Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Who had it worse?

The only thing more annoying than an older person going on about how rough he had it back in the day, is the young person lacking perspective who whines about how bad things are. When @DShaw31 asked me if he and his current seniors had just experienced the worst four years of BC sports I had to respond. These young spoiled kids with their instant gratification don't know how good they have it. Of course anyone who has followed BC sports knows that MY FOUR YEARS were the worst in school history. No one had it as rough as me and my fellow '98ers. But in an effort to put some reason behind the argument, I tried to construct a logical measurement of whose years were worst. For the purpose of the debate, I am only capturing what happened with Football, Men's Basketball and Men's Hockey. I am not trying to slight our women's teams or Soccer or Sailing. I think when discussing BC as a "fan" , the experiences are really centered on the Big 3. If and when people starting showing up for other sports, then we can quantify their impact on the campus physique. Now onto the debate.

As much as I want to say 1998 had it the worst. It was probably 1999 the really captured BC's lowpoint. Let me run through it.

The sports pain of the BC Class of 1999

  • Four losing football seasons. 
  • "Gambling scandal"
  • Losing to Army and Temple when both were terrible
  • The basketball meltdown after JOB left
  • Losing to Notre Dame on the four straight Mike Cloud runs.
  • Losing in the NCAA Hockey Finals in Boston to Michigan.
  • Watched BU win four straight Beanpots.
Of the highpoints for '99ers, BC won the Big East Basketball Tournament when they were Sophomores. The Hockey team followed the loss to Michigan with another Frozen Four run. Although they suffered through two bad hockey seasons, by the time the Class of 1999 graduated, it was clear that Hockey was back.

But they are not the only group to feel pain.

The sports pain of the BC Class of 1991
  • Four losing football seasons
  • Terrible hockey season their freshman year.
  • Three losing basketball seasons

The Class of 1991 did have three good hockey seasons and made the NCAAs three straight times. In fact when they graduated, Len Ceglarski was the winningest coach in college hockey. While the 1991 crew didn't have the off the field drama like the 1999ers experienced, the problem they faced was boring, losing sports and no hope for the future. When they graduated Bicknell was still in charge. JOB showed no signs that he could turn the corner and Ceglarski was on his farewell tour. I don't think they left campus as happy BC fans.

As always there are others with scars. People who graduated in 1979 saw BC's winless football season, a mediocre stretch of hockey and the end of Bob Zuffelato's tenure with two losing seasons.

I understand the current seniors being frustrated. They had four years of Spaz and watched Steve Donahue rebuild during their final two seasons. But I don't have any sympathy for them. They witnessed two National Championships in Hockey with a possible third on the way. BC won four Beanpots. And as boring as the Spaz era was, we went to two bowl games and hosted GameDay on campus. Not great, but certainly not our lowpoint.

I am sure this will fire up debate, so feel free to make a case for another era in the comments. Be honest with regards to the highs and lows since that is what being a BC fan is all about. 


Unknown said...

All good points - but as an Alumni since '92...I can't ever remember a 4-year slide that we KNEW was coming the moment Spazio was hired and then we had to watch the next four years "play itself out" like a slow death march to the pit of Hades, literally watching all the good karma we had built up as a program over the last decade burn to ashes in GDF's Gestapo grip.

Seriously - that might sound dramatic but in 28 years of watching BC Football (me Pappy was an alumni as well, me hardies) was only until the last two years that I've grown passionately bored of BC Football and the only thing that keeps me tuning in, literally, has been the enjoyable banter found on ATL and BCI's websites. Thank the good Lord for blogosphere or else I might've become a mighty UConn fan (Big East Champions!!) in that timeframe.
CWillix '92

bbarrio said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
blockparty said...

highest high as a bc fan had to be BC2008!

football: winning seasons all 4 years, 2004 nearly went to bcs bowl (save syracuse meltdown). had paul peterson leading that first year, won in ND which was a fantastic game. won our bowl game. 2005 joined the acc, espn gameday, kiwi as acc player of the year, should have won the division had matty been given the starting position like he deserved/earned. won bowl game in boise st. 2006 was another winning season, again nearly won the division, won thursday night game vs VT with aponavicious coming out of the crowd, won bowl game vs navy. 2007 was the best year yet, won at ND, won at VT, number 2 in rankings, matty was a heisman candidate, lost ACCCG but won bowl game vs michigan state and finished top 10. matty and gosder drafted first round. other loveable football players included jamie silva and jolonn dunbar.

