Monday, May 22, 2017

New alums owe BC Sports a "thank you"

Another batch of Eagles went from students to alumni Monday. Congratulations to all for their hard work and dedication. One thing that gets overlooked in all of our BC sports debate is what an incredible service Boston College Athletics provides to our alums. It is and instant and constant connection back to the community. It can be a reason to gather, to stay in touch, to commiserate and provide a great form of pride.

I know plenty of graduates didn't care about BC Sports while they were students. I hope that changes as alumni. For all that is wrong with college sports, there is still plenty right. For as frustrating as being a BC fan can be, it also provides so many exciting moments. And while all recent graduates applied to an elite national university, I hope you remember that sports did play an important part in building that national reputation. So many of our Catholic and Jesuit peers don't have the same recognition nor endowment because they didn't have big time sports as and branding and fund raising tool.

To the Class of 2017, continue to excel and keep rooting for the Eagles.

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Baseball closes Shea with big wins, headed to ACCs

Some run down facilities grow in charm as they age. Sometimes when we look back at something terrible, the memories become more found than they were in reality. I don't know if one day BC Baseball fans will look back at the time on Shea Field as the "good ol' days," but at least they will remember the final weekend as a good time. BC swept Notre Dame to secure a spot in the ACC Tournament. Considering how the regular season and ACC season started, this is a great way to finish. The team is playing much better. Although they will be a long shot to advance beyond pool play in the ACC, there is more hope now than there was four weeks ago. Congrats to the guys. I hope BC's new baseball complex let's them take the program to the next level.

Arthur Bailin did a great job capturing the last out.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Lax headed to Final Four

Big congrats to the Lacrosse team. They are headed to the Final Four after knocking off USC 20-14. BC established the lead with a strong defensive performance in the first half. The second half was more back and forth, but BC did enough to hold off the Trojans.

BC has a bit of a home field advantage in the semis, as the Final Four is being held at Gillette. They face Navy for a chance to get to the Championship game. As the saying goes, "you gotta take 'em one step at a time..." but this is a huge opportunity for BC sports. Winning a national championship in a growing sport like Lacrosse would be a great moment for the school and athletic department. Lacrosse is one of those sports that is huge in traditional ACC county AND New England. It is the type of sport where our conference and geography come together and can support a champion. Let's see the women keep going!

Friday, May 19, 2017

Tucky to Cincy shows complications when staffers leave

Before this post gets misinterpreted, let me make a few things clear: Ethan Tucky wasn't going to make or break BC in 2017 nor change Addazio's future. I also don't think former Addazio assistant Al Washington is "disloyal" or doing anything wrong. But Tucky is an example of having to sell a kid on BC the program and not the bond he has with his recruiter. The former BC LB got his release and is now officially headed to Cincinnati

Tucky to Cincinnati makes sense beyond the Washington connection. It is much closer to home for him. They have a new, young and exciting coach. However, it is not all roses. He will have to sit a year and is changing positions. Despite the Fickell excitement, he is also leaving a Power 5 team for a mid-major. 

BC and Addazio could have made his release conditional and "blocked" Cincinnati, but they did not. Fickell shares an Urban Meyer connection with Addazio and BC doesn't want to make enemies in such a traditionally strong recruiting area for us in Cincinnati. Tucky and the Bearcats also played it the right way. In the article there is no mention of Al Washington nor his prior relationship with Tucky. 

I don't imagine any other current BC kids are going to leave to reunite with Washington. But other kids will leave for various reasons when they are not happy at BC. That is why all coaches need to sell BC first. It is not about the assistant, nor Addazio, nor playing time. It is about playing and going to school at BC. That is all the coach can guarantee. If the kid buys that first, the other unpredictable stuff becomes less important. 

Thursday, May 18, 2017

The first of many offseason QB competition posts

As you read BC previews this summer and listen and read about the team, the QB issue will be front and center. Even with Wade coming out of Spring as a No. 1 player, there will still be intrigue. Below is a video from the ACC highlighting both players' Spring Game performances.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Jarmond explains scheduling

Scheduling for Ohio State is very different from scheduling for BC. But there are a few lessons from this OSU piece that provide insight into how new BC AD Martin Jarmond thinks.

Jarmond tries to measure stability and predictability of opponents. But as he admits in the piece, this is somewhat difficult when you schedule games ten years out. (That's why I find BC's scheduling so cynical and dumb.) Like BC, he also tries to schedule opponents who have a geographic tie to our alumni base or recruiting needs.

Given their budgets and fanbase, scheduling for Ohio State is a bit different than what Jarmond will do at BC. I hope he continues to look for quality opponents and not just easy wins.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

BC might debut on ACC Network

The ACC Network is still another year away, but BC could find out soon if they will play the first football game on the network. Half the conference can't play on the network that weekend in 2019 because they've already booked a non-conference game. BC hasn't locked in a game yet making them a likely candidate.

In my opinion being the first game -- or one of the first -- is a good thing. BC can hype it up to recruits and earn some goodwill with the schedulers at ESPN.

The downside is we don't know what the carriage issues will be like then. I would hate for BC fans to not be able to see the game due to a fight between cable companies and the conference. Hopefully there is some online option for those who won't have the ACC Network in 2019.