Practice report: Bulls bracing for new UConn QB

9

October

An extended report from Wednesday's USF football practice:

TAMPA -- Few coordinators in America face a challenge this week quite like the one staring at Chuck Bresnahan, who has no film on the quarterback he's facing Saturday at Connecticut.

True freshman Tim Boyle, the Connecticut High School Coaches' Association Player of the Year in 2012, recently was named starter by interim coach T.J. Weist. He replaces junior pocket passer Chandler Whitmer, who threw five TDs and six picks during UConn's 0-4 start.

"You don't worry about it," Bresnahan said. "You worry about what you can control, and that's what we do on defense. And if we execute and do the things we can do, hopefully we'll present anybody problems."

Bresnahan acknowledged he expects a higher tempo now that Weist, a former offensive staffer
with Bulls coach Willie Taggart at Western Kentucky, is in charge.

Weist, receivers coach at Cincinnati the previous three years, was promoted to offensive coordinator for the 2012 Belk Bowl after Bearcats coach Butch Jones took the Tennessee job.
Cincinnati had 554 yards of total offense in a 48-34 win against Duke.

"Of course, you give (the players) what you think you're gonna get," Bresnahan said.

"We're expecting a fast-tempo offense, a little bit more spread, get the ball out of the quarterback's hands quick to keep him comfortable, so we're going to do some things like that to prepare for that."

INJURY UPDATE: The first 30 minutes of Wednesday's practice, open to the media, came and
went with no sighting of QB Steven Bench (right knee) or RB Marcus Shaw (right leg). Taggart may provide an update on both starters' status on his weekly teleconference today. On Tuesday, he said both were questionable for the UConn game.

PLAUDITS FOR WEIST: Since being hired to replace Paul Pasqualoni on Sept. 30, Weist has been
generating nationwide acclaim for his meticulous ascent up the Division I coaching ladder.
 
Among those issuing praise: former Clemson coach Tommy Bowden and former Alabama coaches
Ray Perkins and Bill Curry. Weist played for both as a Tide walk-on receiver in the mid-1980s.

"I interviewed him one time for a job. It came down to him and (current Clemson coach) Dabo
Swinney," Bowden told The Day of New London, Conn.

"I had a hard time making the call. T.J. is a very, very detail-oriented guy. Thorough and disciplined. Able to teach the mechanics."

ODDS AND ENDS: Look for Bulls defensive down linemen Aaron Lynch and Luke Sager to continue standing up more, at least in pre-snap looks, as the Bulls face more spread formations. ... Boyle will become the first true freshman quarterback to start for UConn since current Bucs backup Dan Orlovsky in 2001. ... Huskies third-year sophomore Tyree Clark, an Alonso High alumnus, is listed as a backup cornerback on the UConn depth chart.

[Last modified: Friday, October 11, 2013 11:42am]

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