COLLEGE FOOTBALL: UConn has three area players on the roster in 2021

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: UConn has three area players on the roster in 2021



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STORRS — UConn football is back. The Huskies did not play last season due to COVID-19 but the entire team and coaching staff met with the media at the Shenkman Training Center on Thursday and are raring to go.

The area athletes are on the squad including former Southington standouts Jay Rose and Jacob Flynn. Wallingford’s Jesse Polansky is an offensive lineman who most recently was a postgrad at Cheshire Academy.

Rose is the biggest name of the three and is a senior this season as the Huskies enter play as an independent this season after a 2-10 record in its final season in the American Athletic Conference in 2019.

Rose is a 6-foot-3, 253-pound tight end and has taken more of a leadership role this season.

“He’s great kid that works really hard,” UConn tight end coach Corey Edsall said. “I always kid with Jay that we need more Southington kids on the team...Jay is a tremendous hard worker. I know he was the man at Southington during his career. I know fans will be excited to see what he does for his senior year.”

Edsall said he’s excited to see what Rose can do in his senior year.

“He’s brings many different attributes to the team,” Edsall said. “First and foremost, he’s a good leader for us. He brings an athleticism with a body type that’s hard to find. He can block and we can take advantage of his size because he has good speed. He has very speed. He brings a versatility to our offense and can do a lot of different things.”

“He’s worked really hard and has put himself in position to have a big senior year,” Edsall added. “He was very productive for us as a junior and was our second leading receiver we have coming back from that ‘19 team. We’ve talked about how he wants to do more and have more catches and more touchdowns and I expect him to do that this year.”

Rose, a former All-State player who led Southington to two state titles, said the team goals are the highest.

“We’ve been working with the same goal in mind to go to a Bowl game and win that Bowl game,” Rose said. “We’ve all been putting in the work and it’s all towards the Bowl game. We have high expectations for the season.”

Rose added that last season was different having no season.

“I’ve been here a while and last year was nothing like any of us had been through before,” Rose said. “It was about adjusting to what was going on and I think we did a good job as a team of putting in the work to get ready for this year.”

Rose said he’s just been trying to stay consistent with his preseason preparation with film, weights and football.

“You have to stay on top of all of that stuff to perform the way you want,” Rose said.

He prides himself in his versatility as a tight end in blocking and catching passes. Rose played in 11 games at tight end and recorded 27 receptions for 261 yards and two touchdowns.

“As a tight end you have to be able to do it all because that’s what the position entails. If you do that you are good to go,” Rose said. “It’s going to be a fun time and this season has been a long time coming. I'm excited for the first time we take the field.”

Opening day is Aug. 28 opener at Fresno State. Rose will have Flynn, a fellow former Blue Knight, on his side of the ball.

Flynn is a red-shirt freshman who will lineup as a 5-foot-11, 190-pound wide receiver. He was an  2018 All-Record Journal, All-CCC and All-State Class LL players in his senior year. He had 44 catches for 816 yards and hauled in a team-high 11 touchdown receptions.

Flynn added that a Bowl game is also the goal for the team.

“It’s exciting to be able to compete against other teams,” Flynn said. “We’ve just been competing against each other. It’s been a while since we’ve played against anyone else...Coming into this year we are even more ready because we had so much time off. We have more time to work and train.

Flynn describes himself as a humble player who puts his head down and works hard. His coaches have nicknamed the receiver ‘sweet feet.’

“Coaches gave me that nickname,” Flynn said with a grin. “You will have to ask them why. I’m not sure.”

Flynn grew up a UConn fan and said he’s excited to be a Husky and take the field for them.

“Jacob is what you want in a football player,” UConn wide receiver coach Aaron Smith said. “He shows up and is ready to work. He may make a play and doesn’t get too high. If he doesn’t make a play he doesn’t get too low. He comes in and does the work. He’s the type of teammate that when he makes a play, everyone is excited. He’s been a talented player, but he’s developed some confidence, which has been fun to see and fun to watch.”

Polansky is a 6-foot-2, 302-pound freshman right guard. He played four years at Suffolk Academy before doing a postgrad year at Cheshire Academy.

He grew up in the Wallingford youth football system.

“I’m happy to be home and playing for my hometown team,” Polansky said. “This is probably the most interesting year because of COVID. We had a whole year off to train and get ready. It was a pretty good transition all things considered.

Polansky said it’s a great accomplishment for him to be playing at UConn.

