It was just his first Olympics as head coach, but after leading the U.S. women’s basketball team to their fifth straight gold medal, Geno Auriemma is taking his ball and going home.
The UConn coach didn’t seem to have much fun at the Olympics, telling the Hartford Courant Thursday that “one time is enough” for him after he realized his job in London mostly consisted of putting talented players on the court and getting out of the way.
“That’s the big fallacy about the Olympics,” Auriemma said. “I wouldn’t call what I did coaching. A lot of the players weren’t interested in learning anything; they just wanted to play.”
The always candid Auriemma said he didn’t have enough time with the players, including his former UConn stars Diana Taurasi, Sue Bird, Swin Cash, and Maya Moore, who were playing WNBA games right up until the Olympics. He added that there were things he quickly learned “I simply needed to put up with.”
Auriemma also served as an assistant during the 2000 Olympics and as head coach for the 2010 world championships, but barring any significant changes in attitude it doesn’t like he’ll sign up for another go round with Team USA. Luckily he’ll have plenty of college kids to teach when his new season starts Sunday.
As for a replacement, our vote goes to Notre Dame coach Muffet McGraw, who’s coming off back-to-back Final Fours, has beat Auriemma in four of five match-ups, and has the best name in all of sports.
MONTREAL (AP) — Marcel Aubut has resigned as president of the Canadian Olympic Committee while under investigation for a sexual harassment complaint.
The committee said in a statement Saturday its investigation now ends. Since the original complaint, two other women made allegations against Aubut.
The committee calls the matter “deeply concerning,” saying it has had a “profound impact on our Olympic family.” The committee adds that its board will begin the process of appointing an interim president in the coming days.
Aubut already had temporarily stepped aside as committee president and chairman of the Canadian Olympic Foundation. The committee had retained a former chief justice of the Quebec Superior Court to investigate the initial complaint.
The 67-year-old Aubut was CEO of the NHL’s Quebec Nordiques until the team moved to Colorado in 1995. He was inducted into Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame in 1999.
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China is set to play in its ninth straight Olympic men’s basketball tournament after beating the Philippines 78-67 in the FIBA Asia Championship on Saturday.
The Chinese were guided by former NBA power forward Yi Jianlian, a three-time Olympian who led the team in scoring and rebounding at the last Olympics. Yi scored 11 points with 15 rebounds Saturday.
Yi and company kept the Philippines, with former NBA forward Andray Blatche, from qualifying for the Olympics for the first time since 1972. Blatche scored a team-leading 17 points.
China went 0-5 at London 2012, failing to win a game at an Olympics for the first time since 1992. Now-retired Yao Ming led the team in 2000, 2004 and 2008, but the nation has never reached the Olympic semifinals.
The 2016 Olympic men’s basketball field:
Brazil — Host nation
U.S. — 2014 World champion
Australia — Oceania champion
Nigeria — Africa champion
Argentina — Americas finalist
Venezuela — Americas finalist
Spain — Europe finalist
Lithuania — Europe finalist
China — Asia champion
Three winners of three July global, last-chance qualifying tournaments
The three last-chance qualifying tournament fields will be six nations each, including three to-be-named, wild-card nations, plus these 15 nations:
Serbia — 2014 World silver medalist
France — 2014 World bronze medalist
Greece — last Olympics: 2008
Italy — last Olympics: 2004
Czech Republic — last Olympics: Never
Puerto Rico — last Olympics: 2004
Canada — last Olympics: 2000
Mexico — last Olympics: 1976
Iran — last Olympics: 2008
Japan — last Olympics: 1976
Philippines — last Olympics: 1972
Tunisia — only Olympic appearance was 2012
Angola — last Olympics: 2008
Senegal — last Olympics: 1980
New Zealand — last Olympics: 2004
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