Sunday, September 15, 2013

No news on UConn's injured starters

Shakim Phillips is one of three starters knocked out of last night's game
On his conference call with the media today UConn football coach Paul Pasqualoni said he considers starting linebacker Graham Stewart, receiver Shakim Phillips and offensive tackle Kevin Friend to be questionable for the Michigan game. It should be noted that Pasqualoni has not met with the players today so the prognosis could change.

Friend and Stewart injured their ankles and Pasqualoni called the injuries high-ankle sprains in his post-game press conference while Phillips has an issue with his hamstring.

With all due respect to Stewart, who is a talented player, his loss could probably be most easily absorbed as Jefferson Ashiru is a starting-caliber player. Xavier Hemingway has been caught fllat footed more than once during his time at right tackle and Dalton Gifford is another player Pasqualoni mentioned as a possibility to play right tackle if Friend is sidelined. The loss of Phillips would deprive the Huskies of its best offensive playmaker. Obviously we will know more as the week moves on.

A couple of other things from today's call.

Pasqualoni wasn't ready to put all the blame on Chandler Whitmer for the pick 6 which gave Maryland a two-score lead. He said it was equal parts the protection, Whitmer's throw and Geremy Davis' route.

He also said that freshman punt returner Brian Lemelle is tentative after fumbling a punt in the Towson game but he doesn't plan to make a switch at that position.

For those interested in such things, Michigan opened as an 18.5 point favorite. The game will be played at 8 p.m. and air on ABC.


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