Unless you’ve been under a rock, you probably know things aren’t going so hot for UConn football. Leading up to last week’s 49-19 blowout loss to a previously one-win Tulsa team, head coach Randy Edsall added more fuel to the fire when he told media that he couldn’t care less about wins and losses.
After getting some flak and suffering a bad loss to the Golden Hurricane, Edsall clarified some of his comments on Sunday’s teleconference call with the Connecticut media. Perhaps most importantly, Edsall said that he, as UConn’s head coach, does in fact want to win football games, even though it doesn’t always look that way on the field.
“Yeah, I want to win, I think you see the way I get after the officials at times, I want to win as much as anybody, ok? But, the thing we are going to do is we are going to do it the right way and weʼre going to do it in a way that is the right way to have sustainable, long-term success,” Edsall said. “I know the wins and losses count, it goes on my record, I understand that, it goes on the universityʼs record, but my thing is this, we arenʼt going to cut those corners to try to get those wins.
Edsall also continued to preach that the culture of the program is not strong right now, and it needs to be reestablished before sustained winning can occur. The coach brought up a few obvious examples of why things aren’t going as well as they probably should be in Storrs, including:
The Sockless Wonder
“We come out to practice here on Friday for our walk-through before we leave. We have a young man who comes out with no socks on, we have a certain dress we are supposed to have. I tell him, ‘What are you doing, we donʼt dress like that. Go back in and get dressed.’ He gave me some type of excuse,” Edsall said. “If you have your program where you want it to be, one of the other players would be on him, not me. So guess what, his butt will be up at 6 a.m. pulling the sled.”
The Ice Cream Man
“We have one guy that wants to bring his ice cream sundae into the meeting. He didnʼt get down to eat in time, when we go into the meetings, we donʼt eat in there because in meetings we pay attention as we try to win a ballgame the next day,” Edsall said. “Then, we have callouts for special teams and heʼs a backup on one of the teams. Coach Allen is going through if someone is down, the next guy is up has to say his name and stand up, that guy didnʼt do it.”
Stories like these make it a little easier to understand why the Huskies haven’t been all that competitive in a lot of football games this season. Edsall does see this culture improving though, and while he says that it will take time, he believes it is heading in the right direction, especially with the younger players that Edsall has brought in.
“Thatʼs why Iʼm saying it takes awhile to get that culture,” Edsall said. Now, do I see that changing now? Yes I do because when I see these young kids and you see them doing some of the things they are doing, they are going with it because thatʼs all they know. We are changing some habits that were formed for a long period of time.”