UConn Expected to Fill Coaching Positions This Week

According to a story in the Hartford Courant, UConn is expected to fill the coaching vacancies created by the resignations of Patrick Sellers and Beau Archibald, later this week.

Some say that the announcements could be made as early as today; other accounts say tomorrow.

Former UConn point guard Kevin Ollie is expected to become the new assistant coach, taking Sellers’ position.  Ollie has managed to put together a long NBA career, playing for a number of teams, most notably the 76ers.

I believe that Kevin Ollie will become an outstanding coach.  He has always had to work extremely had to earn every success that has come his way, and I believe that is exactly the type of player that becomes an outstanding coach.  He has also enjoyed a long NBA career, playing for several teams and a variety of coaches.

Former Penn and Brown head coach Glenn Miller is expected to become the new Director of Basketball Operations.  Miller, who graduated in 1986 from UConn and was an assistant under Jim Calhoun from 1986-1993, also was the head coach at Connecticut College prior to coaching at Brown.  He began his playing career at UConn before transferring after 2 seasons to play at Northeastern under Jim Calhoun.

I’m somewhat less enthused about the hiring of Miller.  He is a Calhoun disciple, and has significant head coaching experience; however, he has not been a terribly successful head coach.  He appeared to have Brown moving in the right direction, before tailing off in his last couple of seasons.  I was surprised that he was then tapped to replace Fran Dunphy, taking over the very successful Penn program.  In his first season, his team continued the success, winning the Ivy League title, before tailing off badly over the next 2 1/2 seasons.  It seemed that the further the program was removed from Dunphy and his recruits, the worse off they were.

I also believe that the Director of Basketball Operations position is generally a stepping stone for a young, inexperienced candidate to an assistant position.  I’m not quite sure how it helps the program to have a retread head coach in that position.  However Calhoun has indicated that he is looking for more maturity in that position, presumably to help right the program.  He also seems to indicate that while there will certainly be administrative duties,  this candidate will also help with strategy.  Reading between the lines, there seems to be at least one dig there at Archibald, perhaps not being mature enough for the position, and perhaps continuing to blame him for the alleged violations.

But I also find it interesting that the position description seems to be deviating somewhat from the expected duties of a Director of Basketball Operations — isn’t that how we got here in the first place, with Archibald stepping outside of his role and making phone calls to recruits?


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