After the Syracuse men’s basketball program had already slapped themselves with a self-imposed postseason ban, it was clear that more bad news would follow. Well, it certainly did — on March 6, the NCAA stepped in, suspending head coach Jim Boeheim for nine ACC games. In addition, the NCAA took twelve scholarships away, and disciplined coach Boeheim by vacating 108 of his wins.
Now, athletic director Daryl Gross has resigned in order to take another position with the university, and Boeheim has made a decision to retire in three years. Wow — okay, so did Gross truly resign, or was he demoted or fired from his position as AD? As for Boeheim, what made him decide to give an exact number of years he will remain as the head coach at Syracuse? Due to these quick announcements, I personally believe that the NCAA will uncover more violations, and harsher sanctions will be implemented.
Syracuse chancellor Kent Syverud certainly does not agree with me, nor would I expect him to do so. He will stand up for his University at all costs. Syverud wrote this to members of the university community:
“The University does not agree with all of the conclusions reached by the Committee on Infractions and does not agree that the full set of penalties imposed by the Committee are appropriate or equitable. We remain disturbed by the severity of certain penalties and the characterization by the NCAA of certain facts surrounding the case. After a full discussion with the Board of Trustees Athletics Committee, the university accepts some of the penalties imposed by the Committee, but will appeal the vacation of certain wins for the men’s basketball program and the reduction in men’s basketball scholarships.”
For me, I have a hard time believing that the NCAA overstepped in regards to any of their decisions. Agree or disagree — it does seem strange that Syracuse would make these announcements on the eve of the NCAA round of 64 tipping off. Additionally, Boeheim will address the media at a 10 a.m. ET news conference Thursday. Please Syracuse, let the tournament be the focus of the college basketball universe, and not your program’s shortcomings.
*Photo credits to Rich Barnes, Associated Press