STORRS – The Big East basketball tournament at Madison Square Garden will have that certain “UConn” buzz to it once again when busloads of fans from Connecticut are enjoying March Madness at The World’s Most Famous Arena. Digital Sports Desk has learned, the University of Connecticut Huskies are making plans to return to the Big East Conference for basketball, according to multiple sources who could not comment publicly.
Before the basketball decision can be announced, the UConn athletics office must work on future details related to their football program, currently members of the American Athletic Conference where the Huskies went 0-8 (1-11, overall) last season. Other collegiate sports plans and schedules are also being juggled with plans for the change to take place before the 2020-21 basketball season.
UConn’s men’s basketball program was once the jewel of the Big East Conference and a major contender in NCAA March Madness where under Coach Jim Calhoun the Huskies won NCAA National Championships in 1999, 2004, 2011. They also went to the Final Four in 2009. Kevin Ollie, one of Calhoun’s former players, led UConn to the 2014 NCAA Final Four title.
UConn went 6-12 in the American Athletic Conference last season and 16-17 overall under Coach Dan Hurley.
UConn also has a storied women’s basketball program where under the coaching of Geno Auriemma, the Huskies won 11 NCAA National Championships as Auriemma plans to celebrate his 35th season in 2019-2020.
The re-addition of UConn to the Big East would bring the conference team count to 11. UConn was an original member school of the Big East when it was formed in 1979. UConn, Syracuse, and Georgetown enjoyed a Big East rivalry of the ages in the 1980s.
Officials for the college conferences could not comment on the story and a message left for UConn athletics was not returned at press time.