The following is a statement from Secretary of the State Denise Merrill on the retirement of Jim Calhoun:
"The retirement of Jim Calhoun really represents the end of an era both for the University of Connecticut and for our entire state. Jim and I have been good friends and we worked closely together in all the years I represented UConn in the Connecticut General Assembly, and we will all miss him dearly. In fact, it is hard to imagine UConn basketball without Jim Calhoun. But more than one of the best coaches ever in the history of American basketball and a mentor to many young men, we really must recognize that Jim Calhoun's work to build UConn as a national basketball powerhouse also mirrored the rise of UConn as a world-class academic and research institution. Though it's not all about sports, Jim Calhoun's consistently winning teams and national championships were certainly a galvanizing factor in attracting top research faculty and investment to the university over the years. The excellent play on the court has put UConn on the national and international map, and given Connecticut citizens a real sense of pride in their state university, especially resonating with the public in a state with no professional sports teams. This higher profile certainly helped us pass investments in the university such as UConn 2000 and helped to attract countless other federal and other grants to explore research in many fields. So it is with a deep sense of gratitude that we wish Jim Calhoun a fond farewell and happy retirement, we will never forget you or all you have done to build our university. GO HUSKIES!"