When news broke that longtime Syracuse assistant basketball coach Bernie Fine was under investigation for alleged molestation, among the prevailing reactions were, “Oh God, please not again,” and also some skepticism. Syracuse head coach Jim Boeheim threw his full support behind Fine. It was noted that being under investigation is different from a grand jury presentment. And it was also noted that Syracuse itself has investigated this whole thing before, and cleared Fine of any wrongdoing.
But that doesn’t mean the story will go away easily – far from it. And on today’s Outside the Lines, we saw (and heard) perhaps the biggest reason yet why. Fine’s most vocal accuser, Bobby Davis, secretly recorded a phone conversation he had with Fine’s wife in 2002. Host Bob Ley said an independent analyst confirmed that the female voice on the call is indeed that of Fine’s wife. And that makes what you’ll hear below very, very strange, to say the least:
“Of course [Fine] would” want to have oral sex with Davis? “Bernie has issues”? “He needs that…male companionship”? And Davis claiming he slept with Fine’s wife? A third Fine accuser coming forward – and his own father calling him a liar? This is messed-up stuff, and a pretty clear sign that this situation won’t be resolved anytime soon.
Either Bernie Fine is a victim of some incredibly damaging false accusations, or there’s something to Bobby Davis’ story. The taped phone conversation, and verification that was was talking to Fine’s wife, suggests that something disturbing was happening. All we can do now is wait and see what other information comes out – although we can’t help but wonder if Boeheim is wishing he hadn’t defended Fine so fiercely.
UPDATE: Fine has been fired by Syracuse.