NEW YORK — Just 24 hours removed from an upset win over No. 15 Syracuse in Madison Square Garden, UConn head coach Danny Hurley was ejected from Friday night’s loss to Iowa in the finals of the 2K Classic.
It was the first time that he was ejected as a college coach.
UConn fans in the Garden gave Hurley a standing ovation and chanted his name as he walked off the court.
Hurley appeared to be caught off guard on the second technical. He was talking to Jalen Adams, who was unhappy with the officiating as well, and Hurley told his player, “I’ll handle it in the press conference.”
Bo Boroski, a Big Ten referee, overheard the statement and hit Hurley with his second technical foul.
“I don’t want to put myself inside the mind of that crew, but it was what it was,” Hurley said. “Bo obviously overheard a conversation I was having with a player on my team and thought that was the appropriate decision. I have a hard job. Players have a hard job. Referees all have a hard job. We all have to be accountable for our performances.”
Hurley went on to lament the job that he did coaching his team on Friday, that he wasn’t as prepared as Iowa head coach Fran McCaffery was. There are going to be frustrations for the young Huskies, and he knows that.
“This isn’t some Disney movie,” Hurley said. “It’s not the Mighty Ducks or whatever. It’s going to take some time.”
What Hurley wasn’t mad about, however, was a last-second dunk by an Iowa player after UConn had stopped trying to play defense. Iowa apologized for it to the remaining UConn staff on the floor. They apologized again in the press conference. Hurley, when asked about it, was clueless.
“I didn’t see it,” Hurley said, a smile breaking. “I was long gone by then, man.”