Breanna Stewart Already Has Geno’s Faith

by Categorized: Big East women's basketball, Breanna Stewart, Geno Auriemma, UConn women's basketball Date:

News item: Geno Auriemma announced on Twitter today that he will be holding a joint clinic with Bob Knight, the former Hall of Fame men’s coach, at the end of April 2013. More details to come, as they say in the trade.

Last week, he had a lot to say about Breanna Stewart, UConn’s latest freshman to win Gatorade Player of the Year as a high school senior.

If you were at “First Night” on Friday, you may have caught Brea’s inauspicious debut as a dunk artist. For some reason, UConn enlisted her to compete with three guys and she just couldn’t get high enough to finish with either hand. In fact, she was 0-4.

Then again, the men’s players weren’t exactly Spud Webb, either.

You can expect for things to get a lot better for her as time goes on. A lot better.

“I don’t know what to expect from Breanna,” Geno Auriemma said. “I was the most surprised person in the gym when I saw Kaleena [Mosqueda-Lewis] do some of the things she did last season [on her way to Big East Freshman of the Year]. I didn’t know she’s be able to do it so early.

“I just know Breanna is going to be really good. How good, I don’t know. But she is going to be really good. If she plays like I believe she is capable, I won’t say I am surprised. She’ll act like a freshman at times, just like Kaleena did. But at times she’ll play like she’s been here two or three years. But I’m not wont to build teams around just one player, to have high expectations for one player. It’s more important to feel like that about your team.

“Men’s teams, out of necessity often, build teams around players who are one and done. And invariably, more times than not, it goes the other way [poorly]. I don’t want Breanna to think that she needs to be the one to get us over the hump to win the national championship. If it happens, it happens. If it doesn’t , it doesn’t.

“But I just think she has the opportunity to be a good as anyone we’ve ever brought here. And that in itself says a lot.”




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6 thoughts on “Breanna Stewart Already Has Geno’s Faith

  1. mayor barry

    Geno, if he accepts it or not, put too much too soon on KML. She was thrown to the wolves against ND in the first game. In the subsequent games she held her own. But between the first and later games KML lost her groove. KML was and is further along in her abilities and understanding of the game than Maya was at the same points in her career.
    But I am a believer in Breanna Stewart. She will be very very good. So will Tuck, she has the potential to be among the best to play at UConn. Stokes and Banks if they matured over the summer can be difference makers–Stokes showed how good she could be in many games as a back up center. Here’s hoping Buck will see the light at the end of the tunnel and play accordingly.

  2. Mike McManus

    Welcome back John. There were many interesting comments afer the first Men’s practice on Saturday, but after the first women’s practice yesterday, nothing? Was it closed to the media or what? Some of us are starved for information on the Lady Huskies so I had assumed that once practice began, we might start reading something about the team and it’s new players. I’m disappointed. So do I have to be on twitter or Facebook to stay informed these days? Many senior citizens [like me] aren’t involved with twitter…so why do we have to lose out?

    1. jaltavilla Post author

      The UConn women’s program does not allow the media to attend its first practice, a custom it adopted a few years ago.

  3. TexasBogger

    Tend to agree with mayor barry regarding KML. Stewart should be first or second off the bench this season, not starting. The team has the strength to waltz through the regular season and gain another #1 seed for nationals. However, this year they need to not get knocked out in the semi-finals. The goal should be to meet Baylor in the finals where “anything can happen”. By then Breanna should be a major factor and just might be the difference in a major upset. Baylor is absolutely loaded so next year is the time to realistically go for it all.

    1. John Singkit

      Nah, you never put any limits on what kids who have been competing all their lives and have done well. So, they stumble here and there, but you pick them up and throw them into the pit again and again, telling them they have it in them to be as good as they dare dream to be. You help them along. KML will be a much better player this year because of all of that. And it should be no different for all the others, especially those expected to shine brighter than the others. Stewart, Tuck and Jefferson….they will help Doty and Faris make another run at #8 and maybe even get it, and 2010 class of Hartley, Dolson, Stokes and Banks might even get two. After that, it all depends on who else comes in to support those three.

      All the conversation is rightfully about Stewart but Tuck and Jefferson will make her even better and vice versa.

  4. Don porter

    Gino is -in my humble opinion – the finest “all around” coach in history. His human understanding, personality skills, motivation skills, handling stress-media-sucess-egos-expectations-consistency & more, is EXCEPTIONAL !
    Calipari of KY is good also & ITALIAN !

    Have snother great year Gino & team !

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