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Wild, wild win in K.C. -10/1/2014, 10:23 AM

Jones didn't wait to impact Kansas State -10/1/2014, 10:23 AM

HHS soccer falls on road -10/1/2014, 10:23 AM

Tiger golfers finish 10th on home course -10/1/2014, 10:23 AM

After big win, Tigers back to work -10/1/2014, 3:09 PM

Chiefs' Smith in a groove -10/1/2014, 10:23 AM

Late surge pushes Dodge past TMP -10/1/2014, 10:22 AM

Monarch XC sweeps titles at Lyons -10/1/2014, 10:22 AM

Tigers' Cole earns MIAA soccer honor -9/30/2014, 3:10 PM

Royals' playoff appearance years in the making for some fans -9/30/2014, 10:34 AM

Chiefs offense gets rolling in rout -9/30/2014, 10:31 AM

California has four teams in the playoffs for the first time -9/30/2014, 10:31 AM

TMP golf finishes third at Hoisington meet -9/30/2014, 10:35 AM

Monarchs move to 14-10 -9/30/2014, 10:30 AM

Big 12 coaches react to firing -9/30/2014, 10:21 AM

HHS volleyball goes 2-3 in Newton -9/29/2014, 10:27 AM

HHS tennis places third at Garden City Invitational -9/29/2014, 4:16 PM

Tiger tennis finishes fall season 5-2 -9/29/2014, 10:27 AM

MNF for Chiefs -9/29/2014, 10:27 AM

Royals' starters rest in win -9/29/2014, 10:26 AM

KU shows Weis the door -9/29/2014, 10:26 AM

Jayhawks take the conservative route in their loss to Texas -9/28/2014, 9:43 AM

FHSU soccer cruises past SW Baptist -9/28/2014, 7:03 PM

Victoria takes advantage for close win at Ness -9/28/2014, 1:14 AM

Plainville grabs first win, beats TMP -9/28/2014, 7:02 PM

Area prep football roundup: Otis-Bison, Kinsley set record -9/28/2014, 7:02 PM

Wildcats roll -9/28/2014, 7:02 PM

Delton, HHS run past Garden City -9/28/2014, 7:02 PM

Tiger women's soccer picks up 1-0 win at Southern -9/28/2014, 7:02 PM

Tiger women's XC wins at Emporia State -9/27/2014, 7:12 PM

Kansas City clinches first playoff berth since 1985 -9/27/2014, 7:02 PM

Tigers take down No. 8 Pitt State -9/27/2014, 6:53 PM

Kansas linebacker Jake Love lives on instincts -9/26/2014, 11:06 AM

Like old times, Kansas State takes pride in stuffing the run -9/26/2014, 10:57 AM

FHSU women fall 2-1 -9/26/2014, 10:23 AM

Big win for Tiger soccer -9/26/2014, 10:46 AM

Tough test for Tiger football -9/26/2014, 10:23 AM

Hays High, TMP move to 4A -9/26/2014, 10:24 AM

One more win and Royals are in -9/26/2014, 10:47 AM

HHS XC second at McPherson meet -9/26/2014, 10:25 AM

Indian soccer snaps skid -9/26/2014, 10:47 AM

HHS golf clinches share of WAC title -9/26/2014, 10:48 AM

Sports Scores

Tuesday

Prep basketball

Boys

Atwood 76, St. Francis 65

Dighton 62, Oberlin 47

Hillsboro 50, Goodland 47

Lakeside 42, Lincoln 32

Minneapolis 68, Russell 35

Rock Hills 42, Natoma 37

Salina Central 62, Andover 58

Salina South 62, Sacred Heart 47

Sharon Springs 75, Leoti 38

St. John's Beloit-Tipton 57, Osborne 34

Sylvan-Lucas 61, Thunder Ridge 48

Girls

Dighton 44, Atwood 11

Dodge City 71, Hays High 28

Hesston 51, Goodland 18

Hoisington 60, Victoria 46

Hoxie 65, St. Francis 13

Lincoln 33, Lakeside 26

Minneapolis 47, Otis-Bison 24

Osborne 59, Wilson 34

Sharon Springs 63, Oberlin 42

Sylvan-Lucas 43, Natoma 41 (ot)

Tescott 41, Rock Hills 33

Trego 56, Leoti 27

Thunder Ridge 33, St. John's Beloit-Tipton 30

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SPOTLIGHT
UConn feeds off hard-working coach Ollie

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UConn feeds off hard-working coach Ollie

Published on -4/7/2014, 10:27 AM

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By Shannon Ryan

McClatchy-Tribune

ARLINGTON, Texas -- Kevin Ollie would wake up at 4 a.m. on summer mornings before the blazing Texas sun would bake the ground and sear the skin. Rising that early to mow lawns for his father was the only way to beat it.

"He didn't pay me a lot," Ollie said of his "Pops."

"I come see some of these apartments I used to cut and I know he got me. He got me all my life. But it really taught me how to work hard."

That grind helped Ollie at every stage of his life, especially now as he leads Connecticut in his second season as head coach into Monday's NCAA tournament championship game against Kentucky near his birth city of Dallas.

That work ethic translated into a hustler's mentality in the CBA and NBA, making the most of 10-day contracts and one-year deals -- when he was lucky. He lasted 13 seasons, playing with 11 organizations _-- including a 2001-02 stint with the Bulls -- and switching teams 15 times..

Scouts and general managers understood his worth wasn't necessarily tied completely to the skill set he brought as a 6-foot-2 point guard but rather the example he would set.

"We were a real young team and we were struggling," Bulls general manager Gar Forman said. "Kevin brought a veteran presence every day to practice. You got a real base of who he was. Rock, rock solid. Those kinds of guys are invaluable."

While he averaged only 3.8 points per game for his NBA career, which spanned from 1997 with the Mavericks to 2010 with the Thunder, he commanded respect.

"This guy was willing to do anything to be successful," said Bill Cartwright, who coached Ollie on the Bulls. "He'd get here early, stay late. He was the ultimate team guy. That's just part of his character. I think it's really hard, maybe impossible, to find someone who doesn't like this guy."

Ollie, 41, looks like he could play now, coaching from a low defensive stance on the sideline.

He has carried with him strategies from his years of tutelage from Larry Brown, Chuck Daly and former Connecticut coach Jim Calhoun. But it's Ollie's lessons as a journeyman that resonate strongly with players.

They picked up the energy he brought as an assistant for two seasons and when Calhoun passed the torch in September 2012 to take over at his alma mater. While Calhoun was the taskmaster, Ollie was the confidant.

Huskies star guard Shabazz Napier called Ollie the father figure he never had in his life.

"He'll sit us all down and we'll talk," Napier said. " 'Guys, you've got to work for everything.' He wasn't given much. But it was the belief that he could make an impact on the bench or in the game or in someone's life. He knows a lot about what it takes to overcome a lot of obstacles."

His Connecticut team has become an expert at plowing through adversity.

A No. 7 seed, the Huskies were considered an early-exit team, even more so than No. 8 seed Kentucky. Connecticut is just a season removed from its NCAA-ordered ineligibility from the tournament.

During the regular season, the Huskies finished in a three-way tie for third with Southern Methodist and Memphis in the AAC. They suffered a 33-point loss on March 8 at Louisville.

"I thought we built on a lot of ups and downs throughout the season," Ollie said. "That's what great teams do. They take the challenge and they get better from it."

Like their coach, the Huskies keep working.

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