The UConn football team lost in blowout fashion Saturday, giving up 38 points to the Indiana Hoosiers while scoring only three of their own.
The Huskies drop to 1-2 on the season, while Indiana improves to 3-1.
True freshman quarterback Jack Zergiotis struggled mightily in the second start of his collegiate career, completing 14 of his 28 pass attempts for just 90 yards, no touchdowns and one interception.
“He was inconsistent, he didn’t play well,” Edsall said. “But again, it was his first time on the road, he just has to play better, we all have to play better. We all have to play better, we all have to coach better.”
The UConn coaching staff tried to get him heavily involved early, calling 10 passing plays versus, just two rushing plays through their first three possessions.
However, Zergiotis was wildly inaccurate, going just 3-9 during those drives, with more than a few of them being uncatchable.
Two of those three completions were on the first drive of the game for the Huskies, going for five and eight yards apiece, as UConn picked up their first of just nine first-downs they would convert all game. However, thanks to an Indiana fumble on the opening drive of the game, they didn’t have to do much to set up the 41-yard field goal that Clayton Harris drilled.
UConn took a 3-0 lead, and Edsall got a bonus for scoring first.
Zergiotis’ interception was also concerning, as in the first drive of the second half he tried to dump one off with his left hand (he’s a righty) while being sacked. The pass was easily intercepted and returned for a touchdown, making it a 24-3 Indiana lead and all but securing the win for the Hoosiers.
Even though he was replaced by redshirt freshman Steven Krajewski in the fourth quarter, Edsall has made it clear he is sticking with Zergiotis at quarterback.
The running game was equally as stagnant, with the Huskies totaling just 51 yards on the ground the entire game. Mensah picked up 34 yards on 10 carries while Art Thompkins managed just 20 yards on seven carries.
“We wanted to establish a run, and there were some things that we wanted to do, but there were some things that we wanted to take a look at,” Edsall said. “We gotta be able to run the ball and have some success and consistency because we’re not good enough to sit there and throw the ball that many times in a row.”
As for the defense, they looked a lot like last year, as the progress they showed in the first two games of this season just wasn’t there on Saturday. Impact players D.J. Morgan and Tyler Coyle also had to leave the game due to injuries, contributing to the defensive struggles.
“We’re not a Big Ten caliber team,” Edsall said. “When you saw them play and you saw the width and the girth and the strength of those guys, you know we’re still a program that’s developing, we’re not a Big Ten team. That was a physical Big Ten team, and we’re not that.”
Some quick stats: Indiana converted on eight of their 10 third downs, while UConn was just 3-14. Lwal Uguak picked up UConn’s only sack of the game, and he now leads the team with 3.5 sacks. The rest of the team has combined for 3.5 sacks. UConn’s three points were their fewest in a game since Nov. 19, 2016, when they got shutout at Boston College.
The Huskies will be back in action on Saturday, Sept. 28, as they travel to Orlando to take on a UCF team that is coming off their first regular-season loss since Nov. 26, 2016.
Jorge Eckardt is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at Jorge.firstname.lastname@example.org.