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UConn men's basketball coach Jim Calhoun retires

STORRS, Conn. -- Jim Calhoun retired as Connecticut's basketball coach Thursday, closing a 26-year career at the school with thanks to everyone who helped him turn UConn from an athletic backwater into a national power that won three national titles.

The retirement of the 70-year-old Hall of Famer was announced on the court in Storrs, where Calhoun racked up many of his 873 total wins.

In thanking administrators, players, fans and his family, Calhoun said he feels blessed and is grateful that "you trusted us."

Calhoun will take a transition appointment through next spring as a special assistant to athletic director Warde Manuel. When he is fully retired, Calhoun will become head coach emeritus.

Calhoun has been slowed by health problems in recent years, including a fractured hip last month.

"The hip injury really didn't enter into the decision, except that it gave me more time to think about it and the more I thought about it, the more I became convinced that this was the right time to move on to the next phase of my life," he said in an official statement.

Assistant coach Kevin Ollie, who played point guard for Calhoun from 1991-95, will be the Huskies' new coach. His contract runs through next April 4 and he will be paid $625,000.