PM 
Blogger Chip Malafronte said...

Edsall told us Sunday only Cody Brown and Butler got invited to the Senior Bowl.

Beatty got picked for Texas vs. the Nation Bowl only. UConn never announced he was invited anywhere else, and the Senior Bowl is pretty elite, so I doubt they selected him.

December 09, 2008 7:55 PM 

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