Jeff Jacobs was born in Kirkwood, Mo., and grew up in Newport, R.I. He got a degree from University of Missouri School of Journalism, then worked at newspapers in Michigan and New Jersey before joining the Courant in 1984. He covered the Hartford Whalers and the NHL for 11 years and has been the general sports columnist for 19 years, covering everything from Olympics, Super Bowl and World Series to UConn basketball and high school sports. He is a nine-time Connecticut Sports Writer of the Year and twice has been honored by APSE as one of the Top 10 national columnists. Married to wife Liz since 1987 and has two children, Katerina, a recent graduate of Southern Connecticut, and Liam, a junior in high school. Passions: Sports, music, geography, genealogy, playing Sporcle. Hobby: Surviving heart attacks.

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Jeff Jacobs

Jeff Jacobs

Jeff Jacobs

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Money Needed To Finish Center Could Use Some NBA Bling

Money Needed To Finish Center Could Use Some NBA Bling

October 17, 2014

STORRS — The $40 million Werth Family UConn Basketball Champions Center, christened on a Friday when dual national championships would be celebrated across the street, is beautiful. Beyond beautiful, really, borderline spectacular compared to what the Huskies' basketball teams have used in the past.

  • Rizza's $5M Gift Comes From A Modest Heart

    October 13, 2014

    STORRS — He had made an anonymous $3 million gift a few years ago. And even as he pledged to match $5 million more in donations toward the construction of a new soccer complex, the largest single donor in UConn athletics history had to be encouraged to allow his name to jump from his checkbook to the public eye.

  • They Love To Run, And So Do The Ones They Love

    October 11, 2014

    Scott Mindel was running to jump a Southwest flight to Chicago immediately after finishing ninth at the 2014 NU Hartford Marathon.

  • Reception Warms Donovan's Heart

    October 10, 2014

    Jurgen Klinsmann cut Landon Donovan in May. And anyone who has ever loved someone or something as much as Donovan has loved soccer knows the first cut is the deepest.

  • No Coverup At Trinity: Tapsall Discards Wig, Inspires Others

    October 9, 2014

    Athletes often take off their gloves, their pads, their caps before they start an interview. Liv Tapsall takes a seat on the bench at the Trinity field hockey field and takes off her blonde wig.

  • In Refurbished XL Center, Whaler Green Is Missing

    October 8, 2014

    There was so much to look for at the refurbished XL Center when NBA hopes and NHL history suddenly collided on this Wednesday night in October.

  • UConn Hockey Team Has A Tough On-Ice Leader In Kirtland

    October 4, 2014

    STORRS — Patrick Kirtland is not a talker, Mike Cavanaugh explained, but he is a leader.

  • Gray Matters: My Friend, A Hartford Legend, Signs Off

    October 3, 2014

    Scott Gray began the final commentary of his 42-year radio career Friday morning with an anecdote about Bobby Hull's first visit to the Civic Center as a member of the Winnipeg Jets in 1975. And I'm not going to lie, I was wondering where the heck his last one was headed.

  • Class Act By Plainfield Students Follows Ugly Act At Game

    October 3, 2014

    PLAINFIELD — For someone who makes his living offering sports opinion, this is a difficult enough column. For a parent of a high school athlete who plays in a town with people accused of using the ugliest of racial slurs against high school athletes from other towns, this might be the most difficult of my 37-year career.

  • Yale's Varga Takes His Place In Bowl History

    September 27, 2014

    NEW HAVEN — With a distinctive brush of hair, a strong jaw and an even stronger running constitution, Yale's Tyler Varga is a football player off a 1950 Saturday Evening Post cover. There's something classic in Varga's look, just as there was something undeniably classic in this late Saturday afternoon of college football.

  • Page-Turner: Book On Yale Bowl Rich With Trivia, Classic Tales

    September 26, 2014

    NEW HAVEN — There is a century-old, leather-bound piece of history sitting on the Yale squash coach's desk that tells the story of the school's 1914 football season. In book stores, meanwhile, there is a newly published book from Rich Marazzi that tells the story of every Yale football season since.

  • As Always, Jeter Brings The Magic

    September 26, 2014

    NEW YORK — It began with a rainbow and it ended with that inside-out swing, the Jeterian swing, and a walk-off single to right field.

  • Despite Measly Resources, Toner Built Powerful UConn Empire

    September 24, 2014

    John Toner got UConn into the Big East. He hired Jim Calhoun. He hired Geno Auriemma.

  • Bill Detrick: The Coach's Coach Had Time For Everyone

    September 23, 2014

    NEW BRITAIN — The first time I met Bill Detrick, he talked about the last time he coached a college basketball game. It was in 1990, for Coast Guard, not Central Connecticut. The Bears finished 11-12 in Detrick's one season in New London, lost that 23rd game on a last-second shot, and Detrick got a double technical when he went into a rage over a call.

  • Still More Questions Than Answers After Patriots Win

    September 21, 2014

    FOXBOROUGH, Mass. — Devin McCourty watched the ball bounce off Raiders receiver Denarius Moore, pinball off fellow defensive back Logan Ryan and nestle in the hands of Vince Wilfork. The Patriots safety just couldn't resist.

  • Say A Little Prayer For Me: Dorothy Ollie In Jacobs' Corner

    September 20, 2014

    My Walk of Faith from the steps of the state Capitol to the steps of Gampel Pavilion, Hartford to Storrs, all 26 miles of redemption, will be Sunday, Oct. 5.

  • UConn's Offense Reported Missing In Florida

    September 20, 2014

    TAMPA — This was more than offensive frustration. Until the very end, this was offensive farce.

  • Eastern Soccer Captain, Now Cancer-Free, Makes Emotional Return

    September 18, 2014

    WILLIMANTIC — Jon DeCasanova knew something was wrong in June 2012 when he looked in the mirror and saw his eyes had turned yellow. The signs of jaundice would mark the first steps into a living hell of radiation, chemotherapy, badly swollen limbs and belly and, maybe worst of all, the endless wait for an appropriate match for a bone-marrow transplant.

