11 November 2010
Game Day Stories (Good Guys):
- Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: Pitt's Wannstedt on alert for effecient Connecticut
- Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: Panthers in position to put stranglehold on conference
- Pittsburgh Tribune Review: Panthers look to extend hot streak
- Pittsburgh Tribune Review: Baldwin graduate feels at home as Pitt defensive end
Game Day Stories (Bad Guys):
- Hartford Courant: UConn has a big challenge when Pitt comes to town
- The Day: Huskies look to knock Pitt from Big East perch
Below the fold is a Q&A with the New England blog, SOX & Dawgs. Good stuff from a UConn perspective.
Hail to Pitt.
1. If there is any Big East team that can claim to be in the same stratosphere of disappointment as Pitt, it's UConn. What the hell happened?
There are many things that can be attributed to the disappointment. The suspensions of Cody Endres and Erik Kuraczea during the preseason. Zach Frazer not playing to his ability, no real downfield threat, too many holes in the defense, poor special teams play. Then of course you have the dismissal of Endres from the team right before the Louisville game which didn’t really help matters at all.
But to me is this team isn’t as good as all the preseason hype. They have weaknesses which teams have been able to exploit and take advantage of.
2. UConn's two headed running back monster of Jordan Todman and Andre Dixon has been condensed into one insanely talented Jordan Todman. For those of us who haven't seen Uconn's running game this season, what has been the keys to its success?
Don’t forget that it started as Andre Dixon and Donald Brown. Then it was just Brown then last year Dixon and Jordan Todman went off and as you said now Todman. The key to their success has been the offensive line. Head coach Randy Edsall may not get the best recruits but he gets guys that can work. And over the past few years, he brought in a great group of guys on the offensive front who battle in the trenches to open up holes for those backs.
3. Give us a player or two to watch for Thursday that a non-UConn fan might not know of?
Running back Robbie Frey would be one guy. He’s been injured at different points of the season but when he’s healthy, he’s been able to spell Todman and put up good numbers doing it.
Fullback Anthony Sherman is another guy. It’s not too often you’ll see him carrying the ball but what you will see is him helping out with the blocking on the running plays or even in pass protection. But where you’ll really see him all over the place is on special teams. He has a knack for getting down there and making the tackle similar to how Deon Anderson did a few years back.
4. UConn's defense is top 40 in terms of points against at 21.4 points per game. However, the Huskies are dead last in the conference is total defense, run defense and 5th against the pass. What gives?
Part of the problem has been UConn’s inability to stop a mobile quarterback. Denard Robinson ate them up, Vanderbilt’s QB ate them up and they’ve given up to many big plays from being burned in the secondary. What it comes down is the fact that they are simply not executing their assignments on defense.
5. Where do you see UConn in 5 years: in the Big East, in a post-schism Big East, or other?
I’m hoping to see the Huskies continue to improve over time. One thing that’s killed them since they joined the Big East is their inability to win a game in an opponent’s stadiums. It’s been a rare thing to see. I am hoping the Big East stays together for football and adds a couple of more quality teams because I think if UConn ended up in any other conference they would get smoked.
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