Temple of the Dogs

Niels Giffey, Will Cummings

UConn forward Niels Giffey tries to shoot over Temple’s Will Cummings during Tuesday’s game in Hartford (AP Photo/Fred Beckham).

No Ryan Boatright, no fans (well, not many), no problem.

The UConn men pounded Temple 90-66 Tuesday night in Hartford while the snow fell outside the building in earnest.

DeAndre Daniels had a career-high 31 points (4-for-6 on 3’s) to go along with a career-high 12 rebounds.

Shabazz Napier added a pedestrian 27 points (5-for-8 on 3’s) to go along with seven rebounds and six assists. Napier has 57 points in his last two games.

UConn out-rebounded Temple 45-25. Temple PF Anthony Lee, the AAC’s leading rebounder, had none.

A few quick notes and quotes before I carefully drive home:

— NAPIER SAID AFTER Daniels’ effort against Memphis that his teammate was capable of more, and he was right.

“When he plays the way I’ve seen him play and the way I know he can play, he can get 30 easily,” Napier said. “Sometimes he gets in his way or he’s not feeling it. He just has to continue to grind. I tell him all the time ‘You’re not going to make every shot. No one in this game of basketball is perfect. You’re going to miss shots. You have to have kind of a Reggie Miller mindset. You miss one and you’re going to make the next one.’ ”

Daniels was just glad to make up for his poor performance against Louisville (season-low 3 points and 4 rebounds).

“I had a bad game. I feel like I let my teammates down and my fans down,” Daniels said. “Tonight me and Shabazz wanted to be aggressive without playing with Ryan Boatright.”

— BOATRIGHT WAS IN Chicago Tuesday for a family funeral and did not make it back in time for the game.

Ollie said he spoke to his junior guard before his cousin’s funeral Tuesday.

“I talked to him right before the funeral. I talked to Tanesha,” Ollie said, referring to Boatright’s mother. “I just let them know we’re thinking about them.”

Boatright also texted his coach later in the day, telling him to “get that dub”. (that’s W, as in win, I assume).

Ollie said he was fine with Boatright missing a game.

“He’s got a couple young brothers and sisters and they probably needed the man of the house to be there. I’m glad he stayed there,” Ollie said.

Boatright is expected back soon and will play Saturday against Rutgers.

— TEMPLE COACH Fran Dunphy doesn’t have much of a roster left (only nine players dressed for Temple) but with PG Will Cummings back after missing two games you might have thought the Owls would play better.

“We didn’t do a very good job on Daniels. I thought he hurt us greatly,” Dunphy said.

Dunphy said his team didn’t “manage” the game well be acknowledged that UConn played very well.

“They have a great deal of firepower,” Dunphy said.

— FROM THE STRANGE but true category: Temple F Daniel Dingle is the brother of former UMass guard Dana Dingle.

The elder Dingle was on UMass’ 1996 Final Four team and is now an AAU coach.



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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