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Paw Prints – Memphis Tigers (3-8, 1-6) @ UConn Huskies (2-9, 2-5) Preview

Paw Prints - UConn football

This week:

Memphis Tigers @ UConn Huskies

The UConn Huskies will finish off the 2013 season on Saturday as they'll host the Memphis Tigers at Rentschler Field. Kickoff is scheduled for 1 p.m. and it's Senior Day for UConn.

The Line:

According to DocsSports.com odds, the game is a pick'em and the over/under is 43 points

Tickets:

According to UConn Huskies ticket office, there are still tickets available to Saturday's game.

Getting To The Game:

Here is link for the weather report. Here is all the parking info you will need for the game, this link includes directions to Rentschler Field. Here is a Rentschler Field seating chart and here is some general information for Rentschler Field.

The parking lots will open up 4 hours before kickoff. Here is a list of the tailgating rules at the Rent.

At UConn home games, FanFest takes place starting four hours before kickoff up until 30 minutes before the game. It takes place between Gates A and B outside the stadium gates.

The offerings change each game, but activities typically include inflatable games for children, live bands, promotional vehicles and UConn student-athletes from various teams signing autographs.

The “Husky Walk” is a chance for fans to welcome the UConn team as they get off the team buses and head to the stadium. That takes place approximately two hours and 15 minutes before kickoff between Gates A and B.

Once again this season at the end of home games, the UConn team will sing the “UConn Husky” fight song in front of the student section at Rentschler Field.

BROADCAST INFORMATION

Television:

Saturday’s game will be available on ESPN3. John Brickley is on play-by-play with Matt Chatham doing color.

A replay of Saturday’s game will be air on SNY on Tuesday, Dec. 10 at 2 p.m.

Radio:

The UConn IMG Sports Network is the home of Husky football on the radio. WTIC NewsTalk 1080 in Hartford serves as the flagship station and is the state’s only 50,000 watt signal and can be heard in 23 states and parts of Canada.

Veteran UConn announcers Joe D’Ambrosio (play-by-play) and Wayne Norman (color commentary) return to call the action with Kevin Nathan on the sidelines.

UConn football on home Saturday dates gets going early with “Breakfast At The Rent” with Ray Dunaway and Scott Gray beginning at 6:00 a.m. For noon games, the UConn Tailgate Show will air from 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. The pregame show begins at 11:30 a.m. followed by the game and then postgame “Husky Talk” with Nathan.

The Memphis game will also be available on Sirius Radio Channel 132 and XM 192.

Here is a full list of stations on the UConn IMG Radio Network.

Memphis Tigers Radio:

The game will be broadcast on the Memphis Tigers Radio Network's flagship station of WREC 600 AM. Dave Woloshin has the play-by-play with Jarvis Greer as his analyst.

To continue reading the Memphis Tigers @ UConn Huskies preview, click on the read more button below if you're on the home page.

Last Week:

UConn picked up its first win of the season beating the Temple Owls 28-21 on the road. Rutgers lost to the UCF Knights 41-17.

History:

Saturday’s game will be the first-ever meeting between UConn and Memphis in the sport of football.

Connections:

UConn does not have any Tennessee natives on its roster while Memphis does not have any Connecticut natives.

UConn defensive coordinator Hank Hughes was on the Memphis staff from 1998-2000 as the defensive line coach.

UConn Notes:

Here are is the video from head coach T.J. Weist's press conference. If you don't have time to watch, here are the quotes Weist's press conference as well quotes from some of the players.

Here is UConn's roster and 2013 schedule.

Here is UConn's depth chart for the game.

T.J. Weist, a 25-year veteran of the coaching profession who most recently served as the wide receivers coach at Cincinnati, is the interim head coach at UConn for the rest of the 2013 season and making his head coach debut this week vs. USF. Weist was elevated to that position on Sept. 30 — four games into the 2013 season. Weist is in his first season at UConn and continues to serve as offensive coordinator and also has position responsibility with the wide receivers.

