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Jim Boeheim shouldn't be allowed to cost kids a free education

Nobody is going to shed any tears over seeing Boeheim and Syracuse receive a big penalty from the NCAA, but cutting scholarships means more kids and debt and probably some kids not getting a shot at a degree. It doesn't have to be like that.

Have fun paying for someone else's players, jerk.
Have fun paying for someone else's players, jerk.
Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports

You've probably heard by now that Syracuse got in a little bit of trouble with the NCAA. They apparently had violations "involving academics, compliance with... drug testing policy as well as staff & student relationships w/a booster" and a head coach who "did not promote an atmosphere of compliance" and we're found to be "jerks and generally bad people." While that last quote is made up (but no less true), the first two are directly from the NCAA.

In punishment for this, the NCAA fined them a bunch of money, placed them on probabation, vacated a bunch of wins, and suspended Jim Boeheim for nine games. That's all well and good, but they also hit the program with scholarship reductions to the tune of 3 a year for 4 years. As The Sporting News writer and Banners favorite Mike Decourcy points out, that totals $600,000+ in lost free education, and all that coin just goes back to the Syracuse athletic department.

You probably find that bothersome, as well you should. Fortunately, I have a solution: fund a walk-on. Not just any walk-on though.

There are 14 other teams in the ACC, and each of them has walk-on on the roster. The money Syracuse lost in scholarships here should be allocated into a fund. Every year, the names of each walk-on in the conference should be placed into a drawing from which three will be selected to receive a one-year full ride. The tradition continues until the money is gone.

Syracuse's infractions represent everything wrong with high-level college sports: greed, corruption, skirting the rules. Walk-on represent the opposite: guys who aren't quite good enough who keep holding on because they love the game. How sweet would it be for a coach to be able to call one of his walk-on into the office and tell him, "Guess what, boss? You just shrugged 30 grand in student debt, and it's all thanks to Jim Boeheim being a jerk."

I don't know if that works for you, but it definitely does for me.