The Boston College sports year is over, and amongst the teams that recently finished up their seasons is the baseball team. It was not a good year for this group, as I’ve said before on this site, but I wanted a non-BC perspective on just how unfortunate this season was. For that, I reached out once again to Brian Foley, editor of College Baseball Daily.
STG: BC did a few nice things, like win the Beanpot and win a game over #1 UVA, but overall, it was a tough year. In fact, by win percentage, it was BC’s worst season since 1984. What were the main factors in BC’s decline this year?
BF: Talent is the biggest problem. The Eagles did not have the depth to handle any injuries to the pitching staff and once Dennhardt went down with his Tommy John surgery, the starting rotation became a mess. The bullpen was not much better either. All around, it was a terrible season as the hitting was pathetic. [Boston College team BA was .258, 256th in Division I]
STG: What players really stepped up for the Eagles in 2011? What players need to step up in 2012?
BF: I would say Garrett Smith had the best season for the Eagles and Thomas Bourdon could turn into a star in the coming years. Matt McGovern was also solid but he missed a large portion of the season and only came back into the lineup when the year was already lost.
STG: Eight seniors (Clemens, Hamlet, both Laufers, Leonard, Oxley, Smith, and Sudol) have just graduated. Who of those will the Eagles miss the most next year?
BF: Garrett Smith as he was the closer and the emotional leader on the team. Honestly, the rest of the seniors are very replaceable right now.
STG: In the most recent interview, you said new coach Mike Gambino has a reputation as a strong recruiter. With the guys we know he’s bringing in next year, do you expect an improvement for BC in 2012? Do you suspect Gambino year two will be better than year one?
BF: There is only one way BC baseball can go: it is up, so I would expect that they will step up their game in the coming years. Gambino was a key part of the Virginia Tech coaching staff in getting Austin Wates and Jesse Hahn who were both high selections in the 2010 MLB Draft.
STG: General ACC question: there’s a top-5 UVA team pushing 50 wins, and overall, six ACC teams are ranked. How likely is it that an ACC team will win it all this year, and who has the best chance of those?
BF: The ACC hasn’t won a title since 1955 when Wake Forest brought it home. I consider the ACC the most overrated conference in the country and it is already starting to show in the NCAA Tournament this year with Georgia Tech losing to Austin Peay and FSU nearly getting knocked off by Bethune-Cookman.