In mid-January, the University of Connecticut hired its replacement for departing head coach Randy Edsall, former Syracuse University head coach Paul Pasqualoni. The announcement came as a shock to many Orange fans who witnessed their team's former head coach bounce around the National Football League for a few years after he was fired following SU's 2004 season, which featured the Orange going 6-6 overall.
Once, the UConn-Pasqualoni relationship became official, the Syracuse faithful were waiting for the weekend that the Huskies and their new coach were going to face the Orange. That happens this coming Saturday when SU (5-3, 1-1 Big East Conference) visits Rentschler Field for a Big East Conference contest against the Huskies (3-5, 1-2) in East Hartford, CT (noon on ESPNU).
"I left there, I don't know how many years ago now? Seven years?" Seven years is a long time in the football business," said Pasqualoni Monday. "There have been a lot of games in between my last one there and this one. Really, no other feelings than let's get ready to play a good Big East Conference team."
Pasqualoni ended his 14-year tenure as the second-winningest coach in program history positing a 107-59-1 record. Under Pasqualoni, Syracuse won four Big East titles and compiled a 6-3 record in nine bowl-game appearances.
"I don’t really think about it like that, and I don’t think any of the players here probably will," said Syracuse head coach Doug Marrone Monday. "The fans and the media may. But in this profession, it’s so volatile – I can’t tell you a game that I’ve coached when someone I’ve coached with previously wasn’t on the opposing sideline. You have relationships with people all the time, and it’s just part of the profession."
UConn is coming off a tough 35-20 loss last Thursday against the University of Pittsburgh at Heinz Field, while Syracuse was dominated Saturday at the University of Louisville, 27-10. The Huskies own a four-game winning streak against SU, which lost last year at home, 23-6. UConn used that win to propel them to a share of the Big East title and a Bowl Championship Series bowl berth.
-- SB Nation New York will provide you with all the latest on Saturday's Syracuse-UConn match up. Check back, to get a full scouting report on the Huskies, injury, in-game and postgame updates. Follow along at SBNationNY or Jared_E_Smith.