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Montgomery, Edsall similar with team descriptions

SMU UConn Football
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Connecticut head coach Randy Edsall pleads with an official during a timeout in the second half of an NCAA college football game against SMU, Saturday, Nov. 10, 2018, in East Hartford, Conn.(AP Photo/Stephen Dunn)

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By RONNIE WOODWARD
The Daily Reflector

Thursday, November 15, 2018

Coaches Scottie Montgomery and Randy Edsall sound similar at this point in the college football season.

Montgomery and the Pirates will be looking to stop a five-game losing streak when 1-9 Connecticut visits Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium for a 7 p.m. kickoff Saturday. ECU is 2-7 this year, giving Montgomery an 8-25 career record, and many fans are calling for this to be the coach’s final season with the Pirates.

UConn’s only win is a 56-49 victory over Rhode Island, a Football Championship Subdivision team. The Huskies exploded for 50 points a week ago, but they allowed 62 to SMU in a loss to add to their woes as the nation’s worst-ranked defense.

“Defensively we played kind of like we have all year with 75 to 80 percent of the plays really good and then 20 percent of the plays we don’t play as well when we have guys make mistakes,” Edsall said Monday during the American Athletic Conference teleconference. “We give up the big plays and big yardage, which ends up hurting us. So those are the things that we have to continue to work on in these last two weeks.”

Montgomery also harped on the fine details this week when breaking down the Pirates’ most recent 24-18 defeat at Tulane.

“We’ve lost three games by a touchdown or less, with situations where you have points taken off the board and have penalties that hurt you,” he said. “The penalties we had in the (Tulane) game on a field goal and a reverse (for a touchdown) for our second (offensive) play of the game, I thought the officiating was correct on both of them and we have to hold ourselves accountable.

“What it is looking like offensively and defensively is that we are one to two playmakers away on offense and defense from being able to win these games and put these games away.”

Saturday will serve as ECU’s seventh and final home game of the season. The Pirates will be underdogs at Cincinnati and at N.C. State to finish another frustrating campaign.

This is Edsall’s second season of his second stint leading the Huskies. His 12-year run from 1999-2010 included winning a share of the Big East championship in 2010 to play in the Fiesta Bowl, but his return to the program has been marred by a 1-9 combined road record in 2017 and this year.

“Hopefully we can out-execute them and out-hit them out-physical them, and if we can do that, then we’ll give ourselves the opportunity to win,” Edsall said of facing the Pirates in a divisional matchup of teams with matching 0-6 AAC records. “That is all we are looking forward to on a week-to-week basis.”

Contact Ronnie Woodward at rwoodward@reflector.com, 252-329-9592 and follow @RonnieW11 on Twitter.

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ECU

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