basketball, 2005 saw us start out 20-0, number 2 in the country, led by the flex offense, al skinner at his finest, craig smith impose his will, jduds doing his junkyard dog thing, and s*** w******* coming off the bench to swat everything, won BE regular season before being throttled in the BE tourney by upstart WV and beilein's offense. that team fizzled out down the stretch, finishing 25-5 with a loss to eventual national champion runner up illinois. 2006 we were a top 10 team, nearly won the acc championship game vs duke and jj redick/sheldon 'the predator' williams. tyrese rice coming off the bench for instant offense, were a 4 seed in the NCAAs, won two great games opening weekend vs pacific and montana (craig hitting 2 free throws to force overtime with less than 5 seconds on the clock?), then we should have beaten nova in the sweet 16 had we not fallen asleep on that inbounds play. 2007 was duds senior year and he went out acc player of the year, although we also lost s*** w******* and our defense has never been the same since. lost in the 2nd round the georgetown and roy hibbert. 2008 was a big time rebuilding year, we didnt win all that much but who can forget john oates' 20+ point game vs like virginia or whoever.

hockey... to be honest i am much less knowledgeable about hockey, but i do recall making it to a national championship game vs wisconsin (in 2006?) and michigan state (in 2007?) and also winning the beanpot in 2008 with gerbe. then we beat ND in the national championship game in 2008 as well.

a great four years for bc. id be interested to see a better 4-year stretch.

beighsman said...

1993 Grads hat it the worst. Basketball never surpassed the NIT, Hockey made the NCAAs but suffered thrugh the whole Alaska/ Anchorage debacle and all the alleations that went along with that (Richmond over Virginia;)). Football did not play in a Bowl once and the high point was an overthrown, end of game Glenn Foley pass to Mike Campbell in 1991at home against eventual National Champion Miami.

beighsman said...

1993 grads had it the worst.
Basketball - Peaked at NIT and the true highpoint was Gerrod Abram breaking a backboard against Providence the YEAR after they graduated.
Football - No Bowls and highpoint ws an errant Glenn Foley pass to Mike Campbell at the end of the 1991 Miami game.
Hockey - Made the NCAAs but the whole Alaska/Anchorage debacle in 1991 and the aftermath (what was the spread on that Cuse Richmond game again?) messed up the program for a few years

mod17b said...

Point of clarification for blockparty - the 2004/05 hoops team that started 20-0 didn't lose to eventual finals runner-up Illinois in the tourney. They painfully lost to UW-Milwaukee, a 12 seed.

eagleboston said...

The '91 and '92 grads had it the worst. Perhaps the most disappointed was the Class of '89, my class. We were the first after Flutie and our fellow freshmen were the top ranked recruits ever at BC. They only went to 1 bowl and the only one to go pro was the great Bear, Tom Waddle.

blockparty said...

youre right mod17b, forgot about that. that was pretty painful. UW-Milwaukee went on to lose to illinois-- bruce pearl rode them to tennessee.

Mike said...

Something to consider is expectations. Current BC seniors came in here on the heels of back-to-back ACC Championship game appearances as well as a decade of relative success in basketball. No NCAA tourney appearances. Two bowl losses before the atrocities of the final two seasons. Also worth noting how you could say, "Yeah but you made those bowls," but do you think the kids at that age really appreciated making bowls? It was a given. These four years have been awful. As much as I love hockey, it is an afterthought to football and basketball. There is no arguing that.

Unknown said...

As class of 99er, I still have nightmares about those four Mike Cloud runs. They couldn't have called play action one time, just once?!?

JMC said...

beighsman- Believe you meant 1992 grads, not 1993, had it the worst. 93 grads did see BC have a pretty fun football season, until the ND loss, that included a loss to Heath Shuler and Tennessee in the Hall of Fame Bowl (although it was a New Year's Day bowl- think it started at 11 am).
As a 1994 grad, my senior year saved what up until that point was pretty meh (2 NITs, although that 1992 football season was a lot of fun for a while). 1993-94 year saw BC win over ND, Elite 8 run for the basketball team, and even a Beanpot Title from an otherwise lousy hockey team.

Goberry said...

ShawnA, don't forget that during one of those plays, a Notre Dame corner missed an assignment and the left receiever was ALL alone and jumping up and down before the ball was snapped to alert Hasslebeck, who didn't see him and called a timeout (the student section WAS abnormally loud).

Scialabba99 said...

I know we lost to Alaska in 91, i am assuming we were heavy favorites. But what happened with Cuse/ Richmond that is referenced in the commnets?

99 was an awful run except for Hockey.

JMC said...

Rumor was some of the members of the hockey team threw the 91 first round NCAA series against Alaska Anchorage because of sports-related gambling debts. I assume they lost the Richmond/Cuse game if true?

TheGuru said...

Class on '90 -- lost to Rutgers 4 years in a row in football. Hall of Fame Bowl in 1986 and Final Four of NIT in 1988 and nothing else.

TheGuru said...

Class on '90 -- lost to Rutgers 4 years in a row in football. Hall of Fame Bowl in 1986 and Final Four of NIT in 1988 and nothing else.

BaldEagle90 said...

The general tone about the late 80s and early 90s being a bad time after the highs of the mid 80s is a definite truth.