It's not Jim Boeheim. It's not Doug Marrone. And it's not Nancy Cantor.
No, the smartest man in Salt City doesn't have an actual say in the goings-on at Syracuse University. But he could probably tell you the quickest way to get from Lambreth Lane to Franklin Street without even thinking about it.
As Meredith Galante of the D.O. writes, he's Don Thatvihane and he's your cab driver. Actually, scratch that. He's not your cab driver. Unless you're a star SU athlete. Then, apparently, he's your cab driver.
Don, a Syracuse resident, doesn’t advertise his University Transportation taxi company. He doesn’t want to encounter danger with strange calls from people. Everyone he drives around he has been referred to. Think of his phone number as an old family heirloom. Mike Williams? Paul Harris? Kris Joseph? No different. The trio passed down Don’s business card to one another. Now, he’s the only cab driver they’ll use, Don said.
He's Kris Joseph's personal advice sounding board. He was Paul Harris' "best friend." And if you want to hear the best summation of Mike Williams' Syracuse career, look no further...
He’s good! He plays well. But his mental was not there. That is why he could not make it with us."
With two of his favorite gone, KrisJo is his sole remaining SU athlete "client." Soon enough, Kris will go pro and that will be that. But Don, who's daughter graduated SU last year, will probably pick up a few more local celebrity riders as word gets around.
Suddenly, it all makes sense. Mookie Jones, get your ass in the back of that cab. Don needs to set you straight.