Jim Calhoun was exhausted after coaching the Huskies through their victory over Pitt on Saturday, so when the team returned to practice on Sunday morning, he let the assistants begin the work of preparing for the Big East Tournament.
“He stayed home and rested,” assistant coach Glen Miller said. “He did stop by, just to pick up some stats.”
Calhoun, who had surgery Feb. 27, returned to practice just four days later, saying his doctors did not agree with his decision to do that. It is to be expected that his comeback will be gradual.
George Blaney ran practice at Gampel on Sunday. Calhoun is expected back on Monday, when the Huskies practice in the early afternoon, Miller said.
Getting to New York for the Big East Tournament, which begins Tuesday, could be a separate ordeal for Calhoun. When he returned home from his back surgery in New York, he had to stop every hour or so to get out of the car and walk around, because doctors did not want him sitting for the entire trip. So what would normally be a 3 1/2 hour drive took about five hours.
During the game Saturday, Calhoun’s surgeon, Dr. Andrew Casden from Beth Israel Medical Center, stayed close by and the assistants did their best to keep the head coach in line with Docs’ orders. George Blaney kept urging Calhoun to sit in a chair during the huddles. Miller tried to keep him off his Diet Coke habit.
“I was trying to keep him hydrated,” Miller said, “I kept giving him water, and he kept saying, ‘can you give me a Diet Coke with ice?’”