This is the second part in a series of football season preview articles by campus correspondent Luke Swanson taking a closer look at some of the opponents UConn will be facing this season.
“If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles”
– Sun Tzu, “The Art of War”
UConn football might not have a hundred games this year, and they may want to fear the result of some of them, but Sun Tzu’s message nonetheless rings clear. For my UConn football preview series I’m going to focus on, in my opinion, the best or most interesting player on each team the Huskies face in the 2017 season.
Junior defensive tackle Marquise Copeland did not start a game for Cincinnati last year and still put up a huge season for the Bearcats, tallying up 59 tackles, 4.5 tackles for loss and two forced fumbles.
Standing 6-foot-3 and weighing in at 260 pounds, Copeland might not be massive for a defensive lineman, but he makes up for that with a lightning-quick first step and elite foot speed. Watch here as Copeland (no. 44) chases down running back Doroland Dorceus of Memphis, who runs a 4.47 40-yard dash.
As rookie head coach Luke Fickell looks to build his team around a strong defense, he’ll likely turn to Copeland and his counterpart on the strong side, Cortez Broughton, to anchor the defense on the inside and lead the Bearcats towards a winning record.
These two could present a problem for UConn’s offensive line, as the Huskies have to replace both guards in 2016, and a rushing attack led by Arkeel Newsome will certainly be a focal part of the Huskies’ offense in 2017.
However, by the time the Huskies face Cincinnati in week 13, UConn’s rushing attack may have have jelled enough to get some push on the interior.
Luke Swanson is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.