The Day After Call: HC Randy Edsall Breaks Down The Huskies Season Opening Win

OPENING STATEMENT: “Not a whole lot different from what I talked about after the game after watching the film, but I really thought we did a lot of very positive things for the first game. Offensively, we drove the ball 7-times out of 12-series into the plus-side of the field, ended up with three touchdowns and a field goal. The thing that we didn’t take advantage of, we basically turned it over three times, on downs one time, a fumble and an interception. That was just something that we need to get better at. We had three, three-and-outs, which we don’t like. Then we had 5-plays and then we punted towards the end of the game and then on the 12th series of the game, we took a knee. I thought there were a lot of positives there. I thought we ran the ball well. I don’t think we played as physical up front as we needed to on the offensive line, which we need to get better at, but I thought we ran the ball really well. I thought we had missed opportunities in the passing game, those are things we need to get better at.”

“Defensively, out of 12-drives, they had 6 three-and-outs, so fifty percent of their drives were three-and-outs. I don’t think we had 6 three-and-outs until probably halfway through the season a year ago. The one thing I thought we did well on defense, we really limited what we consider big plays. They only had 2 in the running game and had none in the passing game. Offensively, we had four explosive plays in the running game and two in the passing game. I thought that was good. We didn’t win the turnover battle, which is something that we try to strive to do. Both of them I thought were careless plays. One, we didn’t protect the ball and the second one, the pick, that was a ball that should have been thrown [to a different guy], we had a guy sitting wide-open over the middle, it would’ve been a first down.”

“Special teams, I thought we got a really good effort out of our guys on special teams. I thought we covered really well except for that first kickoff where I think we had three missed tackles on that play, but I thought Ian Swenson played really well on special teams, Luke [Magliozzi] had a spectacular night kicking the ball. Even on defense, we didn’t tackle as well as we would’ve liked to and the same thing on special teams. I think that’s always something that in a first game is always out there. Three penalties on defense, the penalty on Omar [Fortt] was a good call, it’s stuff that you can’t do and he knows that. Tahj [Herring-Wilson] got a DPI [defensive pass interference], that’s because of technique, so we need to continue to work on our technique. I really didn’t think that one on the out of bounds play was really one that should’ve been called. We had four on offense, two false starts on Christian [Haynes] and then a hold on Matt Peart and a hold on Cam Hairston. Those are all little things we need to clean up. Overall, I’m very, very pleased with what took place and with all the new guys we had playing, to come away with a win, that’s the bottom line because there are only 50-percent of the teams in America that are going to be sitting here at 1-0 after Monday night, so at least we are on the right half of that fifty-percent.”

GAME BALLS: “We have them, but haven’t given them to the team yet since they were off today. We’ll do that tomorrow morning.”

WHAT DID THE ABSENCE OF THE TOP TWO RECEIVERS [ARDELL BROWN & CAM ROSS], LIMIT WHAT YOU COULD DO IN THE PASSING GAME?: “When you have guys that are out, there are certain qualities that they possess that you want to try to take advantage of. If they are your top guys and they aren’t playing, then you need to take a look at what gives you the best opportunity to move the ball and to do the things you need to do to score points. Basically, that’s what we did. Any time you get injuries, it’s going to alter what you do because most of the time, the guys that are replacing the guys who are injured, don’t possess the same qualities that the injured guys have, so you need to tailor things to suit their needs and help them be successful in trying to maintain everything you want to maintain for your team to be successful.”

DID THINGS EXCEED WHAT YOU THOUGHT HEADING IN, OR WERE THEY ON PAR WITH WHAT YOU THOUGHT YOU’D BE LOOKNG AT?: “I felt defensively that we would see the improvement and I’ve said that, that we would be better on defense. We just didn’t fit that one play right on the 55-yarder and then a couple of those penalties on the last drive they had, I mean we only gave up 14-points on defense. Yeah, there were 21-points up there, but 7 of them weren’t given up by the defense, that was the offense that gave those up. I felt like we could get that type of performance defensively, I saw it coming together. Are we where we want to be? No, but it’s a start and it’s a lot better than where we were a year ago.”

“Offensively, I thought that we would be able to do what we did. I think if we would have sustained blocks and executed a little better we could’ve rushed for over 300-yards last night. That’s part of the process that you have to go through with all the things that you want to try to get done. I felt special teams wise, that we would better because of the pool of players that we could have to play on special teams. There were some starters out there, but there were a lot of guys that weren’t starters who were playing on special teams that weren’t playing much on offense or defense, but will make their niche on special teams. We felt our pool was a little deeper this year. I was very happy with Clay Harris kicking the ball the way he did. Again, Luke Magliozzi had a really good night, still a couple that we need to have a little more hangtime on I thought Q [Quayvon Skanes] did a really good job handling all the punts. I thought we did a good job handling all those sky kicks they were giving us on our kickoff return. I felt pretty good about what the special teams did and I thought we could get that. The thing that was disappointing to me was that we weren’t able to finish drives on offense. If we finish the drives, it’s a whole different game. We turned it over, we took 3-or-7 away from yourself and gave them 7, you don’t ever want to do that. I felt we had total control of the game, we just weren’t able to finish some things and we gave up the two big running plays and two fifteen yard penalties that really hurt us.”

ON THE CALEB THOMAS APPEAL: “We put a waiver in last week and that waiver got denied. The appeal was submitted either yesterday or today. The appeals committee meets on Tuesday, so hopefully by Tuesday afternoon we’ll have some resolution to this. There is precedent that waivers have been granted, plus he’s already served a one-game suspension where in the situations where waivers were granted, they didn’t have to do that. It’s just the nature of how the process is. The people at fault are our people here [at UConn]. This could have all been avoided if he wasn’t misadvised, we would have never had to put a waiver in and go through this process if people did their job.”

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