The Boeheim Media Offensive began Monday night in full force as The Per’fessor went after Donna Ditota and Mike Waters of the Post-Standard. It continued Tuesday afternoon as Jimmy B went on The Danny Parkins Show and not only denied some of what he said, but went after seemingly anybody that had ever slighted him.
For perspective on the whole situation The Fizz spoke with Bud Poloquin, columnist for the Post-Standard and The Score 1260’s Danny Parkins. Despite what seems to be more frequent run-ins this year, Poloquin says this is nothing new for Boeheim:
“I don’t think he’s particularly more feisty or combative this year than he’s been in past years. This is something he does in the course of most seasons. He’ll have these mood swings where he’s particularly cranky and take people on. I’ve been around long enough to say, ‘I’ve heard this song before.’ I can tap my toe to some of this stuff.”
Poloquin says he doesn’t have a problem with the events Monday night. He says that when Boeheim comes after him, Waters, or Ditota, it’s okay because they’re paid professionals. But when he goes after young reporters that’s a different story.
“I think when he goes after a 19-year-old sophomore who’s just feeling his way along, who’s not quite as psychologically strong as someone who’s been in the business for a while, I think that’s wrong. He should pick on people his own size, metaphorically speaking.”
We also spoke to Parkins, who reached out to Coach Boeheim Tuesday morning and was interviewing him mere hours later.
“One thing you have to give Jim Boeheim for is he’s always accessible to the media. He always returns your call, even if he says no.”
The interview lasted about 20 minutes and took plenty of twists and turns along the way.
“It started a little awkwardly then veered into confrontational and ended in mutual respect. I thought he was defensive of his own points. I thought that he knew he had his things where he could come at me. I was amazed at how many different takes of mine he was aware of.”
Despite giving The Per’fessor a chance to explain himself, Parkins says that his opinion on the events Monday night hasn’t changed.
“I don’t think it was fair. I think that in general, we the media need to understand that we don’t fully understand his job, and he doesn’t fully understand ours. Maybe he doesn’t know that Donna writes a column, and she doesn’t write the headline and the graphics that go with the story.”
For final reaction, we wrapped up with DA, who went to his fair share of Boeheim press conferences back in his WAER days. He said that even though this season might not be different, this incident certainly was.
“He often goes after student media, or a reporter from out of town that asks a question critical of his team, but rarely do you see him go after the long termed and long tenured Syracuse media, so when he put Ditota and Mike Waters on the spot, that was surprising.”
While Parkins wasn’t surprised that Boeheim did the interview with him, it did surprise D.A. he went back on the offensive the following day.
“I thought that following the game he wanted to attack it but then leave it alone. I was very surprised that he went after it again Tuesday afternoon with Danny and made it even more far reaching. After the game he basically attacked Ditota and Waters. With Danny he attacked letters to the editor, fans, callers to talk shows, Parkins himself, and sports talk radio in general.”
This only left one question: “Where was The Per’fesser’s critique of The Fizz in all this?!?”
Overall, D.A. thought Danny did a solid job by asking all the tough questions. The Per’fessor though, didn’t get quite the high grade.
“I thought Boeheim came off pretty shaky when he denied saying ‘You don’t know your business to Ditota, when he clearly did. I also think he came off shaky when he said ‘I don’t mind the coverage, I think I’ve been covered fairly’ when he clearly does and that’s why we’re here!”
Whether it’s picking on young reporters, making it personal, or denying an obvious truth, everyone had a critique of Boeheim. My beef? This is all after a win. We should be talking about the Orange’s pulling out a gutty victory in a tight spot and instead we’re talking once again about the “press mess.” Boeheim may have won #850 Monday night, but I guess no one can win ’em all.
Posted: Craig Hoffman