Stratton’s Stand: Assessing UConn Football’s chances against their 10 remaining opponents 

Uconn Football played a physical game in the trenches in their home opener against NC State. The Huskies would lose this game 24-14, but showed flashes of greatness during the contest. Photo by: Connor Sharp grab photographer/ The Daily Campus

Prior to this season, many thought the Huskies would have themselves in position for a 6-8 win season. There appear to be a number of winnable games on the schedule, but after two tries and as many losses, everything seems to be in question. Connecticut has shown little offensive ability since their first drive of the season, their subsequent scores coming from a 71-yard breakaway touchdown and two consolation scores at the end of a blowout. Where does this leave them in the 10 remaining matchups on their schedule? Today, I look at the teams they’re set to play and how their chances stand at this point. 

September 16: FIU 

UConn will play FIU with a chance to grab their first victory of the year and turn things around. FIU has two wins, one against FCS Maine and the other over North Texas, a low-tier FBS squad. UConn beat FIU last year in Miami soundly and there isn’t any reason why they shouldn’t be able to repeat. The way this game goes will tell us a lot about what this Husky team is made of. A solid win keeps a bowl well-within contention, while a loss all but shuts the door. 

Stratton’s win probability: 60% 

September 23: No. 21 Duke 

After two exceptional games against then top-10 Clemson and FCS Lafayette, No. 21 Duke is going to be tough to beat, even at home. They appear to be clearly better than NC State—who just lost big to Notre Dame—a team that Connecticut lost to at home. If the Blue Devils were just a bit less talented, UConn could potentially compete for an upset here at the Rent, but the odds are not in the Huskies’ favor.  

Stratton’s win probability: 5% 

September 30: Utah State 

UConn gave the Aggies a fight in Logan, Utah last year in a blazing-hot opener. This year is the return game, one that Utah State could overlook with Mountain West play right around the corner. They gave No. 25 Iowa a fight and demolished FCS Idaho State by 50, so it’s unclear where they stand within that range. If UConn is more encouraged as a team by then, it’s a very winnable game. If they walk into it 0-4, it could be a long afternoon.  

Stratton’s win probability: 35% 

Multiple Huskies come together to deliver big hit against NC State in their home opener. The Husky defense will need to play at a high level in order to reach another bowl game this season. Photo by: Connor Sharp grab photographer/ The Daily Campus

October 7: @ Rice 

Looking at this game based on Rice’s performance in the past decade, this game would appear to be a lot easier. The Owls haven’t finished a season over .500 in their past nine tries and have been in and out of ESPN’s Bottom 10. Instead, this year is the best Rice has looked since 2014. They have former USC and Georgia quarterback J.T. Daniels and just beat newly Big 12 school Houston. As things stand, this game looks a lot tougher than it once did.  

Stratton’s win probability: 15% 

October 21: South Florida 

Staying in the American, South Florida doesn’t look like a particularly stiff challenge for the Huskies. They dropped a game to a middle of the pack FBS team, Western Kentucky, and never truly asserted their dominance over FCS Florida A&M. It’s not clear exactly how good the Bulls are, but this game seems to be one of UConn’s better opportunities. Especially with the game at home, if they don’t win here, it’s tough to see them winning too many more.  

Stratton’s win probability: 70% 

October 28: @ Boston College 

Boston College hasn’t been impressive at all so far, as this game presents itself as one of UConn’s easiest away games. In two games at Alumni Stadium, the Golden Eagles lost a game in overtime to Northern Illinois—a team expected to be worse than UConn—and was bailed out by a late fumble to escape FCS Holy Cross’ upset bid. To say that BC is unbeatable at home would be completely false. Though UConn hasn’t been the team many thought they’d be so far, BC hasn’t looked better. A lot of the momentum of this game will depend on how both teams perform in their next few, but at this point it looks like a coin flip. 

Stratton’s win probability: 50% 

November 4: @ No. 11 Tennessee 

Keeping this short and sweet, UConn is getting paid to head down to Knoxville, Tenn. and lose. The Vols are unbeaten so far and rank in the nation’s top 15. The only way that UConn wins this game is if they really figure things out between now and then and Tennessee overlooks them.  

Stratton’s win probability: 2% 

November 11: @ James Madison 

An FCS national semifinalist two years ago and a 9-3 team last year, James Madison has great momentum early in their second season in FBS. They sit at 2-0, narrowly beating Virginia and easily handling FCS Bucknell. The Dukes seem poised to make another bowl game, and while UConn has a chance to win, JMU seems to have the upper hand. Both teams like to run the ball and JMU has one of the stiffest run defenses in the NCAA. UConn ranks in the bottom 15. There’s a lot of time until November 11, but JMU is in a better spot to win. 

Stratton’s win probability: 20% 

November 18: Sacred Heart 

Of the FCS teams that UConn could have paid to bring into Rentschler Field, Sacred Heart seems like one of the best choices. The Pioneers are winless so far and should be easy to beat. UConn may not be as prolific as many hoped, but they don’t seem to be a team that would lose their FCS game.  

Stratton’s win probability: 95% 

November 25: @ UMass 

The “U Game” is finally being played during rivalry week in a contest that could be the difference in UConn’s bowl chances. UMass beat New Mexico State and challenged Auburn in the first quarter, but has since been unimpressive. Since the rivalry resumed in 2012, UConn is ahead 3-2, with the teams trading wins. So far, this game looks fairly even with the Huskies holding a slight advantage talent-wise.  

Stratton’s win probability: 60% 

Expected win total: 4.12 

Leave a Reply