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On Jim Calhoun's retirement

Sad to see that University of Connecticut basketball coach Jim Calhoun is retiring today. As a Connecitcut native, I've had hours and hours of fun watching the team -- especially during the three national championship years.

You have to live in a state without major league sports to appreciate the fanatacism of Connecticut fans, and the university's basketball teams command the most loyalty. On the Hartford Courant website, for example, the sports section offers the choices of "UConn Men" and UConn Women," and everyone in the state knows that refers to the basketball teams.

Calhoun and the Huskies have robbed me of valuable reading time over the years, but I never minded that. As compensation, the team provided me with endless material for conversations with family and friends. And I loved being able to deliver (or receive) late-night texts and phone calls after a big tournament win.

Calhoun also was an author, writing "Dare to Dream," about the team's first NCAA championship in 1999, and "A Passion to Lead." I confess that I didn't read either one, but the number of words I've read about Calhoun's teams probably would top "Gravity's Rainbow" many times over. Fair trade in my book.

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