PHILADELPHIA – Looking live at the Liacouras Center, a very nice, 17-year-old basketball facility on the Temple campus. UConn is playing here for the first time in about 25 minutes, in an American Athletic Conference road game.
Looks like the Huskies will be intact for this game. Omar Calhoun, who missed two games with a concussion, practiced this week and was out shooting with his teammates before. So he appears good to go.
Anticipating the same starting lineup the Huskies have been using – Shabazz Napier, Ryan Boatright, DeAndre Daniels, Lasan Kromah, Amida Brimah. Will be interesting to see if Phil Nolan, who played well for the Huskies against Memphis, gets “starter minutes” again.
Boatright didn’t play in the Huskies’ 90-66 win over Temple a month ago, and Temple coach Fran Dunphy knows he has to contend with all of UConn’s parts tonight.
Anthony Lee, Temple’s best rebounder, has missed the last couple of games with a knee injury, but he has been out on the floor and it’s expected he will play. Temple, without Lee, outrebounded and defeated SMU last Sunday. This is the third of five consective AP Top 25 opponents for the Owls.
Here is a capsule look at the matchup.
The UConn-Cincinnati rematch on March 1 at noon has been picked up for telecast by ESPN.
The first UConn national championship team, the 1998-99 squad that defeated Duke in the NCAA final, will be honored at halftime of the game Sunday against SMU. Can you believe it’s 15 years? Details of the ceremony are still to be announced, but we know two players from that team – Kevin Freeman and Ricky Moore – will be there. I chatted with both earlier this evening about that special team, and it will serve as the UConn notebook in the Friday Courant.
UConn was in Philly two years ago tonight, on Feb. 20, 2012, and beat Villanova on Shabazz Napier’s buzzer beater. Perhaps you remember that one?