Tuesday luncheon: How to retain that plump figure
- Scott Lutrus' situation hasn't changed. He's still practicing during non-contact drills only and is 50-50 for this week. Lutrus again said he hasn' t experienced any pain or limitations with his range of motion. It's simply the medical staff be cautious with what could turn into a serious injury. Considering the opponent this week, and the fact the Huskies are on bye the following week, don't expect to see Lutrus in the lineup against URI.
- There's not a lot to complain about with UConn's defense. But the Huskies have failed to come through in a couple of 3rd-and-long situations, one of which played a big part in the loss to North Carolina. "It's just execution," Edsall said. "The biggest thing is we have to do a better job as coaches to get those kids to understand that when it's 3rd-and-20, you don't take a 5-yard drop. You get back deeper and make them throw the ball underneath and then you rally to it and make the tackle. We have to do a better job of emphasizing 'know the down and distance'; 'get deeper in your drops'. We've played zone, we brought four, we brought five; we haven't gone to an all-out blitz, but we have to do a better job of coaching them up."
- The defensive calls were no different on those big third down plays. UConn has never played a prevent defense, Edsall said. "First of all, I don't know what a prevent defense is," he said. "I have no idea what a prevent defense it. All I know is, all the calls we made in the first three quarters, we were making the same calls in the fourth quarter." UConn has been in its nickel package making the same calls.
- Cody Endres graded his performance Saturday as "average, maybe a little better than average." His biggest problem was trouble with reads early, but "that got better as the game went on." Edsall concurred, saying he needs to be a little more precise with his short passes. Edsall also addressed the lack of deep balls. "Everyone wants to see you chuck it and all that stuff," he said. "But the farther you throw it, the harder it is to complete it. It's not so much about about throwing deep, it's about throwing effective. If you throw effective, you create more opportunities. Yeah, we want the ball to go down the field, but there might be teams that take that away by the way they play." He also mentioned one play against Baylor that went down field, a completion called back because of an illegal formation penalty.
- Edsall said there are 68 guys competing to make the travel roster, either on offense, defense or special teams. "I've never had that luxury with so many guys," Edsall said. "Part of it is guys understanding the importance of special teams."
- Erik Kuraczea said the offensive line was very happy with it's performance against Baylor, and that it didn't think it would be as easy to create space and opportunities against the Bears. "It makes you realize how good (UConn defensive tackles) Kendall (Reyes) and Twyon (Martin) really are," Kuraczea said. "Going up against them in practice every day tells me how good they are compared to other defensive tackles."
- Kuraczea and Mike Ryan worked their way into the rotation at Baylor, and Edsall said he'll keep it the same this week. The plan is every third series will go to the young linemen.
- Andre Dixon on the offensive line, "Coach Foley is an amazing coach, but those guys really busted their humps in the weight room and during drills. They went out and did the work. You saw guys like Hurd, Dan Ryan, Mike Hicks, Olivier and Moe amping themselves up . It was a huge challenge in Waco, and they were up to it."
- Where were you when Donald Brown scored his first NFL touchdown last night in the Colts slim victory over the Dolphins? It seemed to have caught some of the Huskies off-guard. Edsall said the game was on in his bedroom, but he was sound asleep "face down in the pillow". His son came in and woke him up just in time for the groggy coach to see the replay. Andre Dixon was watching the game, but happened to be in the bathroom when Brown scored. But, he said he didn't waste any time sending Donny a text message (no word on whether Dixon sent it from the throne. Let's hope he waited).
- File this in the category "things you won't see anywhere on the planet aside from a football training table". In the UConn football dining room today, sitting on each table in a lovely plastic frame, was advice on how to make the best of "the training table experience". One section was devoted the best ways to avoid hunger. Another provided tips on how to prevent weight loss. And don't we all need help keeping those excess pounds on? Among the ingenious tips...eat, play a game of billiards in the lounge, then come back for seconds. (I, for one, never would have thought of that). It also suggested peanut butter and jelly as an alternative to "a meat sandwich". (Such as bacon, which you might find in a bacon, lettuce and tomato sandwich). Another novel concept was to purchase food at a local store and then stow it in your room, preferably in a refrigerator. I can make copies for anyone looking to balloon up like Kevin Federline. As the great Thornton Melon, CEO of Tall and Fat Stores once said, "if you want to look thin, you hang out with fat people."
Hi there. Are you a large person? Pleasantly plump? A little on the hefty side, perhaps? Well, let's face it: Are you FAT? When you go jogging, do you leave pot-holes? When you make love, do you have to give directions? At the zoo, do the elephants throw YOU peanuts? Do you look at a menu and say 'OK'? The UConn training table can help you keep that rotund figure.
Hope to see you on the live chat Thursday at 2 p.m.