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Countdown to Kickoff: UConn Football

At a practice on Tuesday, Head Coach Jim Mora said that he feels nervous at the thought of stepping out on the field for game day after years away from coaching.

STORRS, Connecticut — UConn's season opener against Utah State is just days away and football Head Coach Jim Mora can't hide how nervous he is for the start of the 2022 season. 

Mora, who is entering his first year as head coach for UConn football, has not coached since 2017 when he was at UCLA. He said he just has to get back into the flow of things. 

"I have had butterflies for about two weeks now. I keep waiting to have them gone but for some reason, they're not gone," said Mora. "I'd be lying to you if I said I wasn't nervous. I haven't been in this situation for a few years. But it's like riding a bike, once it gets going you just fall back into it." 

RELATED: UConn football's Jim Mora trying to make the independent team competitive

Mora said that Utah State won't be easy for the Huskies. 

"It's gonna be an amazing test for us. We're big underdogs, we should be at this point in time," said Mora. 

Mora left the starting quarterback position unfilled up until game day, announcing Ta‘Quan Roberson will take the spot.

Earlier this week, he couldn't help but express how proud he is of how his quarterback group has played.

"All four of those guys, they compete like crazy against each other, they wanna be the starter so bad, and yet they're this spirit of cooperation," said Mora. "They're able to push each other yet support each other, and that's rare."

Mora also clarified that the defensive coordinator position left by Lou Spanos when he announced he was stepping away is still unfilled, and the defensive playcalling will be a collaboration effort. 

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When describing the team's personality, sophomore wide receiver Keelan Marion said they let the play speak for themselves.

"The personality for this team, it's no talking, we just working, we gonna show up to play," said Marion. "It's real." 

RELATED: UConn's defensive coordinator Lou Spanos steps away for personal reasons

Utah State is favored by just under four touchdowns against UConn at -27 which isn't unfamiliar territory from past years, but junior linebacker Jackson Mitchell said he doesn't think about any of that going into the game. 

"We believe in who we are," said Jackson. "I think we're excited to go out and prove ourselves."

UConn's game against Utah State is on Aug. 27 at 4 p.m.

Daniel Dashefsky is a digital content producer at FOX61 News. He can be reached at ddashefsky@fox61.com.


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