Longtime AP college basketball writer Jim O'Connell dead at age 64


Barry Wilner and Paul Montella | Associated Press

Last Updated - Jul 2, 2018 14:20 EDT

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NEW YORK — Few held court like Jim O'Connell.

Whether you were Coach K, a TV analyst, a fellow sports writer or a fan, he had the same effect on everyone: In just a few minutes, he had you hooked, drawn into his colorful basketball world.

And you were calling him Oc, too.

O'Connell, the longtime college basketball writer for The Associated Press and a member of the Hall of Fame, has died. He was 64.

He died Monday after a series of ailments, his son Andrew said.

"He was a great man," Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim said. "He was a guy you looked forward to seeing. Always had a good word and a smile."

"He wrote sports, but he did it in a positive way, always. He was always good to players, coaches, fans — everybody," he said. "He was a unique individual, always had a good word for everybody. Always."

Jim Boeheim

✔@therealboeheim

I

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