Huskies’ strong pass defense a task for Bulls

Connecticut (2-2) at USF (3-2)When: Sat., 7 p.m.Where: Raymond James StadiumTV/Radio: ABC 28, 970 AM

Connecticut happens to be ranked No. 6 in passing defense. However, the Huskies (2-2) defense has not been very successful against the run.

Connecticut is allowing just 134 passing yards per game, but also 190 rushing yards per game.

One can decide whether that’s beneficial for the Bulls (3-2) since their running game consists of only 714 rushing yards in five games. Quarterback Matt Grothe leads the team with 340 rushing yards and four rushing touchdowns, but is also ranked 34th with 216 passing yards per game.

Coach Jim Leavitt said he isn’t making any special changes for Saturday’s game at 7 p.m. Leavitt also said he isn’t planning on running the ball more or passing any less against the Huskies.

“I’m not necessarily going to run the ball,” Leavitt said. “We didn’t have much balance (between running and passing the ball) last game. Would I like to have balance and be able to pass the ball as much as we throw it? Yes. But I don’t think you have to have it to win.”

Leavitt said he’s not been phased by the Bulls’ two-game losing streak. He said he’s proud of his young team’s improvement throughout the first five games of the season, but it’s been difficult for the team to get past last week’s loss against Rutgers.

“(Our players) know it’ll do no good not to. I’m extremely proud of how they’ve done a good job,” Leavitt said.

Leavitt also said he’s thought about what happened in last season’s game against Connecticut and wants to avoid a repeat.

During last year’s game, the Bulls had a fourth-and-goal situation from the Huskies 6-yard line. USF ran a double reverse and failed to take the lead, losing 15-10.

“We’re focused this week,” Leavitt said. “They know it’s a big game. I didn’t (bring up last year’s game), and I didn’t think I needed to. We got to get better in all areas, and they know we got beat last year.”