Louisville 73, UConn 58: Kevin Ollie’s Take

by Categorized: Kevin Ollie, Omar Calhoun, Rick Pitino, Shabazz Napier, UConn men's basketball


 HARTFORD – Highlights of Kevin Ollie’s remarks, following Louisville’s 73-58 win over UConn:

“It was a game of runs.  They came out in second half – I don’t know what [Coach Rick] Pitino said to them, but he must have said something.  They played very, very hard in the second half.  They took it to us.  They shot 60 percent in the second half.  There were a lot of layups.  We didn’t get back on defense.  We didn’t play with the force that we were playing with in the first half, with the intensity we were playing with on the defensive end.  They did a really good job.  Pitino is a great coach.  He had them come out and play like Louisville is supposed to play.  They pressed us, we gave up the basketball – we had 10 turnovers in the second half.  We didn’t handle their pressure. 

We have to go back as a coaching staff and reassess this and come back and get ready to play, going down to Pittsburgh.  That’s going to be another tough team. 

We’re going to get better.  I want to praise Louisville, they came out with a great effort.  But our guys didn’t respond when they came out and had that run. 

Most of the time our guards take the challenge.  In the second half, man to man, we didn’t take the challenge. … Shabazz [Napier] can’t let anybody take him out of his rhythm. He’s too  good a player.”

We’ve just got to focus in on what we have to do.  We have to make shots.  In those types of games, you can’t draw it, you’ve got to make plays.  They’re flying all over the place.  We do have the guards to make plays but, unfortunately, we didn’t make enough tonight. 

Give credit to Louisville.  They’re a great team and they deserve to be number one.  They’ve got talent, they play hard, they play together, whoever is open they get the ball to him.  And then they have two amazing guards.  Siva and Russ are two damn good guards, and they put pressure on our offense and our defensive side the whole night.

The crowd was wonderful the first half.  They got behind us even the whole game.  I kind of disappointed we couldn’t give them a win because they were so great out there giving us that lift that we needed.

Omar Calhoun played very well on the big stage. He got percentage up with 6 for 9. He played with the passion and purpose I want all our players to have. His play at the end of the first half – everybody seemed to stop playing, but he didn’t stop playing.

“You can’t control events, but you can control the meaning of events. We have to bounce back. We have to look at the positive things we did in  the first half, and then we have to look at the things that didn’t go right in the second half and work on those.”

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15 thoughts on “Louisville 73, UConn 58: Kevin Ollie’s Take

  1. JD Randle

    10 minutes of good play does not make a win, especially when it is followed by 30 minutes of the crap fans had to put up with. “Show”boatright proved why he should be sitting on the bench – out of control on offense, chicken shit on defense. Olander back to his usual self, which is a big zero. Napier is no leader. When is gets down he pouts up and down the court.

    A team of misfits and playground selfish one-on-one unskilled children. Good thing they won’t be going dancing this year. They would embarass the university and state with their style of play.

    1. mikeinmanla

      JD, it’s easy to criticize. These are young kids played fantastic in the first half and simply didn’t maintain the same level of intensity in the second half. They will learn from this and get better.

    2. nate

      We played the #1 team in the country, we are not even ranked in the top 25..{Though I believe we should be }so game played out as it should when a #1 plays a non ranked team..and it seemed for the first time this year it seemed the team actually gave up as the second half unraveled as it did, in fact I got that impression that the bench / coach[s] did too..Coach seemed to allude to team giving up and that the staff will work on that..possible part of the way the game unfolded was because Louisville is just that much better then U-Conn and showed that superiority in the second …I was a bit surprised by the rebonding edge , it seemed as if U-Conn was holding its own over all on the rebounding..I was hoping a few more drives to the basket by the big men rather then the pass out …realize don’t have the conidence yet can’t get that by continually passing out..First half was a blast though ..

  2. Allen Freshler

    A good game of halfs, surely potential for UConn but playground ball in the second, out of synic, great ball pressure from Louisville. Perhaps Wolf should have played more. He gives a presence inside that Tyler doesn’t. The Cardnial guards went by him all the time for easy layups. Why he doesn’t step in for a charge is beyond me. Very slow on his feet and passes the ball out all the time for a reset, why pass him the ball????? Wolf also is a good passer and can break the press. Ollie
    needs to use Wolf 25+ minutes!
    Were a good team, just need more quality production from the front court in tough games like this. Go UConn.

  3. Bobby J

    JD Randle: Wow, I will bet you are alot of fun to hang out with. You are aware of the fact that you have options. If this team of “playground players”, “Selfish Chlidren” upset you so much, don’t watch. After all, they played the #1 team in the nation. I’m a Louisville grad, I visited this site just to get Kevin Ollie’s take on the game and I saw your rant. I’m sure you are just like most of the people who post on these sites, rant on Rome and other such outlets. I would bet my life that you would probably have a very, very difficult time making a bad Junior high team as an adult not to mention a Division 1 team. Please, don’t make yourself any more miserable, don’t follow Uconn, as a former Division 1 player, I can assure you, Uconn does not want “fans” like you.

    1. shawn

      Im sorry i missed the excuse?
      he gave credit where credit was due.. what are you talking about.

      We dont even have a center so what do you expect when you play a number 1 ranked team???

  4. Norman

    Wow between hip hop and jd we have some real dopes on this board.
    Ollies coaching a team that is way short of talent (esp on the inside).He has them playing hard and smart.If he continues to recruit we will be back in the top 10 on a yearly basis.

  5. shoes

    This team is not loaded they need Napier and Boat to play great and someone else to have a great game to beat top teams in the league especially #1 team in the country….game reflects poor 2nd have by both of these guys ….anything over 500 in league play this year will be a remarkable job by KO and staff

  6. Sam

    I have to admit the ‘drama” for the men’s team the past couple of years has cost us dearly, when you win a National Championship the benefit should show up in your recruiting ..we lost that. I have lived in Connecticut all my life and it just seems like our State just accepts status quo and lacks vision and should realize you can’t sit still..the Calhoun transition and all should have never been handled the way it was there should have been a solid transition plan in place . The football program has gone backwards after reaching it’s pinnicle. This state needs leaders with vision and passion. Someday Geno may wake up and want to open a wine factory in Italy I just hope “our leaders” don’t screw up his transition it would be ashame.

  7. Andrew

    Real disappointing to see all this negativity on the board today. This UConn team is good but they certainly lack the raw talent that most of the top 25 teams in the country have and they are also fairly young. The fact that Ollie has them in the game after the first half and they are starting to rebound is real positive stuff. I have high hopes for the rest of the season and think this team is one of the best underdog teams in UConn history. I’m going to certainly miss how easy it’s been to score tix this year. The bandwagon fans and corporate suits will return in a couple years after Ollie loads up again…

  8. Hip Hop Hood

    It’s hard to decide if PP or Ollie is UCONN’s most pathetic coach.

  9. Rick

    I have been a UConn bb fan for 30 years, and I’ve loved it. If I could reach this group of kids I’d tell them that they are my FAVORITE of all time. We have had more talented teams. We have had other gutsy, scrappy teams. But none has had to deal with all of the sideshows, including defections, bans and coaching transitions. These guys have overachieved beyond all expectations. They love each other and their coach. They could have folded in some games, but found a way to win.
    This last game – they had a bad night and were playing a great team. Screw it. Move on. Focus on Pitt.
    I have tremendous pride and respect for this group.

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