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Jim Calhoun Taking A Leave Of Absence

Back in November, I started writing a preview of the Big East basketball season.  It was going to include a list of wildly random and unsubstantiated proclamations about events that would happen in the season.  Among them was that Syracuse will be better than expected (correct!). 

Another guess that stuck in my mind...Jim Calhoun will not finish the season as head coach of the UConn Huskies.  I don't know why exactly but it was a nagging thought in the back of my mind.  I mean, he's not that much older than Boeheim (2 years) but there's just something about him that feels so much more worn down.  Given his recent health issues, it just seemed like a matter of time before he needed to step away.

Of course, all of that was prelude to the news that Calhoun is indeed taking a leave of absence from his post as the coach of UConn basketball.  UConn released a statement with information from his physician:

"It is my recommendation that Coach Calhoun take a medical leave from his coaching position to address some temporary medical issues, none of which involve any previous medical conditions that he has dealt with."

There's no timeline for his return.  Former Seton Hall coach George Blaney takes over in the interim.

As much as we like to boo Calhoun and all he stands for, we should wish him well.  As Syracuse fans, the UConn rivalry is arguably our most heated (sorry Georgetown) and Calhoun has a lot to do with that.  He has been a worthy adversary over the years.  We've loathed him when we lost and we've reveled in beating him.  And of course, wouldn't have been nearly as enjoyable if it hadn't have been the two Jims at the helm, battling it out as hard as the players.  Those two guys are intrinsically linked.  The Hall-of-Fame mates have battled more times than either can probably remember.

The UConn Blog will have updates, I'm sure.