Saturday, October 15, 2011

Defense Steals The Show As UConn Wins Homecoming Duel

Final score UConn 16 - USF 10

There are a lot of things to take away from this game, the most important is that UConn won and is now 3-4 on the season and much better off than they were at the start of the day in terms of bowl aspirations. Without scoring a single offensive point the Huskies were able to stop BJ Daniels just enough times to hold on. A big day from Dave Teggart kept UConn close and then a forced fumble scooped up by Byron Jones, who has had a rough few weeks as the replacement for Blidi Wreh-Wilson in the secondary, sealed the win as for the rest of game running the clock down was the priority.

If I were a USF fan I would be furious about the play calling in the second half, after coming out of the locker room and moving effortlessly down the field the Bulls continually tried to run the ball up the middle regardless of the lack of results. I think given some more creative play calling and some better usage of BJ Daniels' athletic ability the Huskies probably would've lost this game.

Regardless of all of the offensive struggles in this game, another two turnovers and only 250 total yards, UConn comes away a winner. The saving grace was that the special teams stepped up huge, Teggart was 3-3 on field goals and Cole Wagner had a couple huge punts. We know the defense is solid up front and they managed to force four turnovers but aside from the fumble return were only able to turn one of them into three points. It just isn't enough. This offense needs to have some more wow factor and a lot of why it doesn't is because of pass protection and dropped passes. McEntee with time was deadly accurate and on multiple occasions and from multiple receivers there were inexcusable drops on third down, but that was only when he had time which was almost never. The Bulls recorded six sacks, and that doesn't include the multiple times he was rushed and flushed from the pocket. On 23 pass attempts McEntee completed 13, but with at least three drops his numbers could have been much better. The biggest problem however is the lack of finishing in the red zone, in three attempts the Huskies settled for three field goals. This includes a possession in which UConn had three downs from the 1 yard line and couldn't punch it in. These are the kinds of mistakes which have haunted the Huskies in past games but luckily in this match up the defense and special teams were enough.

On to next week, the Huskies visit Pitt in a showdown of 3-4 teams.

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