Former Fizz is a new interview series where we talk with previous Orange Fizz staff writers about Syracuse sports from when they were on campus. Topics include specific players and games, special memories and of course Jim Boeheim throughout the years. You can listen to all of the episodes on the Orange Fizz SoundCloud or orangefizz.net.
On the fourth episode, Mike Couzens joins in on the fun. Mike is currently a play-by-play broadcaster for ESPN and called Syracuse University home for an abbreviated college career of only three and a half years from 2010-2014. He remembers his interactions with Jim Boeheim and he (probably) wants to forget his memories of Greg Robinson. The interview is below, followed by an abbreviated Q&A from the discussion. We hope you enjoy!
QUESTION: What was campus like when basketball season rolled around each year?
ANSWER: Basketball season was great, especially my freshman year when I was a manager for the team. I got to have an inside look of a Division I basketball program and see how Jim Boeheim runs his team.
QUESTION: Of the four seasons you watched as a student, which team do you think was the best?
ANSWER: I’m not sure which was the best, but the one that was the most fun to watch was the 2010-2011 team. There was so much promise and so much hype with the recruiting class that came in with me like Donte Green and Jonny Flynn.
QUESTION: As a student journalist, how special was it to experience a Sweet Sixteen game?
ANSWER: It was amazing, it made you feel like you made it big time. We got to see some of our broadcasting idols.
QUESTION: If you could put together a starting five of Syracuse basketball players that played while you were a student, who would be in it?
ANSWER: Dion Waiters, Jonny Flynn, Arinze Onuaku, Donte Green, Andy Rautins
QUESTION: Do you have any classic Jim Boeheim stories from when you were at SU?
ANSWER: I had very minimal interactions with Boeheim while I was a team manager. One time a rebound went long and I shouted to give him a heads up. The other time he stiff armed me out of the way because I was in his way during a drill. As for press conferences, I don’t really think I had the guts to ask a question.
QUESTION: Just how miserable was the Greg Robinson era for Syracuse football?
ANSWER: As an incoming freshman, I bought the season pass for tickets because I was excited for Division I football. I went to the first game of the season against Washington, but Syracuse got destroyed so at halftime I left and I don’t think I went back to a game other than for media purposes for the rest of my time at SU. I do remember Robinson’s last press conference where he recited “The Little Engine That Could.”
QUESTION: Do you think Big East football from back when you were a student as good as current ACC football?
ANSWER: No, the current ACC now is probably better, especially with Clemson.
QUESTION: Who were some of the big names on the football field that you remember?
ANSWER: For quarterbacks I remember Andrew Robinson, Cam Dantley and Greg Paulus. Other big names were Delone Carter, Chandler Jones, Mike Robinson, and Rob Long.
QUESTION: What was the single best game you remember from Syracuse football from when you were a student?
ANSWER: Syracuse at West Virginia in 2010 because I went down there with a bunch of my friends for WAER and it was great to see a true college football tailgating experience. Plus, Syracuse went into the game as an underdog, but pulled out the win.