Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Big East 2010 Team-by-Team

2010 BIG EAST Conference Team-By-Team Football Schedules

Sat., Sept. 4 at Fresno State
Sat., Sept. 11 Indiana State
Thu., Sept. 16 at North Carolina State (7:30 p.m., ESPN)
Sat., Sept. 25 Oklahoma
Sat., Oct. 9 Miami (Ohio)
Fri., Oct. 15 at LOUISVILLE (8 p.m., ESPN)
Fri., Oct. 22 USF (8 p.m., ESPN2)
Sat., Oct. 30 SYRACUSE
Sat., Nov. 13 at WEST VIRGINIA
Sat., Nov. 20 RUTGERS
Sat., Nov. 27 at CONNECTICUT

Sat., Sept. 4 at Michigan
Sat., Sept. 11 Texas Southern
Sat., Sept. 18 at Temple
Sat., Sept. 25 Buffalo
Sat., Oct. 2 Vanderbilt
Fri., Oct. 8 at RUTGERS (7:30 p.m., ESPN)
Sat., Oct. 23 at LOUISVILLE
Fri., Oct. 29 WEST VIRGINIA (8 p.m., ESPN2)
Thu., Nov. 11 PITTSBURGH (7:30 p.m., ESPN)
Sat., Nov. 20 at SYRACUSE
Sat., Nov. 27 CINCINNATI
Sat., Dec. 4 at USF (ABC/ESPN/ESPN2)

Sat., Sept. 4 Kentucky
Sat., Sept. 11 Eastern Kentucky
Sat., Sept. 18 at Oregon State
Sat., Oct. 2 at Arkansas State
Sat., Oct. 9 Memphis
Fri., Oct. 15 CINCINNATI (8 p.m., ESPN)
Sat., Oct. 30 at PITTSBURGH
Sat., Nov. 6 at SYRACUSE
Sat., Nov. 13 USF

Thu., Sept. 2 at Utah
Sat., Sept. 11 NEW HAMPSHIRE
Thu., Sept. 23 Miami (Fla.) (7:30 p.m., ESPN)
Sat., Oct. 2 Florida International
Sat., Oct. 9 at Notre Dame (3:30 p.m., NBC)
Sat., Oct. 16 at SYRACUSE
Sat., Oct. 23 RUTGERS
Sat., Oct. 30 LOUISVILLE
Thu., Nov. 11 at CONNECTICUT (7:30 p.m., ESPN)
Sat., Nov. 20 at USF

Thu., Sept. 2 Norfolk State
Sat., Sept. 11 at Florida International
Sat., Sept. 25 North Carolina
Sat., Oct. 2 Tulane
Fri., Oct. 8 CONNECTICUT (7:30 p.m., ESPN)
Sat., Oct. 16 Army
Sat., Oct. 23 at PITTSBURGH
Wed., Nov. 3 at USF (7 p.m., ESPN2)
Sat., Nov. 13 SYRACUSE
Sat., Nov. 20 at CINCINNATI

Sat., Sept. 4 Stony Brook
Sat., Sept. 11 at Florida
Sat., Sept. 25 Western Kentucky
Sat., Oct. 2 Florida Atlantic
Sat., Oct. 9 SYRACUSE
Thu., Oct. 14 at WEST VIRGINIA (7:30 p.m., ESPN)
Fri., Oct. 22 at CINCINNATI (8 p.m., ESPN2)
Wed., Nov. 3 RUTGERS (7 p.m., ESPN2)
Sat., Nov. 13 at LOUISVILLE
Sat., Nov. 20 PITTSBURGH
Sat., Nov. 27 at Miami (Fla.)

