If his website URL doesn't make it obvious enough,
NFLDraftScout.com's Rob Rang knows a lot about the NFL, the draft, and scouting. On Tuesday, Rang previewed the 2013 Huskies, specifically the top-5 players most likely to play on Sundays once their college careers are over.
1. TE Ryan Griffin
2. OLB Sio Moore
3. CB Blidi Wreh-Wilson
4. CB Dwayne Gratz
5. DE/OLB Trevardo Williams
Seeing those names it's hard to believe that this group finished 5-7 last season. But you'll notice that four of the five players are on the defensive side of the ball. And while the pass defense struggled at times last season, overall, the defense played a huge role in almost all of UConn's victories.
Put differently: the fate of the 2012 season lies solely with the offense. This isn't a secret to anyone half-paying attention to Huskies football. And it explains why there will be competition at the most important position -- quarterback. Johnny McEntee, the former walk-on trick-shot artist, started most of the team's games a year ago but he'll face challengers for the gig this summer. In addition to returning sophomores Michael Nebrich and Scott McCummings, there's highly-touted freshman Casey Cochran and juco transfer Chandler Whitmer (currently the media favorite to start the season after an exceptional spring).
We wrote last week that the Huskies could be the surprise of the Big East in 2012 but that's continent on the defense's return to form (seems likely) and a revitalized offense featuring a consistent passer (that's where the questions remain).
You can read Rang's in-depth breakdown of his five UConn prospects here but perhaps its the names that just missed his list that tell the real story: RB Lyle McCombs, WR/KR Nick Williams, OT Kevin Friend, DE Jesse Joseph, DT Shamar Stephen. Three of the five are offensive players and Williams is a special teams threat, too. If McCombs can build on a fantastic freshman season, the Huskies will have another weapon at their disposal (and one that will take pressure off a passing game that hopes to feature more than Griffin in 2012). And it will be reasonable to think that not only will they improve on their five-win effort from a year ago, but that they really could be contenders in the Big East.