That wasn't what we expected.
Well, that's not completely true. Most Husky fans expected a loss today, but nobody could have foreseen how it happened. Even though UConn lost by seventeen points, this game was close until mid-way through the fourth quarter. There is a lot to be optimistic about, but also some glaring weaknesses that will need time to improve.
The Broncos got off to a quick lead even though UConn won the toss and chose to receive. On the Huskies first drive, Boise State returned an Arkeel Newsome fumble for a touchdown. It was looking like it might get ugly.
But then UConn was actually able to move the ball through the air against a vulnerable Boise secondary. True freshman Alec Bloom caught a 16-yard touchdown from Chandler Whitmer to put the Huskies up 10-7 with ten minutes left in the second quarter. Geremy Davis had a relatively quiet day, catching only three balls for 47 yards, but did bring in a 10-yard touchdown in the second half to help get UConn within three going into the fourth quarter.
Chandler Whitmer looked really solid today. He was smart under pressure, tucking and running when necessary, hit most of his throws and didn't make too many mistakes. The scoring summary will show that a Whitmer pick-six iced the game, but that ball was wrestled away from Geremy Davis, it wasn't a bonehead throw. The redshirt senior played all but two drives in the game, only sitting one meaningful drive out. He finished with 209 yards, 2 touchdowns and 2 interceptions, completing 16 out of 29 pass attempts.
The offensive line looked better, but 8 sacks is way too many. Also, on Newsome's fumble, the Boise defensive line blew right through UConn's front to meet the ballcarrier right after he received the hand-off.
The defense played great, forcing multiple three-and-outs, and limiting star running back Jay Ajayi to 52 yards from scrimmage and no scores. The secondary was eventually exposed, as multiple missed assignments led to big plays through the air for the Boise State offense-- wide receiver Matt Miller had 2 touchdowns and 74 yards on five receptions. The important thing is, we know we can count on the defense to be strong this year. They held an explosive offense (relatively) in-check today.
After two so-so weeks, we wanted to see the improvement that Bob Diaco has been promising, and that's exactly what he delivered. If you told me last week after the Stony Brook game and the Cochran announcement (by the way, best assistant coach ever!), that we would have the ball down 3 with a chance to win in the fourth quarter I would have slapped you silly and asked you to share your drugs. UConn gave us four exciting quarters of football today against a quality opponent and for that we should be proud.
Oh, also this happened.
Next Week: the Huskies travel to Tampa to take on USF on Friday night at 8pm on ESPN or ESPN2.
Buy tickets for the Temple game! (9/27 - next home game)