Sat., Sept. 4 at Akron
Sat., Sept. 11 at Washington
Sat., Sept. 18 Maine
Sat., Oct. 2 TBA
Sat., Oct. 9 at USF
Sat., Oct. 16 PITTSBURGH
Sat., Oct. 23 at WEST VIRIGNIA
Sat., Oct. 30 at CINCINNATI
Sat., Nov. 13 at RUTGERS
Sat., Nov. 27 Boston College

Sat., Sept. 4 Coastal Carolina
Sat., Sept. 11 at Marshall
Sat., Sept. 18 Maryland
Sat., Sept. 25 at Louisiana State
Sat., Oct. 9 UNLV
Thu., Oct. 14 USF (7:30 p.m., ESPN)
Sat., Oct. 23 SYRACUSE
Fri., Oct. 29 at CONNECTICUT (8 p.m., ESPN2)
Sat., Nov. 13 CINCINNATI
Sat., Nov. 20 at LOUISVILLE

2010 schedule released

2010 UConn Football Schedule
Day Date Opponent TV Time
Sat. Sept. 4 at Michigan TBA TBA
Sat. Sept. 18 at Temple TBA TBA
Fri. Oct. 8 at Rutgers* ESPN 7:30 p.m.
Sat. Oct. 23 at Louisville* TBA TBA
Fri. Oct. 29 WEST VIRGINIA* ESPN2 8:00 p.m.
Thur. Nov. 11 PITTSBURGH* ESPN 7:30 p.m.
Sat. Nov. 20 at Syracuse* TBA TBA
Sat. Dec. 4 at USF* ABC, ESPN or ESPN2 TBA

Thursday, February 04, 2010

Perkins, Wholley named assistants

Darrell Perkins was named defensive backs coach, coming to Storrs from Louisiana-Monroe. Jon Wholley, a former UConn player and graduate assistant, is the new tight ends coach. He was at UConn as a coach from 2006-08, and spent last fall at Fordham. Here are the press releases:

Darrell Perkins, who served as the defensive backs coach at Louisiana-Monroe for the past two seasons, has been named to the same position on the University of Connecticut football staff.

Perkins helped lead the Louisiana-Monroe defense to the top ranking in the Sun Belt Conference in 2009. Prior to his stint at Monroe, he was the defensive coordinator at Charleston Southern in 2007.

“We are very pleased to welcome Darrell to the Connecticut football program,” says UConn head coach Randy Edsall. “He brings a wide variety of coaching experience to our team – and all of it has been successful. Darrell has worked in nearly every region of the country and brings a strong reputation with him to UConn.”

He was the linebackers and special teams coach at Northern Colorado in 2006 and was the defensive backs/special teams coordinator at Charleston Southern from 2004-05. In 2004, Charleston Southern was ranked second in the Football Championship Subdivision in pass defense at 131 yards per game.

Perkins was the defensive backs coach and special teams coordinator at Ferris State from 2002-03 as the Bulldogs finished first in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference in pass defense at 161 yards per game.

He was a defensive graduate assistant at Purdue in 2000 and ’01.

Perkins began his football coaching career at Gateway High School in Aurora, Colo., where he was an assistant coach from 1997-99 at his alma mater. He was the head basketball coach at Legacy High School in Fort Collins, Colo., from 1993-96 and led the team to two state playoff appearances.

Perkins is a 1990 graduate of Wyoming and earned his degree in business marketing. He was a two-year starter at running back for the Cowboys and a three-year letter winner from 1985-89.

At Wyoming, Perkins played in the 1987 and ’88 Holiday Bowls and with Purdue coached in the 2001 Rose Bowl, following the Boilermakers’ 2000 Big Ten championship, and the 2001 Sun Bowl.

He is married the former Elena Zbitskaya and his 19-year-old son Jordan is a member of the men’s soccer team at Iona.

Jonathan Wholley, a 2004 graduate of the University of Connecticut who earned a master’s degree from UConn in 2008, has been named an assistant football coach for the Huskies. Wholley will have position responsibility with the tight ends.

“We are very happy to welcome Jon back to the UConn football program,” says head coach Randy Edsall. “He was a tremendously hard worker for us as a student-athlete and graduate assistant coach. Jon is a Connecticut native who knows the state through-and-through and he is a great addition to our staff.”

Most recently, Wholley was an assistant football coach at Fordham for the 2009 season where he worked with the running backs and had recently added recruiting coordinator duties. The Rams led the NCAA Football Championship Subdivision in total offense at 488.82 yards per game.

A Southington, Conn., native, Wholley was a member of the UConn football team from 2001-04 as a running back and joined the team as a walk-on. He later earned a scholarship and was a member of the 2004 Motor City Bowl championship team.

He earned his undergraduate degree in political science from UConn in December of 2004.

