If you haven't been keeping up on Brent Axe's five-part series with Syracuse Orange AD DOCTOR Daryl Gross, you best catch up. Despite the fact that he's been the AD for ten years (TEN YEARS, MAN!), I can't say we've really gotten too many opportunities to climb inside his head and see what makes him tick. This series is about the closest I think we've gotten in a while.
When the news that Mike Hopkins was inked as the head-coach-in-waiting to replace Jim Boeheim, there was some initial concern that Gross wasn't exactly on the same page with Boeheim on the issue. DOC put that to bed with these comments about Coach Hop and what he thinks of Hopkins's flirtations with other schools.
"I don’t try to fool myself. My influence has been from an administrative level. I always say to Mike, "Would you rather be the King of Belgium of the Prince of England? No disrespect to Belgium (laughs). But England had the whole world at one point.
"That has always kind of been my philosophy. He is the head coach-in-waiting. Just hang in there. How do we recognize him as a top assistant coach in the country? But you get to a point where you say, "I have to be fair to you, Mike. If there is a great opportunity that you see, I understand. Just make sure you don’t have a huge buyout, because when it comes available, we are coming to get you (laughs).'
And then there's Gross's thoughts on the New York's College Team campaign, which we've all given him a lot of guff about. Considering that multiple schools inside and outside of New York State have since copied the strategy, it seems like it wasn't such a bad idea after all. Specifically, Gross talks about the reasons why the MetLife games had to happenand why the LSU game will be played in the Dome and not New Jersey.
"We want teams like LSU in the (Carrier) Dome. We played those games at MetLife (Stadium) because:
"1) We needed to do it for recruiting. New Jersey is very important, as you know. Especially the northern part and the city part. (Football) coach (Scott) Shafer has also addressed that with some staff additions.
2) We needed to be there because in the Big East, the distribution wasn’t there, so now you have a chance to monetarily do some thing really fantastic things that really helped us bridge to get to the ACC.
"So, now we can shift back and do more things here while still recognizing the importance of the (New York) city. It doesn’t hurt us that Syracuse’s 'New York’s college team brand' is in left field at Yankee Stadium every night and people recognize it and the announcers refer to it.
Just one more reason to love the move to the ACC, as if you need any more.
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