  • Emotional Night For Wethersfield's Tyler Murphy

    September 17, 2014

    It was, Tyler Murphy said, a day to remember. "And it was," Murphy said, "a night I will never forget. It's hard to put into exact words how special it was. I've never experienced anything like it."

  • Smart QB: UConn's Casey Cochran Goes Out A Winner

    September 15, 2014

    STORRS — By Casey Cochran's best estimate, he has played the game for 20 years. Casey Cochran is 20 years old.

  • In Almost Every Facet, Giants Succeed At Beating Themselves

    September 14, 2014

    EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — From the cynical seats at MetLife Stadium, the Giants' fourth-quarter collapse Sunday in their home opener could be applauded for its precision. It was clinical. It was surgical. And given some of the precursors, the timing was impeccable.

  • Give Huskies A 'C' So Far, But 6 Wins An Attainable Goal

    September 13, 2014

    EAST HARTFORD — Over the past month, Bob Diaco repeatedly called the first quarter of his first UConn season "the preparation." On Saturday, after this 38-21 loss to Boise State, he called the next quarter "the present."

  • UHart AD Anton Goff Is Banking On Men's Basketball Success

    September 12, 2014

    WEST HARTFORD — Anton Goff has so much energy, I fear standing in the same room as the new Hartford athletic director and his kinetic men's basketball coach John Gallagher. Light bulbs surely will flicker and explode. The earth below the Hartford-West Hartford city line surely will rumble.

  • QB Career Over, So It Would Be Nice To Hear From Casey Cochran

    September 10, 2014

    STORRS — Few young athletes have been on our state radar as long as Casey Cochran. He is Jack's kid, the son of the most famous high school football coach in Connecticut history. He could not escape our attention.

  • TEST - QB Career Over, So It Would Be Nice To Hear From Casey Cochran

    September 9, 2014

    STORRS — Few young athletes have been on our state radar as long as Casey Cochran. He is Jack's kid, the son of the most famous high school football coach in Connecticut history. He could not escape our attention.

  • Let's Go To The Video: NFL, Ravens Handled Rice Case Horribly

    September 8, 2014

    NEW YORK — The video, not some great and enduring principle, led the Baltimore Ravens to cut Ray Rice on Monday. The video, certainly not moral fiber or a sage's wisdom, led NFL commissioner Roger Goodell to suspend the running back indefinitely.

  • Derek Jeter, As Always, One Cool Captain

    September 7, 2014

    NEW YORK — On a day the Yankees honored Derek Jeter, a Sunday when Joe Torre called him the best player he'd ever managed, Torre recalled a moment from October 1996. Jeter was a 22-year-old rookie. Torre was a rookie Yankees manager.

  • Some Good, Some Bad, In UConn's Win Against Stony Brook

    September 6, 2014

    EAST HARTFORD — The first reaction that Bob Diaco had when Luke Allen, who had endured a number of low, short liners, leaned into a third-period punt was, "He just outkicked his coverage."

  • School That Tattled On Geno Is As Slimy And Pathetic As NCAA

    September 5, 2014

    The pathetic part is that the school that complained about Geno Auriemma's making a phone call to congratulate Little League pitcher Mo'ne Davis somehow will feel validated by the NCAA decision to slap UConn with a secondary rules violation.

  • Rossomando Brings Change In Culture To Central

    September 4, 2014

    NEW BRITAIN — Behind them was a wild 31-27 victory over No. 7 Towson, arguably the greatest victory in the history of the football program. Ahead for the Central Connecticut Blue Devils last Saturday night was a five-hour bus ride home.

  • Diaco May Have His Process, But It's Results That Matter

    September 2, 2014

    STORRS — After the unfortunate Paul Pasqualoni era, Bob Diaco has been given a very wide berth. Diaco just has to make sure he doesn't seize all that available space in the early going and make the scoreboard sound as if it doesn't count.

  • Shocked Deutsche Bank Championship Winner All But Shuns Ryder Cup

    September 1, 2014

    NORTON, Mass. — One had been practically begging Tom Watson to play in the Ryder Cup. The other almost seemed to be begging Watson not to pick him.

  • UConn's Goalies Coach Has Wealth Of Experience

    August 30, 2014

    Mike Cavanaugh didn't know Andrew Raycroft. He knew his name. He knew his game. He knew he got traded for Tuukka Rask. Everyone from Boston to Botswana knows that Raycroft got traded for Tuukka Rask. Still, Cavanaugh didn't know Raycroft personally.

  • From Clean And Crisp To Bedraggled, Just Like That

    August 30, 2014

    EAST HARTFORD — He charged onto the field in a white dress shirt as clean and crisp as this new season. Yes, as clean and crisp as his new coaching era.

  • After Initial Whiff, Roger Goodell Finally Gets It Right

    August 28, 2014

    He accepted responsibility for the worst decision of his reign as NFL commissioner. On a Thursday during the 2014 exhibition season, Roger Goodell manned up.

  • Weist Resides In Michigan, But UConn Will Live In His Heart

    August 27, 2014

    He met his wife on Michigan's charter flight home from the 1992 Rose Bowl. T.J. Weist was a graduate assistant. Karen was a flight attendant.

  • Jeff Jacobs: Max DeLorenzo Emerging As Leader On UConn Football Team

    August 26, 2014

    STORRS — Max DeLorenzo was 50th on the UConn depth chart when he arrived in Storrs from Berlin High. OK, that's an exaggeration, but not by much. He was ninth.

  • Torre Still Giving Credit To Everyone Else

    August 23, 2014

    NEW YORK — When he took over as manager of the Yankees on Nov. 2, 1995, greeted by the blaring tabloid headline "Clueless Joe," and the oft-unreasonable demands of George Steinbrenner, Joe Torre had a choice.

  • Huskies Embrace Casey Cochran's Bad Hair (Media) Day

    August 21, 2014

    STORRS — Coach Bob Diaco introduced his four captains Thursday afternoon at UConn football media day. The team voted for them, Diaco said, and he insisted that Byron Jones, Marquise Vann, Geremy Davis and Alex Mateas were incredible leaders.

