Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim said that he would return for his 38th season, he said during an NCAA media session on Wednesday afternoon.
It has become a yearly ritual to speculate whether the 68-year old Boeheim will decide to retire. In the last month, those rumors have heated up following a CBS Sports report saying that the basketball program was under investigation. Boeheim further fueled those questions several weeks ago by making comments about looking forward to playing golf following a tough loss to Georgetown.
But Boeheim quickly quashed those rumors when asked.
“I’m hoping the season lasts forever because I’ve got to go to Disney as soon as this season is over so I hope we keep winning, I swear,” Boeheim said. “I would like to keep playing all year. There is nothing worse than doing that. I can’t even go play golf anymore.
“I’m coaching next year. I kid around a little bit and everybody gets crazy when I do so I’m not going to kid around about it anymore, I’m coaching next year, thrilled, got a great challenge, looking forward to it.”
Then again, Boeheim left the door open for continued speculation with his last sentence.
“About September if I don’t want to coach, I won’t coach,” Boeheim said.
For what it’s worth, his players think he’ll be around.
“I never even thought about Coach retiring,” senior forward James Southerland said. “I think he has another 20 years left. I think he will retire by the time my child is playing basketball but all joking aside, he’s basically built this program from the ground up and it’s been great to be part of the tradition and I feel like he has a lot more coaching years left in him.”
Senior guard Brandon Triche agreed.
“Him being so instrumental to the community, especially in Syracuse and the basketball program and whatnot but also the Syracuse area, me being from Syracuse, he’s one of those guys where you can look up to as a coach and as one of the teachers of the game,” he said.
Even those who have yet to lace up for the Orange have been told that Boeheim will be the coach when they get there.
2014 commit Chris McCullough, who is still a full year and a half away from arriving on campus told SNY.tv that he expects that Boeheim will be his coach in the 2014-15 season.
“He said there’s a lot of rumors going around that he’s retiring but he’ll still be there when I’m there,” McCullough told SNY.tv.