SYRACUSE, N.Y. (CBSNewYork/AP) — With his wife, Juli, looking on at the postgame press conference and his young children close by, Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim’s final remarks were not about his milestone 900th career victory.
“If we cannot get the people who represent us to do something about firearms, we are a sad, sad society,” Boeheim said Monday night. “I’m not talking — I’m a hunter, I’ve hunted, I’m not talking about rifles. That’s fine. If one person in this world, the NRA president, anybody, can tell me why we need assault weapons with 30 shots — this is our fault. This is my fault and your fault, all your faults if we don’t go out there and do something about this.”
Boeheim mentioned by name New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, a longtime champion of gun control.
“If we can’t get this thing done, I don’t know what kind of country we have,” he said. “This is about us. … We need to make them understand somehow that this needs to get figured out — real quick, not six months from now.”
It was a sobering end to what was a memorable evening for Syracuse basketball. The third-ranked Orange’s 72-68 victory over Detroit in the Gotham Classic made Boeheim just the third Division I men’s coach to reach 900 wins.
Boeheim, 68 and in his 37th year at his alma mater, is 900-304 and joined an elite fraternity. Mike Krzyzewski (936) and Bob Knight (902) are the only other men’s Division I coaches to win that many games.
“To me, it’s just a number,” said Boeheim, whose first victory was against Harvard in 1976. “If I get 900, have I got to get more? That’s why maybe it’s just not that important to me because to me it’s just a number, and the only number that matters is how this team does.”
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