Following graduation, he was an assistant coach at Central Connecticut for the 2005 season and worked with the tight ends. The Blue Devils had a 7-4 record and were Northeast Conference co-champions.

Wholley then returned to UConn as a graduate assistant coach for the 2006-08 seasons working on the offensive side of the bowl. He was part of the coaching staff that led the Huskies to a share of the 2007 BIG EAST Championship and an appearance in the 2007 Meineke Car Care Bowl.

He earned his master’s of education in kinesiology from UConn in December of 2008.

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Signing Day notes

A few highlights from Edsall's signing day press conference:
  • The new assistant coaches are hired. An announcement will be made tomorrow.

  • Mike Cox decided to leave to attend grad school at the I-AA level. The decision was made over the weekend, so there's at least one scholarship opening.

  • Edsall said this is UConn's most athletic recruiting class ever. Lots of two and three sport athletes. Lots of speed.

  • As is the norm, a few of UConn's signees had other schools swoop in and attempt to change their minds. Cincinnati came in after Angelo Pruitt, Boston College on B.J. McBryde. Edsall says UConn doesn't have to do that because they already have everyone they want locked up.

  • One of the biggest holes to fill was in the secondary, and Edsall is happy with the five DBs he is bringing in. Andrew Opoku is a 6-4, 226-pound safety and Gilbert Stlouis is a cornerback from Davie, Fla. Both are already enrolled. Ty-Meer Brown, Byron Jones and Taylor Mack also come in with big expectations, though Edsall said their late enrollment will put them behind Opoku and Stlouis.

  • Side note: that is how Gilbert Stlouis spells his name, even though it is pronounced "St. Louis". I can't figure it out, either. I'd think it would at least be spelled "Saintlouis". Whatever. No one cares. Let's move on.

  • Speaking about Tebucky Jones Jr., Edsall said he needs to get in the weight room but is someone who is a tremendous athlete with the will to learn and succeed. He comes from a passing offense at New Britain High, where he caught 51 balls for 735 yards and eight touchdowns.

  • Edsall said during Jones' recruitment, he had an opportunity to walk around campus with his father, Tebucky Jones Sr., a former Syracuse star and eight-year NFL veteran. The elder Jones told Edsall if UConn had its current facilities back in the early 90s, he would have stayed home and gone to UConn rather than gone to Syracuse.

  • Scott McCummings and Leon Kinnard are both dual threat quarterbacks, but Edsall said that's not the new skill set he's looking for at the position. "The most important ingredient is someone who can throw the ball and is accurate," Edsall said. "If they have that, and the ability to run, that makes them more of a threat." I spoke with McCummings' high school coach Tom Lamb last week. Lamb, who coached Doug Flutie at Natick (Mass.) High, says McCummings can throw it 80 yards in the air. If true, that's an arm and a half.

  • McCummings and OL recruit Mark Hansson are two guys who'll at the very least be stars in the classroom. McCummings was recruited by Harvard, Hansson is currently taking college-level courses in the International Baccalaureate program.

  • Linebacker Josh Alexander of Waldorf, Md. set a state record with 21 sacks last season.

  • Reuben Frank was a star defensive end in high school, but will play fullback at UConn. Edsall said the coaches liked what they saw from him at the position during the school's summer camps.

  • Edsall called out the recruiting sites' and their class-rankings system for the sham it really is. "It's all very stupid, in my opinion," Edsall said. "For anyone to go out and rank classes, and to evaluate thousands and thousands and thousands of kids that are 17 and 18 years old, and think they're going to watch all this film and put a ranking on them, it's propaganda. And it's one of the things that's ruining the game, in my opinion. ... It's ruining kids, is what it's doing. I just hope some people come to their senses soon and does something about the recruiting process because we're in this to help young people and this process isn't helping young people. It's hurting them. Until that message gets across, it's not going to get better, it's going to get worse."

  • Edsall also said he's surprised that many high school football coaches in Connecticut still don't realize what the UConn program has to offer. Edsall said he "did his darnedest" to recruit all of the state's BCS signees from today to UConn. "The coaches are realizing the product we have here now. We beat Notre Dame, we beat South Carolina, we have a Big East championship. Sometimes it's tough to break the land of steady habits in terms of what their perception is." Edsall declined to name names. But you have to think he was referring to the majority of coaches in Fairfield County.

