Archive for uconn football

Things that piss me off

Posted in rants, religion with tags , , , , , , , on January 15, 2014 by hendu

When a small thing gets blown up into something bigger because someone in power feels the need to interject themselves.

I saw two things like that this morning.  The 1st involved UCONN’s new running back coach and the comments he made in the Hartford Courant.  Here is a link to the article.

Now, I’m not a religious person.  I do believe that Jesus Christ existed but I don’t believe he’s the son of god.  Again, I’d rather not get started on a religious tirade.  I see nothing wrong with what the football coach said.  That’s his beliefs and I don’t think he’s pushing any religion on anyone.  In his terms, I think he’s talking about a higher power that kids need to believe and trust in.  Lets not forget that he came from Notre Dame, a fairly big catholic school.  UCONN is a public school and the President doesn’t want any university employee to push religion on kids.  Well, I looked through their course catalog this morning and they have classes that teach about Hindu and Jewish faiths and cultures.  So, the school can offer classes in other religions and cultures, but your football coach can’t bring up his?  Seems strange to me.  One counterpoint to that was brought up this morning that a football or athletic field isn’t an educational  setting and he’s not a teacher.  I couldn’t disagree with that sentiment more.  I think one of the best places for any person to learn is on the sports field and from really good coaches.  There is so much that they can offer in real life teachings that you can’t get from a book.  UCONN hired these men to lead their football team and it’s football players.  I say let them do what you hired them to do and if one of the way he gets through to his players is the teachings of the bible, then so be it.  Kids are smart enough to filter out what they don’t need and to take the meaning of teachings as it applies to them.

Wanna hear something even more ridiculous?  A bunch of US Senators are bashing the Golden Globes for “glamorizing” the use of cigarettes.  Yep, this is exactly why we elected these guys, to bash a hollywood award show over a skit where grown-ups are smoking a fake cigarette.  boy, there must be nothing else for these guys to do.  That whole immigration thing is solved, the budget is balanced, gun control is figured out and the debt is erased.  I mean all the big stuff must be settled for them to focus on this.  C’mon guys, I am as anti-smoking as the next guy but lets use some common sense here.  These are adults on a movie award show having fun and making fun of the movie industry.  Lets not get all high ‘n’ mighty now Senators.  Learn to pick your battles a little better.  Is this really about the message it’s sending?  One, how many kids are up watching  and two do you think these kids are now running out today because Julia Louis Dreyfuss took a drag of a fake, water vapor cigarette.  I don’t think you give kids these days enough credit.  How bout you guys in Washington try to focus on the bigger issues like trying not to run our country into the ground, thanks.

OK, I’m done.

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Welcome to Big Time Football UConn

Posted in coaching, football, randy edsell, uconn football with tags , , , , , on January 3, 2011 by hendu

This is what happens when you are succesful.  Others want your services.  What Edsall did is no different than what any other person would do.  He worked hard at his original job, succeeded and was rewarded with a bigger opportunity.  He didn’t abandon his players or his school.  He didn’t stab the state in the back.  He simply did what he thought was better for him, why is that so bad?  He spent 12 very good years here.  He was able to accomplish what many only dreamed of.  The UConn football family should thanks Edsall for his time here and wish him luck in College Park.

Now, Maryland the program isn’t necessarily a huge step up like Notre Dame would have been.  It is a more established program.  He took UConn as far as he could take it.  This Maryland job is another stepping stone for him.  If he can improve the program, win a few ACC titles then you’ll see Edsall at a big time school soon.  That’s what he is looking at.  The ACC is a better conference and gives him a better chance in his career.

Look at this as a great opportunity for UConn.  They can go on a national search for their next coach.  They don’t need to settle for some no-names with state ties like the Hartford Courant suggested this morning.  (How can the biggest paper in the state be so poor in their choices: Mark Whipple Ken O’Keefe and Norries Wilson.  Yeah, who the hell are these guys is right.)  I think the school needs to shoot for the stars (sorry for the lame cliché.)  If Rich Rodriguez gets let go by Michigan, he should be choice #1.  Former Texas Tech coach Mike Leach could be an option, albeit a risky one.  I think the most likely scenario is that the next coach currently resides in the MAC or Conference USA.  I really like the Tulsa coach Todd Graham.  He’s had a great three-year run and may be looking for a BCS conference job.  Another possible route is a big-time offensive or defensive coordinator from a major program like a Penn State. 

Really the possibilities are endless.  Like I said this should be a time to celebrate.  The program has a chance to build off a very good season and try to improve under a new coach in the years to come.  If the administration plays their cards right, we could be looking at the dawning of a great era of Connecticut football.  If they botch this though, the program will be set back many years.

Just do it right.

