Another piece of Dan Hurley’s staff is in place as the Huskies’ new head coach announced Sal Alosi as the team’s Director of Human Performance. He will oversee “the physical, nutritional and wellness aspects of the men’s basketball program” according to a press release from the school.
“I am very pleased to welcome Sal to our program at UConn,” Hurley said in the release. “He has a proven history of success in the field of strength, conditioning and nutrition and I know he will foster the kind of culture and work ethic that will greatly benefit our players.”
Alosi’s role at UConn will go beyond just strength and conditioning on the basketball court.
“We will build a 24-hour wellness program, where the time spent off the court and out of the weight room will be emphasized just as much as the time spent training,” Alosi said. “We will be educating our team about how to eat, how to sleep, how to hydrate, how to recover -- establishing a game plan in all areas that can have a positive impact when it comes to on-court performance."
“There is a much greater commitment than just running and lifting. Ultimately, the tools we teach our players here will benefit them on and off the court, and long after their time at UConn.”
The Huskies are in need of a new program to develop players physically after having three different strength and conditioning coaches over a span of two years under Kevin Ollie. It didn’t seem like players were getting stronger the past few seasons and the effect of that could be seen on the court frequently.
Alosi has worked at both the collegiate and the professional levels throughout his career. He mostly recently spent six years as the strength and conditioning coordinator at UCLA but also spent a year at Bryant as the school’s head S&C coach and nine years in the NFL with the New York Jets and the Atlanta Falcons before that.
However, Alosi does come with some controversy. In 2010, he ordered players to make a wall on the sideline and tripped a Miami Dolphins gunner on a punt. The league fined him $250,000 and the team suspended him for the remainder of the season.
That wasn’t his only incident with the Jets as TMZ Sports reported that Alosi got into a fistfight around the same time with star cornerback Darrelle Revis and that the coach “has a pattern of abusive behavior and the Jets needed to get him under control.”
In 2015, Alosi was involved with an incident with the rapper Sean “Diddy” Combs after Combs punched Alosi before going after a member of the UCLA Strength and Conditioning staff with a kettlebell over the treatment of his son on the football team.
Alosi is known as an intense character, although that’s not unsurprising for a strength and conditioning coach. Some say his intensity is good and helps push players while others believe he crosses the line at times.
Ultimately, if he can keep his nose clean and not get involved in any more controversy, he should be a big-time pickup for UConn as he looks to completely overhaul the team’s body development programs.