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Syracuse fan donates $175K to charity after upset of Duke

A Syracuse Orange fan proved to be a man of his word by donating $175,000 to charity after promising to do so if the team beat the Duke Blue Devils on Monday night.

Adam Weitsman, a local businessman, philanthropist and “close, personal” friend of Jim Boeheim, was having lunch with the coach ahead of Syracuse’s showdown of No. 1 Duke.

“I think you’re going to win tonight,” Weitsman said he told Boeheim, via ESPN’s Myron Medcalf. “He seemed pretty confident.”

The confidence was well-placed, as Weitsman enjoyed a front-row seat to Monday’s thrilling 95-91 victory, sitting directly behind the team’s bench at Cameron Indoor Stadium.

Earlier Monday, Weitsman pledged via Twitter to donate $150,000 to the Boys & Girls Club should Syracuse upset Duke.

On Tuesday, Weitsman phoned the Boys & Girls Club to inform them that he would be sending separate $50,000 checks to Boys & Girls Clubs in Owego, Binghamton and Syracuse.

After being reminded he neglected another club in Endicott, Weitsman tacked on another $25,000 to his pledge to total $175,000.

Weitsman said he was originally inspired to make the charitable offer after reading an article about a Syracuse recruit who extolled the benefits of the Boys & Girls Club in his hometown. It reminded him of how much the club meant to him during his youth in upstate New York.

Weisman’s life took a wrong turn and spent almost a year in prison in 2004 for bank fraud. He has since built a successful business and turned around his life.

“When I was younger, I was pretty selfish,” Weitsman said. “I just want to be a different man than I was when I was young. Hopefully, [my donation] spurs other people to do the same.”