Kickoff: The Huskies will travel to Logan, Utah to take on the Utah State. This is only the second meeting between the two programs. Utah State beat UConn 38-31 on November 10th 2001 in Storrs.
Today’s game kicks off the Jim Mora era at UConn. Anticipation has been high since Mora was hired on November 11th of last year. Mora complied a record of 46-30 over five seasons at UCLA. He led the program to four bowl games and two ten win seasons. Huskies fans are hoping he can bring that kind of success to Storrs.
Here are four keys for today’s game.
1st Down: Roberson and the running game must be effective: Penn State transfer Taquan Roberson is getting the start. Roberson is a dual threat quarterback who can hurt defenses with his arm and his legs.
If offensive coordinator Nick Charlton can establish the running game early with Robert Burns, Nate Carter and Victor Rosa, then the Huskies will be able to complement them with Roberson. Controlling the clock is key so establishing the ground game early is of utmost importance.
2nd Down: Defensive line must dominate: Getting a consistent pass rush and forcing Utah State into long down situations is a must for the defense. The Huskies will bring a fair amount of pressure but they need a push up front from Sokoya McDuffie, Eric Watts and Dal’mont Gourdine.
3rd Down: Limit the big plays: Big plays were a big problem for the Huskies defense last season. They must limit the big play today and every week if they want to have a chance to compete in games like this.
4th Down: Play clean: After scrimmaging two weeks ago, Coach Mora that the Huskies put the ball on the ground too much and had too many penalties. Playing smart is important week in and week out. Hopefully the Huskies cleaned things up and can limit the mistakes today.
Extra Point: This will be the second straight year the Huskies open Week 0 against a Mountain West opponent. Last season it was Fresno State. A game the Huskies lost.
Final Drive: Opening in Logan, Utah to start the season is no easy task. The Huskies are playing a good opponent who is well coached. Mora is hoping that the team plays clean, limits the mistakes and keeps close in the fourth. If they do those things, they have a shot at winning the game.