ESPN's Andy Katz posed the first question to Syracuse basketball coach Jim Boeheim after last night's loss to UConn, and it "prompted a frosty response that included an insult and a stare-down," according to Donna Ditota of the Syracuse POST-STANDARD. Katz asked, "Jim, what has the series with UConn meant to you and to Syracuse?" Boeheim responded, "I'll answer anybody's question but yours. Because you're an idiot and a really disloyal person. And a few other things that I can add, but I'm not gonna go there." Katz and Boeheim "did not speak after their post-game exchange." Later in the UConn press room, Katz said that he "believed Boeheim's ire stems from his reporting about former SU assistant coach Bernie Fine last year" (SYRACUSE.com, 2/13). YAHOO SPORTS' Jeff Eisenberg writes another theory is that Katz reported information pertaining to Syracuse F James Southerland's academic issues that Boeheim "believed he had shared off the record." Regardless, Boeheim was "out of line in the way he spoke to Katz during the exchange." A reporter's primary obligation is "to be truthful, not loyal." Boeheim has had similar "outbursts" in the past, including when he "tore into local media for highlighting that he had lost seven in a row to Rick Pitino" following a Feb. '11 loss to Louisville. He also "lambasted student reporters" after the '06 Big East Tournament for calling former Syracuse G Gerry McNamara "overrated" (SPORTS.YAHOO.com, 2/14). Radio host Dan Patrick said Boeheim’s comments “came out of nowhere, and then you find out the back story on that.” Boeheim told Katz “something off the record about his players” and then Katz “went on the record with that information.” Patrick: “That’s Jim Boeheim’s side of it. Andy Katz, don’t know his side of it.” Patrick said if Katz “went against his own word, your trust, your bond," he "should be yelled at and called an idiot." Patrick: "But Jim Boeheim, you’ve got to understand who you’re telling that information too and why are you telling me that information” (“The Dan Patrick Show,” 2/14).
IS BOEHEIM OUT OF LINE? SB Nation blogger Sean Keeley wrote, "Of course Katz is a great reporter. But if Boeheim feels like something OTR was reported, why can't he be pissed off?" Deadspin's Timothy Burke replied, "That's fine, then just don't answer his questions. 'Idiot' and 'Disloyal' only show Boeheim to be a petty moron." Pro Football Talk's Michael David Smith wrote, "Journalists are not supposed to be loyal to sources. They're supposed to be loyal to the truth." ESPN's Dick Vitale wrote, "@ESPNAndyKatz trust me is no idiot-he is a tireless worker-Jim Boeheim is totally off base using childish name calling to make a point." USA Today's Dan Wolken wrote, "Finally saw the Boeheim vid. He should apologize to Andy."