Syracuse Orange Basketball: Will Bernie Fine Allegations Hurt Recruiting?

Andrew PreglerContributor IIINovember 21, 2011

SYRACUSE, NY - NOVEMBER 19:  Head coach of the Syracuse Orange, Jim Boeheim looks on from the sideline during the game against the Colgate Raiders at the Carrier Dome on November 19, 2011 in Syracuse, New York.  (Photo by Nate Shron/Getty Images)
Nate Shron/Getty Images

The Bernie Fine allegations were all anyone could talk about after the Syracuse Orange thrashed Colgate, 92-47 on Saturday. Jim Boeheim was forced to handle the media after the game, handling the situation in a manner only Jim Boeheim can

But Boeheim is a Hall-of-Fame experienced coach who knows how to handle the media. Granted he may not be the sunniest of coaches, but he does understand what he can say and what he should not not say about a situation like this. 

What Boeheim cannot entirely control is public opinion. Especially the opinions of mothers of star recruits. News broke yesterday that Class of 2014 prospect Isaiah Whitehead had dropped Syracuse from consideration due to the allegations facing Fine.

A correction has come out today saying that Whitehead is still now considering the Orange because his mother thought Fine was the head coach, not assistant coach.

Whitehead even came out and issued a statement himself, saying that, "I still like Syracuse and my family will wait to see what happens."

While Orange Nation may take a deep sigh of relief, who is to say the next star prospect may drop or not even consider Syracuse because of these allegations? Some players and their families want a "clean" environment around the entire program, whether it is the assistant or head coach. 

ESPN has already been criticized in the past for handling stories with little evidence before and even some media experts believe that this story should not have been run when looking at journalistic ethics. 

Regardless, this saga still has a long way to go in terms of uncovering the truth of what happened between Fine, Bobby Davis and Mike Lang. As for the Orange on the court, they continue to commemorate their beloved coach. In recruiting, the Orange are going to have to play damage control and hope that others follow the example of Whitehead and wait until all the dust settles.