Syracuse Orange Basketball Coach Jim Boeheim explained his thoughts on the media at Syracuse's Newhouse College last Thursday to a group of students. Boeheim, keeping it clean, described the ins and outs about how media portrayals can sometimes not be true, or how reporters and bloggers need to not put in their two cents.
"You can't coach another man's team," said Boeheim when describing media fans who believe they know what the team should be doing.
Syracuse, famous for their effective zone defense, is usually criticized by fans to switch to man defense when they start to give up points to opponents.
"There's always some 300 pound guy at home yelling at the TV, but I don't think he realizes I can't hear him," Boeheim expressed jokingly, striking laughter in the crowd.
The hall of fame coach also praised Dave Gavitt, the founder of the Big East Conference and former Providence basketball coach, for his handling of the media in his time. Boeheim exclaimed that Gavitt would purposely avoid listening to media reports so that when he was asked a question, he could honestly respond with: "This is the first I've heard of it."
The Orange coach has used lessons from Gavitt with his own team, mentoring them on how to handle the media. "Don't ever say anything negative about anyone on our team or the other team," is what Boeheim has taught his players over the years. This ranges from picking out a specific player to simply saying "our team is faster than their team."
The legendary coach also expressed that media has many positive aspects, praising the media for its role in helping the team raise money for charity events such as local cancer researchers.
"We're blessed people cover and come to our events," said Boeheim.
Women in the media profession were also praised by the coach, who for the first time this year has a woman graduate assistant helping with the team.
As for how the team will do this year remains to be seen. Boeheim has stressed that this year's squad is one of the best he has had, landing a couple transfers after losing his core three players from last year's final four team. Syracuse opens its season on November 11th when it hosts Colgate at the Carrier Dome.
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