SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) - Just over two decades ago, a kid from Brooklyn followed in the footsteps of Pearl Washington and came to Syracuse to play basketball for Jim Boeheim.

Now, Griffin is the assistant coach at his alma mater, taking over for Mike Hopkins, who took the position as head coach at University of Washington.

Like fellow alum Gerry McNamara, Griffin says one of the many things he brings to Syracuse is experience playing in the system and playing under a hall-of-fame head coach.

"We knew, at the end of the day, coach always had the best interest… had our backs whatever, regardless of whatever it is so. And that's the one thing that I can tell one of these guys is that some times, it's not the yelling part, listen to the message. And trust the message more than anything and hopefully I can help some kid understand that part of it,” he said.

Griffin says he had options for other jobs in coaching, but couldn't resist the chance to come back to Syracuse.

Click the player to see the rest of the interview.

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