Blogs > Elm City to Eagleville

A blog on UConn women's basketball.

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Geno Auriemma was high on Ohio State's wish list

Ohio State is one of the plum women's basketball jobs to come out in the last few years and after firing Jim Foster, the hierarchy in Columbus were aiming high.

According to sources, a call was placed to UConn coach Geno Auriemma to gauge his interest in the job. With Auriemma having just signed one of his best recruiting classes in years in current freshmen Moriah Jefferson, Breanna Stewart and Morgan Tuck and having just turned 59, it was a long shot that Auriemma would leave what he has built at UConn. Add in the fact that Foster is the coach who gave Auriemma his first women's basketball gig when he hired Auriemma to be an assistant coach at Saint Joseph's which a source indicated that Auriemma mentioned when he was approached about his interest in Ohio State. Auriemma was never presented with a formal offer to take the Ohio State job.

Ironically, the interest from Ohio State came as the final details were being ironed out on Auriemma's new five-year $10.8 million contract which was announced on Wednesday.

On Wednesday night Auriemma addressed the rarity of spending more than three decades as a head coach at the same school which will be the case as he would have coached at UConn for 33 seasons if he were to serve out the entirety of the new contract.

"I don't think anybody thinks that far ahead," Auriemma said. "I think there comes a point in every coach's life where they seriously consider making a move, maybe it is early in their career when the grass is greener on the other side and the lights are brighter and maybe it is in the middle of your career where that is your last shot at it or it is at the end of your career when I have had enough of the pressure, I have had enough of the grind so to have lasted 28 years at the same place doesn't happen much anymore and I certainly didn't come up here my first year and think 'yeah, I am going to be here for the rest of my life.' That was just never a part of it."

Foster coached at Ohio State for 11 seasons, going 279-82. He won six Big Ten regular-season championships and four Big Ten tournament titles. However, Ohio State perennially underachieved in the NCAA tournament including posting an 0-3 mark in the Sweet 16.

The State newspaper in Columbia, S.C. has reported that South Carolina head coach Dawn Staley is one of three candidates being brought in for an interview.


Anonymous DEAR KATIE LOU - said...

Wonder if Stanford is encouraging Tara to return to Ohio State. That beat down UConn put on Stanford doesn't look so surprising right now. Many of the espnW WCBB analysts predicted Stanford would be the first top seed to lose. 14 highly recruited high school all stars carried by 1 all american. Not surprising Jordin Canada is heading elsewhere.

2:06 AM 

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