Blaney retires from UConn, school announces

After 12 years on the UConn men’s basketball coaching staff and 43 years overall as a college basketball coach, George Blaney has announced his retirement, UConn has announced.
Blaney, 73, served as UConn’s associate head coach under former coach Jim Calhoun and also as an assistant coach for Calhoun and last year for first-year head coach Kevin Ollie. He is now a special assistant/advisor to Ollie.
“I always said I would know when it would be the right time to go,” Blaney said on a press released issued by UConn. “I have thoroughly enjoyed my years at UConn, but I think for me, this is the right time.
“Coaching with Jim has been so special for me. We have always been such great friends and that just made for a wonderful working relationship. His passion for the game, for the kids, and for UConn is what made him such a special coach.
“And I am just so excited about Kevin. I said right from the get-go that Kevin Ollie is a superstar coach and he certainly showed it last year. And I think this year’s team is going to be terrific.”
Blaney brought a wealth of basketball knowledge with him when he joined the UConn staff before the 2001-02 season after coaching stops at Stonehill, Dartmouth, Seton Hall, Rhode Island, and for 22 years as head coach at his alma mater, Holy Cross.
“Coach Blaney is just a great basketball coach … just the way he puts basketball and life in perspective,” Ollie said in UConn’s release. “He’s been somebody I can confide in, no matter what the situation. Not only was Coach Blaney a great help to me last year through the transition to head coach, but he helped me when I was an assistant, helped me in my whole path to becoming a college coach. And of course, his decades of coaching experience have been invaluable to me on the bench.”
Ollie, who coached UConn to 20 wins in his first season with the Huskies, promised to keep in close contact with Blaney. UConn was on an NCAA probation from the postseason in 2012-13 but will be free to play in the postseason in 2013-14.

David Wells