“I’m tough, strong and ready to be aggressive on the field. I’m not afraid of anyone,” Polansky said.



STORRS — UConn football is back. The Huskies did not play last season due to COVID-19 but the entire team and coaching staff met with the media at the Shenkman Training Center on Thursday and are raring to go.

The area athletes are on the squad including former Southington standouts Jay Rose and Jacob Flynn. Wallingford’s Jesse Polansky is an offensive lineman who most recently was a postgrad at Cheshire Academy.

Rose is the biggest name of the three and is a senior this season as the Huskies enter play as an independent this season after a 2-10 record in its final season in the American Athletic Conference in 2019.

Rose is a 6-foot-3, 253-pound tight end and has taken more of a leadership role this season.

“He’s great kid that works really hard,” UConn tight end coach Corey Edsall said. “I always kid with Jay that we need more Southington kids on the team...Jay is a tremendous hard worker. I know he was the man at Southington during his career. I know fans will be excited to see what he does for his senior year.”

Edsall said he’s excited to see what Rose can do in his senior year.

“He’s brings many different attributes to the team,” Edsall said. “First and foremost, he’s a good leader for us. He brings an athleticism with a body type that’s hard to find. He can block and we can take advantage of his size because he has good speed. He has very speed. He brings a versatility to our offense and can do a lot of different things.”

“He’s worked really hard and has put himself in position to have a big senior year,” Edsall added. “He was very productive for us as a junior and was our second leading receiver we have coming back from that ‘19 team. We’ve talked about how he wants to do more and have more catches and more touchdowns and I expect him to do that this year.”

Rose, a former All-State player who led Southington to two state titles, said the team goals are the highest.

“We’ve been working with the same goal in mind to go to a Bowl game and win that Bowl game,” Rose said. “We’ve all been putting in the work and it’s all towards the Bowl game. We have high expectations for the season.”

Rose added that last season was different having no season.

“I’ve been here a while and last year was nothing like any of us had been through before,” Rose said. “It was about adjusting to what was going on and I think we did a good job as a team of putting in the work to get ready for this year.”

Rose said he’s just been trying to stay consistent with his preseason preparation with film, weights and football.

“You have to stay on top of all of that stuff to perform the way you want,” Rose said.

He prides himself in his versatility as a tight end in blocking and catching passes. Rose played in 11 games at tight end and recorded 27 receptions for 261 yards and two touchdowns.

“As a tight end you have to be able to do it all because that’s what the position entails. If you do that you are good to go,” Rose said. “It’s going to be a fun time and this season has been a long time coming. I'm excited for the first time we take the field.”

Opening day is Aug. 28 opener at Fresno State. Rose will have Flynn, a fellow former Blue Knight, on his side of the ball.

Flynn is a red-shirt freshman who will lineup as a 5-foot-11, 190-pound wide receiver. He was an  2018 All-Record Journal, All-CCC and All-State Class LL players in his senior year. He had 44 catches for 816 yards and hauled in a team-high 11 touchdown receptions.

Flynn added that a Bowl game is also the goal for the team.

“It’s exciting to be able to compete against other teams,” Flynn said. “We’ve just been competing against each other. It’s been a while since we’ve played against anyone else...Coming into this year we are even more ready because we had so much time off. We have more time to work and train.

Flynn describes himself as a humble player who puts his head down and works hard. His coaches have nicknamed the receiver ‘sweet feet.’

“Coaches gave me that nickname,” Flynn said with a grin. “You will have to ask them why. I’m not sure.”

Flynn grew up a UConn fan and said he’s excited to be a Husky and take the field for them.

“Jacob is what you want in a football player,” UConn wide receiver coach Aaron Smith said. “He shows up and is ready to work. He may make a play and doesn’t get too high. If he doesn’t make a play he doesn’t get too low. He comes in and does the work. He’s the type of teammate that when he makes a play, everyone is excited. He’s been a talented player, but he’s developed some confidence, which has been fun to see and fun to watch.”

Polansky is a 6-foot-2, 302-pound freshman right guard. He played four years at Suffolk Academy before doing a postgrad year at Cheshire Academy.

He grew up in the Wallingford youth football system.

“I’m happy to be home and playing for my hometown team,” Polansky said. “This is probably the most interesting year because of COVID. We had a whole year off to train and get ready. It was a pretty good transition all things considered.

Polansky said it’s a great accomplishment for him to be playing at UConn.

“I’m tough, strong and ready to be aggressive on the field. I’m not afraid of anyone,” Polansky said.



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