Head Held High

Posted in Big 10 football, football, michigan with tags , , , , on September 8, 2010 by hendu

It’s good to be back at it after a nice week off.  Most of you know where I was, for those of you at a lost here is a fairly large hint: .  That’s right I was with 113,089 of my closest friends for the UConn/Michigan game on Saturday.  What an unbelievable day.  Not only was it the largest crowd ever to watch a football game in America which by itself was worth the price of admission, it was also the official re-dedication of Michigan Stadium.  The most iconic football stadium in the country.  There were two flyovers during pre-game and a pretty nice fireworks celebration.  The event that brought the house down though was a walk out to mid-field. 

Brock Mealer is the brother of a Michigan lineman.  He was involved in a car crash that killed his father and his brothers girlfriend.  Brock was given a 1% chance to walk again.  Head coach Rich Rodriguez issued a challenge to Brock, keep working hard and you can lead the team onto the field for Opening Day.  Brock kept up his end of the bargain and on Saturday, Coach Rod did the same.  There are very few moments that can bring me to tears, watching this kid take those steps out to mid-field did it to me as well as the rest of the crowd.  I don’t think there was a dry eye in the house.  I don’t know if it meant that much to me because my father was a paraplegic or because I knew of his story or the combination of the two, but it is a two-minute block I will never forget.  I only wish I had shot video of it, but I was too busy clapping and cheering Brock on.  He made it out to the banner, stopped and touched it, quickly followed by the rest of the Michigan team.  I could tell at that moment, the game was over before it even started.

Everything from that moment on seemed to fall into place.  From the play of Denard Robinson to the speed of the defense, I could tell that this was a different Michigan team.  I have been a supporter of Coach Rod from the word “go”.  I trusted his system and had belief that it could work in the Big Ten.  He just needed the time and patience to install it and get his type of players.  This is just the third year, but you can tell what a difference he has made.  They are bigger, faster and stronger than they were last year.  They mostly have freshman and sophomores on the roster.  Just wait a couple of years.  The rest of the conference, let alone the country, better watch out.  I am smart enough to realize that this year is just another step toward the ultimate goal.  8-4 is a reasonable and very attainable goal.  Even though I think Rodriguez needs to keep his job no matter what, 8 wins will secure him for a long time.  To all the Michigan fans, throw all your faith behind this coaching staff, you won’t be disappointed.  To all you haters:  I hope you enjoyed your two-year shit-talking run, the time for redemption is upon us.

Back to the game, our seats were un-real.  All the Michigan scores happened at our end zone.  We were 8 rows back.  What a great perspective of the stadium.  The student section was decked out in its finest maize:  and the band was in its full glory:.  Even had the pleasure of seeing one of my former players, Jeff Ventres, march in the UConn band and have a trumpet solo during their halftime performance.  The new additions to the stadium were gorgeous and they helped make the place even louder.  I see the “Big House” becoming more of a home field advantage.

On a more personal note, the fact I spent the weekend with the people I care most about made it perfect.  This was Nikki and mine 4th trip out to Ann Arbor.  This time we brought my brother Cam out for his 1st experience and was able to bring Avery along as well.  All in all it was a fantastic weekend but it feels good to be back doing what I love. 

Of course being back means I start my new job.  First day was yesterday.  I am now a JV girls soccer coach.  Please, pray for me.

Round-Up

Posted in American Idol, baseball, golfing, randy edsell, Tiger Woods, uconn football with tags , , , , on December 8, 2009 by hendu

After a few days off from writing, a fair amount of stuff has gone down, so let’s get to it.

First things first.  Am I the only one laughing at Tiger’s transgressions?  The more women that come out, the more I think of all the things he has thrown away for a Perkins waitress et al.  Really, Perkins???  What was the Waffle House hostess out of your league?  What the hell gets into these guys.  I always knew he was an ass on the course, but apparently he liked a lot of it off the course as well.  The only victims of this are his kids.  At least they’ll get his money and maybe a better father-figure.

While I’m on the subject of morons, how about the buffoons in Litchfield who want to take off the yellow ribbons off the trees.  For what, some made up excuse about a disease?  C’mon guys, get your noses out of the air and come to your senses.  You may be against the wars but lets continue to show support for the troops and their families.

I’m seeing a lot of commercials for American Idol.  That means one thing.  Normal thinking and reasoning Americans turn their eyes to a glorified karaoke show for months at a time then take just as long to discuss why one no-talent hack beat out another no -alent hack.  Every time I hear these I want to smash my head through my desk.  Of course, I wish that we had it on our air.  Nice call to turn that down NBC execs.

Only two months and ten days till pitchers and catchers.  All I will say about the MLB Winter Meetings is this:  bring Bay back to the Back Bay!!  Pay the man!  Pay the man!! PAY THE MAN!!!!  DON’T MESS AROUND JUST GET IT DONE!!!!!  Thanks.

Finally, big ups to the UConn football team.  What it took to overcome all those close losses as well as the loss of a teammate was just remarkable.  They did it with class and pride.  Coach Edsall should be commended for his ability to rally his players.  Connecticut has waited a long time for a major football program.  Well, here they are and they deserve our support.  I have season tickets and plan on keeping them for a while.  This program has the potential to be a major player in East Coast football and if you want in, do it know.  Don’t be left behind.

