Wednesday, September 18, 2013

UConn players look back to 2010 game at Michigan

With UConn ready to host Michigan on Saturday night in what could be the most high-profile home game in program history, it seems like a perfect time to look back on UConn's 2010 game to Michigan.

Although he did not start in the game, senior defensive tackle and captain Shamar Stephen made one of his two tackles on UConn’s first defensive series.

“That was the first time I ever played in a game so it was definitely a great experience for me,” Stephen said. “I remember it was a pretty fast tempo, getting into it was a little different and as the game wore on, I adjusted and started making the plays.

“It was definitely nerve wracking at first but once you make that first hit, it all goes away and you are into the game. I was more focused on my assignments. I just didn’t want to mess up in my first game but it was pretty crazy.”

Stephen was one of six current Huskies to play in the 30-10 loss to Michigan in the 2010 season opener. Jesse Joseph started at defensive end and made four tackles, Cole Wagner had a 66-yard punt, Chad Christen averaged 65.3 yards on three kickoffs while Martin Hyppolite and Taylor Mack also played in the game.

Many of the current seniors were on the travel squad for UConn’s lone trip to Michigan Stadium.

“It was a fantastic experience,” UConn senior offensive tackle Kevin Friend said. “I was a redshirt freshman and I have never seen a stadium like that before and just to see it, looking up at it and seeing that it was full it was awesome. Just feeling what the team felt in the locker room and how everyone came together before the game and psyched everybody up. It was an awesome experience.”

Fellow senior offensive lineman Steve Greene also has mostly positive memories of the trip to Michigan.

“I remember it was a big place and we were in the game and we had a chance to win it too,” Greene said.
“It is one of the most famous arenas in college football so obviously it is a great experience.”

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