Whitmer cleared, still game-time decision on start

Connecticut quarterback Chandler Whitmer (10) hands off to Lyle McCombs (43) during an NCAA college football game in Louisville, Ky., Saturday, Nov. 24, 2012. (AP Photo/Garry Jones)

John F. Silver

Quarterback Chandler Whitmer has returned to practice for the Huskies and cleared medically to play UConn head coach Paul Pasqualoni said on Thursday.

“Chandler’s clear,” Pasqualoni said. “He’s available. We will see how he works out (Thursday)…he’s all set.”

Pasqualoni was careful to say that Whitmer wast 100 percent cleared to play.  As far as who is starting  against Cincinnati on Saturday, it was more vague. The coaching staff still wants to see how Whitmer responds and practices and called his status a game-time decision. Whitmer, of course, suffered a head injury against Louisville and missed the fourth quarter and all three overtimes in UConn’s 23- 20 win. He was having a tough game passed for only 7 of 22 for 72 yards and an interception in the win.

McEntee, last year’s starter, was 2 of 7 for 20 yards as the backup.

Pasqualoni also addressed Wednesday’s move to the ACC by Louisville and the snub of UConn. The Huskies remain in the Big East, but has expressed no public support of the conference.

“The people here and the leadership here are doing what they can do,” Pasqualoni said. “I don’t worry about this. I don’t think it is over by a long shot and there will be more coming down the road as we move forward. How soon? I don’t know. There will be more realignment and more movement and Connecticut will continue to be a great program and a great school for any conference to have. People will continue to work at it and continue to be in position to be the best place we  can be.

“It’s a distraction. Not necessary to worry or think about it. The only thing we can control is this game against Cincinnati. That in itself would be a good accomplishment for the program.”
A win over Cincinnati would move the Huskies to 6-6 and a bowl game as the late season push to salvage the season continues.
Pasqualoini wants the focus on 8-3 Cincinnati, but the Huskies can also extend their season for one more game.
” It’s very obvious, you win this game and you have an opportunity to practice and the good fortune to be around (the seniors) and the younger guys get better,” Pasqualoni said. “There are so many benefits to being in a bowl game and we understand that.”