Another blog about UConn basketball! This time it’s about the men’s team so you can go ahead and keep reading. Anyway, Jeff Goodman of that really dumb sports network reported early this morning that former URI head basketball coach Dan Hurley has agreed to become the new coach of the Huskies. Hurley picked UConn’s offer over a more lucrative one from Pittsburgh and also one from URI.
Apparently, URI offered a 7-year deal worth $2 million per year that would begin in July of 2019. They also went in with a promise to build a basketball-only practice facility in the next two years, charters for all away games and salary increases for his whole staff*. It was a pretty good offer from a smaller time program, but not good enough as Hurley knew UConn was the place to land.
There were actually people out there saying he had a tough decision on his hand and to that, I laugh in your face. Sure it was cool that he built something at URI and Pitt is no slouch of a program at all, but come ON. This is UConn we’re talking about here. They’ve been down in the dumps since they won it all in the 2013-2014 season but they are one of the premier basketball schools in the whole country. You may laugh, but I’d say this job is right up there with Kansas and Louisville and Michigan State. UConn has more national championships then all of them and sits behind only UCLA, Kentucky, UNC, Duke and Indiana.
So Hurley took the right job, no doubt about it. I’m excited to have a new coach for my favorite team and while I thank Kevin Ollie for the title in his first year (that he won with Jim Calhoun’s players), I am very glad to be rid of him. Hurley isn’t someone I know a whole lot about but he was the #1 choice for the Huskies and the best guy out there right now. So I may have been rooting for Tom Crean or even a Jim Calhoun comeback, whatever. They don’t need a superstar, big-name guy. All they need is a good coach and good recruiter who can restore some respectability in the short term, and get them back to prominence in the long term. He’s got 6 years to figure it out.
So far, Hurley has shown the ability to recruit and that I believe is a major key (shoutout to DJ Khaled). He was able to get what is as of right now, the 30th best recruiting class for next year, to go to URI. Getting kids to come to UConn will be so, so much easier. He’s got important connections all along the East Coast and I think he’ll do well to get kids to come to Storrs.
Obviously, next year will be interesting. The team in Connecticut was awful this year and could lose their star Jalen Adams. If they keep Adams, I could see them having a decent year and possibly being back involved with March Madness. That’d be huge for UConn fans and really basketball fans everywhere. March needs the Huskies.
*If I’m his current URI staff I’m kinda pissed that I didn’t get a raise here.