Sunday, February 23, 2003

UConn coach back on bench

Calhoun wins16 days after cancer surgery

The Associated Press

STORRS, Conn. - Jim Calhoun's return to the Connecticut bench 16 days after prostate cancer surgery was successful and dramatic.

Ben Gordon scored 18 points and Emeka Okafor dominated inside with 12 rebounds and nine blocks as the Huskies held on for a 77-69 victory over St. John's on Saturday.

The 60-year-old Calhoun had expected to take three to four weeks off but felt strong enough to come back to lead the Huskies against St. John's in the penultimate home game of the season.

He walked onto the floor of Gampel Pavilion amid deafening cheers from the sellout crowd of over 10,000. Signs in the stands heralded his return and in the student section, seven shirtless men had "Calhoun" spelled out on their bare torsos.

St. John's coach Mike Jarvis was among the many greeting Calhoun with handshakes and hugs as he made his way to the UConn bench. A few of the St. John's players also walked over to shake his hand.

Calhoun's doctors said the cancer was detected very early and is very treatable. Since his Feb. 6 surgery, Calhoun has eased his way back with treadmill workouts and has been the recipient of a steady stream of get-well cards and e-mails.

He returned to practice full time this week, running the Huskies through their paces on Thursday and Friday.

Now in his 17th season at Connecticut, Calhoun has led the Huskies to national prominence, peaking with the 1999 NCAA title. With a career record of 640-292, including 14 seasons at Northeastern, Calhoun is eighth among active Division I coaches in victories.

The Huskies went 3-2 under assistant coach George Blaney, the longtime head coach at Holy Cross. The Huskies, the defending Big East champions, have four regular-season games remaining.

Saturday's game also marked the return of starting point guard Taliek Brown, who broke his left index finger in the Huskies' 95-74 loss at Virginia Tech on Feb. 5. He finished with four points and a blocked shot.

UC 101, No. 4 Louisville 80
Daugherty: If they're satisfied, they're not saying
Cronin coaches vs. former team

Xavier occupies top spot all alone
Dayton sends extra troops to stop West near basket

Wildcats are again wary of Bulldogs
RedHawks suffer costly loss in big win
Boilermakers thumped by Bucks, blasted by Keady
Top 25 roundup: No. 1 Arizona blows out State
UConn coach back on bench
Norse rebound with win over Indianapolis
Indy women top NKU, clinch GLVC crown

Most empty-handed after ticket grab
Hudson, Guillen must show they are worthy
Hitting is catch for prospect Sardinha
Rule 5 gamble could pay off
Reds Q&A
Wells won't stop using weight-loss supplements
Young slugger impressing the Mets

Bengals study free agents
Newsome likes Lewis' system
Bengals Q&A
Rogers, Lions would be great fit
No QB competition for Rams - it's Warner

Ohio boys games
Ohio girls games
Kentucky games
Kentucky district pairings
Title games will be televised
Vieth era at St. Henry's winds down
Lakota West's Sartini wins the all-around title
Bombers bag 5th straight state title
Ursuline's three-year title reign stopped
Surging St. Xavier earns district title behind seniors
Cooper, Fassbender win titles
Graham, Versailles triumph
Prep sports results
Prep sports schedules

Tyson wins first-round knockout
Tonya Harding loses in pro debut

Ohio-bred Holiday wins Grade I Donn Handicap

Charles charges to 3-stroke lead in Nissan
Augusta supporters seek protest permits

Clary sisters are aces for Xavier's program
C'mon, baby, light the lamp
Enquirer Page Two power rankings

This weekend's sports on TV, radio