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Syracuse basketball: Bernie Fine fired after new sex allegation

November 28, 2011 |  9:31 am

Bernie Fine

Longtime Syracuse assistant basketball coach Bernie Fine was fired Sunday after a third man alleged that he was molested by Fine nine years ago.

Fine, who has been an assistant at Syracuse for 35 years, has denied the allegations.

Fine has been on administrative leave since two former team ball boys told ESPN on Nov. 17 that they had been sexually abused by him in the 1980s and 1990s. On Sunday, the Syracuse Post-Standard reported that a third man, from Lewiston, Maine, recently told police he was molested by Fine in a Pittsburgh hotel room in 2002.

The same day the story came out, the university's senior vice president for public affairs Kevin Quinn announced at 7:39 p.m.: “At the direction of Chancellor [Nancy] Cantor, Bernie Fine’s employment with Syracuse University has been terminated, effective immediately.”

Head coach Jim Boeheim released a statement Sunday supporting the school's decision.

“The allegations that have come forth today are disturbing and deeply troubling," Boeheim wrote. "I am personally very shocked because I have never witnessed any of the activities that have been alleged. I believe the university took the appropriate step tonight.

"What is most important is that this matter be fully investigated and that anyone with information be supported to come forward so that the truth can be found. I deeply regret any statements I made that might have inhibited that from occurring or been insensitive to victims of abuse.”


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Photo: Bernie Fine. Credit: Jim McIsaac / Getty Images