STORRS – A few notes, quotes and thoughts from UConn’s 77-60 win over Boston University. …
First blush – it wasn’t perfect, not the blowout one would expect, but you just have to live with these things and avoid reading too much into them. UConn outscored them 32-13 over the first 14 minutes, and 31-14 over the last 15 minutes. So you can isolate an 10- or 11-minite stretch in the middle of the game where BU shot well and made its run.
The most important development was DeAndre Daniels’ break-out; nothing profound there. The Huskies have other players who can fill in the slack when Daniels is in a slump, but to be great they need him to be this good on a consistent basis.
Hey, four up, four down. Be happy.
Here is the main game story. (It will be updated Sunday night with the “print version.”)
Here is Kevin Ollie’s take:
“”We started off the game pretty well and then we kind of took our foot off the gas pedal, which I don’t like to see. They are a tough team to guard. They’ve got some penetrating guards, they’re around the three-point line – they shoot 32 times from the three-point line. They were going to make some sooner or later.”
“One thing I want to stress is transition defense, and also offensive rebounds. We’ve got to do the job on the boards.”
“Once again, it comes down to offensive rebounding and it comes back to transition. That’s our game. If we can rebound the basketball, I’ll put my money on us any night.”
“Guys were finding [Daniels] he was hitting his shots and looking aggressive. Nothing special that we did with the game plan .He was aggressive. He was still one-for-five from the three-point line, but I’m not worried about that. He’s going to keep shooting it. I just like him being aggressive on that block. I wanted to run the first play for him, get him going a little bit. It was good for him to get to the free throw line, see that ball going in. And then he was off to the races .He just took advantage of his mismatch. I’m proud of DeAndre for stepping up. One thing I never heard from DeAndre was excuses. He said, coach, I’m going to stay in this gym and get it done and I’m going to be there for you.’ A lot of guys on other teams would have come in my office and complained, but I didn’t hear a peep out of him. So that’s a good thing.”
On Daniels’ confidence:
That’s Shabazz saying that. I think the guy’s confident, you see in the game, he was confident. He just got back in the gym and kept working. People are going to go through slumps. We wanted Shabazz to take a few more shots today and be more aggressive. DeAndre’s got confidence, he went through a little mini slump but let’s talk about the last three halves he’s put together – they’re pretty darn good.”
When BU took the lead …
We just wanted to keep a clear man, understand the game plan. We were going to try to get points in the paint. Shabazz stepped up and h it a couple of threes when they were sagging on him. We started rebounding a little better. Boatright had a good game. We just kept passing to each other. We kept our turnovers down, too. I was very happy with that. They came in, opponents averaging 19.5 turnovers, we got 10. That’s a pretty damn good number.
t all came down to execution. That’s a good team. Like was instilled by Jim Calhoun, that’s money in the bank. I tink that team is going to be real, real good. They put a lot of pressure on your defense.
… They make you run around. Our defense is predicated on ball pressure. I was very pleased to hold them to 34 percent. They surround the two guards with shooters, and that’s kind of how we spread teams out”.
On Giffey getting only two shots off …
They played a zone. Nobody denied. There weren’t the pick and pops that we were getting, the pick and roll stuff. They played 30 minutes of zone, and I’ve never known a zone, except Syracuse that gets out . They took some stuff away from us. The 4-hole was there.
Niels is still there, Niels isn’t going anywhere. They just played a different type of game. We’re not going to face zones like that all the time, but if we do we’ve got other people that are going to step up.
Niels came up to me the other night, he walked passed me and he said ‘coach, they’re not leaving me.’ That’s pretty good, if they’re not leaving you. If you make so many shots, they’re not going to leave you. They’re not going to keep giving you open threes. So you have to adjust and we’re going to adjust as a team. I was very pleased how we handled their zone.
… You finish a defensive possession with a rebound. If you don’t rebound, you didn’t really play defense. You finish a stop with a rebound. So when we go to practice, you got to get three stops and if you don’t get the rebound, it doesn’t count as a stop.
[Brimah’s] got to play early, get in y our defensive stance. You can’t always depend on blocked shots. If he moves early, gets into position he can move his feet a little bit better. He knows. All freshmen go through that.”
For more on BU, Jeff Jacobs’ take and the UConn notes, click here for our main website. More will appear later Sunday night. Shabazz Napier now has 482 assists, good for eighth in UConn history. Ricky Moore and Marcus Williams are next on the list, tied with 510.
Nope. Still nothing on National Letters of Intent.
Here are some pictures from the game.
My pregame hunch on Kentan Facey playing more was wrong. He played only two minutes. Terrence Samuel didn’t get in at all. Ollie used nine players for 10 minutes or more.
Ollie, Tom Crean of Indiana, Lorenzo Romar of Washington and Steve Donahue of Boston College will be on a teleconference Monday at noon. We’ll have some stuff from that for you during the afternoon.
Here is the 2K Classic site, if you want to follow along with the “tournament.”