5. February 12, men’s basketball: Virginia Tech 66, Boston College 65
The Hokies get their third mention in a row, but this time, in men’s basketball. Boston College had this game at Cassell Coliseum won, leading by six points with 1:20 to go and four with 26 seconds to go. Dorian Finney-Smith scored five unanswered points himself in the last 26 seconds to give the Hokies the win, including the game-winning tip shot with four seconds left. The last two minutes of this game were an unmitigated disaster for a young team that could not close games, and this loss was demoralizing to say the least.
4. January 2, men’s basketball: Rhode Island 78, Boston College 72 (2OT)
Here’s another very bad loss for BC basketball (and the worst of 2012 was yet to come). The Rams came into Conte Forum with very little in the way of wins, but so did the home team. Sure, the Eagles battled, but they ultimately could not outlast a team that won fewer games than they did. Rhody killed BC on the boards, 45-31 (21 offensive rebounds for URI), and found a way to beat the Eagles despite shooting only 31% from the floor.
3. October 13, football: Florida State 51, Boston College 7
Nothing like following an embarrassing loss with an even more embarrassing loss. It was no shock that BC went to Florida State and lost — only the blind optimist would have expected otherwise — but 51-7 was bad, even for this team that won all of two games in 2012. At no point did the Eagles look like they belonged on the same field. It symbolized how far away from elite BC had fallen under Spaziani, but it was not the lowest point to which they stooped this season.
2. October 6, football: Army 34, Boston College 31
Quite possibly the most embarrassing Boston College football loss of the last decade. Losing to Army officially made Spaziani into Dan Henning 2.0, in a game which saw the Eagles blow the lead at West Point with less than a minute to go. BC led the game by a touchdown at the half and led by as many as ten, but Trent Steelman and the Black Knights tagged the defense for almost 600 yards. Army cut the BC defense to pieces with 516 rush yards; they also converted 8-of-16 third downs and 2-of-3 fourth downs. You know you’ve officially found rock bottom when you lose to a service academy that ended up 2-10 as well.
1. November 25, men’s basketball: Bryant 56, Boston College 54
To date, the loss to Bryant was BC’s worst of 2012. Losing to Army on the road is bad enough, but losing to Bryant at home is incomprehensible. The Eagles had never lost to the Bulldogs, and in fact beat them by 20 with a younger team last season. One can say that Ryan Anderson and Dennis Clifford were limited due to injury, but the fact is that no Atlantic Coast Conference team should lose to Bryant, and that BC did made some, myself included, doubt in the long-term plan for this program for the first time. In the second year, losses like that should have been eliminated, but not only did they blow an 8-point lead in the second half of this game, they had several other close calls with teams just as unimpressive. Things are mighty shaky right now, and if they don’t get much better, we’ll be talking about the Bryant game for a while to come.