STORRS, Conn. (August 20, 2007) -- The University of Connecticut football team held its final two-a-day practice on Monday in Storrs. With the weather a bit chillier than what UConn will likely encounter on Sept. 1 when the team opens its 2007 season in Durham, N.C. against Duke where temperatures were in the upper nineties today, both halves were held inside the steamy Mark R. Shenkman Training Center. With the heat turned on, the air temperature was 88 degrees with a heat index of 92.
The morning practice started off with the punt team and extra points/field goals prior to individual position drills. After a team period that focused on blitzes and zone coverages, the Huskies got some work in for the kickoff return team. Full team work was next with a focus on first-and-ten and second downs of varying distances. The Huskies worked some in a half line pass skeleton after that followed by short yardage and goal line work both going in and coming out.
The evening began with kickoff coverage prior to 20 minutes of positional work. Ten minutes of punt return work yielded to a full squad session of red zone practice. UConn worked in the pass skeleton for 10 minutes on third down plays of nearly every distance before doing the same for 15 minutes as a full team. UConn capped the day with work on the two minute drill. The first scenario saw the offense needing to drive 80 yards for a touchdown in 1:40 with two time outs. The second scenario put the offense on its own 40 yard line with 50 seconds to play and no time outs needing a field goal.
"With the cooler weather it was good to get in here and be able to turn the heat up some," head coach Randy Edsall said. "I was more pleased with the morning practice. I didn't think the afternoon practice was as sharp as I would have liked it to be. The morning practice was crisper and more smooth. We've just got to keep improving. We're starting to narrow it down a little bit in terms of our two-deep and our special teams. We've got a lot going on these last two days here. We have to wrap it up and determine who's going to be on the travel squad and who's going to be on the scout team."
The Hard Hat of the Day winners of Saturday were fullback Anthony Davis and corner back Robert McClain.
UConn will hold its final true practice of preseason camp in Storrs on Tuesday, a session that is open to the media. On Wednesday, the Huskies conclude the true preseason camp with a closed scrimmage at Rentschler Field. The team begins preparation for Duke in earnest on Friday.