Geno Auriemma says he hates John Wooden comparison

UConn coach Geno Auriemma had interesting comments on John Wooden and comparisons of his team to the UCLA dynasty …

DP: Do you wanna be compared to John Wooden?
GA: No! Not in a million years. I hate it.

DP: Why?
GA: I’m sitting here in Indiana right now, and I hate it.

DP: Where (John Wooden) was from.
GA: I don’t like it because half the population is gonna say, well you’re not John Wooden and I’m gonna go, of course I’m not. And then the other half — who’ve never saw any of those UCLA teams — is gonna go you can never do what he did. Well, actually we did because when they played it was exactly the way women’s basketball is today. So there’s no winning that argument and I coach a different sport. Although in our era today we are kind of what UCLA was back then. Players stayed all through their college careers, you’re able to build a team. Look where the game of men’s basketball went. Hopfully we can do for women’s college basketball what coach Wooden and his UCLA teams did for men’sbasketball.

DP: Coach Wooden had to win a nation title every year.
GA: Correct.

DP: Can you relate to that?
GA: Yes, and I don’t like it. I don’t like it and I say to myself a lot of times do I really want to be in this situation year after year after year. You know…. unless you’ve been in that… you say well c’mon how hard can it be. You know here’s the mentality, you have the best players, you get all the best players in the country. Which is like a joke. We get two or three, we don’t get all of them. But this perception that [it’s like] managing the Yankees … it must be pretty cool huh? Well only if you win the World Series. Otherwise it sucks. (Laughs)


DP: John Wooden was 64 when he retired.
GA: I know. In some cases, I want to be like Wooden (Laughs).

DP: You can announce your retirement right now if you want to Geno.
GA: Only if I got to take over your show a couple days a week and make a third of your salary, then I’d be alright.

DP: Is that what it’s gonna take? Because I know Notre Dame will pitch in, Tennessee, Baylor, Stanford …. there’s a few schools around the country that will pitch in to pay for your salary for you to join me. But do you see yourself coaching when you’re 70?
GA: In today’s day and age Dan, I’m not sure. I know I can keep doing this as long as I keep getting the kind of players I’m coaching today. I don’t even mean like that kind of talent like transcendent talent like Stewie (Breanna Stewart), and Moriah (Jefferson), and Morgan Tuck. I’m talking about the kind of kids that I’m coaching. I could do it. I could do it but, it’s getting harder and harder,