Saturday, October 12, 2013

Lemelle hoping to making impact

It hasn't been the easiest of starts to Brian Lemelle's freshman season at UConn.

One of the most highly-touted members of this year's freshman class won the punt return job during preseason camp but in his first game disaster struck. UConn had just scored to pull within eight points of Towson and forced a punt. Lemelle muffed a punt that was recovered by Towson. Just six plays later Towson put the game away.

The next time out Lemelle was understandably cautious as he let multiple catchable punts hit the turf costing UConn field position.

UConn could count on Nick Williams, currently on the Washington Redskins practice squad, to make big plays in the punt-return game. However, UConn ranks 113th out of 123 teams in punt returns this season and the Huskies have managed just 22 punt return yards

Lemelle said he has made strides in that department and is hoping to come up with a spark on special teams for the Huskies today.

"I think I am moving forward," Lemelle said. "The team is moving forward, it happened and I think them doing that (supporting him) helped me get prepared and more comfortable."

Lemelle, the all-time leading receiver in Pennsylvania high school football history, credited T.J. Weist for helping him decide to come to UConn. Now Weist is the interim head coach and he mentioned the possibilities of some younger receivers like Lemelle having a bigger role as the season moves along.

"I liked having Coach (Paul) Pasqualoni there but he’s changed things up a little bit and I like what he is doing with it, hopefully we can move forward from here," Lemelle said. "Things are a lot more energetic and guys seems like they really want to practice, that is a lot faster pace and we are getting after it.

"I think it is tough at time. I never changed coaches in high school and I guess it takes some adjusting. I think the off week did help, we realize what Coach (Weist) is trying to do and what the game plan is and having him coach the rest of the season."

Lemelle vows to be ready if he sees more time on the field with the UConn offense.

"If that is what they ask me to do, I think I will be ready," Lemelle said. "Coach Weist has helped me a lot, the schemes of defense and how to read defenses. Coach (Mike) Digman also as a receiver coach is showing me tricks of the trade as a receiver and how to get leverage on a DB. They have been showing me a lot of things."



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