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A blog on UConn women's basketball.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Geno talks about the freshmen

Among the many subjects UConn women's basketball coach Geno Auriemma addressed at Thursday's Big East women's basketball media day at B.B. King Blue Club and Grill in New York was the progress of the five freshmen.

Auriemma said that Bria Hartley, who was voted as the Big East's preseason freshman of the year, and Stefanie Dolson have been the most consistent of the freshmen. He also said that Samarie Walker could be cleared for full practice in time for Friday's practice.

Auriemma did not pull any punches regarding the first official practice on Saturday.

"It was as bad as any day I've had since I've been here," Auriemma said. "I just couldn't believe how little (the freshmen knew). Let's put it this way, the last time we had five freshmen, we had seven or eight returning guys so I could get rid of the five freshmen and scale them in little by little and not have them dominate practice with their stupidity. Now I have five of them and I have five of their guys so it is us against them and they dominated the first day of practice with their dumbness, the stuff the didn't so they ruined the practice for everybody."

The good news is Auriemma has been progress from the five freshmen.

"There have been a couple of days when I said these guys could be pretty good," Auriemma said.

Auriemma said that Michala Johnson has displayed a knack for offensive rebounding but also delivered a classic line on his rail thin 6-foot-3 frosh.

"Our trainer Rosemary (Ragle) said she is developing some muscle strength and I said 'how can you tell?' She is the skinniest kid I have ever recruited, she makes Tiffany (Hayes) look like Dwyane Wade."

Regarding Walker, Auriemma said that "(she's beind doing) only some half court stuff. Hopefully, she'll be cleared for tomorrow. That was the next step that she could do some full court stuff."

He said that Lauren Engeln has been making some stuff happen but consistency has been an issue.

That has not been the case for Hartley and Dolson.

"They've been on the court more," Auriemma said. "Both of them have a certain level of endurance. They can be out there a long time so the longer they are out there, the more stuff they can get done. Bria has so much confidence in her offense that she doesn't look lost as much. Stefanie has such a good feel for the game, when to flash, when to post up, which was to turn after she catches the ball. She is a pretty good passer so she is not stuck when she catches the ball. A lot of freshmen when they catch it and don't now what to do with it, they panic and throw it away or throw it at the rim. She has a pretty good sense of what to do with the ball when she catches it. Those two more than everybody else has had more good days out of the five days than the other three."

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Anonymous UConn Steve said...


Tennessee @ Louisville
11/12 7:00pm ET

Tennessee @ Baylor
12/14 7:00pm ET

Stanford @ Tennessee
12/19 7:00pm ET

6:54 PM 

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