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Vanderbilt Football: Getting to know Connecticut

James Franklin and the Vanderbilt Commodores showed no mercy last week in dispatching its initial target, the Elon Phoenix. Franklin and company boast a perfect kill ratio of 1.00 for the 2011 campaign. This is the briefing on their next target.

Week 2 Target: The University of Connecticut


From the wikipedias

Football specifics after the jump.

Most of this was taken straight from the UConn game notes. The information is theirs. We are just saving you from the PDF monsters.

Quick Hits

  • UConn opened the season with a victory against an FCS opponent, Fordham, 35-3. Thusly, new UConn coach Paul Pasqualoni had a successful debut. He is the 28th head football coach in UConn history. He is also now the first UConn head coach since Summer Doyle in 1923 to win his debut game (!).
  • Pasqualoni is the all-time winningest coach in Big East Conference games with 62 victories, and is tied for first in overall wins (108) with Frank Beamer of Virginia Tech. Obviously, Frank Beamer's victories now count towards the ACC, so with his next victory, Pasqualoni will own the record outright.
  • This will be UConn's first road game of the season. This is not a surprising fact.
  • UConn is 2-2 all time vs. the SEC with wins against Vandy and South Carolina, and losses to Vandy and Kentucky.
  • Redshirt freshman Lyle McCombs rushed for 141 yards in his college debut. I am happy about this because McCombs is not Jordan Todman, who rushed for 190 yards and 2 TD's in last year's VU-UConn matchup.
  • UConn has scheduled a home and home series with Tennessee, with UT going to Rentschler Field on Sept. 26, 2015 and UConn playing at Neyland on Sept. 3, 2016.
  • Paul Pasqualoni's first career game at Syracuse came with a 37-10 win vs. Vanderbilt at the Carrier Dome on Sept. 7, 1991. I'm pretty certain my father attended this game and brought me back a Syracuse jersey, which I will now find and burn.
  • Unlike the Commodore baseball team, there are no players on the Commodore football team from the state of Connecticut. UConn cannot boast of any players from Tennessee.
  • UConn defensive coordinator Don Brown coached at Maryland from 2009-2010 with Coach Franklin, OC John Donovan, and TE coach Charles Bankins.
  • UConn has won four of its last five road openers, with the loss coming against Michigan last year. (They beat Ohio in 2009, Temple in 2008, Duke in 2007, and Indiana in 2006)
  • UConn began playing football in 1896, and has an overall record of 482-503-38 (1,022 games). Vanderbilt is 558-568-50 (1,176 games).
  • UConn was picked sixth (of eight) in the Big East preseason media poll.
  • UConn is 22-26 all time in Big East conference games. Their best mark is 5-2 (2007, 2010). They are currently on a five-game Big East winning streak, the longest in school history.
  • An actual sentence in the UConn game notes (emphasis theirs): "Over the past 103 games, UConn has outgained its opponent 64 times. This stretch, like many UConn trends, dates back to a 28-24 loss at Vanderbilt on Oct. 26, 2002."
  • UConn's four captains: Kendall Reyes (two-timer), Kashif Moore, Moe Petrus, Blidi Wreh-Wilson (who had a 44-yard INT for a TD in the fourth quarter of last season's VU-UConn game to make it 38-21).
  • UConn entered 2011 without a quarterback with a collegiate start and only one quarterback with a collegiate appearance.

Very Brief Scouting

The following Huskies are on preseason watch lists: Jr. TE Ryan Griffin, John Mackey Award; Sr. K Dave Teggart, Lou Groza; Sr. DT Kendal Reyes, Outland Trophy, Bronko Nagurski Trophy, Lombardi Award; Sr. C Moe Petrus, Outland Trophy, Lombardi Award; Sr. OT Mike Ryan, Lombardi Award.

As you can tell, UConn's strength is in their offensive line. Petrus has 40 consecutive starts, the last 27 at center. Ryan was All-Big East first team last season and has started 22 games over the past 2 seasons. Jr. Adam Masters will play right guard and started ten games last season -- the final six at right tackle. So. Kevin Friend plays right tackle and started two games last season.

There are three QBs competing for playing time at UConn:

  1. Sr. Johnny McEntee. Played in two games over the previous two seasons. Started the Fordham game last week and was 8-for-12 for 113 yards.
  2. R-Fr. Scott McCummings. Attended same high school as Doug Flutie (WHICH MEANS HE WILL TOTALLY BECOME DOUG FLUTIE JUST YOU WATCH GUYS). Passed for over 2,000 yards and 15 TDs, rushed for 12 TDs his senior year of high school, which is neat but fairly irrelevant. He had a 55-yard TD pass vs. Fordham to go with seven rushing attempts for 23 yards.
  3. Fr. Mike Nebrich. "Highly decorated Virginia high school player who enrolled at UConn for the spring 2011 semester. Broke the Virginia state record for all-purpose yards with 4,968 and scored 59 TDs." He played vs. Fordham as well and had 11 yards rushing to go with 3-for-8 passing for 60 yards.

Three-headed monster?

The section on their kicker, Dave Teggart is very extensive. The following are the bolded sections:

  • His 52 career field goals is a school record, which he broke with a 24-yard FG vs. Cincinnati in 2010.
  • His 104 extra points is tied for second in school history while Matt Nuzie had 124 from 2003-206. His 259 career points is tied for first in school history with Nuzie.
  • Teggart's 25 field goals last season was a school single-season record.
  • He had a total of three field goals in that game [vs. WVU, 10/29/10] and was named Big East Special Teams Player of the Week for his efforts.
  • Dating back to 2009, Teggart had kicked a field goal in 14 of the past 15 games.
  • Teggart is the first kicker in school history to successfully convert his first 11 field goal attempts.

So. Nick Williams lead the country in kickoff returns in 2010 with 35.29 yards per return.

Pronunciation Guide

Kenton Adeyemi = ADD-a-YEM-ee
Tevrin Brandon = TEV-rin
Ty-Meer Brown = tie-MEER
Kijuan Dabney = kih-juan
Dwayne Gratz = grats (like congrats)
Mark Hansson = Hansen
Martin Hyppolite = HIP-o-light
Jonathan Jean-Louis = zhawn loo-EE
Twyon Martin = twawn
Kashif Moore = cuh-sheef
Sio Moore = SEE-oh
Michael Nebrich = KNEE-brick
Andrew Opoku = ah-poe-coo
Michael Osiecki = oh-shess-ski
Muhammad Petrus = pet-russ
Yawin Smallwood = yah-win
Brandon Steg = stegg (rhymes with egg)
Shamar Stephen = stef-in
Blidi Wreh-Wilson = bleed-ee ray-wilson [humorously, they misspelled his first name here]

Bulletin Board Material

If seeing the name Johnny McEntee didn't ring a bell, enjoy the following video. The UConn Game Notes has this to say: "[Johnny McEntee (Fullerton, Calif.)]...gained international fame last winter with his "trick shot" video on Youtube...the video now has over six million hits."