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Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
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Monday / December 10.
  • Dan Hurley named new head coach at UConn

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    Here’s the release from UConn:

    UConn officially announced Friday that Rhode Island coach Dan Hurley has been selected as the 19th head coach of the UConn men’s basketball program.

    Hurley, 45, and the university have agreed to a six-year deal, with a compensation of $2.75 million in the first season. Hurley will be introduced to the university community and the state of Connecticut at a Friday, March 23, press conference at 1 p.m.at the Werth Family UConn Basketball Champions Center at which further contract details will be provided.

    “We are thrilled to name Dan Hurley as our next coach,” said UConn President Susan Herbst. “I never doubted for a moment that UConn would be able to attract a coach of Dan’s talent. He understands UConn, student-athletes at this level, and college basketball in the Northeast. I know our entire community will be delighted to welcome Dan, Andrea and their family to UConn.”

    “I am honored and excited to become the head coach of the UConn men’s basketball program and I would like to thank President Herbst and David Benedict for this tremendous opportunity,” Hurley said.  “This program, which is part of one of the top public universities in the country, has a championship history and wonderful support from a passionate fan base.  I look forward to continuing this proud tradition.”

    The news was first reported Thursday night by A Dime Back.

    Hurley chose UConn over offers from Pittsburgh and Rhode Island. He will succeed Kevin Ollie, who was fired March 10.

    Hurley met with the Rhode Island players about 7:45 AM Friday to inform them of the news.

    Assistant coach Tom Moore, a former UConn assistant, will go with Hurley to UConn.

    Coach Hurley comes to UConn from the University of Rhode Island (URI) where he compiled a 113-82 record in six years as head coach, taking over a program that won just seven games the season before he arrived. He increased that win total to 23 just three seasons later, when he took Rhode Island to the 2015 National Invitation Tournament (NIT). That year, the Rams led the nation in three-point field goal percentage defense (.265) and ranked ninth nationally in defensive efficiency as Hurley was named District I Coach of the Year by the U.S. Basketball Writers Association.

    “Coach Hurley is the absolute right fit for this University, its student-athletes, and UConn Nation,” said AD David Benedict. “We were impressed with his turnarounds at Wagner and Rhode Island and his prior success at St. Benedict’s. His proven track record of developing student-athletes and preparing them for productive lives both in and outside of basketball perfectly aligns with UConn’s values.”

    Prior to his successful run at Rhode Island, Hurley orchestrated the successful two-year turnaround of Wagner University, where he improved the team’s record by eight victories in his first year (2010-11) and by 12 more wins, to 25-6, in his second season.

    Hurley, with a lifetime collegiate record of 151-105, took his last two URI teams to the second round of the NCAA Tournament. His 2017-18 team finished 26-8, won the Atlantic 10 regular season title with a 15-3 league record, and earned him honors as the Atlantic 10 Coach of the Year.

    Although Hurley’s 2015-16 team was beset by injuries, the Rams still won 17 games and were among the national leaders in scoring defense at 64.8 PPG. The following season, Hurley led Rhode Island to 25 wins, the Atlantic 10 Tournament championship and an NCAA Tournament victory over Creighton before bowing to eventual Final Four participant Oregon. It was URI’s first NCAA tourney appearance in 18 years.

    The 26 wins this past season — which ended in a second-round loss to Duke in the NCAA tournament — were the most at URI in eight years. The Rams put together a 16-game winning streak, the second-longest in school history, and spent seven weeks of the season ranked in the Top 25 of the national polls, rising as high as #14 in the USA Today Coaches Poll and #16 in the AP Top 25. In addition to the A-10 Coach of the Year, Hurley was awarded his second District I Coach of the Year honor by the USBWA.

    Before becoming a Division I college head coach, Hurley built his reputation as an outstanding prep school coach at powerhouse St. Benedict’s in Newark, N.J. In nine years at St. Benedict’s, he compiled an impressive 223-21 record, earning four Top Five finishes in the national prep school rankings and coaching four McDonald’s All-Americans.

    Hurley gained coaching experience as a college assistant for four years (1997-2001) at Rutgers, which followed one year as a prep school assistant at his alma mater, St. Anthony’s in Jersey City, working under his father, Bob Hurley Sr., a legendary prep school coach and a Hall of Famer.

    Hurley is a native of Jersey City, where he played for his father at St. Anthony’s. He then went on to Seton Hall, playing as a point guard for coaches P.J. Carlesimo and George Blaney, where he scored more than 1,000 points and helped the Pirates to three NCAA Tournament berths and an NIT appearance.

    Hurley is part of one of the most well-known basketball families in the country. Besides Bob Sr.’s Hall of Fame coaching career at St. Anthony’s, Dan’s older brother Bobby was an All-American player at Duke who is currently the head coach at Arizona State.

    Dan and his wife Andrea are the parents of two sons, Danny and Andrew.

     

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    Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle. A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013. He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.