Friday, March 25, 2011

How Does This UConn Run Rank with Others?

I grew up in Rhode Island rooting for Providence College and URI (sorta like rooting for both the Yankees and Mets, I suppose, but possible), so my knowledge of UConn basketball history was only cursory when I took over the beat four years ago. Sure, I knew of the Huskies' accomplishments and followed them as they happened as a fan of college basketball, but in no way can I pretend to have detailed knowledge of Husky history pre-2007.

Last night, I asked a couple of fellow scribes -- one of whom has been on the beat since there were just 13 colonies -- if this remarkable UConn run to the Elite 8 compares with the Impossible Dream team of 1990.

Not even close, I was told. That run came completely out of nowhere, took the entire state by surprise and took everybody on a magical ride.

Fair enough, but is that any different from this season? I mean, who saw this coming? Who even saw the Huskies making the NCAA tournament back in October? And even after their great run in Maui, who saw UConn doing much of anything in the Big East and NCAA tournaments after their 9-9 conference season? Don't lie.

I suppose the main difference is the fact that this year, as opposed to 1990, at least the program has "been there, done that" before. Heck, the Huskies were in the Final Four just two seasons ago. Still, it's hard to believe this run is much more out of the blue than 1990.

Phil Chardis of the J-I compares this run more favorably to 2002, when, behind Caron Butler's incredible play, the Huskies reached the Elite 8 before bowing to eventual champion Maryland.

I'd like to know from you: How does this UConn run rank with others in the program's past? Please feel free to leave comments below.


Here's my notebook off last night's game, leading with San Diego State's two technical fouls that really hurt the Aztecs.

And here's a chance for you to rate the different aspects of the game for UConn in its Sweet 16 victory.



Anonymous gouconn13 said...

To be honest with you, it is too hard to compare against other Uconn's elite final 8 teams college basketball's era have changed from 1990's to 2000's. Because back in the 1990's, most of these final 8 teams have more upper classmen players than the lower classmen players including Uconn. Look at today teams, there are more teams that have lower classmen players than the upper classmen players such as Uconn, Arizona, Kentucky, UNC, Ohio State, etc. Plus almost most of these topp player for these sweet 16 teams except Walker are either a freshman or sophomore such as Barnes, Sullinger, Kanter, etc. So can I picture this year team beating the 1998's elite team where they had RIP/Voshukl, Freeman, etc who were all sophmores along with Kahlid as a freshmen or can they beating Allen/Marshall/Ollie team where they are one of the best up and down tempo team in Uconn's history, etc? I think that the more Jim Calhoun bring his team to the final 8 over past 20 years, it will get harder on how to compare these teams due they are playing in two different era's.

March 25, 2011 at 10:42 AM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ummm what?

March 25, 2011 at 11:41 AM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

trustmeiknow. It's not fair to say no one predicted this. I did. Right here on the Register's blogs and comments sections. In fact I guaranteed it and I bet money on it in Las Vegas. I said before the Big East tournament that UConn would win and that they were headed to the Final Four and a national championship. I told everyone that as the PGA Tour used to say, "these guys are good." I proclaimed Calhoun the master and I cited that and Maui as indicia of this team's toughness. I was in Maui for the Thanksgiving tourney and I paid in advance for tomorrow's game. Oh some of ye have such little faith in UConn that it's sad.

March 25, 2011 at 4:37 PM 

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