Ollie Happy With UConn’s No. 7 Seed

Josh Keppel

The NCAA has spoken and the Huskies are the No. 7 seed in Buffalo's East Region, where they will face No. 10 St. Joseph's in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament this Thursday.

A quick look at the bracket and it's readily apparent that the selection committee didn't think much of the American Athletic Conference. Louisville, the No. 5 team in the country, is a No. 4 seed. Memphis, which was in the top-25 for most of the season, is a No. 8 seed.

It's all a non-issue as far as UConn coach Kevin Ollie is concerned.

"I'm happy with the seeding," he said. "You always want to get a lower seed, but I'm happy for our team. This is their prize for a great season and a great tournament down in Memphis. Now, we have to see what we're going to do with that prize."

Twelve months ago at this time the Huskies were on the outside looking in. NCAA sanctions kept them out of the Big East and NCAA Tournaments, despite a 20-win season in Ollie's first year on the job. Now, UConn is back in the Big Dance, which it won three years ago.

"It's been a while," said senior point guard Napier, who was on a rookie on that championship team. "Guys were asking me how to react - I didn't know. It's been two years. ...

"I stayed, I gave myself this opportunity," Napier continued. "The journey is still in progress. I want to hoist that trophy at the end of the day, I want to get as close to it as I possibly can."

Ollie concedes that getting to this point wasn't easy.

"There were some dark days there," the coach said. "But everybody in life is going to have dark days. I'm just so proud of the guys, how they stayed together, planting seeds.

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