UConn’s Dan, Andrew Hurley savoring latest March Madness run together

GLENDALE, Ariz. — Andrew Hurley had options.

Division III schools recruited him.

He could’ve gone prep for a year after an ankle injury limited him his senior year at East Catholic High School (Conn.).


UConn coach Dan Hurley and son, Andrew, share a moment following their win over Marquette in the Big East Tournament on March 16 at the Garden.
UConn coach Dan Hurley and son, Andrew, share a moment following their win over Marquette in the Big East Tournament on March 16 at the Garden. USA TODAY Sports

But those opportunities paled in comparison to the one his father, Dan Hurley, offered.

A chance to play for him as a walk-on at Connecticut.

“He put me against the clock. I didn’t have a lot of time to decide,” the younger Hurley told The Post on Sunday, as the top-seeded Huskies prepared to meet fellow No. 1 Purdue in the national championship game Monday night at State Farm Stadium. “He just kept telling me, ‘You gotta decide.’ ”

The 6-foot-1 Andrew accepted the offer.

Four years later, it feels like a dream.

He’s played in 11 NCAA Tournament games and has been able to dribble out the clock in each of them, including last year’s national title game, in front of friends and family.

Most important of all, he’s done it all alongside his dad.

“To be able to be in the position we’re in and the success we’re having, it’s been something you can’t ever ask for,” Andrew said. “It’s insane how lucky I’ve been.”

Dan, though, believes his son has had a significant role, too, even if he only plays when the game is out of hand.

Andrew “humanizes me,” as the player who knows the coach better than anyone.

Andrew was one of the first players to make Cam Spencer feel at home at his new school.

Andrew is particularly important early in the season with new players who are adjusting to playing for the intense, hard-driving and at times maniacal Hurley.

“If you’re not getting yelled at, you’re doing something wrong,” he tells them.

Andrew added: “Him being my father and us sharing a lot of the same personality traits, I understand him, and I understand how he’s feeling. … People might get the wrong idea about him. He’s a real fiery guy outside of everything. But he’s really passionate. He has a lot of compassion for people. He’s very emotional. He’s a real loving guy.”


UConn coach Dan Hurley talks things over with Andrew Hurley during practice on Friday as Donovan Clingan looks on.
UConn coach Dan Hurley talks things over with Andrew Hurley during practice on Friday as Donovan Clingan looks on. Getty Images

Andrew doesn’t get preferential treatment, Spencer said.

Andrew will hear it from his dad, just like everyone else.

“Maybe getting yelled at a little bit more,” he said.

Most important to the two is the time they have gotten to spend with each other these last four years.

Dan put off leaving his high school job at St. Benedict’s Prep in Newark to spend time with his sons, Andrew and Danny Jr.

But he has missed a lot due to his career since making the move to college in 2012.

“As a coach, you sacrifice a lot, especially at the college level or the NBA level. Oftentimes, your wife and your kids suffer with that time lost,” Dan said. “So to be able to get that time back and be together 11 months a year, see each other every day, multiple times a day, the highs and lows of everything we go through made up for a lot of time we lost.”

Andrew has another year of eligibility but isn’t sure if he will use it.

He has considered coaching or potentially becoming a sports psychologist.

He is a psychology major.

He would like to do something in basketball.

But there is still one game left — and the potential for him to dribble out the clock of another championship game.

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