3 things Jim Boeheim said at Syracuse men’s basketball media day

first_img Published on October 21, 2016 at 7:12 pm Contact Paul: [email protected] | @pschweds Syracuse held its annual media day on Friday afternoon and head coach Jim Boeheim kicked off the day with his season-opening press conference. The Orange welcomes three transfers — Andrew White, John Gillon and Paschal Chukwu — as well as freshmen Tyus Battle, Taurean Thompson and Matthew Moyer. They join a group that returns Tyler Lydon, Tyler Roberson, Dajuan Coleman and Frank Howard from its Final Four team in 2015-16.Here are three things Boeheim said ahead of his 41st season.Boeheim is open to discussing players sitting for the national anthemSeveral athletes across the country have been sitting or kneeling during the national anthem in recent weeks. Following the lead of San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, players are using the action to protest against police brutality. The controversy has swept across the nation as some argue the action is disrespectful to American soldiers in the military.Boeheim said he hasn’t spoken with his team about the topic but plans to.AdvertisementThis is placeholder text“I’ve always been a believer in if you want to do something, do it,” Boeheim said.But he added that he personally isn’t “a protest guy.” Boeheim cited Team USA’s forum with community members in Los Angeles as more productive than simply not standing during the national anthem.“I’ve always believed you stand for the national anthem, that’s important. When I do that, I think about the soldiers who serve our country. I just look at it that way,” Boeheim said. “But everybody’s got their own way of protesting something and drawing attention to something and I’m not gonna criticize anybody for doing that and our players are welcome to talk about it.”Syracuse’s depth allows for flexibilityBoeheim said he can’t remember a year where five new players received significant playing time. With White, Gillon, Chukwu, Battle and Thompson, the Orange could consistently play nine or 10 players, Boeheim said. Moyer has missed time throughout the preseason nursing a foot injury but has gained ground in the past couple days.With depth, Syracuse could push the pace of the game and press more since it has players to sub in. Boeheim said teams are built to beat presses and using just seven players makes it impossible to press successfully. Having the option is something he hasn’t had in recent years.“That doesn’t necessarily mean it’s going to work, but we will do some more things,” Boeheim said. “It’s going to take a while to fit all those things together. When I spoke in the summer, I said we have more depth, which is true and we have people at every position, a couple guys at every position, which we haven’t had in a long time.”Boeheim doesn’t like the fifth-year transfer rule, but is taking advantage of itFollowing Malachi Richardson’s decision to leave for the NBA, Syracuse dipped into the transfer market to pick up White and Gillon. Had Richardson stayed, Boeheim said, Syracuse probably would have stayed with the eight scholarship players it had. Since White and Gillon both have a fifth year of eligibility, they could transfer without sitting out a year. It’s a rule Boeheim said he doesn’t like but was able to take advantage of in order to help the Orange.The rule, he said, is here to stay and that over 100 players transferred as fifth-years in the offseason. Since the transfer market doesn’t open up until the offseason, Boeheim said it’s too late in the year to pick up an incoming freshman who would legitimately help the team. He doesn’t have much of a history taking transfers, but ones he does take usually have an impact.“We certainly helped our team with Johnny and with Andrew so that’s what we’re looking to do,” Boeheim said. “It’s not something we would always do. It’s something you do in certain circumstances.” Comments Facebook Twitter Google+last_img

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