Three days after Boston College fired head coach Steve Donahue, reports surfaced that Hall of Famer and longtime UConn coach Jim Calhoun was interested in the BC opening.
Calhoun appeared as a guest on Chris Russo’s show on SiriusXM’s Mad Dog Sports Radio on Tuesday and put an end to the speculation.
MORE: Follow along with the 2014 Coaching Carousel
“No, I’m not interested,” Calhoun said.
“Let me give you a little background to make everybody, not everybody, but just to, not clear the air but I don’t want to get involved in anything with the tournament, with our team playing and all the other things and so on. But what happened is that when [our] good friend Doris Burke and then Andy Katz came over and they started talking, ‘Would you ever do it?’ Yeah, I would. I would think about coaching but it has to be the perfect situation. I don’t have to go hunting for a job. That’s not really what I’m desiring to do. But if something special came along I feel I still have enough zip, power and certainly love for the game, love for competition, that I’d do it. But it’d have to be the right situation for me and for that school. At this particular point I just don’t know if I would find the answer at Boston College. Nothing against Boston College, it’s a great school, it’s a terrific a school in what will be, in my opinion, the best basketball conference in America. You add Jamie Dixon, which you just did. You’re going to be adding Rick Pitino, you’ve got Roy Williams and Mike Krzyzewski. Great, great thing and I’m sure they’ll do very well but for me it’s just not going to…I have not talked to the people at BC. BC has not talked to me. You could imagine that with all my Boston ties a lot of people have called me. That’s kind of a normal thing, that happens with folks. I will never say never because I love the game and the right situation for me and for the school I would think about. But at this point I’m not interested.”
Calhoun is a native of Braintree, Mass. and began his coaching career at Northeastern before he took over a UConn program, which won three national titles in Calhoun’s 26 years as head coach of the Huskies.
Not only is Wyoming senior guard Josh Adams the lone returning starter from a team that won the Mountain West tournament last season, but he’s also one of college basketball’s best dunkers. And if anyone may have forgotten about his jumping ability, Adams put it on display Saturday during the Cowboys’ win over Montana State.
After splitting two Montana State players at the top of the key Adams attacked the basket, dunking with two hands over a late-arriving help-side defender. If you’re going to rotate over, have to do it quicker than that.
Video credit: Wyoming Athletics
Even with the coaching change from Fred Hoiberg to Steve Prohm, No. 4 Iowa State remains one of the nation’s best offensive teams. Given their skills on that end of the floor many teams find it tough to go score for score with the Cyclones, and that’s what happened to Illinois in Iowa State’s 84-73 win in the Emerald Coast Classic title game.
Georges Niang scored 23 points and grabbed eight rebounds, with Monté Morris adding 20, nine rebounds and six assists and Abdel Nader 18 points as the Cyclones moved to 5-0 on the season. The three-pointers weren’t falling in the second half, as Iowa State shot 0-f0r-12, but they shot 19-for-24 inside of the arc to pull away from a team that lost big man Mike Thorne Jr. late in the first half to a left knee injury.
Illinois’ loss of size in the paint opened things up offensively for Iowa State, and the Cyclones took advantage. But where this group grabbed control of the game was on the defensive end of the floor, and that will be the key for a team with Big 12 and national title aspirations.
Nader took on the responsibility of defending Illinois’ Malcolm Hill (20 points) in the second half and did a solid job of keeping the junior wing in check, with that serving as the spark to a 12-2 run that put the game away. There’s no denying that the Cyclones can put points on the board; most of the talent from last season is back and the productivity on that end of the floor hasn’t changed as a result. Niang’s one of the nation’s best forwards, and both Morris (who now ranks among the country’s best point guards) and Nader have taken significant strides in their respective games.
Iowa State will add Deonte Burton in December, giving them another option to call upon. Front court depth is a bit of a concern, as Iowa State can ill afford to lose a Niang or Jameel McKay, but there’s enough on the roster to compensate for that and force mismatches in other areas.
But the biggest question for this group is how effective they can become at stringing together stops. Illinois certainly had its moments in both halves Saturday night, but Iowa State also showed during the game’s decisive stretch that they can step up defensively. The key now is to do so consistently, and if that occurs the Cyclones can be a threat both within the Big 12 and nationally.