Surprising news broke on Tuesday afternoon, when it was announced that Syracuse.com’s Bud Poliquin, the long-time reporter and columnist, would call it a career after more than 40 years in the industry.
He spent the last 36 with Syracuse.com/the Syracuse Post-Standard, covering Syracuse Orange sports. But after yet another eventful season chronicling SU, he felt it was time to retire. As he told his employer of nearly four decades:
“The universe is talking to me a little bit here that maybe it's time for me to step up more as son, son-in-law, brother and husband and the job is sort of getting in the way of that. I don't want to cheat the job and I don't want to cheat the reader and I don't want to cheat my colleagues."
While we certainly had our fun with with some of Poliquin’s old-timey “whiz-bang” sensibilities -- and perhaps some of those even served as the impetus for this site’s founding -- we do wish him well as he starts the next chapter of his life.
Covering Syracuse sports is not always rewarding. And sometimes it can be quite trying. But he did it for far longer than anyone else.
His accomplishments behind the scenes may be even greater, however. Syracuse basketball coach Jim Boeheim has had numerous run-ins with the media over the years. But Bud may have been at the center of more than anyone else due to longevity alone. The best of those moments, which have led to some all-time one-liners from Jim:
After SU’s win against West Virginia, Bud made the mistake of asking Jim if he felt he was being treated unfairly, and BOY WAS HE. Some of the money quotes:
“You want to talk about personal? Yeah, it’s personal. When people write and say things about me it’s personal to me. Always will be.”
“You write, what, a 100 articles a year for the paper? 150. 200. Someone looks at six or seven of them and says, this is bad.”
“One of (Rick Pitino’s) teams went to the Final Four, we beat them three times. So now we’re all the sudden going to put in the paper that I’ve lost six straight to Rick Pitino? Why don’t we put that I beat him six straight? Go ahead. That’s really good. Why don’t you keep doing that? That’s really good. I appreciate that.”
It also spawned this work of art.
Jim read what you wrote (2017)
Bud wrote an article that made a similar point to one of ours, but since Jim doesn’t read blogs, Bud gets lit on fire instead...
“When you go to the Final Four, you could lose 20 games. It doesn’t matter. Those are just numbers that you put in the paper. They don’t mean anything.”
“We lost 14 games last year; one of the five best years we’ve ever had since I’ve been coaching here. And all that matters -- you know this — is what you do in the NCAA Tournament. That’s all that matters.”
“This is a press conference — you can say whatever you want.”
1,000* wins (2017)
This was actually a pretty pleasant one, but worth highlighting nonetheless. Bud gets Jim to open up about a subject he hadn’t really touched on at all, due to NCAA issues.
Jim gets mad at Bud over questions about Michael Carter-Williams. The whole thing featured some heated quotes, but this all-timer is worth the price of admission:
“I didn’t say he wasn’t. I just made a comment. I just made a comment, Bud. I think you are newsworthy, but somebody else might not.”
BONUS: YOU DON’T KNOW YOUR BUSINESS (2011)
This exchange was with Donna Ditota, but part of the West Virginia “Snapshot” exchange. So it’s fine to add in here as an additional contribution to the rich tapestry between Bud and Jim.
Do you have any additional favorites to the “Jim vs. Bud” saga? Or perhaps we just want to talk about the best Jim press conferences (there are three or four that probably stand above the rest, off the top of my head). Proceed below...