Crossroads

Posted in football, michigan, uconn football with tags , , , on November 23, 2009 by hendu

Finally a decent weekend of football.  What a comeback for UConn against Notre Dame.  That win, coupled with yet another Michigan made for a 50/50 Saturday.

These two programs are at major crossroads in their programs path.  This will come to a head next September when the two open the season at the Big House in Ann Arbor, MI.

First for Michigan.  Saturday marked the fifth year in a row they have lost to archrival Ohio St.  This is also the second year in a row with a losing record and as a result, finished tied for last place in the Big Ten.  It has been a long and frustrating season.  From the early season accusations about practice time to the hope of a 4-0 start to the disapointing 1-7 finish. 

On the plus-side, a lot of freshman and sophmores gained valuable experience.  On the down-side, freshman and sophmores tend to make a ton of mistakes.  I really can’t fault the coaching staff too much.  They took over a program that had bare cubbards of talent.  They installed a brand new offense last year and a brand new defense this year.  They only had 70 of an NCAA max of 85 scholarship players on the roster.  It takes time to recruit the talent you need to run a system.  This winter and spring will be huge for the talent base.  This staff needs to recruit the hell out of the country to get what they need. 

This can go two ways.  Either this will be an utter failure and a new staff will be fired after next season or we’ll continue to see an improvment, the Maize and Blue will head to a bowl and the future will be bright.  I am certain that the latter will happen.

As for UConn, the future is ungodly bright.  What a huge win for the program on Saturday.  On a national stage, they showed the country just what UConn football is all about.  I betcha they picked up 3-4 recruits that were on the fence with that performance.  They gotta build on this though.  Go out and win your last two games at home and get to a bowl.  Bring in another solid class of recruits to continue the process. 

Next September you are playing in front of 110,000 pissed off Michigan fans and against a Michigan team with everything to prove. 

This game will define where these two programs are headed.  Can UConn prove it is worthy of big-boy status or will Michigan start righting the ship, proving to the country they are still the Champions and the Best?

They should be a great game and yes, I have already started counting down the days till September 4th.

Forced to Grow Up

Posted in uconn football with tags , , , on October 19, 2009 by hendu

First off, I can’t say how sorry I am to see another kid killed on a CT campus.  We should be able to send kids off to better their lives without having to worry about getting killed.  These three recently just adds to tragedies in VA Tech and Northern Illinois.

Now, do not take this as being cold or uncaring, but positive things can rise up from tragedies like this. It’s up to the people involved which direction they want to head.  The UConn team and it’s coaches can honor a great teammate, friend and player by going out and play inspired football for the rest of the season or they can let this rip them apart as the season slips through their fingers.    They have a chance to use the life of “Jazz” as a rallying cry.  They can go out and play in honor of Howard, dedicating the season to him and his family.  They can use their memory of him as a driving force.  What better way to honor the 20-year-old.

This is a tough lesson to learn in the middle of a season.  This really is something that no kid should have to go through, but here they are, face-to-face with a huge reality check.  How they react to this can define the rest of their football careers and their lives.  I thought team captain Desi Cullen represented himself, his team, and his school proudly during the press conference yesterday.

It is up to the coaches to lead the team in the right direction.  Get this team back on the field.  Get them doing their normal routine.  Get into practice and pads, running and blocking, throwing and catching.  This team will need to get away from the tragedy, and ironically, that will be the football field. 

This will be the biggest test for the UConn Huskies football team this season.  Lets hope that, for the sake of  Jasper Howard and his family, they go out and play as a team.  They go out and play hard.   They go out and play with love in their hearts and with the same drive and determination that brought Jasper Howard from LIttle Haiti in Miami to the Storrs campus.

Go out and make him proud.

Feelin' Bossy

Posted in food, football, mike and the mad dog, nbc30, PUMPKIN PIE, thanksgiving with tags , , , , , , on October 16, 2009 by hendu

Today is National Boss Day.  In celebration I got to boss my boss this morning(I think that’s irony……)

So take some time and celebrate your boss.  That is if you like ’em.  If you do, (like me) consider yourself lucky.  Feels great to work in an environment where you are respected and trusted fully by your boss.  If you work with the opposite, maybe another job is in your future.

So apparently it snowed in CT yesterday.  I didn’t see it but it did feel a lot like November this morning.  That explains the craving I had for turkey, pumpkin pie and cranberry sauce. 

tailgating tomorrow.  Gonna be cold.  Glad I’m making chili.  I may need to make it a tad hotter now.  Maybe the weather will hold out for us.  Maybe this calls for a flask of Jameson to keep me warm.

FYI, a reunion of sorts today, at 1:05 pm, Chris “Mad Dog” Russo will be joining Mike Francesa from Yankee Stadium and on the YES Network as well as 660 AM.  For those of you who loved the two together, it is great.  The rest of you, sorry ya just wasted your time reading about two guys you know nothing about.

Enjoy your November weekend.