  • Jeff Jacobs: Blake, Courier Give Connecticut Open Crowd Money's Worth

    August 21, 2014

    NEW HAVEN — They were not afraid to whiz some vicious shots at each other's head. Yes, it was much more dangerous off the court Wednesday than on it for James Blake and Jim Courier at the Connecticut Tennis Center.

  • Casey Cochran At The Bat, But We'll See If He Stays There

    August 18, 2014

    STORRS — Two quarterbacks are going to play, he announced, but this is not a two-headed monster.

  • A Bleak View Of NCAA's Future

    August 16, 2014

    Walter Harrison, a serious man of letters, is not without that most important of qualities: A dry sense of humor.

  • Springer Enjoys Fenway Visit

    August 14, 2014

    BOSTON — His favorite Fenway memory is his first Fenway memory.

  • Wayne Simone Honored For His Work: Call Him Mr. AAU

    August 14, 2014

    WATERBURY — Ken Smith, the longtime coach at Windsor High School, remembers reading a book called “Raw Recruits” by Alexander Wolff and Armen Keteyian. Good grief, it was almost 25 years ago.

  • Kevin Ward's Tragic Death Heartbreaking And Unnecessary

    August 11, 2014

    On the list of needless deaths in sports, this has to be the most needless. Kevin Ward's violent passing at age 20 on a New York dirt track Saturday night was tragic, heartbreaking and totally unnecessary.

  • Sun Have To Do Better

    August 10, 2014

    UNCASVILLE — Maybe this is what it takes. Maybe it takes Chiney Ogwumike, the team's future, to get caught in the health issues of the present and have to watch the vital minutes from the bench.

  • Dad Who Gave Kidney To Daughter Grateful To Sox

    August 9, 2014

    This story starts with pain in Bella Forrest's knees and it ends with her dad, Bill, winning three authentic Red Sox World Series rings. Yet it is all the things in between, the kidney transplant, the strength drawn from Jonny Gomes, that will form a special forever bond between a Connecticut father and his daughter.

  • UConn's Basketball Brotherhood Gathers For Jim Calhoun Charity Classic

    August 8, 2014

    UNCASVILLE — Charlie Villanueva walked on the court 22 minutes before the start of the seventh Jim Calhoun Charity Classic, hugged Donyell Marshall, hugged Ben Gordon and immediately made a move to block a jumper by Taliek Brown.

  • We Must Do Much More To Rid Campuses Of Sexual Violence

    August 7, 2014

    He received a master's degree from Michigan in social work in 1993 and an MBA from Michigan's Ross School of Business in 2005. He has been involved in athletics management at the highest collegiate level for many years.

  • Foreign Substance: Knappe, Cruz Vow To Improve UConn's OL

    August 6, 2014

    STORRS — One comes from Silkeborg, Denmark and the defensive side of the football. Another comes from Dominican Republic via myocarditis.

  • In WNBA, Joy At Becky Hammon's Coaching Job In NBA

    August 5, 2014

    UNCASVILLE — Pokey Chatman was ecstatic. Ecstatic Becky Hammon had smashed a big hole in the glass ceiling. Ecstatic that an aspiring female coach and the NBA champion San Antonio Spurs were such a perfect fit.

  • Jacobs: Cespedes Fills Many Needs

    August 2, 2014

    BOSTON — Boston already has Big Papi. So let's call Yoenis Cespedes the Big Need.

  • A Night Ranaudo Won't Forget: Fans Jeter For First Strikeout

    August 2, 2014

    BOSTON — It was barely a year ago when Anthony Ranaudo stood in the rear of the New Britain Stadium press box, stretched to his full 79 inches and smiled at a question he knew was coming.

  • A Night Ranaudo Will Never Forget

    August 2, 2014

    Ranaudo was only 7 when he went with his family to his first major league game, the Yankees' home opener against the A's. Seventeen years later, after seeing Jeter for the first time in person, Ranaudo saw The Captain again. This time it was from 60 feet, six inches.

  • Jacobs: A Worst-To-First-To-Worst Cycle

    July 31, 2014

    After the Red Sox put an exclamation point on one of the most compelling stories in baseball history last October, only champagne bottles were left to be collected in the home team clubhouse.

  • Another AAC Trophy? Aresco Might Be Top Cheerleader In Nation

    July 29, 2014

    NEWPORT, R.I. — The weight of modern athletic history, one made all the heavier by the bottomless moneybags of network television, is against him and his league. Deep down, Mike Aresco must know this.

  • State Needs To Help With New Stadium Plan

    July 20, 2014

    Done deal.

  • Jeff Jacobs: Local Fans As Intense As Any

    July 13, 2014

    Draped in a German flag, shouting at the large-screen television in his native tongue, Steven Koegler was a portrait of unrestrained joy.

  • Jeff Jacobs: Gaspar Takes Pride In Iran Cup Experience

    July 12, 2014

    Dan Gaspar's unforgettable World Cup moment arrived not in one of Brazil's frenzied stadiums, filled with their uninhibited joy and extra-time heartache. It came with security forces surrounding the Iranian soccer team.

  • LeBron's Next Duty? Tailor A Title Belt For The Rust Belt

    July 11, 2014

    If you had been there outside the Boys & Girls Club of Greenwich on that steamy July night in 2010, wilting among the 300 rubberneckers to 21st century sporting hubris, you would have understood why they burned LeBron James' jersey and pulled down that 10-story "Witness" mural in Cleveland.

  • Jeff Jacobs: U.S. Soccer Fans Have Fun Time, Despite Loss

    July 1, 2014

    HARTFORD — It started in the 106th minute early Tuesday evening, only a few stifled groans after Romelu Lukaku had given Belgium a two-goal World Cup lead. A little tinny at first, a few voices scattered among the 300 or so American Outlaws fans that had jammed one side of Damon's Tavern on Prospect Avenue.

  • In Search For Offense, Red Sox Gamble On Betts

    June 28, 2014

    NEW YORK — Mookie Betts was at his Rhode Island hotel with his fiancee late Friday night, and had just ordered pizza when Pawtucket manager Kevin Boles called. The PawSox had beaten Norfolk 4-2, but Boles wanted Betts to return to McCoy Stadium.

