Grambling State at No. 17 UConn: Time, TV and what you need to know

Connecticut's Samson Johnson against Long Island's at the University of Connecticut Wednesday Nov. 17, 2021, in Storrs, Conn.

Connecticut's Samson Johnson against Long Island's at the University of Connecticut Wednesday Nov. 17, 2021, in Storrs, Conn.

Paul Connors / Associated Press


When: Saturday, 4 p.m.

Where: Gampel Pavilion

Records: Grambling State 3-5, UConn 7-1

TV: Fox Sports 2

Radio: UConn Sports Network, 97.9 FM-ESPN Hartford, Sirius-137, XM-206, SXM App-965, WAVZ-New Haven (1300 AM), WGCH- Greenwich (1490 AM), WATR-Waterbury (1320 AM), WILI-Willimantic (WILI 1400 AM)


Identity change? UConn runs much of its offense through Adama Sanogo. Now that the 6-foot-9 sophomore is out for at least a few weeks with an abdominal injury, the Huskies are going to have a very different look.

“We’re just gonna have to play a different way,” Dan Hurley noted, “and we’re figuring that out right now.”

Little-used freshman Samson Johnson, a national top-50 recruit, will see an increase in minutes. But the 6-9 frosh is a far different player than Sanogo, who is a true low-post threat.

“He’s good in ball-screen game as a rim-roller,” Hurley said of Johnson. “Similar body type to Akok (Akok). I think he’s got maybe a better instinct for cutting, putting himself in better position around the basket to finish big.”

Defense never rests: In truth, Hurley’s biggest worry over the next few weeks without two of his three top scorers isn’t on offense.

“I’m more worried about the defensive end of the court. We’ve really not guarded the way we should guard. The defensive end of the court is where we’ve gotten away from our identity — and on the backboard.”

“If that continues,” Hurley added, “you’re gonna see rampant substitutions.”

No more softness: Hurley admitted he’s been “agitated, unhappy” over the past few days, not solely because of the team’s injuries. He found UConn’s effort in a 72-63 win over Maryland-Eastern Shore on Tuesday to be unacceptable.

“We were so far away from our identity,” he noted. “It was really incredible to watch, probably one of the worst video sessions we’ve had since I’ve been here — and there have been some tough ones.”

Some of that was the absence of Martin, perhaps the team’s most energetic player. Grambling State, like Maryland-Eastern Shore, is a MEAC team that should be easy pickings for the Huskies. Another performance like Tuesday night might set Hurley off the edge.

“When we’re a fully-formed team, we’re somebody that most people are not excited about playing. We were a shell of ourselves the other night. We knew how important Tyrese was, but he couldn’t be the only battery in our back. It was thoroughly disappointing.”



Player Pos. PPG

Cam Christon G 12.6

Danya Kingsby G 13.3

A.J. Taylor F 11.1

Prince Moss G 7.6

Tra’Michael Moton G 6.7


Player Pos PPG

R.J. Cole G 16.1

Akok Akok F 4.1

Isaiah Whaley F 6.3

Jordan Hawkins G 7.2

Andre Jackson G/F 6.3

— David Borges