A few notes about Huskies football -- from recruits and incoming freshmen to those with aspirations of playing in the NFL next season…
* The 2013 season could be coach Paul Pasqualoni's last best chance to turn things around for a program that has had back-to-back 5-7 records. Put another way: Pasqualoni's incoming recruits might play a non-trivial role in his future in Storrs. If so, some good news, via the New Haven Register's Jim Fuller:
Offensive lineman Tommy Hopkins out of Westlake High School was named to the New York State Sportswriters Association Class B first team while Junior Joseph earn first-team honors in Class AAAA by the Pennsylvania Football News (he earned the same recognition from the Pennsylvania sports writers' association last month) and Sha-ki Holines was among 26 players to earn all-state honors from the Massachusetts High School Football Coaches Association.
The first of the Connecticut all-state teams was released last month and UConn commit Matt Walsh was named to the Connecticut High School Coaches Association first-team squad on defense while Tommy Myers was named to the Class M squad as a tight end.
After 10 wins in two seasons, any news is good news.
* The list of UConn seniors set to play in all-star games continues to grow. Blidi-Wreh Wilson, Dwayne Gratz and Trevardo Williams are headed to Mobile, Ala., for the Senior Bowl later this month. And Wednesday, we wrote about Jory Johnson and Ryan Griffin earning invites to Raycom College Football All-Star Classic, and Mike Smith headed to the Texas vs. the Nation All-Star Game. Now there's one more name to add to the list: returner and wideout Nick Williams was chosen to play in the Casino Del Sol All-Star Game in Tuscon, AZ, on Jan. 11. Still no word on if Sio Moore, one of the Huskies' best players, will get an all-star game invite.
* So who's getting drafted? We've trotted out the list since the summer: the five best NFL prospects on the Huskies' roster include TE Ryan Griffin, OLB Sio Moore, CB Blidi Wreh-Wilson, CB Dwayne Gratz, DE/OLB Trevardo Williams. In a recent mailbag, the Hartford Courant's Desmond Conner was asked this very question. Here's his answer:
Hard to be exact at this point but I think Griffin, Gratz and Wreh-Wilson will be playing on Sundays. I think Williams is an Aaron Maybin type (EJ Norris too for that matter) so I think he goes. I think Moore and Jory Johnson will play on Sundays, too. I think TE John Delahunt could surprise and catch on, if not (in the) CFL. WR Mike Smith will get an opportunity. Notice I said think … Who really knows? I think we’ll have a better idea during Pro Day in March when those guys work out for NFL teams.
The combine is in February and it will be interesting to see which UConn players get an invite. But Conner's right; NFL draft boards will change a hundred times between now and late April.