  • After Being Shut Out Against Yankees, Sox Limping Toward All-Star Break

    June 28, 2014

    NEW YORK — The Red Sox will hit the halfway mark of their 2104 season Saturday against Masahiro Tanaka. Yet after this limp dishrag of a performance, in which the Sox made Vidal Nuño look like he was, well, Masahiro Tanaka, you've got to wonder.

  • Many Picked Before Shabazz, But Few Better

    June 27, 2014

    NEW YORK — LeBron James saw what he did. We all saw what he did. As a junior, Shabazz Napier pulled one overtime rabbit out of a hat after another. As a senior, Napier took a team that nobody picked for the Final Four and led UConn to a national championship.

  • There's No Time Like Futbol Time

    June 26, 2014

    If only the World Cup were as simple as Luis Suarez. He bites Giorgi Chiellini on the shoulder, doesn't get thrown out, Uruguay eliminates Italy and the entire planet outside of Montevideo is outraged.

  • Seven Straight Birdies? That's Not The Real Miracle

    June 22, 2014

    CROMWELL — After golf history had been made, after little Sophie had charmed the lens off the CBS cameras, Kevin Streelman's caddie, A.J. Monticinos, said, yeah, Streelman is a talker.

  • Tiger, Who's Not In Cromwell, Steals The Spotlight

    June 21, 2014

    CROMWELL — There is an old line about how there are two Olympics. The one you see on NBC and the one that's actually happening.

  • Lee Janzen Keeps Pushing To Accomplish Unique Milestones

    June 20, 2014

    CROMWELL —Twenty-one years ago Friday, Lee Janzen channeled his inner Tom Watson and feathered a 30-foot chip to history on the 16th hole at Baltusrol. Twenty-one years ago Friday, Janzen's drive on 17 hit a tree branch, bounced back on the fairway and suddenly anything was possible.

  • Quick Start Doesn't Necessarily Mean Strong Finish

    June 19, 2014

    CROMWELL — The first-round leaderboard at a PGA Tour event is like the presidential election results from Dixville Notch. They are early. They pique interest. And, ultimately, they usually have little to do with who walks away with the big prize.

  • Alex Morgan Bringing Game (And Fun) To East Hartford

    June 18, 2014

    EAST HARTFORD — From Sao Paulo to Fenway Park, empirical analytics is everything in sports these days. So we don't need an opinion from Alex Morgan, we need a metric.

  • In P.T. Barnum's Hometown, A Baseball Circus Named Pete Rose

    June 16, 2014

    BRIDGEPORT — Although the quote doesn't really belong to him, Phineas Taylor Barnum has been credited with saying there's a sucker born every minute. Like that sucker, I am drawn to Barnum's hometown to listen to Pete Rose and watch him manage an independent league team for one night.

  • What's Next For The XL Center?

    June 14, 2014

    I have no answer. I'm going to ask the question, anyway.

  • Problems With New Britain Stadium Put Solomon On The Move

    June 13, 2014

    Rock Cats owner Josh Solomon doesn't like being called a liar. Nobody likes being called a liar. And that's probably as good a place as any to start.

  • Rangers Prove Their Resilience In Game 4

    June 11, 2014

    NEW YORK — If the weight of history holds form, if the inexorable grind does leave the Rangers in a heap of California dust, the Los Angeles Kings might be remembered as the most resilient playoff team in North American history.

  • State's Tight-Knit Hockey Community Focuses On Quick

    June 10, 2014

    STAMFORD — Mike Backman said he wasn't sure how terrific his son-in-law was Monday night until he got home and saw the replays Tuesday morning. It was then that Backman saw the stick save that Jonathan Quick made on Mats Zuccarello in the first period. It was then that he saw the stick save that Quick made on Derick Brassard in the second.

  • Low-Key Quick Makes A Splash — But Quietly

    June 10, 2014

    NEW YORK — The last time Jonathan Quick played at Madison Square Garden he was with the Pee Wee Rangers. It was 16 years ago. He was 12.

  • California Chrome Owner Shows Lack Of Horse Sense

    June 7, 2014

    ELMONT, N.Y. — If only Steve Coburn had spoken as many words as his horse did after the 146th Belmont Stakes, he'd have a whole bunch more respect today.

  • Trainer Kenny McPeek Blames Lasix For Triple Crown Drought

    June 6, 2014

    ELMONT, N.Y. — On a weekend when the sports world will surrender 150 precious seconds of its attention span to find out if California Chrome can do what 12 Thoroughbreds dating to Spectacular Bid in 1979 could not, Kenny McPeek answered a question with a question.

  • UConn Reunion At Mohegan Sun

    June 6, 2014

    UNCASVILLE — The 5,014 Sun fans gave Kara Lawson a decidedly mixed reaction upon her return to Mohegan Sun Arena Thursday night. Although Lawson had nothing bad to say about anybody after the Mystics beat the Sun 74-66, it was no secret that she was looking to leave after last season — maybe even during it.

  • Summer In The City? Baseball Would Make It Special

    June 3, 2014

    We have a history. Oh, do we have a baseball history.

  • Well-Worn Path From Wolf Pack To Rangers

    May 31, 2014

    From Dominic Moore to J.T. Miller, Ken Gernander has watched them climb from the minors to within four victories of the Stanley Cup. There are 10 of them who have made their way from Hartford to the Rangers, 10 players spanning 11 hockey seasons, all with one dream.

  • Lundqvist Shows Why He's The King

    May 29, 2014

    NEW YORK — He wasn't going to let in a goal. Not on this glorious night. No way. No how.

  • A New Manny Ramirez Returns To Fenway Park

    May 28, 2014

    BOSTON — After Pedro Martinez stepped from behind the giant banner hanging from the Green Monster and did a crazy, Petey jig, there was no way they were going to boo Manny Ramirez.