The captains of the 2013 UConn Huskies football team are Steve Greene, Shamar Stephen, Yawin Smallwood and Lyle McCombs, who was named a captain before the Temple game by Weist.

Saturday’s game vs. Memphis will mark the final Rentschler Field appearance for 14 UConn seniors.

They are: Jimmy Bennett, Offensive Tackle, Alexandria, Va., Accounting/Political Science; Tyler Bullock, Offensive Guard, Mechanicsburg, Pa., Communication Sciences; Chad Christen, Kicker, Etters, Pa., Sociology; Ryan Donohue, Linebacker, Montvale, N.J., Political Science; Kevin Friend, Offensive Tackle, Warrentown, Va., Political Science; Steve Greene, Offensive Guard, Ebensburg, Pa., Business Fundamentals; Frank Guardi, Wide Receiver, New Fairfield, Conn., Communication Sciences; Martin Hyppolite, Running Back, Wakefield, Mass., Political Science; Jesse Joseph, Defensive End, Laval, Quebec, Political Science; Taylor Mack, Cornerback, Powder Springs, Ga., Communication Sciences; Spencer Parker, Tight End, Newington, Conn., Sociology; Shamar Stephen, Defensive Tackle, Brookville, N.Y., Economics; Cole Wagner, Punter, York, Pa., Economics; Tim Willman, Defensive Tackle, Fulton, Md., Economics. Nine of the 14 seniors have started on offense, defense or special teams in 2013, and 13 have played significant roles for UConn this season. Bennett, Greene, and Stephen have started all 11 games this year and the 14 seniors have combined for 186 starts in their year on offense and defense and 256 including special teams.

The 2013 season marks the tenth anniversary of the opening of Rentschler Field with many special events planned for the season to commemorate that.

The Huskies have sold out 30 of their first 67 dates at Rentschler Field. UConn has played to 95.7-pct. of capacity all-time there, drawing 2,566,986 fans, or an average of 38,313 per game.

UConn was picked to finish 7th in 2013 AAC Preseason Poll.

The following players were named Game Ball winners in UConn’s win over Temple on November 23: Offense: Geremy Davis; Defense: Yawin Smallwood, Tim Willman; Special Teams: Cole Wagner.

The following were named Game Ball winners in UConn’s win over Rutgers on Saturday. Offense: Casey Cochran. Defense: Taylor Mack.

The 21-point deficit that the Huskies overcame to beat Temple on November 23 was the largest since UConn entered the FBS in 2002. UConn trailed Temple 21-0 but came back to post the 28-21 win. The previous high was 17 points, when Western Michigan led UConn 17-0 in the second quarter on Nov. 1, 2003, but came back to win 41-27. UConn overcame 14-point deficits to top Notre Dame (2009), Pittsburgh (2006), Duke (2004) and Ohio (2002).

UConn’s 2013 schedule is currently ranked the 46th toughest in the nation out of 127. The ranking is based on the records of past and future opponents. UConn’s schedule is the fourth- toughest in the American. Appalachian State is ranked No. 1 this week, followed by Tennessee, Purdue, Georgia and Virginia.

For just the third time in school history, UConn has faced three ranked teams in the Associated Press poll at the time of the game. Louisville checked in at No. 20 while Michigan was No. 14 for the Sept. 21 game and UCF was No. 21 for the Oct. 26 game.

Lyle McCombs is 27 rushing attempts away from tying Donald Brown's record of 698.

Geremy Davis is 122 yards away from having 1,000 yards receiving season

Casey Cochran scored the game-tying touchdown on a one-yard run vs. Temple, the first rushing TD for a UConn QB this season.

Cochran is now 2-1 as the starter at QB. Chandler Whitmer was 0-4 as was Tim Boyle.

Taylor Mack was named the American Athletic Conference Defensive Player of the Week after picking up two interceptions

Cochran was named to the American Athletic Conference Honor Roll after going 25-for-33 for 311 yards and two touchdowns.

