As Jim Boeheim prepared to coach one of the most emotionally difficult games of his career, the Syracuse basketball faithful made it very clear they support the coach in the aftermath of his deadly crash.
The Carrier Dome crowd gave Boeheim a standing ovation as he walked onto the court ahead of the Orange’s Saturday game against No. 1 Duke. While not obvious in the video below, ESPN’s Jeff Borzello reports that Boeheim carried a somber look on his face.
The ovation for Jim Boeheim as he enters the court pic.twitter.com/z8F4cZjMSc
— Niko Tamurian (@NikoTamurian) February 23, 2019
Boeheim is just three days removed from a crash that killed 51-year-old Jorge Jimenez on Wednesday night, in which Jimenez was reportedly struck by Boeheim’s car after leaving his vehicle due to a previous accident. Authorities did not fault Boeheim, who had no alcohol in his system, for his actions before or after the crash and do not expect him to face any immediate legal ramifications for the accident.
It was an open question whether or not Boeheim would appear during Saturday’s game, but the program announced Friday that he would indeed coach against Duke.
The mother of Jimenez’s sons and stepson reportedly opposed Boeheim’s decision, while the 19-year-old stepson questioned the idea of Syracuse playing a game at all. ESPN also opted to pull its “College GameDay” program from Syracuse in the aftermath of the incident.
Syracuse recognized Jimenez before the game with a moment of silence announced in both English and Spanish, per Yahoo Sports’ Pete Thamel.
There's a Moment of Silence pregame in Carrier Dome both in English and Spanish for Jorge Jimenez.
— Pete Thamel (@PeteThamel) February 23, 2019
Jimenez’s family has set up a GoFundMe to raise money for funeral expenses.
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