UConn (Finally) Announces Hiring of Kevin Ollie, Glen Miller


It’s now official: UConn has announced the signing of Kevin Ollie as an assistant coach, and Glen Miller as the director of basketball administration (previously titled as director of basketball operations).

While these were two of the worst kept secrets in recent memory, the official announcement seemed to be delayed for a long time.

Ollie is a great add as an assistant coach, with a long NBA career under several coaches, and a track history of mentoring younger players.  Anyone that was brought in to mentor LeBron James ought to be able to deal with college kids, and has credibility to boot.

Miller was a bit more of a surprise to me, though he has a unique pedigree.  Born in Connecticut, he played for a couple of seasons for the Huskies before transferring for his junior and senior seasons, where he played for — Jim Calhoun.  He was an assistant coach at UConn under Calhoun from 1986-1993 before taking head coaching positions at Connecticut College, Brown, and UPenn.

Why was I surprised?  Typically, the director of basketball operations/administration has been a stepping stone position for a young coach to join the staff, before moving up to an assistant’s position at some point.  At least that’s how it’s been handled at UConn.  Andre LaFleur held the position, and I believe that Patrick Sellers also had the position.

Reading Jim Calhoun’s statement regarding Miller’s hiring, it seems clear that UConn was determined to fill the position with a very experienced college basketball veteran.  Connecticut appears to be making the statement that they are addressing the previous issues by filling the position with someone very experienced with college basketball compliance.   This has the secondary effect of blaming the current problems not so much on Beau Archibald but on his inexperience.  I wonder, though, whether a coach coming from the Ivy League really has the full range of experience that is implied — I’m not sure how the rules apply when a school is recruiting non-scholarship players, as the Ivy League schools do.  Regardless, Connecticut seems to be putting their best foot forward by hiring a man who has been a head coach at 3 schools, is older, and probably has less to prove than a younger coach wannabe.  I also like him better than Donyell Marshall in this position — Marshall, who was rumored to be in the running for the position, was hired this week as an assistant at George Washington under former UConn player and assistant Karl Hobbs.

Oh, and the Hartford Courant and New Haven Register have finally learned that Miller’s first name is ‘Glen’!

The link to UConn’s official statement, as posted by the Hartford Courant, appears here:

http://www.courant.com/sports/uconn-men/hc-uconn-coach-statement,0,7249741.story

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