  • Triple Crown Winners Agree: Don't Change The Format

    May 28, 2014

    They have seen enough, too. They have watched 12 horses since 1979, including eight since 1997, win the Kentucky Derby and Preakness only to fail to close the deal at the Belmont Stakes. They, too, are pulling for California Chrome to end the 36-year Triple Crown drought June 8 at the Belmont Stakes.

  • Drama Making For Great Series Between Rangers, Canadiens

    May 26, 2014

    NEW YORK —You get the feeling that if they all had broken jaws like Derek Stepan, they'd still be yapping. They'd still find a way to curse each other out and keep skating.

  • On Memorial Day, Let Freedom Of Expression Ring

    May 24, 2014

    His name was Billy Woods, Seaman 2nd Class William Anthony Woods, and he left William Cullen Bryant High School in Queens to join the U.S. Navy. He was aboard the USS Arizona at 7:48 a.m. on Dec. 7, 1941, when the Japanese began their stunning air assault on Pearl Harbor.

  • Sue Bird On Anne Donovan, Aging And The Big Picture

    May 23, 2014

    UNCASVILLE — She was gone by dawn. Sue Bird had a chance to see Geno Auriemma's wife, Kathy, and their family. She saw Maria Conlon and Morgan Valley.

  • Manuel Nails It; Everybody's A Winner In Ollie Deal

    May 23, 2014

    This is a good deal for Kevin Ollie. This is a good deal for UConn.

  • Blood Has Injected A Spark Into Hartford Baseball Team

    May 21, 2014

    LOWELL, Mass. — They have the sure-fire, first-round draft pick on the pitcher's mound, a precious commodity for any college baseball program. They have a freshman two-sport star — soccer goalie/third baseman — an oddity at any Division I school in the 21st century.

  • This Won't Be Last Time Rumors Of Ollie's Departure Surface

    May 20, 2014

    There is no doubt. Kevin Ollie is a UConn guy. Kevin Ollie is an NBA guy.

  • Jeff Jacobs: At This Point, Spievey Isn't Taking Any Chances

    May 17, 2014

    — The cross-over dribble, the grace and speed, the leaping ability, the step-back jumper, they were all there Saturday inside Mercy High School's gymnasium.

  • As More Sickening Details Emerge, Hernandez Far From Heaven

    May 16, 2014

    As Suffolk County District Attorney Daniel Conley stood there speaking late Thursday morning, his horrifying words of ambush and execution captured by national television cameras, the mind drifted to a place and time 900 miles and 27 months away.

  • Bruins Lost To A Better Team

    May 15, 2014

    BOSTON — The Bruins scored 16 goals and hit 13 goal posts in a seven-game series that ultimately ended in stinging season elimination.

  • Norwich Friends Fulfill Their Dreams on Major League Fields

    May 13, 2014

    NEW YORK — Big dreams can come from small places. And as Eric Campbell sat at his locker in the visiting team clubhouse Tuesday at Yankee Stadium, he shook his head in amazement at how big those dreams grew off Scotland Road in Norwich.

  • Paul Pierce Spoke, LeBron James Responded

    May 13, 2014

    NEW YORK — LeBron James had some messages to send. Oh, he had some messages to send.

  • Eastern Baseball Back In A Healthy Place

    May 10, 2014

    MANSFIELD — Mike Vaccarelli's left index finger is broken. The left index finger of the first-year coach who has pointed the Eastern Connecticut baseball program back in the right direction is not.

  • Jeff Jacobs: Napier Checks Another Off List With Graduation

    May 10, 2014

    STORRS — Astronaut and UConn alum Rick Mastracchio is making news for delivering Saturday's graduation address to the UConn school of engineering from the International Space Station.

  • User Manuel: UConn AD Knows Both Sides Of NCAA Issues

    May 8, 2014

    On a Thursday night at Radio City Music Hall when the eyes of American sports were on what's next for many of college's premier athletes, the truth is that the most sweeping and controversial matters involve what those athletes are leaving behind.

  • Rangers' Nash Struggles, And So Does His Team

    May 7, 2014

    NEW YORK — He barreled in on a 3-on-1 break. The puck stood on its edge and Rick Nash shanked a wrist shot wide of the Pittsburgh net. Ugly.

  • The XL Center's Future Is Everyone's Business

    May 4, 2014

    As sports fans, we all want the best venues. As taxpayers, few of us want to foot the bill.

  • Let It Be About Hockey, Not Racism

    May 3, 2014

    BOSTON — The puck is black, the ice is white and, by the grace of all that is good, both are color-blind.

  • Bob Toski Knows All The Golf Greats, Past And Present

    May 2, 2014

    CROMWELL — The PGA Tour stop in our state has been called eight different names with 54 different champions through 62 years and two golf courses. Only one man ever called The Courant to call his own victory.

  • Philadelphia Story: Geno Pays His Respects To Dr. Jack

    May 1, 2014

    Geno Auriemma's favorite player of all-time is Walt Frazier. He loved the way Frazier played on both ends of the basketball court. He loved the way he won championships. Most of all, Frazier did it with the undeniable cool that made a young guy from Norristown, Pa., say, "Man, I want to be Clyde."

  • Carcillo Steps Up When It Counts

    May 1, 2014

    NEW YORK — They weren't going to win Game 7 without a goal from Rick Nash. They weren't going to win without a goal from Martin St. Louis. They weren't going to win if they didn't finally, finally, finally score a power-play goal.

  • Sterling-Silver: Longtime Bully Toppled By Skinny New Guy

    April 30, 2014

    Adam Silver answered the weight of sports history with the required precision of an accomplished lawyer and the inspired vision of a proud American. The NBA commissioner picked up that great weight of history high overhead Tuesday and dropped it on Donald Sterling harder than one of Blake Griffin's monster dunks.

  • Peeling Back Another Layer Of Racism Thanks To The Foul Donald Sterling

    April 28, 2014

    President Barack Obama was correct when he said that when ignorant people want to advertise their ignorance, you don't really have to do anything. You just let them talk.

  • After Detroit, Onward To Montreal For The Bruins

    April 26, 2014

    BOSTON — Each Stanley Cup playoff game has a pulse of its own. First round to last, each of its games pounds to its own heartbeat. Regular, irregular and sometimes, well, sometimes it races like a mad dog after a cheap cut of beef.

