When UConn Huskies point guard Moriah Jefferson is honored on Senior Night in 2016, she’s going to get more than just a framed jersey.
Because she was named a WBCA All-American on Saturday, Jefferson will forever have her name on “Husky of Honor” wall at Gampel Pavilion. That is the criteria of head coach Geno Auriemma for having a player’s name up there.
Jefferson’s All-American status is no surprise to her teammates. Jefferson has taken her game to a higher level this year and is one of the main reasons why the Huskies are in the Final Four yet again.
Watch and/or listen below as Moriah Jefferson’s UConn teammates react to her being named an All-American:
While it’s not as extreme as the “Price is Right” model giving away a car earlier this week or the Boston Celtics’ Kelly Olynyk announcing Boston Bruins’ Dougie Hamilton’s injury, UConn women’s basketball player Breanna Stewart did have a similar moment after accepting the AP Player of the Year award.
During her acceptance speech where she was thanking her family, teammates and the AP, Stewart accidentally announced that Florida State Seminoles head coach Sue Semrau was the AP Coach of the Year.
You really can’t blame Stewart as she hadn’t been told that Semrau hadn’t been announced as the winner.
The main goal of the UConn women’s basketball team every season is to win the national championship. As we’ve seen, they’re pretty good at doing that having won nine national championships, including four of the last six.
So when the UConn women’s basketball team wins a conference tournament title or a regional final to send them to the Final Four, they don’t cut the nets down.
The reason, the UConn women’s basketball team savors the moment of being able to cut down the final net of the season which would be when they win the national championship.
In a bit of irony after they beat the Dayton Flyers in the Albany Regional final, the UConn women’s basketball team was given t-shirts, made by Nike for the NCAA, that said “Cut The Net“.
Watch and/or listen below as UConn women’s basketball players Morgan Tuck, Moriah Jefferson, Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis and Breanna Stewart talk about why they don’t cut the nets down.
When UConn women’s basketball head coach Geno Auriemma has something to say about one of his players, sometimes it’s a snarky comment. Now that isn’t the norm.
But he rarely dishes out praise about his players. He doesn’t want it going to their heads.
During the UConn women’s basketball press conference for the Elite Eight game versus the Dayton Flyers, Auriemma said that Moriah Jefferson was the best point guard in the country. She just happens to be one of the five finalists for the 2015 Lieberman Award which goes to the top PG in women’s basketball.
Watch and/or listen below as both Auriemma and Jefferson talk about her improvement this season:
When the UConn women’s basketball team and the Dayton Flyers get together on Monday night in the Albany Regional final of the 2015 NCAA Women’s Basketball Tournament, it may resemble a track meet. Both teams like to play quickly.
There is a difference though when the UConn women’s basketball team plays at their rapid pace. They are very much under control. There hasn’t been a team that’s been able to keep up with them.
And even when teams try to slow the UConn women’s basketball team down, it doesn’t usually last that long because of their outstanding defense.
Dayton head coach Jim Jabir hopes to be able to slow them down a little. But with his team playing a similar style, he just has to hope they don’t turn the ball over.
Watch and/or listen below as Jabir talks about how he plans to slow the pace down, if at all and the UConn women’s basketball starting five talk about what it’s like for them to play the swift pace.
The Texas Longhorns starting center, Imani McGee-Stafford, is 6’7. Technically, there is no starting center for the UConn women’s basketball team but boasts Breanna Stewart at 6’4.
The Longhorns also have Kelsey Lang, who is 6’5, who sees quality minutes. The next tallest UConn women’s basketball player is Kiah Stokes at 6’3 then Morgan Tuck at 6’2.
So for the UConn women’s basketball team to be successful, they need to stay out of foul trouble for one. Secondly, they need to use their quickness as they did against a taller South Carolina Gamecocks team earlier this season. Thirdly, they need to hit the open shots when the guards penetrate then kick it back out.
If the UConn women’s basketball team can do that, they should be able to move on to the Elite Eight.
Watch and/or listen below as Stokes, Stewart, Tuck, Moriah Jefferson, Kia Nurse and Gabby Williams talk about the challenges that Texas’ height presents.
