Jim Boeheim

Jim Boeheim, reporter feud at Final Four press conference (VIDEO)

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Questions about Jim Boeheim’s future with Syracuse had drawn attention in the weeks prior to the Final Four, but he appeared to have cleared them up before his team’s matchup with Michigan Saturday night.

But CBSSports.com’s Gregg Doyel asked the question again in the video above, drawing the response below:

Q. When do you think you’ll decide, announce, whether or not you’re coming back next year?

BOEHEIM: Why would you ask that question? I expect it from you. I know you. Why ask that question? Are you going to ask John Beilein that question.

(WATCH: Video of the exchange here)

The exchange went back and forth for a few more moments before Boeheim moved on to another question. But he circled back around at the end of the press conference when asked about whether he wanted to coach in the ACC. Boeheim proceeded to go on a pro-ACC tangent. Below are some of his key points:

On the remaining Big East:

“I love the Big East, but if the Big East was the same as it was, or even remotely the same, I would quit because I wouldn’t be happy. The Big East is not there at all. In fact, there’s more Big East teams in the ACC than there are Big East teams in whatever the conference is, American whatever.”

On travel:

“For us to be able to stay on the East Coast, and predominantly all our games are an hour and a half, almost all, and in the Big East, without this crazy expansion, we had to go to Florida, we had to go to Marquette, Notre Dame anyway. So we had long trips. We’ll have the same long trips that we had. When you’re chartering now, it’s mostly an hour, most of these trips.”

On the ACC’s impact on his personal decisions:

“I mean, the ACC has absolutely zero input into whether I would not coach next year. The only reason that I would not coach next year is because I didn’t feel I could do a good job or wanted to do it, and I have no feeling at all now that that will be the case. Usually right now I would have that feeling. If I don’t have it now, I’m not going to have it in September.”

Daniel Martin is a writer and editor at JohnnyJungle.com, covering St. John’s. You can find him on Twitter:@DanielJMartin_

Syracuse receives mixed news on sanctions appeals

Jim Boeheim
Associated Press
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Wednesday the NCAA made its ruling on two appeals of sanctions made by Syracuse University, with the news being mixed for the men’s basketball program.

On the positive side the NCAA ruled that Syracuse will be docked two scholarships per season for the next four years, as opposed to the original ruling of three. As a result Jim Boeheim’s program only has to account for the loss of eight total scholarships, meaning that they’ll have 11 to fill in each of the next four seasons as opposed to ten.

One scholarship may not seem like a big deal, but in a sport where you only get 13 (when not dealing with sanctions) getting that grant-in-aid back really helps from a recruiting standpoint.

As for the negatives, they both concern Boeheim. Not only has there yet to be a ruling on Boeheim’s appeal of his nine-game suspension that goes into effect when ACC play begins in January (that appeal is being heard separately), but the appeal to reinstate the wins that were vacated as part of the sanctions was denied. As a result Boeheim officially has 868 wins instead of 969 (not counting today’s game against Charlotte).

And with Mike Hopkins set to take over as head coach in 2018, the denial means that college basketball will have to wait quite some time before anyone threatens to join Duke’s Mike Krzyzewski in the 1,000 wins club.

While not having the wins officially reinstated does hurt, getting a scholarship back for each of the next four seasons is a bigger deal when it comes to the long-term health of the Syracuse program. Also of great importance will be the ruling regarding Boeheim’s suspension, as a suspended coach is not allowed to have any contact with his players or coaching staff while serving the penalty.

And with the original ruling due to take up half of Syracuse’s league slate, not having Boeheim (or the chance to speak with him) is a big deal when it comes to this current team.

St. John’s forward Kassoum Yakwe cleared by NCAA

Chris Mullin
AP Photo/Rick Bowmer
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St. John’s forward Kassoum Yakwe has been cleared by the NCAA to play this season and will be eligible immediately, the school announced on Wednesday.

Yakwe is a 6-foot-8 forward that reclassified and enrolled at St. John’s this fall. He attended the same high school as Kansas forward Cheick Diallo, who was also cleared by the NCAA to play today.

St. John’s played in the Maui Invitational this week, and Yakwe did not take part. His first game with the Johnnies will be on Dec. 2nd against Fordham if the program plans to play his this season.

The question that must be asked, however, is whether or not he will suit up or simply redshirt. The Johnnies are in the midst of a serious rebuild and will be without their other elite recruit this season, Marcus Lovett. Lovett was ruled a partial qualifier. Would it make sense to burn a year of eligibility on what make amount to a wasted season, or will head coach Chris Mullin opt to save that year for down the road?