  • Academic Progress: Two Smart Decisions In Storrs

    April 25, 2014

    DeAndre Daniels announced Friday that he is entering the NBA draft. Ryan Boatright announced he is staying at UConn for his senior season.

  • Bitterness Is In The Air With Tina Charles' Departure

    April 14, 2014

    UNCASVILLE — This is a total face-lift, a total eclipse of the Sun. Yet before UConn fans and Sun fans go crazy about Connecticut's WNBA team trading away one of the greatest players in State U. history, a league MVP only two years ago, this much you should know:

  • With Help Of Winning Coaches, Depressing Date Gets New Shine

    April 13, 2014

    HARTFORD — As the UConn men's basketball coach, one who would later say he isn't going anywhere, stepped up to speak outside the State Capitol on Sunday, thousands of UConn fans began chanting, "Ol-lie! Ol-lie!" No lie, the earth rumbled and it sounded like "A-li! A-li!" in Kinshasa before the Rumble in the Jungle fight against George Foreman.

  • Diaco Changing The Football Culture At UConn

    April 12, 2014

    EAST HARTFORD — On Wednesday, he brought them over in full practice gear to the women's national championship victory rally on campus. On Saturday, Bob Diaco brought his players down the Rentschler Field steps through the student section as they took the field for pregame warmups at the annual Blue-White Spring Game.

  • Capitol Steps: Courant Columnist To Make Good On Boast After UConn Men Win It All

    April 12, 2014

    And so I walk. ... "Color me not convinced. Call me the Doubting Pitino if you want, but I'll carry this banner from the state Capitol to Gampel Pavilion if UConn wins the national championship."

  • They've Been Flawless When It Counted The Most

    April 9, 2014

    NASHVILLE — History demanded perfection. For without perfection Tuesday night in this state where Pat Summitt ruled as basketball royalty, there would be no history for UConn and Geno Auriemma.

  • Huskies Climbed To Top Of World One Step At A Time

    April 8, 2014

    ARLINGTON, Texas — They took the stairs. They took them one step at a time. They took them one by one when there wasn't anything to play for last season and they were the pariahs of the NCAA. They took them one step at a time even after Louisville smoked them three times this season.

  • UConn's Dominance Shows It Deserves A Bigger Stage

    April 7, 2014

    NASHVILLE — Numbers are thrown around faster than crumpled up brackets this time of year. Call it one-and-done or, as John Calipari, with the propriety of a snake oil salesman, calls it, "succeed and proceed." Whatever term you choose, Kentucky will start five freshmen Monday night in the national championship game against UConn, and all five could be gone to the NBA in weeks.

  • From The Ashes Of Nothing To Play For, Ultimate Redemption Is In Sight

    April 6, 2014

    ARLINGTON, Texas —The team that had nothing to play for last season has a national championship to play for Monday.

  • Kemba, Shabazz, The Shot, The Promised Land

    April 4, 2014

    ARLINGTON, Texas — In the end, it is only a shot. The ball leaves the fingertips. The ball nestles in the net. The buzzer sounds. One team wins. The other team loses.

  • Mix A Dash Of Ollie, A Pinch Of Calhoun, You Get Donovan

    April 4, 2014

    DALLAS — He built a basketball powerhouse, a multiple national champion, in a place where it never was supposed to happen.

  • Cherish The Moment, Connecticut: Something's Happening Here

    April 1, 2014

    LINCOLN, Neb. — Sometimes it comes from the mouth of an outsider. Sometimes it comes from the mouth of an insider.

  • Numbers Don't Lie; Huskies Dominate The Game

    April 1, 2014

    LINCOLN, Neb. — A half continent away from Madison Square Garden, the full onslaught of UConn basketball continued Monday night. A half continent away from an ear-shattering Sunday afternoon in an arena players love to call the Mecca of basketball, the full onslaught of UConn basketball continued in a land where football is king.

  • Feeding DeAndre Daniels Satisfies The Whole UConn Team

    March 29, 2014

    NEW YORK — He missed his first shot. That is being too kind. DeAndre Daniels bricked his first shot, a three-point attempt that would have caved in the south side of Madison Square Garden if it hadn't bashed into the backboard.

  • Anybody Notice Which College Team Has Foothold In New York?

    March 28, 2014

    NEW YORK — Each has a story to tell and all of them paid a lot of dollars to tell it. Yet in the end, the message that their passion sends is the same:

  • Dolson Finishes Gampel Career In Royal Fashion

    March 26, 2014

    STORRS — With two minutes, 40 seconds remaining in another UConn women's rout Tuesday night, Stefanie Dolson left the Gampel Pavilion floor for the final time. Geno Auriemma briefly threw one arm around her as Dolson went down the line to slap hands with the rest of her teammates.

  • Dolson Finishes Gampel Career In Royal Fashion

    March 25, 2014

    STORRS — With two minutes, 40 seconds remaining in another UConn women's rout Tuesday night, Stefanie Dolson left the Gampel Pavilion floor for the final time. Geno Auriemma briefly threw one arm around her as Dolson went down the line to slap hands with the rest of her teammates.

  • In Geno's Mind, Ollie Is No. 1 When It Comes To Seeding

    March 24, 2014

    STORRS — Geno Auriemma gets a kick out of it. He clicks on the television, he picks up the paper and there is Kevin Ollie, that noted farmer from South Central LA, talking about planting seeds.

  • Jeff Jacobs: Jim Calhoun Photobombs Way Into Focus Of UConn's Tourney Snapshot

    March 22, 2014

    BUFFALO, N.Y. — Satisfied, Jim? The attention is on you.

  • Jeff Jacobs: This Time UConn Got By Without Its Miracle Worker

    March 21, 2014

    They were the 11 points that saved the UConn season. They were the 11 points that made this night worth the two years of wishing and waiting by Kevin Ollie and a bunch of guys who had been embarrassed by Iowa State and Royce White in that last NCAA Tournament game in 2012.

