Hurley not ready to make estimate on when UConn men's basketball will return to campus

Published on Thursday, 4 June 2020 11:34
Written by NEILL OSTROUT

Journal Inquirer

As much as UConn coach Dan Hurley would like to see all of his men’s basketball players together in person, there’s no timetable for that to occur, it seems.

Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont’s second phase of easing COVID-19 restrictions, which is set to begin June 20, might seem like a reasonable time for the Huskies to gather on campus as a whole but Hurley wasn’t sure if it would occur that soon.

“We’re communicating with basketball staffs at other places, obviously Geno (Auriemma) and his staff. We’re all trying to collaborate,” Hurley said.

The coach wasn’t ready to make any predictions about when the Huskies’ first informal practice might occur.

“The fact that we’re talking about it is encouraging to me,” Hurley said.

Guard James Bouknight and center Josh Carlton are on campus currently, Hurley said. And the coaching staff has been visiting with a third Husky on occasion.

“We’ve been able to sneak in and see Akok (Akok) in rehab,” Hurley said. “The rest of the guys I have not seen.”

REHAB WARRIOR

Although Hurley has been unable to see him in person lately, Hurley is confident Tyler Polley will be ready to play when the Huskies begin playing in the upcoming season.

And the fact Polley’s home state of Florida has more relaxed COVID-related restrictions than Connecticut has, has allowed the senior forward’s rehabilitation from the knee injury he suffered in January to continue more smoothly.

“He has gym access. He has knee rehabilitation access, pool access. He’s able to do more things in Florida away from us than he’d have been able to do on campus,” Hurley said.

“I can’t see him but form all the reports we’re getting from (UConn trainer James Doran) and from Tyler verbally is that he feels great,” Hurley added.

WAIVER IN PLAY?    

Tyrese Martin, who has transferred from Rhode Island to join Hurley - the Rams’ former head coach - at UConn might end up eligible to play in the upcoming season. Hurley said the Huskies are still exploring the possibility of getting Martin a waiver from the NCAA so he could avoid sitting out the 2020-21 season.

“That’s something we’re exploring now. I have no update on that. I do think that Tyrese is a different situation than R.J. (Cole) who was really looking for that year to build up his body and use that redshirt year,” Hurley said.

FREE THROWS

One Husky has switched his uniform number for the upcoming season and the incoming players have made their choices. Akok will drop his No. 4 and will wear jersey No. 11. Among the new Huskies, R.J. Cole will wear No. 1, Tyrese Martin No. 4, Rickie Springs No. 13, Adama Sanogo No. 21, Javonte Brown-Ferguson No. 31, and Andre Jackson No. 44. … Hurley offered some high praise for Sanogo, the newest member of the incoming Class of 2020. “He’s a winner, he’s a warrior. He’s like an old school type of guy, too, in terms of his work ethic, his unselfishness,” Hurley said. “He’s another high-level talent.”



Posted in New Britain Herald, UConn on Thursday, 4 June 2020 11:34. Updated: Thursday, 4 June 2020 11:36.