  • Expanding on the previous statement, Edsall said it bothers him that every year UConn offers discounted game tickets to high school coaches, offers free coaching clinics in the spring and opens up spring practice to all coaches. But "they don't get the kind of numbers you'd think," Edsall said. "That's what's disappointing to me. We are better received outside the state of Connecticut than what we are within the state, in certain pockets. That's tough to say, but you've got to say it because it's true."

  • Edsall did say he won't recruit kids who, in his opinion, aren't committed to academics, a strong work ethic and show a strong character.

Your 2010 recruiting class

The following is a full signee roster: One player who had given a verbal, Jacob Ruby, an OL from Fork Union (Va.) Military Academy, is not on the list.

Randy Edsall speaks at 3 p.m. We'll update later.

Name Pos. Hgt. Wgt. Hometown/High School
Alexander, Joshua LB 6-3 215 Waldorf, Md./Westlake
Brown, Ty-Meer DB 6-1 180 McKeesport, Pa../McKeesport
Cruz, Gus OG 6-4 256 Manchester, N.H./Kimball Union Academy
Davis, Geremy WR 6-2 205 Lawrenceville, Ga./Norcross
Frank, Reuben FB 6-2 229 Poughkeepsie, N.Y./Poughkeepsie
Hansson, Mark OT 6-5 256 Clearwater, Fla./Palm Harbour University
Jones, Byron DB 6-0.5 175 New Britain, Conn./St. Paul (Bristol)
Jones, Tebucky WR 6-0 180 Farmington, Conn./New Britain
Louis, Jonathan DE 6-5 240 Brockton, Mass./Wyoming Seminary (Pa.)
Mack, Taylor DB 5-10 170 Powder Springs, Ga./The Lovett School
McBryde, B.J. DE 6-5 250 Beaver Falls, Pa./Beaver Falls
McCombs, Lyle RB 5-8 175 Staten Island, N.Y./St. Joseph By The Sea
McCummings, Scott QB 6-2 210 Natick, Mass./Natick
McKee, Greg OT 6-5 295 Chicago, Ill./Martin Luther King College Prep
Opoku, Andrew DB 6-4 226 North Brunswick, N.J./Fork Union Military Academy (Va.)
Paull, Bryan C 6-4 290 Parkland, Fla./M. Stoneman Douglas
Pruitt, Angelo DL 6-2.5 270 Cincinnati, Ohio/North College Hill
Smallwood, Yawin LB 6-3 215 Worcester, Mass./Doherty
Stlouis, Gilbert CB 5-11 175 Davie, Fla./Plantation
Steg, Brandon LB 6-3 220 Coral Springs, Fla./J.P. Taravella

The following student-athletes each signed a Letter of Intent with UConn in 2009 and enrolled for the Spring 2010 semester

Name Pos. Hgt. Wgt. Hometown/High School
Kinnard, Leon QB 5-9 180 Reistertown, Md./Loyola Blakefield
Osiecki, Michael LB 6-2 225 Seymour, Conn./ Seymour

The following are biographies of the 2010 Letter of Intent Signing Class:

JOSHUA ALEXANDER – Named first team All-Maryland for large schools in media voting…named First Team All-County by The (Waldorf) Independent and first team All-Southern Maryland Athletic Conference…named All-Metro Honorable Mention by The Washington Post ….named First Team All-Charles County…had 79 tackles and 21 sacks his senior year…team won Maryland 3A Championship game in 2009…team captain…played in the Chick-Fil-A Challenge all-star game in Maryland on Dec. 12…is the holder of the state single-season sack record…owns school career record for sacks…also runs track and field…brother Darius Powell played linebacker at North Carolina and now plays at Fayetteville (N.C.) State…born on July 3, 1992.

TY-MEER BROWN – Played quarterback in high school in wishbone formation…will play defensive back at UConn…threw seven TD passes and was 13 of 29 in passing in senior year and rushed for 604 yards and 11 TDs…team captain…two-time selection to Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Fab 22 and Pittsburgh Tribune Terrific 25…two-time all-conference pick…also plays basketball…born on April 24, 1992.

GUS CRUZ – A native of the Dominican Republic…named NEPSAC (New England Preparatory School Athletic Council) Class C Lineman of the Year…named 2009 All-New England Prep…two-time All-Evergreen League selection…team captain…team won 2008 and 2009 Evergreen League championship…attended Trinity High School in Manchester before transferring to Kimball Union Academy…born on Sept. 22, 1990.

GEREMY DAVIS – Had 40 receptions for 705 yards and nine touchdowns as a senior…in junior year, had 18 catches for 215 yards and three touchdowns….played in the Rivalries of Gwinnett All-Star Game in December…named All-State Honorable Mention in Class AAAA by the Georgia Sports Writers Association All-State Football Team….named First Team All-County by the Gwinnett Daily Post …also named all-region…team captain…born on January 10, 1992.

REUBEN FRANK – As a senior, had 89 tackles (56 solo)…named First Team All-State Class A by the New York State Sportswriters Association…named a First Team All-Star by the Poughkeepsie Journal …earned all-league and all-section honors as a junior and senior…made 92 tackles as a junior…selected to play in the Northeast vs. New Jersey All-Star game and the New York Upstate vs. Downstate All-Star game…born on October 24, 1992.

MARK HANSSON – Named First Team All-Pinellas (Fla.) County by the Tampa Bay Times …had an outstanding performance in the North-South Pinellas County All-Star Game…ranked No. 2 offensive lineman in Pinellas County by the St. Petersburg Times …also named All-Pinellas County by St. Petersburg Times …team captain…takes courses in high school's prestigious International Baccalaureate program...born on February 21, 1992.

BYRON JONES – Named to the Class MM All-State team by the Connecticut High School Coaches Association…named First Team All-Naugatuck Valley…had 51 receptions as a senior for 735 yards and eight touchdowns….also had three interceptions and returned punts and kickoffs…team advanced to first round of Class MM state playoffs…had three catches for 63 yards in state playoff game…also plays basketball and is averaging 22 points per game…team captain…attended same high school as current Huskies Marcus Aiken and Derek Chard…born on August 26, 1992.

TEBUCKY JONES – Named First Team All-State Class LL by the Connecticut High School Coaches Association…was named to the Hartford Courant All-State team…also named First Team All- New Britain Herald …had 51 receptions for 735 yards and eight TDS in 2009…caught 30 passes for 530 yards and eight touchdowns as a junior…earned All-Central Connecticut Conference honors in 2008 and ‘09…also plays basketball and track…son of former Syracuse standout and eight-year NFL veteran Tebucky Jones, Sr. …born on December 24, 1992.

JONATHAN LOUIS – Enrolled at Connecticut for the Spring 2010 semester…played high school football at Cardinal Spellman in Brockton, Mass., and St. Thomas Moore in Oakdale, Conn. …had 50 tackles and five sacks in 2008 at St. Thomas Moore…prepped for a year at the Wyoming Seminary in Kingston, Pa…had 59 tackles and eight sacks in 2009 …Wyoming went 7-1 in 2009...also played basketball and track in high school…honor roll student...born on September 24, 1991.

TAYLOR MACK – Named Honorable Mention Class AA All-State by Georgia Sports Writers Association in 2009…team advanced to Class AA Semifinals….two time first team all-area pick…had four interceptions and three defensive TDs as a senior…team MVP and captain…was MVP of Atlanta of National Underclassmen Combine…born on June 10, 1991.

B.J. McBRYDE – Had 72 tackles in senior year to go along with six sacks…named honorable mention all-section…team captain and two-year starter…team went 10-2 in senior season and won a pair of playoff games…also plays basketball and is team captain and three-year starter…born on October 10, 1991.

LYLE McCOMBS – Named to New York Daily News All-City team and New York Post All-Staten Island…Named co-winner of Al Fabbri Award, given each year to the top high school football player on Staten Island…two-time Staten Island Advance All-Star….led all Staten Island players with 172 points scored...rushed for an average of 7.2 yards per carry in senior year…rushed for 1,544 yards in nine games…also had 15 receptions for an average of 23.4 yards per reception…also rushed for over 1,000 yards as a junior…born on April 12, 1992.

