Husky kickoff: UConn vs. Pitt
Updated 12:16 am, Friday, November 9, 2012
UConn vs. Pitt
WHEN: Tonight, 8
WHERE: Rentschler Field, East Hartford (40,000)
ON THE AIR: ESPN2, WTIC-AM 1080
LINE: Pitt by 3
RECORDS: UConn 3-6, 0-4 Big East; Pitt 4-5, 1-3 Big East
LAST WEEK: UConn lost to South Florida 13-6; Pitt lost to Notre Dame 29-26 in three OTs.
SERIES: Tied 4-4
LAST MEETING: Pitt defeated UConn 35-20 on October 26, 2011 at Heinz Field.
INJURIES: UConn: Defensive end E.J. Norris (shoulder) out for season; G Adam Masters (ankle) out for season; DE Jesse Joseph (Achilles) out for season; DT Ted Jennings (knee) out for season; LB Sio Moore (neck) probable.
When UConn has the ball ...
BROKEN RECORD: UConn head coach Paul Pasqualoni has been talking about this since Week 1 -- they have to establish the run game. The Huskies are averaging just 82.0 rushing yards a game and top tailback Lyle McCombs is averaging just 68.4 yards. He averaged 95.9 last season. If UConn can't run the football, they can't win. Period.
MAKE IT SPECIAL: UConn must get its special teams on track. Nick Williams hasn't had a punt return in the last two games. Might be time to forget the fair catch and start taking some chances.
SEEING RED: In 22 trips into the opponents' red zone this season, UConn has scored 10 touchdowns. That's a miserable 45 percent success rate. Ugh. If that doesn't improve ... 3-9 could be the Huskies final record.
When Pitt has the ball ...
SLOW SUNSERI: Another game, another solid quarterback challenge for the Huskies defense. This week it's Tino Sunseri, who's passed for 2,363 yards and 14 touchdowns this season. Even better, he's thrown just two interceptions and none in the last six games. Last year, he passed for 419 yards against UConn, a career best.
GRAHAM CRACKER: Tailback Ray Graham is back running like he did a year ago before he tore his ACL against the Huskies last season. Graham has 794 yards and eight touchdowns, while averaging 88.2 yards a game. Last week against No. 4 Notre Dame (who surrender just 95.2 yards rushing a game), Graham had 172 yards.
CLOSE THE STREET: WR Devon Street is the Big East's most productive wideout. He leads the conference in yards per game (81.1) and receptions (5.9). The last Pitt receiver to finish as the league leader in those stats was Larry Fitzgerald. He's in the NFL now.