Jim Boylen Rumors
USA Basketball has picked its 12-man roster for the opening second-round window of World Cup qualifying, as the Americans look to move closer to clinching a spot in the field for next year’s event. Jim Boylen will return as coach, assisted again by Ty Ellis and Othella Harrington. The roster will include six players — Michael Frazier II, Langston Galloway, David Stockton, DaQuan Jeffries, John Jenkins and Eric Mika — who were with the Americans for the previous qualifying window in July.
Tim Reynolds: The USA went 5-1 in the first round of World Cup qualifying — all under coach Jim Boylen — and now is expected to start second-round play in Las Vegas on Aug. 25. FIBA still finalizing schedule.
If you followed Boylen’s tumultuous, two-year tenure as the Bulls’ head coach at all, so much of this sounds familiar, from the cheesy motivation tactics, all the way to pushing his players far beyond their comfort zones. But there is one key difference now that he’s coaching Team USA. Those same tactics seem to be working. “I’m very direct, I think you see that,” Boylen told me last week, as we sat in the bleachers at the Washington Wizards’ practice facility, where Team USA worked out. “I was very direct in Chicago. I coached that Chicago team how John Paxson and Jerry Reinsdorf wanted it coached.”
“I learned what it’s like to coach in a really big market,” Boylen said. “It’s different. I learned what the media is like in a big market. I learned the pressures of what a big market does and a rebuild in a big market does to the vertical alignment of your organization. It puts a lot of pressure on.”
Boylen said he was grateful to the Reinsdorfs, not only for hiring him, but for signing him to a contract under which he is still being paid. He said there were things he did while coach of the Bulls that he would change if he had the chance, but he didn’t want to name them because “if I tell you those things, I hurt people.” Without going into detail, he cited the roster and “dysfunction” in the front office.