With the Huskies' season-opener against UMass now less than a month away and with coach Paul Pasqualoni hoping to have a starting quarterback named by August 24, there is much work to be done. Particularly since this team is coming off a 5-7 record in Pasqualoni's inaugural season, and that they were picked to finish sixth in the conference earlier this week at Big East media day.
CBSSports.com has broken down UConn's schedule, identifying the must-see matchups, the get-togethers the team should win, as well as the tough stretch of games that could be the difference between another five-win effort an something more than that. Matt Rybaltowski of CBSSports.com provides the details:
Must-see game: Pittsburgh, November 9
"The early November game, scheduled to be played in front of a national television audience, will be the last time the rivals face each other as members of the Big East."
Should-win games: at Western Michigan, Buffalo, at Rutgers, Temple
"While the Huskies will likely be underdogs when they face the Scarlet Knights (Oct. 6), the remaining three games during the stretch are all winnable. Of the three, the Owls are the only team to have finished the 2011 season ranked in the Top 50 in the final Sagarin Ratings."
Brutal stretch: at USF, vs. Pitt, at Louisville, vs. Cincinnati
"The Huskies' last four games of the Big East schedule feature three of the top four teams in the preseason media poll."
Here's the Huskies' complete 2012 schedule.
It won't take long to find out if 2012 will be much different from 2011. After the UMass matchup, the Huskies will host NC State and then travel to Maryland for the unofficial Randy Edsall reunion game. Whomever wins the quarterback job will be tested early, as will UConn's defense. They don't have to win the two ACC matchups (they'll be underdogs), but how they play could go a long way in determining how the rest of the season unfolds.