Syracuse University Assistant Basketball Coach Accused of Sex Abuse
Penn State isn’t the only University embroiled in a sex abuse scandal. Syracuse Unversity’s assistant basketball coach Bernie Fine has been accused of molesting a team ball boy. The abuse allegedly took place for more than a dozen years beginning in the mid-1980s.
Bobby Davis, now 39, told ESPN’s Outside the Lines Fine molested him beginning in 1983 shortly before he entered the seventh grade. He claims the abuse occurred at Fine’s home, at the Syracuse basketball facilities, and on road trips, including the 1987 Final Four. Davis’ step-brother claims Fine also molested him. Fine is in his 35th season as an assistant to head coach Jim Boeheim. Davis claims Boeheim knew he was traveling on the road and sleeping in Fine’s room. “Boeheim saw me with Bernie all the time in the hotel rooms, on road trips. He’d come in, and see me laying in the bed, kind of glance at me like, ‘What are you doing here?’ But he wouldn’t say that. He’d just scowl. And I would look at him like, I’d be nervous. I felt embarrassed ’cause I felt stupid that I’m there. I’m not supposed to be here. I know it, and Boeheim’s not stupid.”
Syracuse released a statement before placing Fine on leave. It read: “In 2005, Syracuse University was contacted by an adult male who told us he had reported to the Syracuse City Police he had been subjected to inappropriate contact by an associate men’s basketball coach. The alleged activity took place in the 1980’s and 1990’s. We were informed by the complainant that the Syracuse City Police had declined to pursue the matter because the statute of limitations had expired.
“On hearing of the allegations in 2005, the University immediately launched its own comprehensive investigation through its legal counsel. That nearly four-month long investigation included a number of interviews with people the complainant said would support his claims. All of those identified by the complainant denied any knowledge of wrongful conduct by the associate coach. The associate coach also vehemently denied the allegations.