Monday, September 01, 2014

UConn game a homecoming for Stony Brook coach

If there is one person who can appreciate what it is like to win games in the Hartford area it certainly is Stony Brook head coach Chuck Priore.

Before taking over at Stony Brook he posted a 39-9 record in six seasons at Trinity's head coach including a 31-1 mark in his final four seasons. He still owns a house in Wethersfield and admits that he comes back to Connecticut quite often.

"I still have a lot of friends that will be at the game and I am certainly looking forward to getting back up there and playing in (East) Hartford," Priore said on Monday's Colonial Athletic Association weekly conference call. "We will compete and hopefully we will show up and give UConn a good game.

"I am excited (to play at Rentschler)," Priore said. "I have watched some games from the stands and I have spent some time in the press box at different events so it will be exciting to coach the game. We have a couple of local kids who I know are very excited about  it also."

Priore is grateful for the experience at Trinity, his first head coaching gig.

"That was a tremendous experience for me," Priore said. "It was my first head-coaching job, I worked some great people, the institution, the presidents I worked for. The athletic director, Rick Hazelton, certainly gave me the opportunity to grow as a head football coach. I really appreciated my time in Connecticut both living and also as an employee at Trinity."

As for UConn, Priore was impressed with what he saw on tape.

"I see a team that has great potential," Priore said. "I thought Coach (Bob Diaco) did a great job, they played a lot of kids and he is still getting a feel of his talent level. It is one thing to evaluate kids in practice and another to get them on the field. I think their kids stepped to the plate, a lot of young kids and I think he played 40 or so kids on offense and defense which is quite a bit at this level. They have good physicality on defense, their linebackers played downhill, they ave a real good cover corner, the D-line is stout. On the offensive side, I like their quarterbacks, they went at you with a number of running backs and they have some size on the offensive line. They are learning what they need to do BYU, in that game it was all about the quarterback. If that quarterback's not there it is a much closer game. It is a talented program at the FBS level, they've got the scholarships and I think the kids played hard which is what you need the kids to do."

The game will kickoff shortly after noon on Saturday and will be televised on SNY.


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