And that, as they say, is that. With the season on the line, the UConn Huskies could muster just two field goals against USF, the only team in the Big East with a worse record. Fittingly, the game ended on a Chandler Whitmer interception, the second of the game (and, incidentally, the season) for the Bulls' defense. And with the 13-6 loss, the Huskies fell to 0-4 in the conference and 3-6 overall.
Technically, UConn is still bowl eligible if they win their remaining regular-season games but there's been no indication that this team will win again, much less reel off three in a row. (Also not helping: the three opponents are Pitt, a team that just took No. 3 Notre Dame to triple-overtime, then No. 10 Louisville and finishing with 6-2 Cincinnati.
So, yeah, things look bleak.
Afterwards, coach Paul Pasqualoni repeated many of the talking points we've heard throughout the year.
"Going in at half time, we felt like there were some things we were going to be able to do in the second half," he said. "I thought the coaches did a great job getting us up on the board. I thought we played with good effort. I thought that both teams fought hard. …You just can't have that many bad things happen in the fourth quarter in a tight game like this."
We're not sure to which coaches Pasqualoni was referring, but the Huskies converted two field goals -- a 50-yarder as time expired in the first half and a 38-yarder in the third quarter. If anything, we'd question why offensive coordinator George DeLeone continued to unsuccessfully run the ball on first down constantly putting Whitmer and the offense in second-and-long situations. By the time it was over, UConn had 43 rushing yards, averaging 1.4 yards per carry.
The first three and last three drives of the night were a microcosm of the the season. The Huskies punted three consecutive times to open the game, and ended things with a fumble and back-to-back interceptions.
The defense, meanwhile, allowed just 13 USF points, six coming after two late-fourth-quarter Huskies turnovers. Pasqualoni talked about the blown opportunities.
"The fumble seemed like the handoff hit a little bit high, but the ball just ended up on ground, which was kind of a freaky thing," he said. "In the other play, the ball slipped out of Chandler's hand and on the last one, a lineman intercepts it. I put those in a category of `bad things happened' and for us, those were bad things."
No one would dispute that these qualify as bad things. The problem: no one seems capable of changing things.