SCOTT McCUMMINGS – Named to the Massachusetts High School Football Coaches Association All-State Team…was named MetroWest Daily News Player of the Year…named All-Scholastic by both the Boston Globe and Boston Herald …team captain…had over 2,000 yards of passing in senior year with over 1,000 yards of rushing …passed for 15 touchdowns and rushed for another 12…team advanced to state Division II Super Bowl…as a junior, threw for 1,232 yards and five touchdowns while rushing for 980 yards and 14 TDs…has twin older brothers that both play college football – Thad at Massachusetts and Theo at Mount Ida…born on October 15, 1991.

GREG McKEE – Enrolled at Connecticut for the Spring 2010 semester….named First Team All-Public League from the Chicago Sun-Times on the defensive side….team finished second in conference in senior year…two-time all-conference pick…academically ranked 23rd in class of 218…National Honor Society member…plays the piano and cello…also a member of the wrestling team….born on May 10, 1992.

ANDREW OPOKU – Enrolled at Connecticut for the Spring 2010 semester …played his high school football at North Brunswick High School and spent a season of prep school at Fork Union Military Academy in Virginia…earned first team all-conference honors in high school and was a team captain…had 15 career interceptions in high school…earned Honorable Mention Honors as the U.S. Army All-America Combine…team captain…honor roll student in high school…born on November 11, 1990.

BRYAN PAULL – Second Team All-County pick…played in the Miami-Dade County vs. Broward County All-Star Game on January 15…is also a member of the wrestling team…spent time living in Illinois…born on February 16, 1992.

ANGELO PRUITT – Named Honorable Mention All-District in Region IV by the Associated Press…two-time all-league and all-city pick…team had a 10-0 record in regular season during senior year…made 98 tackles with 26 for a loss as a junior in 2008..also had 235 rushing yards and three TDs as a junior…had 78 career tackles for a loss…three-time league all-academic pick…born on June 10, 1992.

YAWIN SMALLWOOD – Named to the Central Massachusetts All-Stars for Division 1C…Had 71 tackles as a senior in 2009 with five sacks… rushed for 769 yards and ten touchdowns and also passed for 126 yards… as a junior, passed for 726 yards and six touchdowns and rushed for 724 yards and six TDs….two-time pick to Worcester Telegram and Gazette Super Team...three-time Division I all-star and two-time Division I Defensive MVP…also plays basketball…attended same high school as former Husky center Keith Gray…two-year captain…born on December 25, 1991.

GILBERT STLOUIS -- Enrolled at Connecticut for the Spring 2010 semester …played in the Hawaii/Polynesia-Mainland Bowl in Honolulu in December…team went 8-3 in senior year…earned first team all-conference in 2009 with 15 pass breakups…had 40 tackles as a junior…team captain…also runs track…born on April 30, 1991.

BRANDON STEG – Played in the Miami-Dade County vs. Broward County All-Star Game..also played in the Hawaii/Polynesia-Mainland Bowl in Honolulu in December…named second team all-county…team captain…born on October 11, 1991.

The following are biographies of the two student-athletes who signed a Letter of Intent in February of 2009 and enrolled for the Spring 2010 semester.

LEON KINNARD -- Second team all-state pick as a junior...was honorable mention all-state as a sophomore and a senior, was named second team all-metro from the Baltimore Sun and All-Baltimore County...first team all-metro and all-county as junior a sophomore in 2005, was 103 for 185 in the air for 1,415 yards and 11 TDs..also rushed for 303 yards and 11 a junior in 2006, threw for 1,489 yards with 13 touchdowns as team won state title... team went 11-0 in senior captain...was selected to play in 2008 Maryland Crab Bowl between all-stars from Maryland and Washington, D.C., but missed game because of injury...born February 9, 1991.

MICHAEL OSIECKI -- 2008 Gatorade State Player of the Year in Connecticut....also earned first team all-state honors from the New Haven Register ...two-time first team All-Naugatuck Valley advanced to state Class SS final as a senior...also played fullback in high school, rushing for 1,774 yards and 26 TDs on 199 carries and catching 25 passes for 419 yards and six TDs as a senior...second team all-state his junior captain...born June 14, 1991.