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Mike Hopkins Leaves to Be Next Head Coach at Washington

The plan was set.

Following the 2017-2018 basketball season Mike Hopkins was going to take over for Jim Boeheim as SU’s head coach. The school announced the retirement plan following the sanctions that were levied against the program in 2015.

Not so fast.

Today, Mike Hopkins accepted the head coaching position at the University of Washington, according to multiple reports. Clearly, this wasn’t part of the plan the University devised two years ago.

John Wildhack confirmed to Brent Axe a few months ago that Jim Boeheim’s retirement would still take place a year from now. What’s changed since then?

While we don’t have the exact answer to that question right now, this much seems clear: either Jim Boeheim won’t be stepping down after next season, or Hopkins was not guaranteed that he’d get the job after Boeheim retired.

So what does this mean?

The first possibility is that Boeheim somehow worked out with Wildhack and the SU administration a plan for him to coach longer than next season and he’ll retire on his own terms.

The second possibility is that Hopkins was told that he was not guaranteed the Syracuse job after next season and he has decided to take the Washington job as a result. If no changes had been made to the initial Boeheim plan, it wouldn’t make sense for Hopkins to leave knowing he would have a better job in a year.

In this scenario, Syracuse now has a lot of time to find its next coach. Boeheim will coach one more year and Wildhack will use the year to gauge the interest of potential replacements before eventually settling on one.

Whatever you believe has occurred, this is a significant news item for SU fans and will have a major effect on SU’s program going forward.

What do you think has happened? Respond below.

Posted: Connor Morrissette

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The Fizz is owned, edited and operated by Damon Amendolara. D.A. is an ’01 Syracuse graduate from the Newhouse School with a degree in Broadcast Journalism.

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