The Oklahoma State men’s basketball team is in familiar territory for head coach Mike Boynton as he returns to his hometown.
The Pokes are in Brooklyn this week to play in the NIT Season Tip-Off, and Tuesday morning, they got to work out at Boynton’s old high school, Bishop Loughlin.
“I think sometimes they think, ‘Oh what’s this guy talking about?’” Boynton said, smiling. “Didn’t really play, didn’t really grow up in the city.”
Oh but he did, and his name graces the Lions’ “1,000 Point Club” banner, class of 2000. One of the men who has been instrumental in Boynton’s journey is Kenny Pretlow, his former coach, who’s known the Cowboy coach since he was nine years old. He was also there for a key moment in Boynton’s development.
“(He) comes to high school and on his first report card, I think he got four 90s, an 85 and a 75,” Pretlow said.
That 75 was trouble.
“His parents immediately came up.”
Boynton was called to see his coach and had no idea why.
“I walk into the coach’s office, and my mom is sitting there,” Boynton said. “I’m thinking something bad must have happened.”
Nope. Well, not yet. Pretlow learned he might lose Boynton before his career even began.
“They told me, straight out if he gets another seventy-five while he’s here, he won’t play basketball,” said Pretlow.
“She walked out and didn’t say a word to me,” Boynton said of the encounter. “I didn’t ever get a ‘C’ again.”
Boynton and the Cowboys take on Syracuse on Wednesday night.