Consecutive Years of Returning a Kickoff/Punt for a Touchdown:

  • 1. LSU 12
  • 2. FIU 10
  • 2. Ohio State 10
  • 4. UConn 9
  • 5. Florida 8
  • 5. Ole Miss 8
  • 5. Kansas State 8
  • 8. Louisiana Tech 7
  • 8. Oklahoma State 7
  • 10. UCF 6
  • 11. Auburn 5
  • 11. Southern Cal 5

The following is where UConn ranked in the NCAA national statistics:

  • Total Offense – 116th at 298.6 yards per game (9th American)
  • Rushing Offense – 119th at 85.3 yards per game (10th American)
  • Passing Offense – 80th at 213.4 yards per game (8th American)
  • Scoring Offense – 113th at 18.4 points per game (9th American)
  • Total Defense – 58th at 396.2 yards per game (6th American)
  • Rushing Defense – 32nd at 141.2 yards per game (7th American)
  • Pass. Eff. Defense – 88th at 136.30 points (7th American)
  • Scoring Defense – 195th at 32.1 points per game (9th American)
  • Ind. Tackles – Yawin Smallwood, 17th at 10.2 tackles per game (4th American)
  • Rec. Yards Per Game – Geremy Davis, 48th at 79.8 yards per game (5th American)

Yawin Smallwood Awards Watch Lists for 2013 season:

  • Walter Camp Football Foundation Player of the Year
  • Bronko Nagurski Trophy
  • Bednarik Award
  • Butkus Award
  • Butkus Award (semi-finalist)

Lyle McCombs Awards Watch Lists For 2013 season:

  • Doak Walker Award

Memphis Tigers vs UConn Huskies stat matchup

Notes from this week's opponent Memphis:

Here is the video from Memphis Tigers head coach Justin Fuente's press conference. Here is the transcript of Fuente's press conference if you don't have time to watch the video.

Here is the Memphis Tigers 2013 roster and schedule.

Here is the Memphis Tigers depth chart for the game.

Justin Fuente is in his second year as the head coach at Memphis and led the team to a 4-8 record last season. He came to Memphis after serving on the TCU staff from 2007-2011 as the running backs coach (2007-08) and the co-offensive coordinator and QB coach (2009-11). Fuente helped TCU advance to consecutive BCS bowl appearances with a 2011 Rose Bowl win. Fuente served on the Illinois State staff from 2001-06.

Memphis was picked to finish last in the AAC by the media in the preseason poll.

For the first time in the program’s history, Memphis plays a football game in the New England region when the Tigers meet the Huskies in East Hartford, Conn., Saturday.

Saturday’s game will mark the final contest for 15 University of Memphis seniors — Lonnie Ballentine, Anthony Brown, Johnnie Farms, Antonio Foster, Brandon Hayes, Tom Hornsey, Rod Howard, Corey Jones, Jacob Karam, Jesse Milleson, Andrew Niblock, Chris Schuetz, Jai Steib, Jamere Valentine and Anthony Watson.

A Memphis victory would allow the Tigers to equal their win total from the 2012 season, the program’s final year in Conference USA. Memphis was a combined 3-21 its previous two seasons combined (2010, 2011).

Memphis enters the final week of the season with FBS Football’s 20th-toughest schedule.

Memphis has played four teams in the latest USA Today Coaches' Poll in Duke, Cincinnati, UCF and Louisville.

Saturday is the Tigers’ first regular-season December game since 1972.

Memphis senior punter Tom Hornsey is a finalist for the Ray Guy Award. Hornsey was one of 23 players selected as finalists for the nine National College Football Awards Association (NCFAA) given annually during The Home Depot College Football Awards.

Memphis Tigers and UConn Huskies NCAA Ranking Comparison

Thursday UConn Football Links:

To open the links up in a new tab or window, use Control+click

DC answered a few questions in his mailbag [desmond conner - hartford courant]

Former UConn LB Lansanah signed by Buccaneers [jim fuller - new haven register]

One Game Left, But UConn's Steve Greene Will Go Out In Style [hartford courant]

Back in the public eye, Casey Cochran proves he is still a winner [the hour]

Next Week:

UConn is finished for the 2013 season.

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