UConn football: A long way to go

John F. Silver

EAST HARTFORD, Conn. —Losing football plays.

Way back during spring practice UConn head coach Bob Diaco didn’t even want to think about how to win football games. His goal was to avoid losing, losing plays that can doom a team before the game really starts.

It was as he feared against BYU.

The Huskies, in the first five minutes of the game, had three penalties, a broken assignment that led to a touchdown, a fumble, and then another blown coverage that led to a touchdown.

The Bob Diaco era at UConn began with a two touchdown deficit five minutes in and while it got better from there, the Huskies never really got over the hump on Friday. The Huskies just aren’t good enough to come back from that kind of start.

They didn’t. UConn fell 35-10 to BYU.

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Game recap: BYU 35, UConn 10

Result: Taysom Hill threw for 308 yards and three touchdowns and ran for 94 yards and two touchdowns as BYU overwhelmed UConn 35-10 at Rentschler Field on Friday night in the season opener.

Need to know: The Bob Diaco era got off to a difficult start as BYU jumped out to a 14-0 lead less than five minutes into the game. Hill ran for a 7-yard touchdown run to open the scoring and UConn’s first offensive play was a fumble. Hill then found Mitch Matthews for a 26-yard touchdown pass and it was 14-0 and UConn never got closer.  The Huskies gave up 513 yards of offense to BYU. UConn played two quarterbacks with Casey Cochran passing 17 of 31 for 171 yards and an interception. UConn’s Chandler Whitmer added 13 yards passing. Josh Marriner had the lone touchdown run for the Huskies.

Gameball: Hill showed why he’s a Heisman candidate accounting for over 400 yards of offense.

Links: Recap | Box score

 Next up: UConn plays host to Stony Brook next Saturday at noon on SNY.

UConn, BYU return game changed to Oct. 2

John F. Silver

UConn and BYU announced on Friday prior to their season opening game at Rentschler Field that the return game next season in Provo, Utah will take place on Oct. 2., 2015.

The game, the second of the two-game series, was originally set for Oct. 31 of 2015.

The Huskies will play Villanova on Sept. 5 next season and Army on Sept. 12 in the only non-conference games on the schedule.



Gameday Preview: UConn-BYU

UConn vs. BYU

John Silver previews UConn vs. BYU

Casey Cochran

In the Spotlight: UConn two-quarterback play

The skinny: UConn will go with two quarterbacks on Friday night against BYU. Casey Cochran will get the start but Chandler Whitmer will also see some action. What should we expect?

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UConn men’s 2014-15 schedule released

John F. Silver

The UConn men’s basketball team’s 2014-15 schedule was released on Thursday and includes another ESPN Gameday event feature against SMU this season. 

The Huskies will play home-and-home series against conference heavyweights Cincinnati, Memphis, and Tulsa, which all made the NCAA tourney last season, as well as two games against NIT runner-up SMU, one a nationally-televised contest on CBS, and the other as part of ESPN GameDay.

The Huskies will have a fully-televised schedule, including two games on CBS, one previously announced at Florida on Jan. 3 and the other against SMU at home on March 1. UConn will make its seventh appearance on GameDay at SMU on Feb. 14. UConn will play at least 11 games on ESPN or ESPN2, six on the CBS Sports Network, and five on SNY.tv. The remainder of UConn’s games will be televised by the ESPN family of Networks.

The breakdown of UConn’s home venues as well as game times will be announced at a later date.

UConn will open its conference season on Dec. 31, playing host to Temple at a time to be determined. The Huskies will travel to new AAC member Tulsa on Jan. 13, to Tulane on Feb. 7, and to East Carolina on Feb. 25. Tulsa visits UConn on Feb. 12, Tulane is at UConn on Feb. 22, and East Carolina comes on Feb. 4.





Hartley named to WNBA all-rookie team

By Carl Adamec

Former University of Connecticut All-American Bria Hartley has been named to the WNBA all-rookie team, the league announced Thursday.

The 5-foot-9 guard from North Babylon, New York, was the No. 7 pick in last April’s WNBA Draft by the Seattle Storm and was traded to the Washington Mystics in a draft night deal.

Hartley started 29 of Washington’s 34 games and averaged 9.7 points, fifth among rookies, and 3.1 assists, which was sixth among first-year players. The Mystics advanced to the Eastern Conference playoffs but were eliminated in the semifinals by the Indiana Fever.

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Wednesday update: Huskies 48 hours away from BYU

John F. Silver

UConn head coach Bob Diaco needs offensive linemen Ryan Crozier and Trey Rutherford to develop quickly on the line.

The duo are also true freshmen just a couple of weeks on campus.

Offensive linemen typically redshirt their first year, but Diaco is going to play both Crozier and Rutherford on Friday against BYU. It’s the only way for them to get better as far as Diaco is concerned.

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Diaco on pace of play, BYU

John F. Silver

 BYU is coming to UConn with a high-tempo, no huddle offense that is aimed to put stress on the defense. 

UConn is ready for that, but head coach Bob Diaco is also going to make sure that the BYU offense isn’t going to make the officials spot the ball unnaturally fast. The officials control spotting the ball, not the offense.

It will be a big issues Friday as BYU was third in the nation in plays snapped at 85.45 per game.  BYU also took a snap at 19.51 seconds, the shortest turnaround time in the nation.

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Trouble at corner brewing?

John F. Silver

STORRS — Byron Jones is as good a physical specimen at corner as you’ll find in college football. His cohort, Jhavon Williams, has proven to be an excellent cover corner in his short time playing for the Huskies.

In that sense, as long as Jones is playing, there really isn’t a worry at cornerback for the Huskies. Things like depth at corner are rarely noticed unless someone goes down.

But just off the surface, a scan of two-deep and because of some under-reported departures on the roster, corner looks like it’s one injury away from a problem in the making as the Huskies get ready for BYU on Friday.

We got the first glimpse of the issue at corner when head coach Bob Diaco moved true freshman Brice McAllister to the position from running back immediately at the start of camp. A couple of days later, Tyree Clark left the team for undisclosed reasons.

Then, right at the end of camp, we also saw the departure of David Stevenson, another experienced corner, who also left the team for undisclosed reasons. That’s two veteran corners, who weren’t likely to start at UConn, but have played just enough to give some semblance of depth.

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