While Syracuse was not named in the FBI probe into college basketball's pay-for-play scandal, Jim Boeheim is incredibly close to the situation and shared his opinions on it.
"Obviously, it's a difficult time,'' Boeheim said Friday at Syracuse's preseason media day. "That's what it is. A very difficult time.''
The scandal cost former Louisville coach Rick Pitino, who was on the same staff as Boeheim in the 1970s, his job. While Nike's Elite Youth Basketball League has been served a subpoena in correlation with the scheme, Boeheim doesn't believed Nike, which provides uniforms for Syracuse, is involved.
"It doesn't happen with Nike,'' Boeheim said Friday. "Nike has about 80 schools. The guys we're recruiting, we're recruiting against three or four Nike schools most of the time. (Nike) isn't going to help one of those schools.''
Adidas sponsors far fewer teams than Nike, and Adidas was mentioned in the investigation specifically. Most notably Louisville was caught funneling money through the company to get recruit Brian Bowen to play for the program.
Pitino and Cardinals athletics director Tom Jurich were fired as a result. That one hit close to home for Boeheim, who coached with Pitino at Syracuse from 1976-1977.
Arizona, Oklahoma State, Auburn and the University of Southern California were also mentioned in the FBI report.
Boeheim is not thrilled with the investigation into college basketball.
"First of all, I think the FBI could do a lot better investigating criminals and terrorists than they can investigating college basketball,'' he said. "In my opinion. I'm a tax-payer. There's a few tax-payers here. I'd sure as hell rather have them looking into terrorism and not spending three years investigating AAU programs or shoe companies. That's the least of our concern.''