Not only are those days over, but UConn basketball is flourishing in the Big Apple these days.
Guard Terrence Samuel became the latest New York City product to commit to UConn, giving his verbal to the coaching staff Sunday night. The 6-foot-3 combination guard from South Shore High School in Brooklyn is an AAU teammate of forward Kentan Facey, who is the other member of UConn's Class of 2013 so far.
Omar Calhoun, another New York guard, is already in Storrs for the start of his freshman year. And Samuel seems to want in the footsteps of New York point guards such as Taliek Brown and Kemba Walker.
"UConn was my dream school," Samuel told The New York Post said. "I watched them on TV, I watched them play football. I loved everything about them."
Samuel has helped turn around a South Shore High program with his play at point guard. He had narrowed his choices to UConn and Rhode Island before making his decision. He visited UConn on Aug. 24. When highly rated guard Wes Clark committed to Missouri last week, it may have opened the door for Samuel to pick UConn.
Tennessee, Dayton, Pittsburgh and Temple were among the schools that showed interest in Samuel.
Samuel is described as an athletic guard with excellent ballhandling skills. He is a big-time scorer who needs to improve his three-point range.
Samuel recently told Scout.com that the key to UConn "is my relationship with [assistant coach] Kevin Ollie. He makes me feel comfortable."