Jim Boeheim: biography
Jim Boeheim (full name is James Arthur Boeheim ) is an American famous basketball coach working as the head coach of Syracuse Orange men's team Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) for more than 10 years. The trainer took part in five Big East Tournament championships, in many ACC Tournament (mostly in Greensboro) and 33 NCAA Tournaments. In his career, there have been lots of wins and failures.
Due to his extensive experience, Boeheim is thought to be one of the best coaches worldwide. Are you interested in his way to success? So, let's get acquainted with Jim's story!
Jim's birthplace is Lyons, New York, the United States. His city was pretty small, situated about 57 miles west of Syracuse. He was born on November 17, 1944, to a middle-class family. As a child, he attended Lyons Central High School. In 1962 he entered Syracuse University from which he graduated with a bachelor's degree in social science.
As a freshman, Jim joined the freshman basketball team as a walk-on. He trained a lot and managed to become the varsity team captain. Besides, he was a teammate of future All-American Dave Bing. Together they formed an excellent pair – they led coach Fred Lewis's Orange to a 22–6 overall win-loss record that earned the team's second-ever NCAA Tournament tournament berth. Studying at the university, Boeheim joined the Delta Upsilon fraternity.
Having graduated, Jim Boeheim joined the Scranton Miners Eastern Professional Basketball League. He played there professionally, succeeded to win two championships and was a second-team all-star (SU Athletics).
While playing, Boeheim became interested in coaching. In 1969 he started working as a graduate assistant at Syracuse under Roy Danforth. He served well and got a full-time assistant coach title. Moreover, Jim was a member of the coaching staff that helped guide the Orange to the 1975 NCAA Tournament, where Syracuse University made its first appearance.
In 1976 he left the team for the sake of becoming the head basketball coach and athletic director for the Tulane University team. Interestingly, initially, the team's management didn’t plan to hire him as a coach. But in an interview, he showed his professionalism and impressed them.
Remarkably, Boeheim had never wanted to leave his state. So, in 1986 he was offered to work as a head coach at Ohio State but denied.
In his entire 42-year career, Boeheim has guided the Orange to postseason berths, either in the NCAA or NIT tournaments, in every year in which the Orange have been eligible.
The team has never had a losing season.
On November 7, 2005, Boeheim took part in an exhibition game against Division II school Saint Rose from Albany, New York. Then the first his career ejection occurred – it was after arguing a call late in the first half in the Orange's 86–73 victory. Another his removal was on February 22, 2014 – after arguing a player control foul call.
Interestingly, Jim worked as a coach for USA national teams. In the 1990 FIBA World Championship Jim worked as an assistant coach under Mike Krzyzewski for the US national team. They co-worked together again in the 2006 FIBA World Championship, winning the bronze medal both times, in the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, China, and again at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, England.
In 2012-2013 Jim helped Syracuse get to their first Final Four since their 2003 NCAA National Championship. They were beaten by the University of Michigan 61–56.
The next year, the coach led the Orange to the NCAA Tournament and lost in the third-round game versus the Dayton Flyers.
In 2013 Jim had a conflict with Andy Katz. Boeheim said in his press conference to him:
"I'll answer anybody's question but yours, because you're an idiot and really a disloyal person. I have a few other things I could add, but I'm not gonna go there."
It's unclear what Boeheim is talking about with respect to Katz's idiocy and disloyalty, but it could go back to November 29, 2011 story he did about the Syracuse program. Katz touches on a number of issues, including the Bernie Fine scandal and the strained relationship between his family and the Fines. The overall feel of the piece could also have been interpreted by Boeheim so as to paint him as a hands-off guy with a lax attitude when it comes to his staff and ultimately the program.
In 2016 Boeheim announced he would retire in 3 years. The reason for retirement is his health, according to his speech at a press conference.
Boeheim's salary is evaluated at $2.6 million. He has a net worth of $12 million.
Jim Boeheim is married to Juli Greene Boeheim, 53. They have been married for more than two decades and have three children together, all of whom play collegiate basketball.
Jim Boeheim and his wife may spend most of their time on a basketball court, but they met while enjoying horse racing. According to the news, they were introduced in 1994 at a party at the Kentucky Derby in Lexington. Juli was born in Miami, Florida, on March 5, 1966, but grew up in Kentucky.
Juli Boeheim shared in an interview in 1996 that she and Jim began talking after playing a game of backgammon at the party in their mutual friend's house.They tied the knot on October 10, 1997.
Since their marriage, Juli, who was born and raised in Kentucky, has become one of the most visible faces in the entire Syracuse area. A graduate of the University of Kentucky, Juli received her master’s degree from SU in child and family studies with a focus on infant and young children with disabilities.
Juli has always been her husband’s biggest fan, speaking publicly about the struggles the family faced while Jim was suspended and, now, their joy at a Final Four berth.