Both Briana Pulido, known affectionately as Polly to her teammates, and Tierney Lawlor joined the UConn women’s basketball team as walk-ons before the 2013-14 season.
Being a walk-on isn’t a glamorous thing but when you are a part of the UConn women’s basketball team, it can be very special.
For one, you usually have a cult following from the student section at home games. Two, you get to visit some pretty cool places since the UConn women’s basketball team seems to visit many different destinations. Three, you get to become part of a sisterhood with some of the best basketball players in college and ones who have graduated.
Fourthly, if you’re lucky, you might get a national championship ring or two which also gets you into the Huskies of Honor down the line. Lastly, unlike most other schools, you actually to get play and not just be a practice player.
This season, Lawlor has seen action in 32 of UConn women’s basketball’s 35 games while Pulido in 31-of-35. Lawlor has played 124 minutes with Pulido getting 75 minutes. And finally, Lawlor has 13 points with Pulido adding seven.
Not bad for a kid from Ansonia, CT (Lawlor) and a former UConn track and field member and aspiring doctor (Pulido).
Watch and/or listen below as Pulido and Lawlor talk about getting minutes and their experiences as walk-ons with the UConn women’s basketball team.
Here’s an interesting stat for you. There is not one UConn women’s basketball player that was born the last time they didn’t make it to the Sweet 16.
On March 17, 1993, the UConn Huskies were eliminated from the NCAA Tournament by the Louisville Cardinals in the first round. On March 30, 1993, senior Kiah Stokes was born. For good measure, senior Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis was born on November 3, 1993.
Since then, the UConn women’s basketball team has now gone to at least the Sweet 16 22 straight times. And if they can beat Texas on Saturday, that would be 10 straight appearances in the Elite Eight.
Like every team in college football, the UConn football team finds itself with walk-on players who don’t get scholarships.
Scholarship or not, the walk-on players for any team are the unsung heroes. They might not get any playing time but they are out there grinding with their brothers at every practice just as hard if not harder.
They do it because they want to not because they can. And sometimes, they’ll be rewarded with a scholarship, something that is not uncommon in college sports these days.
The UConn football walk-ons are no exception. They play a vital role in the teams preparation. Some even see quality playing time at important positions.
Watch and/or listen below as UConn football coach Bob Diaco talks about the importance of walk-ons to the football program:
The UConn football team lost one of its most important starters on the offensive line in center Alex Mateas to graduation.
Mateas was backed up by Kyle Bockeloh for most of the 2014 season. But that’s not how things are looking right now during UConn football’s spring practice.
In the two practices we’ve been able to attend for UConn football, Ryan Crozier has gotten the bulk of snaps at center. And for now unless something changes, it looks like it’ll be that way for the foreseeable future.
Watch and/or listen below as UConn football coach Bob Diaco talks about the Crozier “experiment” at center as well as the importance of the younger guys on the offensive line:
When Andreas Knappe came to the UConn football team, he was a raw specimen from Denmark with no set position. After playing two-three plays at defensive end in 2013, he was moved to tackle by head coach Bob Diaco and his staff.
At 6’8″, Knappe had the build and frame to play right tackle. He just didn’t have the skills to do it. Over the 2014 season for the UConn football team, Knappe improved each week and has continued that during spring practice so far.
With the UConn football offensive line still being relatively young, Knappe will once again be counted on in 2015.
Watch/and or listen below as Diaco and Knappe talk about his transformation on the offensive line for the UConn football team:
Stewie found herself what I’ll say was questionable foul trouble after two calls against her that really should have gone the other way. That withstanding, it was a chance for other players to step up and show that this team is not just Stewie.
But that hasn’t stopped from head coach Bob Diaco from bringing another QB to battle for the starting spot on the UConn football team as Garrett Anderson, a JUCO quarterback, committed to the Huskies two weeks ago.
While Anderson won’t get a shot in the spring, when he comes on campus in June and then in preseason camp, he will be given the chance to win the starting job on the UConn football team.
Watch and/or listen below as Diaco talks about what Anderson brings to the UConn football team: