Anyone excited for this weekend’s showdown between Vanderbilt and UConn? While it may not be the most enticing game on Saturday’s national slate, there’s a certain morbid curiosity to be had in watching arguably college football’s two worst teams. How egregiously bad are UConn and Vandy right now? Put it this way—if misery replaced dollars and cents as our national currency, the Huskies and Commodores would be Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos.
To illustrate how obscenely awful UConn has been this season, consider that the winless Huskies—already on their second coach after Randy Edsall’s dismissal last month—are 14.5-point road underdogs against a team that produced 77 yards of total offense in a comically lopsided 62-0 loss to Georgia last Saturday (UG coach Kirby Smart pulled most of his starters by the second quarter). UConn is such a colossal train wreck that, as recently noted by Adam Kramer of the New York Post, Vegas handicappers have no earthly idea how to set their spreads, in some cases taking their games off the board entirely. The Huskies, who are being paid handsomely ($1.2 million) to get slaughtered at Clemson next month (oddsmakers suggest the opening line could be as high as 58.5 in Clemson's favor), have lost their five games this season by a combined 208-71 margin. That includes shutouts at the hands of Purdue and Fresno State and, in what many would point to as their rock bottom, a humiliating loss to Holy Cross in the Huskies’ home opener.
UConn, upon joining the Big East in 2004, looked like a program on the rise, appearing in a BCS game as recently as 2011. But any momentum Connecticut, currently operating as an FBS independent, once had has quickly evaporated with the laughingstock Huskies now a free square for any team that schedules them. Dreadful as the Huskies have been, Vanderbilt hasn’t been appreciably better, failing to register a victory in last year’s COVID-abbreviated 2020 campaign (0-9). The Commodores’ win over Colorado State last month snapped an 11-game losing streak spanning almost two years.
Both schools have become weekly fixtures in ESPN’s Bottom 10 rankings with UConn spending most of the year at No. 1. The mere act of UConn covering the spread against Wyoming (favored by 31) last week sent shockwaves through college football, while costing one doomed bettor over $100,000. If any masochists want to put themselves through the voluntary torture of watching two hopelessly broken programs butt heads, ESPNU has you covered Saturday night at 7:30 PM ET.