Saturday, September 26, 2009

A win is a win

Hard to find fault in a 42-point win. The Huskies dominated, though there were some troubling mistakes. Seven fumbles, three lost, and some missed tackles, including a big one that led to Rhody's only touchdown. Among the good things: UConn's defense limited the Rams to 1-for-15 on third down and 0-for-2 on fourth down, the offense was 6-for-6 in the red zone and took only two penalties in the game. Great numbers, but there are no more URIs on the slate from here on out.

Some postgame notes.
  • Randy Edsall said the fumbles were the result of players trying too hard to make things happen. "There's things, like after any game, that you have to work on and get better," Edsall said. "I probably didn't do a good enough job of telling the guys this week to just go out and take care of their responsibilities and plays will come to them. I thought we had some guys pressing a little to make things happen rather than letting the game come to them. Jasper with the punt returns, Desi with the punts, Cody a couple times. I'll take the fault for not getting the point across."

  • Endres had a career day with highs in completions (23), passing yards (289), longest pass (50) and threw his first touchdown pass. Edsall said he did a good job aside from holding the ball a little long on some plays. "There's 1-on-1 coverage, and guys might not be wide open," Edsall said. "He has to have the confidence to throw the ball up and let guys make a play. But I think he's gaining more confidence."

  • A quarterback controversy? Edsall won't address anything yet. Zach Frazer may not be healthy enough to return for the Pitt game in two weeks, so it's a moot point right now, he said. "Until the trainers say (Frazer) is back, I'm not concerning myself with that situation," Edsall said.

  • Jerome Junior has had his problems though four games, and he may have played his way out of a starting job today. His big whiff on Tyquan Barnum led to a 65-yard touchdown, the Rams only one of the day. Aaron Bagsby came in to replace him on the next series, and did well enough that he could be there for a while. Bagsby played that position last fall in nickel packages, and was effective today. "We were in coverage where you should be forcing the receiver inside," Edsall said. "I'm not sure we forced him inside. I was told by the player he was forced inside. But sometimes what they tell me and what I see on film is two different stories. What happened is we didn't sink back enough, and our safety took a bad angle to the ball. If he takes the proper angle in that coverage...and wraps the guy rather than put his shoulder into him."

  • Junior said afterward he made the correct first read, but missed the tackle. Badly. "At least it wasn't against Louisville or Cincinnati," Junior said. "I'd rather get those out of the way now." Junior needs to wrap the receiver there, not lower his shoulder into him.

  • There was no tinkering with the offense today. Once Rhody began to pack the box, UConn, as it expected, needed to start throwing the ball more. They were able to do that with some success thanks to Endres and strong games from receivers Michael Smith, Isiah Moore and Michael Lang. Dwayne Difton got a lot of preseason hype, but Lang and Nick Williams have been better so far. Edsall said one of the things the coaches will settle in the bye week is a rotation of six receivers who will be featured. One man's guess: Smith, Kanuch, Lang, I. Moore, K. Moore and Difton.

  • Smith said he could have played at Baylor, but with his knee he wouldn't have been very effective. He remained in Storrs for treatment while, oddly, his family made the trip to Waco from Houston for the game. He felt fine today, and it was apparent with his most productive day as a Husky (eight catches, 82 yards).

  • Johnny McEntee at QB today, and nice day for Robbie Frey (five runs, 69 yards).

  • Lindsey Witten showed he wasn't fully recovered from the stomach bug that sidelined him earlier in the week. No other big injuries, aside from Meme Wylie.

  • One thing you don't have to worry about is UConn playing a stinker against a Division I-AA team. Since 2002, the Huskies are 8-0, winning by a combined score of 384-65, or an average score of 48-8.

Catch up with you tomorrow after the Sunday conference call.


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