STORRS - From a high school that has already produced multiple NFL players, saying an athlete from Windsor High is exceptional is quite a statement.
Tyler Coyle, one of three Windsor graduates playing on the UConn football team this season, is probably the most athletic of that select group.
He’s also one of the most athletic on UConn’s entire roster.
A standout basketball and track star with the Warriors, in addition to his football exploits, Coyle has already wowed the new UConn coaching staff.
“Tyler really flashes at times and can really do some nice things athletically,” UConn defensive coordinator Billy Crocker said after practice Sunday. “There’s some plays he makes where you’re like ‘Wow!’ that other guys can’t do physically.
“But the thing with Tyler is just the consistency part of it,” Crocker continued. “He’s got to really focus and lock in to do what he’s being taught, his job, his assignment.”
Coyle, a 6-foot-1, 196-pound redshirt freshman, may have some work to in order to gain the complete adoration of his coaches but for now it looks like he’ll start for the Huskies when they open the season Aug. 31 against Holy Cross.
Tre Bell a senior who transferred from Vanderbilt, and Jamar Summers, a talented UConn veteran who had an up-and-down sophomore season a year ago, will be the Huskies’ starting cornerbacks. Suffield Academy product Brice McAllister and fellow junior Anthony Watkins are slated to be the first-team safeties.
But Crocker’s 3-3-5 base defense calls for a fifth defensive back in the lineup, and the man at the top of the list for that role right now is Coyle.
“I have a great chance of playing this year. I just can’t let it get to my head. I have to keep working,” Coyle said.
Although his athletic exploits have rarely been in question, Coyle’s football education needed some fine tuning before he was given a chance to play with the Huskies’ first team.
“Since spring, I was struggling with the defense a little bit. That was one my main focuses in the offseason, learning the defense,” Coyle said. “Since then my confidence is up. I know all the checks, all the calls.