Quick Hits: Jackson to UNM, UConn Football to Death Valley

Vance Jackson waves his arms to pump up the hometown crowd in UConn's 74-65 win over Houston in the second round of the American Athletic Conference tournament on Friday, March 10, 2017 at the XL Center in Hartford. (Amar Batra/The Daily Campus) 

Vance Jackson waves his arms to pump up the hometown crowd in UConn's 74-65 win over Houston in the second round of the American Athletic Conference tournament on Friday, March 10, 2017 at the XL Center in Hartford. (Amar Batra/The Daily Campus) 

This week in UConn sports another men's basketball player chose his next destination, while the football team got a sizable check to play a national powerhouse. That and more in this week's edition of Quick Hits.

Jackson chooses New Mexico

Former UConn player Vance Jackson has decided to transfer to New Mexico. Jackson played just one season in Storrs and was named to the American Athletic Conference All-Rookie Team for his performance. The freshman initially struggled for the Huskies but significantly improved and averaged 8.1 points and 3.8 rebounds for the season.

Jackson, a Southern California native, will be much closer to home at his new school. He will have to sit out the 2017-2018 season per NCAA rules but he has three years of eligibility left for the Lobos.

UConn football gets $1.2 million to play Clemson

The Huskies will head to “Death Valley” to play the defending champion Clemson Tigers in 2021. The Tigers went 14-1 last season on their way to a National Title while UConn won just three games. The two programs have never met in football.

UConn will be paid $1.2 million for the game, a good source of revenue for a struggling football program. The $1.2 million is slightly more than the $1.125 million that the Huskies will receive for playing a home game against Boston College at Fenway Park this season.

Two Husky commits selected in NHL Draft

Two UConn commits were drafted into the NHL on Saturday. Kale Howarth and Tomas Vomacka were both selected in the fifth round, just six picks apart.

Howarth, a 6-foot-5 left wing from Canada, was taken by the Columbus Blue Jackets with the 148th overall pick. Vomacka is a 6-foot-3 Czech Republic goaltender selected by the Nashville Predators 154th overall.

Howarth most recently played with the Trail Smoke Eaters of the British Columbia Hockey League and tallied 30 goals and 28 assists in 51 games this season. Vomacka played this past season with the Corpus Christi Ice Rays of the North American Hockey League, going 19-13-6 with a .923 save percentage.

Both Howarth and Vomacka are expected to come to Storrs for the 2018-2019 season.

UConn receives several ESPY nominations

UConn is well represented in this year’s annual ESPY awards show. The Huskies are up for five awards in total.

Diana Taurasi was nominated for Best Record-Breaking Performance with her WNBA career scoring record. Taurasi is up against Russell Westbrook, Michael Phelps and Bill Belichick for the award.

Tina Charles and Maya Moore are both in the running for Best WNBA Player. The two Huskies will have to beat out Elena Delle Donne, Nneka Ogwumike and Candace Parker for the award.

Andre Blake is up for the award of Best MLS Player. The former UConn goalie is up against David Villa, Stefan Frei, Matt Hedges and Bradley Wright-Phillips.

The Huskies are also nominated in some not-so-good awards. Mississippi State’s upset of UConn in the Final Four is one of the finalists for Best Upset and Morgan William’s buzzer beating shot to win that game is part of the bracket-style Best Play nominations.


Josh Buser is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at joshua.buser@uconn.edu.