UTAH STATE AGGIES

Winless UConn Huskies Host Utah State Football In Get Right Game

Sep 29, 2023, 4:06 PM

utah state football...

Utah State players celebrate a touchdown from kicker Elliott Nimrod against the James Madison Dukes at Maverik Stadium on Friday, September 29, 2023.

LOGAN, Utah – A third of the way into the season and Blake Anderson’s Utah State football team has run out of room for excuses after stumbling out of the gates. The Aggies seek a momentum-building win against the winless UConn Huskies.

Utah State (1-3) is in Storrs, CT for the second time in program history to take on the UConn Huskies (0-4) as USU wraps up its non-conference schedule on Saturday, September 30. Kickoff is scheduled for 10 a.m. (MT).

RELATED: How To Watch Utah State Aggies Versus UConn Huskies

RELATED: Aggies Force Three Turnovers In Comeback Win Over UConn

In last season’s opener for both teams, USU used three turnovers to fight back from 14 down before prevailing 31-20. Logan Bonner (20-of-29) threw for 281 yards and three touchdowns, connecting with Brian Cobbs eight times for 108 yards and a score. Kyle Van Leeuwen and Justin McGriff also found the end zone through the air. Robert Briggs won MW Freshman of the Week honors, rushing for 85 yards and a touchdown but Calvin Tyler Jr. got the bulk of the carries for Utah State. Tyler Jr. carried 33 times for 161 rushing yards, a 4.9 yards per carry average.

Current Huskies QB Ta’Quan Roberson threw two passes for ten yards and gained eight yards on three carries. He scored UConn’s only rushing touchdown of the game.

The Huskies were 5-1 playing at Pratt & Whitney Stadium at Rentschler Field in 2022 but have been unable to replicate that success, losing their first three home games this season.

RELATED: Week 4: Top Plays From BYU, SUU, Utah, USU, Utah Tech, Weber State

USU begins the week as one of three teams with a Mountain West loss, joining San Diego State and San Jose State. Air Force (4-0, 2-0) leads the MW. At 0-4, UConn is the only winless independent FBS program.

RELATED: Linebacker Change Highlights Week Five Utah State Depth Chart

Huskies To Watch

Offense

Former NFL and UCLA head coach Jim Mora returns to lead the Huskies in his second season. Led by Mora, UConn is scoring 13 points per game and averaging 286.3 yards of total offense per game (118.0 rushing, 168.3 passing)

QB Ta’Quan Roberson

A redshirt junior, Roberson is 47-of-90 (.522) passing for 500 yards (166.7 ypg) with three touchdowns and one interception. He did not play in the season-opening loss to NC State. Roberson threw for a season-high 216 yards and two touchdowns against Georgia State.

Roberson transferred to UConn from Penn State before last season. He was injured on the Husky’s second series of the year against Utah State and did not play again.

RB Victor Rosa

Sophomore Victor Rosa leads the team in rushing with 218 yards on 42 carries (5.2 yards per catch/54.5 ypg) with two touchdowns. He also has three catches out of the backfield for 13 total yards.

Rosa tallied a season-high 99 yards and two touchdowns on nine carries against NC State. His 68 yards on 14 carries against Duke last week represent the most work he has gotten since the season opener.

RELATED: Utah State Running Back Depth Being Tested In Early Season

As a true freshman in 2022, Rosa led all Husky running backs with 636 yards and 11 touchdowns on 140 carries.

WR Brett Buckman

Graduate senior Brett Buckman has 18 catches for 205 yards (11.4 yards per reception/51.3 ypg) with one touchdown. Buckman exploded for season-highs of nine catches, 93 yards, and a touchdown against Georgia State in UConn’s second game.

RELATED: Performance Of McCae Hillstead Gives Utah State Positive Outlook

Buckman caught 61 passes for 763 yards and a touchdown in four seasons at Delaware before transferring to UConn for the 2023 season.

Defense

UConn’s defense returns eight starters from last season’s 6-7 squad. Through four games, the Huskies are allowing 31 points per game and 361 yards of total offense (153.3 rushing, 207.8 passing)

DB Durante Jones

In the secondary, the 6’0 junior cornerback has one fumble recovery and is second on the team with 26 tackles this season. Jones finished with eight tackles against Utah State last August.

In 12 starts last season, Jones was third on the team with 97 tackles and forced two turnovers with an interception and fumble recovery.

LB Jackson Mitchell

Listed at 6’2 and 235 pounds, Mitchell leads the Huskies with 32 tackles this year, The senior has two tackles for a loss and three quarterback hurries. Mitchell led the Husky’s defense with a season-high 16 stops against the Aggies last season. He finished with one sack and forced a fumble.

Mitchell was named to the 2023 Chuck Bednarik Award Watch List, the Butkus Award Watch List, the Bronko Nagurski Trophy Watch List, and The Wuerffel Trophy Watch List after finishing 2022 as a Butkus Award Semifinalist. He led UConn with 140 tackles and 4.5 sacks last season.

DL Jelani Stafford

A 6’0, 303-pound junior, Stafford has 16 tackles this season with a team-high 6.5 tackles for a loss. He had two tackles last season in Logan.

Stafford finished 2022 with 28 tackles and two sacks.

Following The Aggies With KSL Sports Zone

Utah State (1-3) completes the non-conference portion of their 2023 schedule when they take on the Connecticut Huskies (0-4) in Storrs, CT on Saturday, September 30.

Utah State football games are found on KSL Sports Zone with Scott Garrard and former Aggie quarterback Kevin White (1988-89) on the call.

KSL Sports coverage of Utah State University Athletics can be found here. 

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Winless UConn Huskies Host Utah State Football In Get Right Game