Due to the blizzard engulfing the state this weekend, UConn set up a conference call with head coach Geno Auriemma and a couple of players rather than have all of us risk bodily harm by trying to drive up to Gampel Pavilion for tomorrow's practice.
The most newsworthy items coming out of the call is that no date has been set for sophomore Brianna Banks' surgery to repair the torn ACL in her right knee and freshman Morgan Tuck missed the Marquette after slipping on some ice walking around campus.
"We want to make sure she (Banks) is in the best shape possible for when surgery does occur," Auriemma said. "Rehab started the very next day and it will continue leading up to the surgery and obviously for a long, long time after that. This is a good way for her to get a preview of what it is going to be like. No matter how much you explain it to somebody, until they go through it it is hard to prepare somebody for it."
Assuming that campus would be closed on Friday (as it was) Auriemma made the decision to practice on Thursday night and use Friday as an off day. Auriemma reported that all 10 healthy players, including Tuck, were able to take part in drills. Then Auriemma mentioned the bit about Tuck's "mishap."
"The latest report we got was that she was doing so much better and then the little mishap on the ice kind of set her back a little bit but hopefully that was just a temporary thing," Auriemma said.
"If Morgan was a junior I think she'd know how to handle this a little better. She would handle it like Caroline, she would come in and play when she could, contribute and then move on but because she is a freshman she has no reference point. It is hard for her one day to be at practice and the next day not be at practice, then practice for three days and play in a game like St. John's and then not practice for three days. That is not natural and she has no experience with that. I am hoping little by little, if we can get a two-week stretch where she practices every day, plays in a bunch of games then all of a sudden we get to see more of what Morgan can do, that is our goal anyways."
Auriemma also said it was no confidence that one of the Huskies' best offensive showing of the season in the win over Marquette coincided with guard Doty and Bria Hartley exuding confidence when they were on the court.
"The two biggest catalysts for that are Bria and Caroline," Auriemma said. "I think when the two of them are playing with a lot of confidence and it comes across that way, they exude it on the court I that that infects everybody else and that makes our entire team act and behave much differently so if both of them have it we are a real difficult team to beat and if one of them has it obviously we are really good."
Labels: Bria Hartley, Brianna Banks, Caroline Doty, Geno Auriemma, Morgan Tuck