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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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UConn men’s coach Dan Hurley back at work after spinal surgery

UConn coach Dan Hurley is back at work full time, less than two weeks after having surgery for a degenerative spinal condition that required replacing two disks in his neck with artificial ones. Hurley described the fear he felt when doctors told him in August that he needed surgery and that any hard fall or bump could have left him paralyzed. He says before this summer, he had always thought of himself as bulletproof.

Kevin Ollie wins ruling on union protection in fight over firing

The arbitrator in the dispute between UConn and Kevin Ollie says the former basketball coach is protected by a union contract when it comes to the standard the school must meet in proving his ouster was justified. The union agreement requires a showing of serious misconduct. UConn had argued that Ollie’s personal contract superseded union protections, allowing it to fire him for a broader range of offenses.

UConn will pay $17M to leave the AAC for Big East

The University of Connecticut has agreed to pay a $17 million exit fee to the American Athletic Conference so the school can rejoin the Big East next year. The Huskies will join the Big East in all sports except football, men’s and women’s ice hockey and rowing. UConn also announced Friday its football program will become an independent in the Football Bowl Subdivision in 2020.

American Commissioner Mike Aresco: No plans to replace UConn

American Athletic Conference Commissioner Mike Aresco says the league has no plans to add a member to replace Connecticut when the school leaves to join the Big East. UConn’s return to the Big East was announced last month, but exactly when it departs from the American and how much it will have to pay in exit fees still must be negotiated. Aresco says the American is not targeting any schools to add, but it is open to a school that could add value to the conference.

UConn hoops gets probation for NCAA violations under Kevin Ollie

UConn’s men’s basketball program has been placed on probation for two years and Kevin Ollie has been sanctioned individually for violations of NCAA rules during his tenure as coach. An NCAA panel outlined numerous violations, most of them occurring between 2013 and 2018. It agreed with penalties UConn self-imposed in January, including the loss of one scholarship for the 2019-20 season. Ollie’s attorney says the former coach plans to appeal the sanctions.

UConn rejoins Big East for hoops, other sports; not football

UConn is heading back to the Big East. The University of Connecticut Board of Trustees voted to accept an invitation to move its basketball and most other teams from the American Athletic Conference. President Susan Herbst signed a contract with the league. The teams are expected to begin play in the conference at the start of the 2020-21 academic year. The school hasn’t decided where the football team will play because the Big East doesn’t include football.

AP sources: UConn in talks to move back into Big East

A University of Connecticut official says the school is working to get back into the Big East for basketball and other sports. The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to release the information, confirmed there have been talks with the Big East, but said they were not aware any invitation had been extended.