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Orange Crush

Student writer received undeserved wrath from Boeheim

Posted: Thursday March 9, 2006 1:32PM; Updated: Friday March 10, 2006 1:49PM
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By Adam Kilgore

Ethan Ramsey never expected any of this a month ago when he penned a column for The Daily Orange, Syracuse's student newspaper. Ramsey took a bold step and proclaimed star Gerry McNamara overrated. As the paper's sports editor, Ramsey, a sophomore, noticed a debate going on around campus, and he wanted to lend his voice.

The Walk-On
Adam Kilgore is a senior at Syracuse. As sports editor for the Daily Orange in 2003-2004, he covered the men's basketball team with such intensity that he started to look like Gerry McNamara.

Gerry McNamara had ten assists in the first half against UConn today.
Gerry McNamara had ten assists in the first half against UConn today.
Photo by SI/Damien Strohmeyer

A month later, here he was, checking his flooded in-box for e-mail at the Hotel Pennsylvania across the street from Madison Square Garden, where he had covered SU's first-round Big East tournament victory over Cincinnati. Ramsey's column had been transformed into national fodder after coach Jim Boeheim's rant against media who call McNamara overrated. About 20 e-mails had poured in, some in support, some in derision.

The New York Times called The Daily Orange sports office to verify some facts. Digger Phelps ripped into the school paper barely 10 minutes into SportsCenter. All of this came about after Syracuse's dramatic 74-73 victory. At the postgame press conference when asked about Daryl Watkins' performance, Boeheim unleashed his now infamous diatribe:

"I have to laugh a little bit when our own student newspaper is calling [Gerry McNamara] 'overrated,' and they actually listened to a couple of assistant coaches who I guarantee you will never be head coaches if they think Gerry McNamara is overrated," Boeheim started. "Of course our paper won't print that anyway because somebody said it."

"Without Gerry McNamara, we wouldn't have won 10 f ------ games this year. OK? Not 10. These other guys just aren't ready. They needed him. Without him there, not 10. We wouldn't be here to even have a chance to play this game. And everybody's talking to me and writing to me about Gerry McNamara being overrated? That's the most bull---- thing I've seen in 30 years, and especially because it comes from our people, in our papers.

"But they quote it from somebody else - an anonymous assistant coach. Let the assistant coach come up to me and say, 'Gerry McNamara is overrated. I'd like to see one of those guys come up to me and say that. He's been double-teamed in every game this year, and the coaches voted him first-team all-conference. The head coaches, they don't know s---, I guess."

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