The UConn Huskies enter the 2024 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament as one of four No. 1 seeds and offer a legitimate chance to repeat as national champions.

Fresh off a Big East conference championship, UConn’s March Madness journey began on Friday against the No. 16-seeded Stetson Hatters at Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

The Huskies put up numbers like a No. 1 seed through the first 20 minutes, taking a 52-19 lead into the locker room at halftime. Despite the lead of more than 30 points, Huskies head coach Dan Hurley offered a rather negative view of his team’s first half performance.

“Everything should be automatic this time of year,” Hurley told CBS’ Tracy Wolfson at halftime. “It’s human nature, I guess. Just to throttle down like that late. That’s not championship level.”

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Hurley added: “In this tournament, if you don’t keep everything at the absolute highest level, like automatic at this level, things go bad for you in this tournament. We gotta grow up a little bit. The last couple of minutes, I didn’t like.”

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The Huskies look to take care of business and keep their hopes of a second-straight NCAA championship alive in the coming rounds.

Featured image via Robert Deutsch/USA TODAY Sports Images