STORRS – Ricky Moore, who left an indelible mark on UConn basketball with his defensive effort against Duke and Trajan Langdon in the 1999 NCAA Final, returns to Storrs as assistant director of basketball administration.
“I’m ecstatic to be back,” he said. “Great feeling.”
Moore’s long overseas pro career ended and he became an assistant at Dartmouth. In this role, he will not be able to participate in coaching activities.
“Of course, you’d like to be on the court coaching,” Moore said, “but this is a unique opportunity to sit back and learn some more.”
Moore believes he could be a good middle man between players and coaches. “I wanted players to know they can come to me,” Moore said. “It might be more comfortable for them to come to me since I’m not on the floor screaming and yelling at them. … It’s important for them to know when they come to us that we’ve been through all this, going to class, all that. It can be done.”
Kevin Ollie said Moore is “the type of person we want our players to be around. They can learn a lot from the way he has lived his life.”
UConn had two possible 2014 recruits, Winston Morgan, a 5-11 point guard from East Catholic-Manchester, and Khadeem Carrington, a guard from Brooklyn, at First Night. … UConn’s two ’13 commits, Kentan Facey and Terrence Samuel, both from New York, were expected at Gampel.
There was some hope that a major target, Noah Vonleh, might come, but he was at Syracuse’s event. Vonleh, who recently re-classified to 2013, has been to UConn unofficially, and could come for a visit some time this coming week.
Brandon Austin, a small forward from Philly, is expected to come for a visit next weekend.
Ollie picked Breanna Stewart of the women’s team to win the slam-dunk contest. Ollie and Stewart were side by side signing autographs, as were Geno Auriemma and Omar Calhoun across the lobby.
The first men’s practice will be Saturday around noon time. Media will be allowed in for the end of it, so I will be tweeting, blogging from that. (@AmoreCourant). Ollie thinks his team has benefited from the new practice allowance, two hours a week. “We’ve established that it’s a pride thing to put on this uniform and play for this university,” he said.
John Altavilla, Paul Doyle and I will have lost more from First Night as it gets underway in a few minutes, and lots of coverage in The Courant on Saturday.