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2011 UConn Huskies Gambling Odds | Predictions

2011-2012 Football Previews – Big East Conference – Connecticut Huskies

Previous coach Randy Edsall did a remarkable job in bringing this program from literally non-existent in the FBS ranks to national relevancy – the Huskies were in the Fiesta Bowl vs. Oklahoma last year.

Big East 2011-12 Football Previews: Connecticut Huskies
Coach: Paul Pasqualoni
2010 Record: 8-5
Connecticut Gambling Odds from Sportsbook.com to win BCS: +5000

UConn Team Page – Players Stats – Roster – 2011 Schedule –>

New coach Pasqualoni is more experienced than Edsall (who bolted to Maryland in the offseason), so he must continue right where Edsall left off.

His resume is encouraging, as Pasqualoni coached Syracuse for 14 years, guiding the Orange to nine bowls and producing alumni such as Donovan McNabb, Marvin Harrison and Dwight Freeney.

Yet in 2011, this may be easier said than done, as Connecticut does not have any proven commodities at the linch-pin positions of QB and RB. The Huskies have their usual glut of defensive talent and scrappy players here and there, but a repeated visit to the top of the Big East heap will require more than that.

Team Strengths

UConn has a chunk of defensive players that will vie for all-Big East honors. Veterans like DT Kendall Reyes, DE Jesse Joseph, LB Sio Moore and CB Blidi Wreh-Wilson will command a unit that should be stout indeed. New defensive co-ordinator Don Brown should be able to get a lot out of this group of kids.

On the other side of the ball, the offensive line is the best news, anchored by seniors Moe Petrus (an NFL talent), Mike Ryan and Gary Bardzak.

Though important positions are unproven and rather unsettled, there is an interesting option at RB in USC transfer D.J. Shoemate, formerly one of the highest recruits in the nation and bull-strong at 5”11, 220 lbs.

Team Weaknesses

The backfield must have some new faces emerge after the offense loses key players like QB Zach Frazer and RB Jordan Todman. [soliloquy id=”82219″]

Sophomore Michael Box might be the best option under center, while Shoemate should get the first look at RB, though redshirt frosh Lyle McCombs also presents an intriguing skill-set.

The lone eyebrow-raising situation on the defense is at LB, where though Moore is excellent, two new starters must emerge. Consider the inside track given to junior Jory Johnson and underclassman Yawin Smallwood.

2011-12 Connecticut Football Prediction: 8-5

Having question marks at your team’s most crucial positions is never a good thing. But the optimistic Huskies observer notes that the team’s 2011 schedule is rather cupcake-esque.

The only two really daunting challenges are playing at West Virginia and at Pittsburgh; every other game on the slate, the Huskies have a shot at winning.

However, this forecast is contingent on Connecticut getting stability and productivity from the offensive backfield. Not having an established QB is really a huge hole to worry about.

The Huskies were notoriously a scrappy offensive team even when they had vets at those positions; with green underclassmen and transfer options, the outlook could be bleak.

Connecticut’s defense and special teams are absolutely in good shape. Pasqualoni must get his troops (in his first year on the job, no less) playing hard-working, conservative football and making as few mistakes as possible.

UConn won’t be able to keep up in a barnburner, so if the Huskies can keep everything in front of them in 2011, they have the potential for a respectable season.

2011 UConn Huskies Schedule

9/1/11 7:30 PM ET FORD
9/10/11 7:30 PM ET @VAN
9/16/11 8:00 PM ET IOWST
9/24/11 12:00 PM ET @BUFF
10/1/11 12:00 PM ET WMICH
10/8/11 12:00 PM ET @WVIRG
10/15/11 12:00 PM ET SOFLA
10/26/11 8:00 PM ET @PITT
11/5/11 12:00 PM ET SYR
11/19/11 12:00 PM ET LOU
11/26/11 12:00 PM ET RUTG
12/3/11 12:00 PM ET @CIN

Click here to check out MORE 2011 college football previews for the 2011-2012 NCAA Football Season!


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