Huskies face big challenge Vs. Syracuse

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UConn Athletic Communications / September 9, 2022

Television: CBS Sports Network

Radio: UConn Sports Network of Learfield – ESPN 97.9

Live Stats: UConn.StatBroadcast.com

Play Notes: UConn Syracuse

STORRS – There could very well be bigger games in the future for the UConn football team than Saturday night’s game against Syracuse at Pratt & Whitney Stadium at Rentschler Field (7 p.m., CBS Sports Network), but there It’s hard to believe the Huskies will put him up against a bigger opponent.

Literally.

On the offensive line, the Orange (1-0) average over 6-foot-5 and 330 pounds. Tight ends are 6-5 and 6-7, one-sided wide outs are 6-6 and 6-4 and quarterback Garrett Shrader is 6-4, 228.

And, oh yeah, running back Sean Tucker has already rushed for over 2,200 career yards and ranks 14e on Syracuse’s all-time roster, which includes legendary names like Jim Brown, Floyd Little, Ernie Davis and Larry Csonka.

“It’s a huge challenge for us, but also a great opportunity to play against a really, really good Syracuse team,” the UConn head coach said. Jim Mora said. “It’s a gigantic offensive line – big, physical, experienced. They do a really good job in their running scheme and a really good job of protecting.”

The Orange skill position players also made a strong impression when the UConn coach watched the footage as Syracuse edged Louisville, 31-7, in last week’s season opener.

“I know Sean Tucker is the hype over Heisman and if you watch him run the football, if you watch him come out of the backfield as a passer, he’s certainly worthy,” Mora said. “He’s a physical fullback. He runs with power, he runs with speed, he’s elusive and he can catch the ball. He poses a huge challenge for us.

“The quarterback, Garrett Shrader, is just a big guy who’s very athletic. He’s a really good runner. He throws the ball well to their big receivers. He’s not a guy who goes down easily – he doesn’t he doesn’t slip a lot, he doesn’t go out of bounds a lot. He’s a physical player.”

The Syracuse defense, meanwhile, shut out Louisville for the last three quarters after giving up a first-quarter touchdown.

UConn (1-1), however, is coming off a 28-3 victory over Central Connecticut and came out of the game without any major injuries.

“We have to be explosive off the ball, we have to play with a good level of pad, we have to use leverage, we have to not cling to blocks,” Mora said. “But they’re going to move you. We’re at the stage of our development where the best thing for us is to keep doing what we’re doing and try to do it better and better.”

That means putting the ball in the hands of sophomore running back Nate Carter, who gained 313 yards in two games for the Huskies, and relying on the freshman quarterback’s decision making. Sion Turnerwho completed 26 of 53 passes for 281 yards and three touchdowns.

“It’s a good look at where we are as a program,” said UConn’s offensive coordinator. Nick Charlton. “Syracuse was ranked in the top 25 defensively last year and they’re bringing back the majority of their starters. They’re a really good team. we.”

The match will be on the 12the meeting between the teams, dating back to the old Big East Conference football league, and UConn hold a 6-5 advantage, including a 4-1 home record against the Orange. Syracuse have won the last three meetings, however, including a 51-21 victory in 2018 at the Carrier Dome in the last encounter. UConn’s last win over Syracuse was a 28-21 decision at Rentschler Field in 2011.

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