What RU thinking about UConn’s latest loss?


UConn coach Jim Calhoun speaks to the media following Saturday's loss to Rutgers (Neill Ostrout photo)

If you’re UConn, it’s not often that you lose to Rutgers and Seton Hall in the same year.

The last (and only other) time that happened? That would be 1969.

Here’s my game story from the JI after UConn’s 67-60 defeat, and below are a few more of the reactions:

— Is there a leadership problem with this UConn team? Jim Calhoun certainly thinks so.

When asked about leadership after the game, the coach was curt and a bit comical.

“There’s not a lack of it, there’s just none,” Calhoun said.

Point guard Shabazz Napier takes plenty of that to heart.

“I feel as though I’m their best leader. Sometimes they give me a chance, sometimes they don’t,” Napier said. “That’s how it is. It’s just basketball, I guess.”

“Losing like this, I hope they understand I’m not here to just rule people or be the captain just because it gives you an ego boost. I’m here to win games. I hate losing games as much as anybody in the world.”

Andre Drummond, whose 10 points and 12 rebounds were kind of overshadowed by his 7 turnovers, thinks it can’t be all on Napier.

“It’s obviously Shabazz but it can’t be just one person,” Drummond said. “Everybody’s got to be a leader. Everybody’s got to step up and do their part, find their role.”

— Oh, and on that rim-rattling dunk Drummond had in the first half:

“That’s just one of the things I’m good at doing, finishing plays,” Drummond said with a smile.

— Still good?

“I don’t understand why we’re losing games,” Napier said. “I feel as though we have one of the best teams in the country.”

One potential answer?

“Right now we have guys that think they’re something they’re not,” Calhoun said. “And they’re good kids.”



About Neill

Neill Ostrout covers the UConn men's basketball team for the Journal Inquirer in Manchester. He has been a member of the "Horde" for more than 16 years.
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