Looking at the Bright Side of Syracuse’s NCAA Penalties


(Photo credit: AP)

Of all the penalties Syracuse University incurred for violations it committed, the most ridiculous and most hurtful price to pay–vacated victories–could actually be perceived as a blessing in disguise for many Orange fans. Jim Boeheim’s stay as Orange head basketball coach might have just been extended.

Part of the absurd penalty handed down by the NCAA is that Coach Boeheim must forfeit a total of 108 victories from his illustrious Hall of Fame record. That news will only make the ultra-competitive coach decide to stick around and go get ’em back.

The 108 docked wins drops Boeheim from second place to sixth in career coaching victories. The good news is that the guys he fell behind on the all-time list are either retired or dead. So, the coach could easily catch right back up.

The bad news is that the dude in the lead (Duke’s Mike Krzyzewski) ain’t slowing down to let Boeheim pass. So, first place is probably out of reach. Unless of course the NCAA comes up with a punishment for the Blue Devils, based on some decade-long investigation it’s been conducting.

And speaking of North Carolina schools, the eventual punishment for the Tar Heels, and their 18 years of fake classes in Chapel Hill, better be a doozy. I’m sure we can expect a ruling from the NCAA on THOSE infractions in, what, 2025?

There’s so much wrong-doing across the board at these institutions, it’s hard to police. What the NCAA needs is a new set of rules for understanding and dealing with these issues. Maybe a politician should step in and write those up; or maybe a standup comedian.

Of course maybe the NCAA will restore the Syracuse victories, just like it did recently with wins it initially took away from Penn State. After all, according to Syracuse University Chancellor Kent Syverud, the school does not agree with many of the NCAA’s findings and may appeal.

So, this could have a happier ending? Sure. If you’re very optimistic. And some of the other silly penalties from the NCAA could also have silver linings.

For instance, the college must return any trophies or banners associated with the vacated wins. But, return them to whom? The shop that manufactured them? The conference or organization that conferred them upon the Orange? And what would THEY do with the baubles? Give them to the teams that finished second in those games or tourneys the Orange won? Put them up for grabs in a big garage sale?


Here’s an idea: Package up those doodads and send them off to some less fortunate Third World villagers, who could put them to use in their everyday lives. That’s who gets the championship t-shirts and hats prematurely printed by teams who lose their title games and end up with a surplus of spoils they can’t enjoy. I’m sure the good people in some poverty-stricken Congo town would love to have a nice gold trophy for drinking water. Or maybe they could utilize the trophies for some other key bodily function–the same one the NCAA performed on Syracuse today with these overly severe and long overdue penalties they dumped on the school.

Dave Coombs is a longtime morning radio host, who played Division III hoops and never had enough victories to vacate.

4 Responses to Looking at the Bright Side of Syracuse’s NCAA Penalties
  1. Chuck Windhausen Reply

    i think we’ll all be curious to see what co weeks. On the Tarheels…(nice writing)

    • Dave Coombs Reply

      Thanks, Flip. Boeheim said 2 days ago it would be a year of big change.

  2. Gary Paricio Reply

    Nice article Dave! Since Suracuse self reported, they got a light sentence. I sure hope tarheels and blue devil get hit harder. The whole Fab Melo mess cost SU a National Title that year, how about that for taking our own punishment!

    • Dave Coombs Reply

      Reading the details of the Fab deal, so many people at SU trying to write the paper for him and turn it into the professor…stupid!!!

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