  • Nearing 70, Syracuse's Boeheim Never At A Loss For Words

    March 20, 2014

    BUFFALO, N.Y. — Forget the bracketologist-in-chief. The sour puss-in-chief said Wednesday he'd pick Michigan State, Louisville, Florida and Arizona to advance to the NCAA Tournament Final Four.

  • Just Part Of The Madness: Phil Martelli Is A UConn Foe And A UConn Best Friend

    March 17, 2014

    STORRS — The first call Geno Auriemma got after he won his first national championship in 1995 wasn't from President Clinton, Governor John Rowland or Jim Calhoun.

  • Zero Respect: NCAA Shows What It Thinks Of AAC

    March 17, 2014

    STORRS — The last time the UConn basketball team missed the NCAA Tournament in successive years was 1988-1989. Bill Clinton was still governor of Arkansas. The Red Sox were still cursed. And the "Lethal Weapon" sequels had only reached 2, on their way to 5.

  • March 15, Where It All Started [We Know The One Team UConn Can't Beat]

    March 15, 2014

    In this column that appeared in The Courant on March 16, 2014 - after UConn's loss to Louisville in the AAC tournament final - columnist Jeff Jacobs went out on a limb. Read on!

  • Huskies Count Out The Tigers ... Eins, Zwei, Drei

    March 14, 2014

    MEMPHIS, Tenn. — There will be no more Saturday nights in March, magical nights at the corner of 33rd Street and Eighth Avenue and the intersection of Ewing and Kemba. For UConn, Syracuse and some other elite basketball schools, there will be no more Big East tournament on the biggest stage, where every Calhoun rant and every Boeheim frown was dissected by New York drama critics dressed in sports writer khakis.

  • No Matter Where They Play, The Huskies Will Be Tough To Beat

    March 10, 2014

    UNCASVILLE — Greatness has no boundaries. Greatness needs no favors.

  • Don't Look Ahead: UConn's Hockey Future Starts Right Now

    March 7, 2014

    STORRS — Mike Cavanaugh wanted his UConn hockey team to do things it had never done. That was the motto. He was looking for firsts in the history of the program. First Atlantic Hockey title? Maybe. First trip to the NCAA Tournament? That would be great.

  • With Mom's Support, Napier Finishes What He Started

    March 5, 2014

    STORRS — She had done her best to remain composed during the pregame senior night ceremony. She had hugged Kevin Ollie tight and hugged Jim Calhoun just as tight. Afterward, after UConn had outlasted Rutgers, she stood there laughing as she posed with shirtless UConn students with her son's name spelled out on their chests.

  • Shoni Schimmel's Bark Exceeds Louisville's Bite

    March 4, 2014

    LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Maybe it was the magic of the pre-game ceremonies on Senior Night. Maybe it was the lingering magic of shocking Baylor in the Sweet Sixteen last March.

  • UConn Wins Ugly ... Very Ugly

    March 1, 2014

    HARTFORD — On a Saturday afternoon when UConn upended No. 11 Cincinnati in a sport we are still trying to identify, there are a few things you should know.

  • Feat Of A Dancer: Dolson Approaches Curtain Call With A Smile

    February 28, 2014

    She has a galaxy of stars and an inscription on one foot. When she was 16, Stefanie Dolson and her older siblings Ashley and Courtney decided to get tattoos. A sister thing, Dolson says.

  • Day Of Memories For 1999 UConn Team That Started It All

    February 23, 2014

    STORRS — Larry Brown got a chance to see Jim Calhoun Sunday.

  • Aaron Hernandez Had Everything – Except Courage

    June 26, 2013

    As he walked out of the front door of his $1.3 million McMansion on Wednesday morning, handcuffed under his white T-shirt, it struck me that Aaron Hernandez looked like he had alligator arms.

  • Sports No Salvation For Alleged Bomber

    April 21, 2013

    After a marathon that danced with joy and ended in horror, surely we see what sports can mean to a city. By now, after pregame tributes marked by an anthem singer's fist pumps and the most appropriate f-bomb in New England history, yes, we see how sports can serve as the great stage to unite a region and lift its spirit.

  • Bombings Hit A Race That Is Peaceful At Its Heart

    April 16, 2013

    Amby Burfoot was a little more than a half mile from the finish line Monday, running happily with childhood friends from Groton, when suddenly a human traffic jam confronted him.

  • Soccer Stars Give Newtown Kids Something To Smile About

    January 8, 2013

    This was Chris Canetti's idea. This is Marcus Tracy's hometown.

  • Athletes Who Use Guns Must Use Their Influence In Wake Of Newtown Massacre

    December 17, 2012

    Some of the best hunters and anglers in the world are to be found on the rosters of American professional sports teams. Some of the best hunters and anglers in the world are to be found enshrined in Cooperstown, Canton and Springfield. They are respected as both sportsmen and sportsmen.

  • Let's Have Hugs, Prayers And No More Need For Tributes

    December 17, 2012

    John Prior saw the news flash across CNBC on Friday and it staggered him.

  • McCourty Doesn't Fumble Gratitude For Teammates

    October 21, 2012

    — We figured that Devin McCourty owed some of his teammates dinner. A nice cut of prime rib for Mr. Prime Time Tom Brady maybe, for impeccable efficiency in answering his critics on that last-minute drive in regulation. A big Maine lobster, surely, for Steve Gostkowski for nailing a 43-yard field goal to send the game into overtime and then a 48-yarder to win it.

  • Calhoun: Guts And Glory

    September 14, 2012

    STORRS — The reality of 40 cold New England winters are behind him. We begin with the Jim Calhoun legend now, and when legend becomes fact, they say, print the legend.

  • Calhoun's A Legend; Get A Legend To Replace Him

    September 12, 2012

    We knew the toughest man in the room, the most competitive man in the gym, the greatest college basketball coach in New England history would battle until the end. We knew he'd go the full 15 rounds.

  • Jeff Jacobs: Never A Doubt Webb Simpson Was Coming To Travelers

    June 20, 2012

    CROMWELL — He passed on Letterman. He passed on Leno. He didn't pass on the Travelers Championship.

