STORRS — Coach Geno Auriemma was curious last week. He wanted to know how many women's basketball programs have had four Cosida Academic All-Americans like UConn has had in Leigh Curl, Jennifer Rizzotti, and two-time picks Maya Moore and Rebecca Lobo.
His point was that his program produces better students than many people suspect. And that notion might be reinforced again soon by the work of senior Kelly Faris.
Faris, a pre-kinesiology major, had a 4.0 grade point average in the 2012 spring semester.
"It's no mystery why Kelly Faris earned the 4.0," Auriemma said. "She's bright, she's prideful and she wanted to get it. So she got it."
"We're very competitive on and off the court," associate head coach Chris Dailey said. "Our goal is to get 11 of 11 [on the honor roll]."
Faris was nominated, but not selected, for Cosida's Academic All-District team this season.
Curl, now the orthopedic surgeon for the NFL champion Baltimore Ravens (1984-85), and Wendy Davis (1991-92) were also Big East Basketball Scholar-Athletes of the Year. Moore (2010 and 2011) and Curl (1985) also won the Big East's scholar award for all female athletes in the conference.
The Huskies always take the team out for a nice dinner the night before a road game and last Friday was no exception. The team ate at a historic steakhouse in Brooklyn.
But when she woke up Saturday, Dolson had a bellyache and it didn't go away. That's why she didn't play against St. John's
Dolson, who has been watching her weight since the summer, splurged with her teammates on steak, cream spinach and French fries.
"It [my stomach] was off. It didn't feel right. I don't know what it was. It was churning and cramping. It was awful."
"So I pulled myself out. … I don't know how much help I would've been out there. So I just told the coaches that I couldn't play.''
Dolson played 23 minutes Tuesday and scored 15 points, shooting 6 of 8 from the field with four blocks, two steals, four rebounds and two assists.
Jefferson Takes Over
With Brianna Banks out for the season with a right ACL tear, freshman Moriah Jefferson is likely to get most of her teammate's minutes. Jefferson went into Tuesday's game averaging 16 minutes in the first 21 games.
She played 26 minutes in Tuesday's 94-37 win. Jefferson scored two points, but had five of UConn's 26 assists.
"Sometimes when you're forced into a situation, you have a tendency to respond because you don't have a choice," Auriemma said.
Jefferson said Monday that she was ready for whatever extra time — and chores — Auriemma gives her.
"I think it is an opportunity for me, I guess, because now it's another guard down," Jefferson said. "Brianna can't be there to step up. So I have to step up for her and my teammates.''
Chong To Play In WBCA Game
Saniya Chong, UConn's only member of the Class of 2013, was chosen Tuesday to play in the 2013 Women's Basketball Coaches Association High School All-America Game.
The 22nd annual High School All-America Game, held as part of the WBCA National Convention, will be played April 6 at the New Orleans Arena, site of the 2013 Women's Final Four. Tipoff is set for 5:30 p.m. Eastern time. … Morgan Tuck did not play after complaining again before the game about her chronically sore right knee … Championships continue to follow Moore around the world. UConn's all-time leading scorer had 34 points, 16 rebounds and seven steals to lead her Shanxi team to a 97-87 win over Zhejiang to clinch the WCBA title in China. Moore averaged 41.5 points, 12.5 rebounds, 6.3 assists and 5.3 steals in four championship-round games.