For about 72 hours, it looked like the UConn Huskies men's basketball program was going to soon need to adjust to life without Dan Hurley. With the Los Angeles Lakers preparing to make a “massive offer” to Hurley, and Hurley rumored to have legitimate interest in taking the job after being impressed by LA during his meeting with them over the weekend, UConn fans were left wondering, “Well, what now?”

Fortunately for everyone in Storrs, Connecticut and all others who identify as UConn fans — myself included — Dan Hurley turned down the Lakers offer, which would've made him the sixth-highest-paid coach in the NBA, in order to stay at UConn and chase a three-peat. There were surely plenty of reasons why Hurley decided to stay at Connecticut: his family's desire to stay on the east coast, UConn's status as title favorites heading into the 2024-25 season, and a Lakers offer that turned out to be much lower than what was initially reported. But one key factor hadn't been discussed until Dan Hurley himself spoke about the decision today… Alex Karaban.

Just a couple of weeks ago, UConn forward Alex Karaban opted to return to school to pursue that aforementioned three-peat. For reference, if UConn were to win the National Title next April, Karaban would join Lew Alcindor, Sidney Wicks, Curtis Rowe, Henry Bibby and Lynn Shackelford — a quintet of UCLA Bruins — as the only player in NCAA history who has been a starter on three consecutive National Championship winning teams. That's not nothing. That's monumental basketball history.

But why should we be surprised? After all, the University of Connecticut is the basketball capital of the world.

Connecticut Huskies head coach Dan Hurley hugs forward Alex Karaban (11) during the second half of the national championship game of the Final Four of the 2024 NCAA Tournament at State Farm Stadium.
© Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Storrs, Connecticut: The basketball capital of the world 

When the UConn Huskies men's basketball team won the 2024 National Championship, head coach Dan Hurley defiantly declared that the University of Connecticut had been running college basketball for the past 25 years. It may have sounded boastful, even after the Huskies won their second-consecutive National Title, but the fact is, it couldn't be more true. Since 1999, 33.3 percent of Division I men's and women's basketball titles have been won by UConn. That's 16 of 48, for those wondering. Baylor University is the next closest on the list, with a combined four National Titles.

While the UConn women's team has long been considered the preeminent dynasty in women's college sports, this Dan Hurley squad is now making a serious case for that distinction on the men's side. A UConn three-peat ten months from now would all but solidify it.