UConn’s Dan Hurley says wife got ‘violently angry’ in the early days of Lakers’ interest: ‘She got emotional’

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UConn men’s basketball coach Dan Hurley said his wife Andrea got “violently angry” when he was approached about possibly becoming the new Los Angeles Lakers head coach, a reaction the coach somewhat predicted after the Huskies won back-to-back national championships.

After defeating Purdue in the title game in April, Hurley was immediately met with questions about his future at UConn and if there was any interest in his taking over the coaching position at Kentucky after John Calipari’s exit. 

Dan Hurley of the Connecticut Huskies addresses the media after the National College Basketball Championship game against the Purdue Boilermakers at State Farm Stadium on April 8, 2024 in Glendale, Arizona. (Mitchell Layton/Getty Images)

Hurley deferred to his wife on those questions, joking that he could not “afford a divorce right now.” 

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“Oh my God, Kentucky or anywhere that’s going to take her further from New Jersey,” he said of her reaction to the rumors at the time. “I mean, we just went to Rhode Island, which I had to drag her to, and then to Connecticut. I got her closer. And now further? I can’t afford a divorce right now, too. I just started making money.”

However, the Hurleys had not anticipated that an NBA job would be in the cards just months later, when the Lakers moved on from Darvin Ham, who was fired after his second season with the team, which resulted in Los Angeles’ first round playoff loss this year.

During an appearance on “The Dan Le Batard Show with Stugotz,” Hurley said his wife did not take the news well – at least initially. 

Andrea Hurley at a news conference

Andrea Hurley listens during a news conference after Dan Hurley was introduced as Connecticut’s head coach in March 2018. (Mark Mirko/Hartford Courant/Tribune News Service via Getty Images)

“She was crying in the beginning. I think initially, the first couple days of it, she got violently angry and emotional, not like hitting me and stuff, not like ‘Get away from me. I don’t want to consider this. You’re torturing me with this incredible opportunity, you horrible human being,’” he said with a laugh. 

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“She got emotional like, ‘I can’t believe you’re bringing this – Our life is so great. It’s perfect. Our lives couldn’t be better and now you’re bringing this s—.’”

However, a quick trip to California seemingly left a good impression on Andrea.

“She was bad in the beginning but then she warmed up to it when we got out there and she met [vice president of basketball operations Rob Pelinka] and she met [owner Jeanie Buss] and felt the weather. We drove around Manhattan Beach and just met the people though mostly. And she saw the vision of it. She was into it.”

However, Hurley said it was short-lived and the couple both “flipped back” to UConn when they returned home. 

Dan Hurley family

UConn Huskies head coach Dan Hurley, left, walks with his son guard Andrew Hurley, #20, along with his wife Andrea during senior day before the start of the game against the Seton Hall Pirates at Harry A. Gampel Pavilion on March 3, 2024. (David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports)

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He reportedly turned down a lucrative offer, a six-year, $70 million deal, and it was a decision that he said “tears you up inside.” Part of the struggle, Hurley explained, was internal – wanting to still prove himself all these years later. 

“I’m still haunted by my playing career in a lot of ways in terms of how disappointed I am to this day in terms of how that went for me at Seton Hall. So I do feel this enormous pressure in coaching to kind of make up for that in a way and to achieve more greatly because of the disappointment that will kind of eat away at me whenever my playing days are brought up.” 

Hurley and the Huskies are on the hunt for more this season. They are chasing a third-straight national championship with the Huskies, a feat only ever accomplished by the UCLA Bruins in the 1960s and again in the early 1970s. 

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