UConn football: How the 2 QB system worked

John F. Silver

UConn head coach Bob Diaco said on Friday night he was pleased with how the two-quarterback system looked.

How the Huskies decided to sprinkle in Chandler Whitmer over the course of the game was preset well before the game. This wasn’t an on the fly and by feel move. UConn’s rotations are methodically set and designed.

The design on Friday was to give Whitmer every third series, and to bring him in the game in the red zone area save for the first two drives. Cochran, was promised the entire drive his first two possessions. After that, if Cochran didn’t knock the Huskies in, Whitmer was going to come in as a more of a red zone threat.

That change happened one time.

Casey Cochran, who was 17 of 31 for 171 yards passing, worked in the third quarter and  was pulled for Whitmer after taking the Huskies down to the 17-yard line down 28-7. To read more of this story, click here

The day after: On quarterbacks and subs


John F. Silver

EAST HARTFORD, Conn — On Thursday, Bob Diaco had his coaches sit down with their position groups and go over the gameplan.

It was there that the Huskies were told how much they were going to play and what their roles were.

Diaco promised to methodically detail how much players are going to play and had preset snaps and series for these players.

The result? Diaco counted 25 different players playing on offense and defense. UConn played 50 players in the game, not counting special teams.

The Huskies played eight true freshmen in the game.

In one sense, it was a managing marvel. It worked in real time for the Huskies. There were no timeouts because of  sub confusion, no delay of games, no chicken-with-the head cut off sub patterns. The patterns worked, showcasing Diaco’s managing magic.

But was it effective?

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GEICO SportsNite: UConn falls to BYU

GEICO SportsNite has highlights of UConn’s football opener, in which the Huskies were on the losing side of a 35-10 contest against BYU.

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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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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Monday Presser: BYU to open

John F. Silver

STORRS, Conn. — Bob Diaco is an intense guy. Anyone who has ever worked with him, played for him or even talked football with him can feel the intensity and passion dripping when speaking of the sport. 

Monday is another level for the first-time head coach.

Diaco, who has grown adept in a short period of time speaking in front of reporters, was monotone, but with an edge in answering questions from the media in preparation for the opener against BYU on Monday. This week is different than all the others. Diaco was controlled and measured. He physically was keeping it all in and consciously trying to remain composed.

After about a half hour of answering all the questions about his team and the game, Diaco had to let loose with his final answer.

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