ACC School Mount Rushmores: Syracuse’s Most Hated!
Once upon a time, we had some fun with Syracuse’s Mount Rushmore (as we did with all the school Mount Rushmores). The final Syracuse Mount Rushmore: Jim Boeheim, Jim Brown, Ben Schwartzwalder, and Ernie Davis. You can go there to read the reasons why those four were chosen. But if Syracuse was to create a “most-hated” Mount Rushmore, who would be on it?
The first and easiest is John Thompson. Although he and Jim Boeheim are probably golfing buddies now, there was a time when there was absolutely no love lost between these two. One of the worst moments in Syracuse sports history was when Thompson deemed Manley Field House closed. One of the coolest moments was Thompson getting ejected at the Carrier Dome. In between, there were plenty of basketball moments…. including Michael Graham’s punch: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k6o2iHeCWGo.
The second one is not as obvious, but there has to be a football name on here. Joe Paterno and Syracuse have had a quarrel over the years. First, Penn State dominated Syracuse on the football field for a long time during his reign. Then, Syracuse turned the tables in 1987 and Paterno (wisely) decided to cancel the series. Second, Paterno wrongly blamed Syracuse for Penn State not making it into the Big East. Syracuse voted for Penn State. Syracuse may have a more bitter rivalry with other schools on the field, but Joe Paterno was disliked in Central NY long before the Sandusky scandal emerged.
The third spot goes to Keith Smart. He did not do anything wrong. He hit a shot. But that shot was replayed over and over and over again for so many years. If you were old enough to form memories during the 1987 Championship Game, you probably want to get in a fetal position when you see that replay. So close to a national championship, but instead Keith Smart wins it on a jumper. It’s not his fault, but he gets a spot.
So then we come to the 4th spot. We’ll let you vote for this one. After you vote, tell us why–especially if you do not select one of the entries.
Nobody did more to take down SU Football than GROB
First, I would replace JoPa with Pat Dye.
Secondly, if you’re going to have someone internal to the program then it has to be AD Jake Crouthamel. While the rest of the programs in the Northeast were increasing their football budgets adn spending like crazy, he told Syracuse fans to “get a life”.
He lacked the balls to fire Coach P (when the Coach refused to replace DeLeone). He was responsible for changing the nickname to “Orange” and then didn’t even have the decency to properly paint the name on the endzone (instead painting the word “MEN” in a green that was kinda close to the carpet), he also said that we could never have field turf…which was obviously untrue since we have had field turf since right after he left.
Although the GRob hire was a mistake, the damage done was well underway by Jake.
Crouthamel got Syracuse into the Big East… oversaw the Dome being built… got Syracuse into the ACC 10 years ago, only to have the ACC pull the plug for Va Tech. Not even sure how anyone over the age of 20 can suggest him for this list.
Pat Dye coached one game. The only way we would have been #1 was if Miami-Oklahoma had tied. They didn’t. Had we won, we would have MAYBE finished #2 to Miami. We tied and finished #4. Not much of a difference. Weak call to go for the tie by Dye… but if he had gone for it and scored a TD, we would have lost and finished #6. Not enough to be top 4.
I’m basing my addition of Crouthamel solely on his final years at SU when he fell asleep at the wheel and arguably put Syracuse several years behind the rest of the schools in the region. Had the AD been more invested in Syracuse during the late 90’s and early 2000s we may never have had a GRob era and the need to rebuild our football program. Who knows, we may never have had a Bernie Fine scandal.
For all of Dr. Gross’ missteps to start his tenure, he has been a very successful fundraiser and at marketing the programs, and understands what it takes to get/keep SU competitive. If the day comes when Dr. Gross wants to just rest on his laurels and coast toward his Golden Parachute while perennially downtrodden teams like Rutgers surpass us, then he may deserve to go on the list as well.
In fact, I would argue that with a few more years like the last, Dr. Gross could make a strong argument for being on a Syracuse Mt. Rushmore…
Louisville didnt make the list? Damn it. Guess we need to call Kuric back.
How different would the landscape be today if Penn St had joined the Big East?