You smell that? That, my friends, is the smell of the start of a new academic year, and with it comes all the wondrous and beautiful things that go with the start of a new year. 100 dollar books you never need, dorm food that doesn’t qualify as food as I understand the definition of it, and professors that sincerely try to make accounting enjoyable. But of all these things there’s nothing I enjoy more about the start of a new year than college football. Coming off of a BCS bowl berth, I’ve got some high hopes for the new look Connecticut Huskies, even though someone “experts” don’t think we can compete this year (and when was the last time an ESPN analyst steered you wrong? *cough* NCAA Tournament *cough*.) I’ll tell you why we can.
Quarterback. Some may peg this position as a weakness, and I agree. Under Edsall, the passing game was never quite right. Despite this, we managed a BCS bowl berth with Zach Frasier playing QB. I purpose the idea that no matter who we put out there, there’s no way it could possibly be a downgrade from what we had last year. Rumor has it that true Freshmen Mike Nebrich is the guy that Coach P is going with, but he’s staying hushed about it. As much as I’d love to see Johnney Mac start, I think Mike Nebrich is the guy to go with. The kid is a winner and has been his whole life. I don’t think there is much to lose here by starting a true freshman and you have to love how athletic he is compared to Johnny Mac. I say give him a shot and see what he’s got, because there’s no way he’s worse then what we had.
Halfback. I envision this situation to look a lot like Andre Dixon and Jordan Todman a couple years ago. I trust neither D.J. Shoemate nor Lyle McCombs very much, D.J. because of his fumblitis from last season and Lyle because he’s an unproven asset. I know D.J. is far from proven either, but he was a USC recruit and reports from practice are that he quit doing his best Adrian Peterson impression. That being said, I think if we find a winner in one of them then we will be more than fine, and I think D.J. is in a perfect position to prove why he should be a tailback and not a fullback. If Lyle gets going and we have a two headed rushing attack I’d be ecstatic. That would mean options, and options are always a good thing.
Defense. The D line is nasty. Every starter returns in the secondary. As soon as Linebacker gets a little healthier and a little more experienced, this defensive unit will be disgusting and terrifying, front to back.
Special Teams. Dave Teggart alone is worth a win or two (am I right USF?) and will find his way to a NFL camp eventually. Return ace Nick Williams is back and will have more than his share of opportunities to return kicks. I think it’s cool he’s getting a look at WR, but that didn’t work out too well for Devin Hester in the beginning when the bears put him there and I’d rather have my return ace be exactly that, a return specialist, and not have to worry about playing offense.
The Huskies will be a lot better than people are giving them credit for. There is a weak non-conference schedule that gives our offense and who ever starts at QB an opportunity to get on track before the Big East Schedule. If things shake down properly I see no reason we can’t compete for another league title. I also fear that this may be our last shot at one with TCU entering the league next season, but that’s a discussion for another time.
Now on to something that is truly exciting. Andre Drummond, the number one center in the class of 2012 and potential future number one pick in the NBA draft recently committed to reclassifying to the class of 2011 and playing for Connecticut. Our chance to repeat as champs was pretty good before Andre. With him we’re easily top 4 in the nation and will very much contend for another title. The way we got him a scholarship is a little shady I’ll admit, but if it gives us another chance for a title I’m happy. The future is now for the UConn basketball team.
Get stoked for the new year UConn Country. Football season is so close I can taste it. U-C-O-N-N UCONN UCONN UCONN
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