In case you missed it, Syracuse Orange head coach Jim Boeheim joined Rick Pitino on his podcast, the Pitino Press, which was released yesterday. This comes after Pitino visited Syracuse in the preseason and spoke to the team while perhaps providing some advice for the team and players.
Pitino is coaching in Greece these days which means he’s probably not doing too much podcasting at the moment. To play spoiler, this pod was probably recorded around late November or early December as Pitino makes mention of Syracuse just coming off a win at Ohio State.
Anyway, you can check out that podcast by clicking the link here or by searching in iTunes. Otherwise, we’ve highlighted some of the more interesting nuggets below.
Boeheim talks about interviewing for the Ohio State basketball job (1:55)
Jim Boeheim talks about interviewing for the Ohio State job early in his career — he says he knew in about 10 minutes he wasn’t taking the job and never seriously considered any other coaching gigs. Syracuse picked up a win at Ohio State in the ACC/Big 10 Challenge earlier this season and Boeheim is, of course, well, still at Syracuse.
There are actually good Italian restaurants in the south? (5:20)
Boehiem infamously pissed off the southern representation of his new league right away when it was announced that Syracuse would be leaving the Big East for the ACC. That of course meant that Boeheim would be parting ways with his favorite restaurants on Big East road trips in favor of trips to Denny’s. A long appreciator of Italian food — explained in a new book on Boeheim — the Syracuse coach has since found some new chicken parm spots in the south? We’re calling bluff.
If Jim can't name five off the top of his head, he's definitely just saying that... https://t.co/G1gOFqDjrj— NunesMagician.com (@NunesMagician) January 9, 2019
Boeheim recalls his starting salary at Syracuse (10:15)
Boeheim’s memory is like a flashbulb as we’ve witnessed numerous times (receipts). He recalls without hesitation his starting salary as a head coach in 1977 and divulges that figure of $25,000. He also reveals that he was making $11,000 as an assistant.
Taking inflation into account, the purchasing power of $25,000 in 1977 is just over $100,000 today. Boeheim opined that $25k back then was worth a lot of money back when he started and also noted that that was before the days of lucrative apparel deals and television contracts.
The Syracuse basketball point guard situation (15:40)
Pitino asks about point guard Frank Howard and how quickly he’ll get back up to speed. As that’s still a work in progress but moving in the right direction, it was a pretty good question to ask especially back in December. Boeheim notes that Howard missed about eight weeks and that Jalen Carey missed time as well with his own ankle injury.
The selflessness and professionalism of the USA Basketball team (22:51)
Boeheim talks in depth about how altruistic the players were on the USA Basketball team and their willingness to come off the bench and not focus on themselves to win. Those teams had the singular focus of winning a gold medal without caring who started or who scored. That team-first approach was what allowed them to play so well, without agents or money involved.
The college basketball landscape and teams around the country that could make a Final Four this year (28:00)
It’s been well documented to this point how much of a hoops junkie Boeheim is and this season is no exception. Boehiem talks about the top teams in college basketball, who he thinks can make a Final Four and and who can win a national title this year. He thinks college basketball is in a good spot moving forward despite changes coming through the pipeline.
Whomever is conducting a Boeheim interview would be remiss not to bring up the retirement topic. The 43rd year head man gives no insight into a potential retirement date and thinks age is irrelevant as it relates to stepping away from coaching.
Also featured on the pod, Boeheim had some nuggets on the ACC Network, the Bob Knight 30 for 30, recruiting length in the 2-3 zone, coaching his son Buddy Boeheim and some of his toughest arenas to play in. Perhaps unsurprisingly, Boehiem says he’s never played Kansas at Phog Allen Fieldhouse, only in Kansas City. For those that have listened, what did you think of the pod?