STORRS, Conn. (CBSNewYork/AP) — UConn is in an unusual position this week, coming off a victory and favored to win again.
The Huskies (2-6) face Army (2-6) on Saturday at Yankee Stadium in New York, UConn’s first game in the city.
This will be Army’s 41st game in either the old or new Yankee Stadium (14-21-5), but its first since 2011. UConn holds a 4-1 advantage in the series and has won the last four meetings.
UConn, which upset UCF 37-29 last Saturday, is hoping for consecutive wins for the first time since ending the 2013 season on a three-game winning streak. The Huskies are a 4 ½-point favorite
“It’s nice that the work that we have put in finally showed results on the scoreboard, and kind of showed to the public as opposed to us, we knew what we’re doing” said quarterback Chandler Whitmer. “We’re just going to try and keep that going.”
Army is trying to break out of a three-game losing streak after falling to rival Air Force 23-6. Coach Jeff Monken said he doesn’t believe the team is going into games expecting to lose.
“We’ve continued to encourage them that if they play better in the execution of their assignments, we’ll have opportunities to win games,” he said. “We’ve had some opportunities this year and have fallen short. It’s frustrating to lose, but particularly when we feel like we had an opportunity.”
UConn coach Bob Diaco said Army’s triple-option offense will challenge his defense, which has not seen that style of play this year.
But Army will need to prepare for UConn’s emerging option threat. Receiver Deshon Foxx ran for 102 yards last week in the Huskies option package.
Here are some other things to know about Saturday’s meeting:
FOXX HUNT: Foxx has the Huskies’ longest run, reception and return this season. The 5-foot-10 senior returned a punt 72 yards for a touchdown in UConn’s first win of the season over Stony Brook. He caught an 88-yard touchdown pass from Whitmer in a loss at East Carolina and last week kept the ball on a read-option play and ran 68-yards for a touchdown.
YANKEE STADIUM ADVANTAGE: Diaco is intimately familiar with the Yankee Stadium setting. He grew up in New Jersey and said his extended family continues to share four season tickets to Yankee games. He said he also has played in some football games at the old Yankee Stadium. Diaco said he’s confident a large contingent of UConn fans will be on hand, because they often traveling to New York to watch the Huskies basketball teams.
ARMY STRONG: UConn has a significant size advantage up front. The Huskies’ offensive line averages just over 299 pounds compared to 262 pounds for the Army defensive line. The Black Knight’s offensive front averages 281 pounds while UConn’s defensive line weighs in at an average of 280 pounds. But Diaco said Army relies on quickness more than strength and he doesn’t believe the size advantage will be a big factor. “We are not going to out-tough the United States Army,” he said.
RUSH: Army comes into the game ranked fifth in the nation in rushing, averaging just under 295 yards per game on the ground. UConn has been giving up just 126 rushing yards.
CONNECTICUTING: While Army is 1-4 against UConn, the two teams have not played since 2006. The Black Knights did face another team from Connecticut this season. They were upset by Yale 49-43 in overtime on Sept. 27 in New Haven, giving up 625 yards in offense to the Bulldogs.
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