Dan Hurley of UConn, who was irritated by a fan, was hit with a technical foul

NEW YORK — UConn coach Dan Hurley warmed up to a fan again Friday night.

Moments after St. John's rival Rick Pitino received a technical foul for yelling at the officials in the Big East semifinals, Hurley blew a whistle during the same stoppage in the game.

His father, Hall of Fame high school coach Bob Hurley Sr., sat in the front row behind him, and Don Hurley called for security to evict a fan from a nearby selection of seats at a sold-out Madison Square Garden.

“Obviously, the place went crazy when we got the coach,” Hurley said. “And then there was a guy — a short guy in a red blazer on the court who was yelling refs, and then he started yelling at me and started going in my direction. So I pointed. [referee James Breeding] That the coach is behaving worse than Pitino.

“I was really trying to help the officials. They probably didn't see it. And I got the technology to point out the increasingly aggressive fans. On the side of the court, you shouldn't be on the court.”

Hurley said the fan was yelling too much, but the UConn coach later told the ushers he didn't want to throw the guy.

“I put him in. They were going to take him out of the game. I went in there to say I wanted to keep him — not because I thought he was a good guy. I thought maybe it was unlucky.” Hurley said with a smile. “Karma.”

The New York Post reported that Tom O'Grady, a St. John's fan, said he didn't say anything to Hurley, all he did was tell the official that Hurley had come out of the practice box.

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“Yeah, that guy's a straight shooter,” Hurley said with a hint of sarcasm.

The exchange came six days after Hurley spent most of the final minute of his team's 74-60 win with a Friars fan in the second row at Providence Jaws. The coach of the defending NCAA champions also waved his hands to encourage the sizable fans rooting for the road team, then left the court with both index fingers raised in the air.

“I told him, 'I got a national championship ring, we won the regular season in the Big East, we're champions,'” Hurley said after that game. “'And you should shut up, you shouldn't run your mouth at that point in the game. You know, get out of here. You know? Go.'

Unlike many college basketball coaches, who have always been a demonstrative yeller, Hurley was sidelined for second-ranked UConn's 95-90 win over St. John's. But star guards Tristan Newton and Cam Spencer thought it wasn't out of the ordinary.

“Honestly, today, I thought he was a little more calm,” Newton said.

Hurley said she recovered in half by doing a 3-minute meditation on her calm app.

“I might be the boy who cried wolf now because of the last game, but if we play Marquette tomorrow night I promise there won't be any incidents because those people are incredibly classy fans and we have incredible respect for them,” Hurley said. .

Marquette defeated Providence 79-68 in the second Big East semifinal to advance to the title game against UConn.

As for Pitino, 71, he highlighted the technical he received at the 8:16 mark of the first half for arguing a foul call on St. John's center Joel Soriano.

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“I haven't had a tech in a long, long time. I was really looking forward to that moment,” Pitino said deadpan because he thought things weren't going the Red Storm's way when his scenario was planned.

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