Sunday, November 18, 2007

Defending Boeheim's Legacy

Apparently some journalists decide its never important to have an original thought, and would rather jump on the bandwagon and state what they believe is the obvious, without actually doing any real research or paying attention to the facts. Then again, why pay attention to the facts when they get in the way of your story, right?

Fellow Orange blogger Troy Nunes is an Absolute Magician found a blog called the 'Meaningfull Collateral'. Apparently these guys are just the types of guys I referred to in the first paragraph. And they are taking the wrath of the 'Cuse blog collective. Good work by Cuse Country, Orange44, and State of the Orange in their respective responsives.

I've defended Syracuse's scheduling in the past and I'm not going to go into detail on that again. Though, as a reminder to those of you not familiar with the geography of New York State, Syracuse is 4 1/2 hours from New York City. Most of the teams in the original Big East are closer than the Orange to Madison Square Garden.

Rather, I'd like to focus on Boeheim's record, which was ripped by those who did not due their homework at Meaningful Collateral. They make a statement that Boeheim's tradition has been
"Win all these games at home against mediocre squads, go .500 in your
conference, be on the bubble every season
".
First of all, Syracuse's record in the Big East (which is all under the tenure of Jim Boeheim) is a win/loss of 64.7%. The best in conference history... no where near .500. In 28 years of the conference's history, Syracuse has played .500 basketball only twice (1996-97, and 1981-1982). Only two other times did the Orange have a winning percentage less than .500; 1980-1981 and 2005-06. So in 28 years of league action, only 4 times (or 14% of the time) have the Orangemen played .500 ball. From that the writers at Meaningful Collateral determine a 'tradition'? Egads.

Second, Syracuse rarely is on the bubble to go to the NCAA. If anything, they have a reputation (whether or not it is true... that's a discussion for another time) of being a higher seed that does not deliver. I doubt most casual fans in the country would ever consider Syracuse a perennial bubble sitter.

Third, 25 times in Boeheim's 31 years the Orangemen have made the NCAA tournament. Once they were banned by the NCAA. So that leaves five seasons where they did not make the tournament. That's 1/6 times the Orange don't make the dance, not the 1/4 the authors at Meaningful Collateral suggest. Of those five seasons, Boeheim complained in three of them: 1981 (where Syracuse won the Big East Title but the conference had no automatic bid), 1996 (where Syracuse with 19 wins became the first Big East School with 18+ wins not to make the tournament) and last season where everyone in the country already knows the details.

Meaningful Collateral... you are entitled to your opinion. Freedom of speech is a right and privilege in this great country of ours. With that freedom comes some responsibility, and that responsibility is to tell the truth. Your version of the truth can differ from mine, because we can interpret the facts differently. But it does nobody any good if you misrepresent the facts.

3 comments:

tim said...

Well put. To paraphrase Daniel Patric Moynihan once said, everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but not their own facts.

Jeff said...

I was going to compliment you for this factual rebuttal. Then I realized you could find this information in 90 seconds on the internet...on your Orange Hoops site. This makes their errors even worse. You did all the work for them and they still flubbed it. Even if they did a live podcast they could have found the info in plenty of time to keep the continuity of the show.

Robbie Allen said...

Over on StatSheet.com you can clearly see how Boeheim is an elite coach. His career record speaks for itself! There are only a few coaches with similar numbers over the same period of time.