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Jim Boeheim & Frank Martin recall 2012 NCAA Tournament matchup

The two head coaches are set to square off for the first time since 2012.

NCAA Basketball Tournament - Kansas State - Syracuse Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

The last time Jim Boeheim and Frank Martin squared off against one another was in the 2012 NCAA Tournament while Martin was still coaching at Kansas State. Syracuse earned a No. 1 seed that year whereas Kansas State was a No. 8 seed. With a win over Southern Miss in the first round, Kansas State had a date with Syracuse in the round of 32.

Long story short, for all the #DisloyalIdiots out there who didn’t watch that game, Syracuse won 75-59. In anticipation of Saturday’s matchup between Syracuse and South Carolina, both Martin and Boeheim were brought on a press conference last week and reminisced over the last time they met head to head.

The two seasoned coaches had opposite perspectives as they recalled the matchup. For Frank Martin, the game seemed like it were yesterday.

“That game, that’s the one where Fab Melo couldn’t play and then my senior power forward got taken out of the game the night before the game so what we thought we could do against the zone was altered because of personnel. We didn’t have time to practice with the different people we had but it wouldn’t have mattered, I mean coach (Boeheim) does such an unbelievable job. Their zone morphs into what you try to attack it through and they just don’t give you opportunities. Their size, their athleticism, and their discipline defensively, it makes it extremely hard.”

“I remember it like it was yesterday, I want to say it was a two point game, 47-45 and my point guard was Angel Rodriguez and I told him going into the game, I said ‘Angel whatever you do, don’t go for steals. Scoop Jardine is going to tempt you and bait you to go for steals. Don’t go for steals.’ And in a 47-45 game, Scoop showed him the ball and Angel reached and he went right by Angel, we got the help, he hit Dion Waiters for three. Next play, did it again, Angel reached a second time and Scoop got into the paint and I can’t remember if it was him or the other guard there (Triche) had a three point play the old fashioned way and that created the separation that we couldn’t overcome. That was the last game I ever coached at K-State so it’s one I remember clearly,”

Martin concluded.

NCAA Basketball Tournament - Kansas State - Syracuse
Scoop being defended by Angel Rodriguez
Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

Where Martin spoke perspicuously, recollecting as if the game were just last season, Boeheim opined how long ago that game felt.

“You know I just remember it was a really tough close game and we won, you know, that’s about all I remember it was a tough game, a tough battle and we just came out on top in that game. But you know, it seems like a long time ago. I’ve watched South Carolina play this year twice and I’m very impressed with what they do and how they play, the job that they’ve done. Obviously they’re coming off a year, they had a tremendous year last year and look like they’re going to have a better year this year,”

Boeheim finished.

In that context we’re able to delve further into the true genius of Boeheim. It’s undeniably true when he says he takes a one game approach to the schedule — the hall-of-famer is always laser focussed on the present. Notice how he segues from talking about a past game to talking about Frank Martin’s current team? He doesn’t look too far into the future to ruminate about retirement and he doesn’t reminisce about seasons ago. His focus on the present is evergreen — it’s part of what makes him one of the greats.

Either that or he just has a bad memory.