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Syracuse Basketball Throwback Thursday: Allen Griffin

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We take a trip back in time to reflect on the four-year career of guard Allen Griffin.

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Be sure to read our other Throwback Thursday stories on Josh Pace, Kueth Duany, Andy Rautins, Dave Bing, Dion Waiters, Otis Hill, Jason Cipolla, James Southerland and Lucious Jackson.

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Allen Griffin grew up in Brooklyn, NY where he'd attend Roberson (no, not Tyler) High School. As a junior and senior in high school, Griffin would earn All-American honors. Capable of playing either guard position, Griffin was a combo guard before the term combo guard was ever contrived.

When he arrived at Syracuse in 1997 for his freshman season, Griffin was used sparingly behind guards Jason Hart and Marius Janulis. He would average 2.4 points per game for a Syracuse Orange team that went to the Sweet 16.

Griffin earned more responsibility as a sophomore by starting every game at the two-guard position. He had a solid year as a starter, a job he would abdicate as a junior as Jim Boeheim elected to go bigger at guard with the 6-foot-4 Tony Bland. Griffin saw his role diminish at both guard spots as sophomore Preston Shumpert came onto the scene with his silky shooting stroke.

Frustrated by his lack of playing time, Griffin flirted with the idea of transferring. Although he was discouraged, Griffin persevered through his penultimate year and the idea of transferring proved to be ephemeral; He would eventually earn back a starting role at Syracuse as a senior, this time at the point. With Jason Hart playing for the Milwaukee Bucks and Tony Bland transferring to San Diego State, Syracuse's starting backcourt had moved on. With Griffin left to run the show, Syracuse would have a solid season which included winning the Great Alaska Shootout. The then Orangemen and Griffin finished with a 25-9 record, falling to a talented Kansas squad in the round of 32.

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After graduating from Syracuse, Griffin would grab a cup of coffee in Slovenia for a one-year playing stint before coming back to the Syracuse area and coaching at Christian Brothers Academy in 2002. It wouldn't take long for things to come full circle as Griffin would wind up back at Syracuse University, but this time as an administrative assistant. Griffin stayed with Syracuse until 2005.

He's since coached at St. Francis (Brooklyn), Providence, Hofstra and now Dayton, where he's an assistant to Archie Miller. In 2011, Adrian Autry was set to have what is now Griffin's position at Dayton, but once Rob Murphy left Syracuse for Eastern Michigan, a spot opened up for Autry at Syracuse. This left a void with the Flyers which Griffin would eventually fill.

Griffin has been at Dayton since 2011. And yes, that includes the 2014 round of 32 game where Dayton upset Syracuse to advance to the Sweet 16. All the best, Griffin, but if Syracuse never plays Dayton again it'll be too soon.

Side note: Are we so sure that Allen Griffin isn't Kevin Hart?