Lorenzen's Spring Ends Early

UConn quarterback Tyler Lorenzen walks to the sidelines at the Shenkman Center with a pronounced limp and bulky knee brace around his left knee. He is in full pads with his helmet on during Tuesday's spring practice, but it's just for show. Lorenzen doesn't have a chance to get on the field. He sprained his left knee is last week and after 11 practices his spring is done.

Lorenzen knows it too. He heads away from practice and starts to play catch with oft injured wideout Ellis Gaulden, who has a boot on his right foot and is on crutches, about 10 feet away.
 
Lorenzen cocks his arm back and throws the ball to Gaulden who catches it one handed. Gaulden tosses it back. It's just a way for Lorenzen to deal with the boredom.
 
This Saturday was supposed to be the time that Lorenzen showcased himself to UConn fans at the Blue and White scrimmage at Rentschler Field. Now all they get to do is shake his hand.
 
"It's football. Things like this happen and I will take it in stride," Lorenzen said after practice Tuesday. "It's disappointing. I built up some momentum and the team did too. I wish I could be a part of that."
 
Lorenzen injured his left knee after getting rolled on by linebacker Danny Lansanah last Thursday.
 
Lansanah threw Lorenzen to the ground and then rolled over the knee. It was an aggressive play by Lansanah but UConn head coach Randy Edsall didn't think it was over the top.
 
"It might have been preventable," Edsall said. "I talked to Danny about it, but it wasn't malicious or with intent. He got caught up in the moment, took the guy down and rolled over him."
 
Where that leaves the Huskies for Saturday's annual Blue and White Scrimmage is without a second quarterback.
 
With the move of D.J. Hernandez to wide receiver midway through spring practice, and now the loss of Lorenzen leaves only Dennis Brown.
 
Walk-on Matt Vollono is taking snaps, but he doesn't appear to be an option for Saturday's scrimmage. Edsall also said he wouldn't move Hernandez back to wide receiver.
 
Edsall is going to alter the spring game format for Saturday later this week and has already declared the quarterbacks off limits.
 
The quarterbacks were in red shirts during Tuesday's practice and will remain so on Saturday in whatever format Edsall chooses.
 
"The quarterbacks are off limits right now," Edsall said. "They aren't going to be live on Saturday."
 
How does the loss of Lorenzen affect the Huskies fight at quarterback?
 
It may not at all.
 
Edsall has strongly indicated late this spring that he may put off a decision on who is the starter at quarterback until the summer.
 
Brown has been impressive in spots during the spring especially with the increased reps and Lorenzen is playing as advertised.
 
"We won't make a final judgement in 11 practices," Edsall said.
 
The beneficiary for the increased rep will be Brown.
 
After sitting out all of last season Brown is starting to feel comfortable again playing. He has made tremendous strides during camp and has garnered enough of the coaching staff's confidence that they are willing to move Hernandez from the position.
 
"Dennis has come here and is getting better each day," Edsall said. "He is taking advantage of the opportunities."
 
Another opportunity for Brown will be on Saturday. He has a captive audience waiting at Rentschler Field and he is right now the only game in town.
 
Don't expect Brown to be nervous however.
 
"I don't think I will be nervous," Brown said. "Every practice is game for me. And I've only been playing football for 18 years."


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