When they aren’t focused on basketball, Jim and Juli are also heavily involved in local charities and even founded the Jim and Juli Boeheim Foundation. According to the Foundation’s site it “strives to enrich the lives of kids in need within our Central New York community, as well, as, provide support for eliminating cancer through research and advocacy.” Their events include an annual gala called the Basket Ball and a Golf Classic. They also run a Fantasy Camp for adults, in which participants get to play basketball as if they were on the Syracuse team.
Boeheim had previously been married to Elaine. The pair divorced in 1993 and the end of the relationship came at a particularly difficult time for the long-time coach. In the early 90’s the program was under NCAA investigation for recruiting violations after players allegedly received cash from boosters. Boeheim & his ex-wife have an adopted daughter, Elizabeth, together
When her parents' affair ended, Elizabeth lived with her mother while she was growing up before earning her undergraduate degree from Colby College in Waterville, Maine. She went on to earn her master’s degree from the University of Montana.
When Elizabeth completed her degree, she stayed in Montana and lived in Missoula for several years – it was a trip her father enjoyed taking.
Although Elizabeth doesn’t spend much time in the spotlight now, her presence in Boeheim’s life has been undeniably significant. In fact, shortly after she was adopted by Jim and Elaine, Elizabeth was credited with helping to calm her father down on the sidelines and change his in-game perspective.
Juli and Jim Boeheim are parents for three college-age children together. And all three of them are playing basketball at the collegiate level.
The eldest son Jimmy plays for Cornell University. Jackson chose to stay at Syracuse and play for his father. Jack’s twin sister, Jamie, is at the University of Rochester.
Juli keeps track of all of her kid’s schedules by posting them to the refrigerator; she joked that she checked the fridge before checking her calendar. She also shared the kids’ nicknames: Jimmy is JJ; Jamie is Sissy, and Jackson is Buddy.
Juli and Jim’s sons Jimmy and Jackson played against each other on December 1, 2018. Juli wore a special t-shirt for the event, which was called the “Battle of the Boeheims.”
The Boeheims aren’t the only Syracuse kids playing at J-D. Adrian Autry, the son of an Orange assistant and Michael Hopkins, the son of long-time assistant Mike Hopkins, are also standouts on the hardwood.
At the age of 56, Boeheim was diagnosed with prostate cancer, an illness which claimed the life of his father.
Despite being in season, he wasted no time getting treatment. Boeheim flew to St. Louis to meet with Dr. Catalona, who recommended surgery to remove the prostate. Again, Boeheim acted quickly to get the surgery and continued on to a speedy recovery – within 10 days of the operation he was back to coaching the Orange.
Achievements and records
Boeheim has been named Big East coach of the year four times and has been named as District II Coach of the Year by the National Association of Basketball Coaches ten times. In 2004, Boeheim received two additional awards. In 2004 Boeheim was presented with Syracuse University's Arents Award, the University's highest alumni honor.
In his 38th season as head coach, Boeheim has amassed over 966 wins to make him the second-winningest coach in NCAA Division I men’s basketball history behind Duke’s Mike Krzyzewski, who became the first to reach 1,000 career wins on January 25.
But that’s not the case anymore.
Now that the NCAA is requiring SU to forfeit 108 of those wins, Boeheim drops to 858 wins and to No. 6 on the all-time wins list behind Bob Knight, Dean Smith, Jim Calhoun, and Adolph Rupp.
The vacated victories not only affect his pursuit of 1,000 – a feat SU thought he might reach in the next two years – but will also impact his NCAA record for the most 20-win seasons, he had 35, but once the specific victories are determined, that number will change.
But even with the vacated wins, Boeheim holds the record for total wins at one program – Krzyzewski’s victories came from Army and Duke – and he is still one of only four coaches – joining Dean Smith, Mike Krzyzewski, and Rick Pitino – to take his school to the Final Four in four decades.
And he still has other accolades. On February 24, 2002, SU named the Carrier Dome court, “Jim Boeheim Court.” Boeheim coached ‘Cuse to a national championship in 2003 when Carmello Anthony – now with the New York Knicks – was one of his players. Boeheim was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 2005, received the John R. Wooden “Legends of Coaching” Award in 2006 and was named a Naismith Coach of the Year in 2010.
In 2011 best-selling author Scott Pitoniak published a book about the coach called Color Him Orange: The Jim Boeheim Story. The writer identifies the sources of Basketball Hall of Fame coach Jim Boeheim's fierce competitive drive and loyalty to Syracuse. The book also examines the people who shaped Boeheim as a person and a coach, the great players he has coached, and his incredible devotion to raising money in hopes of eradicating cancer—which claimed both of his parents' lives and has also victimized Boeheim himself.