CINCINNATI, OH - DECEMBER 03: Rob Trigg #45 of the Cincinnati Bearcats holds the the Big East Championship Trophy as he celebrates with fans and teammates after the Bearcats defeated the Connecticut Huskies 35-27 to claim their share of the 2011 Big East Championship on December 3, 2011 at Nippert Stadium in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Tyler Barrick/Getty Images)
Collecting the news and opinions from yesterdays Big East Championship clinching win against UConn
"Last year was rough on us," said linebacker JK Schaffer. "We got together as seniors and talked about how we were going to make our team successful again and the plan worked. When we were sitting there in December and January watching bowl games on our couch, it definitely motivates you."
"The last one, my second TD, the drag route," he said. "It's called a drag route because you're five yards behind a ghost tight end. It works really well in man-to-man coverage. I was wide-open."
Bearcats ran Mesh to death yesterday. A concept that Mike Bajakian has stayed away from the last two years because Zach Collaros, being 6'ish, struggles to find passing lanes in the pocket. McClung was almost always one of the drags, and he was nearly always open.
Cincinnati got the ball with 5:46 remaining. All UConn needed was one stop to try and complete its comeback bid. But the Bearcats made two third-and-short conversions with runs, and they were able to ice the game despite being outscored 21-7 in the second half. Dave Teggart ended up with four field goals on the day for the Huskies, who had to play the majority of the game without backup quarterback Scott McCummings (concussion).
That drive was crucial, and indicative of the Bearcats change in mentality this year
The Cincinnati Bearcats are a 9-win team yet again. After last year’s setback, this season’s results must put a smile on the faces of Bearcat fans everywhere. Despite failing to reach their goal of a BCS game, the Bearcats can still call themselves champions for the third time in just four years. With the win, the Bearcats will share the 2011 Big East Football Championship with the West Virginia Mountaineers and the Louisville Cardinals.
In a first half that would be all that mattered, he was 12 of 19 for 167 yards and two touchdowns. He threw downfield with confidence. He rolled out and threw on-target strikes. He attacked the edges effectively with his legs. He even threw the ball away when plays broke down.
The game was reminiscent of 2009 at Nippert Stadium when the Bearcats built a 35-10 lead at halftime and survived a furious UConn comeback win, 47-45. But in that one the Huskies didn't have to overcome a defensive lineman ripping the ball out of the quarterback's hand in the end zone for a touchdown and 7-0 lead less than five minutes into the game. That's what 6-foot-5, 248-pound junior lineman Walter Stewart did to Johnny McEntee.
Good to know I wasn't the only one having flash backs to 2009