  • Michael Thompson Is Rising Toward Top Of PGA Tour

    June 19, 2012

    Michael Thompson lived last week on the crookedest street in the world, which is entirely fitting given his profession. He arrives in Connecticut this week all too aware that no sport puts you on the crookedest street of emotions like golf.

  • Nov. 23: Bobby Valentine Will Be Fun With Red Sox, But It Won't End Well

    November 24, 2011

    This started Nov. 3 at the Hartford Club. And make no mistake, it would end spectacularly. This started with an arranged meeting before a World Affairs Council event on Prospect Street. And the prospect of it ending in flames on Yawkey Way isn't really a prospect at all.

  • Kemba Walker Embraced The Process

    April 13, 2011

    STORRS — Jim Calhoun was using Charlie Villanueva as a comparison, but the truth is the UConn coach could have inserted the names of hundreds of college basketball players. The difference with Kemba Walker, Calhoun insisted, is he didn't have to learn how to work.

  • UConn's George Blaney Not Just Along For The Ride

    April 9, 2011

    By his own calculation, UConn associate coach George Blaney had been to 36 Final Fours before 2004. He sat on the board of the National Association of Basketball Coaches. That meant Blaney always had good seats.

  • Finale Built Brick By Brick

    April 6, 2011

    Sure, it was a rock fight. Yet to focus on the rock is to miss the fact that the UConn Huskies moved a mountain over 28 glorious days.

  • Three For Calhoun In The Blink Of An Eye

    April 5, 2011

    HOUSTON — In one of those simple, brilliant leads that occasionally grace the sports pages, Courant beat writer Michael Arace sent 17 words back to Connecticut from St. Petersburg, Fla., on March 29, 1999.

  • Calhoun Vs. Calipari A Show In Itself

    April 2, 2011

    Coaches, players, Cinderellas, old New England turf rivals, they were all at a banquet to honor their Final Four achievement Thursday night when Jim Calhoun decided the time was ripe to play the "My Three Sons" card.

  • They're Riding High Out Of The West Again

    March 27, 2011

    ANAHEIM, Calif. — The three-pointer by Derrick Williams that would have ended this jubilant, most improbable UConn season bounced off the rim. Kyle Fogg kept the rebound alive and the three-pointer by Jamelle Horne that would have ended this jubilant, most unusual nine-game run bounced off the rim again.

  • With Jeremy Lamb, March Comes In Like A Lion

    March 25, 2011

    ANAHEIM, Calif. — Kemba Walker blinked. College basketball's omniscient guard, the god who sees all, knows all, does all, blinked.

  • Not Women's Or Men's, Just Greatness

    December 22, 2010

    Tina Charles flew in from Russia. Kemba Walker, Randy Edsall, Richard Blumenthal — the who's who of Connecticut — descended from all parts Nutmeg. In the middle of Geno Auriemma's postgame press conference on this historic night, even the President called.

  • Howard Baldwin Knows It Wouldn't Pay To Fight For Two Letters

    September 21, 2010

    The old Howard Baldwin probably would have fought this fight. In those days, the 30-year-old blond WHA rebel would be told he shouldn't do something by the hockey establishment, do the opposite and then dare the old codgers to do something about it.

  • Watson Triumphs On A Day That Had It All

    June 28, 2010

    If you saw the pitching wedge Bubba Watson topped from a fairway bunker into the water on the 17th hole, you saw a piece of it. If you saw his monster drive on 18, the one that bounced off the cart path 396 yards into Travelers Championship legend, yes, you saw another piece.

  • Micheel Has Special Delivery For Ill Mother

    June 27, 2010

    — The ball has traveled from the Pacific to the Atlantic Coast and it remains in a safe spot in Shaun Micheel's golf bag. The three-iron from 239 yards turned into only the second double-eagle in the 110-year history of the U.S. Open, and considering it occurred on Father's Day, any other time Micheel would gladly have presented the ball to his dad.

  • Rebuilding The Love Of The Game

    June 26, 2010

    — Seems like such a great life, doesn't it? Courtesy car is waiting at the airport. Mint chocolate is on the hotel pillow. Wake up and rub elbows with the big boys on the range.

  • Thursday Usually A Day For Dreamers At Travelers

    June 25, 2010

    Thursday in Cromwell can mean only one thing.

  • At The Travelers Championship, Wounded Soldiers Get Many Thanks

    June 24, 2010

    You watch Dan Nevins make his way slowly up the 18th fairway on two prosthetic legs. You look at Dan Perry's face, a face that has paid the price, a face that breaks into a huge smile after he chips in at the second hole at TPC River Highlands.

  • Howard Baldwin Makes First Move

    March 20, 2010

    Howard Baldwin is back and this time he insists he's not leaving. He has moved into an office at 100 Pearl Street and dug in for long days of work. Maybe the address is only fitting. For Baldwin will continue to swim out in the sea of his biggest dreams, 100 percent committed to finding the great pearl in the mouth of the whale.

  • Dobratz Always Had Time For Kids

    February 10, 2010

    They met skiing at Powder Ridge. Ray was months out of Maloney High in Meriden, soon to head for basic training in the National Guard. Paula was a Newington girl, still in high school.

  • Dixon's Journey Made Him A Leader

    January 3, 2010

    Andre Dixon took us into his locker room. Randy Edsall took us into his heart.

  • Aug. 26: UConn Football, Expect Big Year From Howard

    August 26, 2009

    Jasper Howard is a talker. He talks to his mom in Florida twice a day. He talks to the wide receivers in drills, oh, twice a minute.

  • Money, Allegations Squeeze Romanticism

    April 3, 2009

    For days I have been unable to get the thought out of my head. It creases my brain when I'm awake. It arrives in black and white footage in my dreams.

  • Greed? Arrogance? It's Waist Deep

    March 26, 2009

    First off, Coach, it wasn't a blog. The investigative piece was the result of six months of industry by Yahoo! Sports, one of the world's most visited websites. Calling it a blog, whether by intention or ignorance, sounded dismissive and the last thing you and UConn need today is to come off dismissive.


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