Boston College basketball schedule released for ’11-12


Last night on Twitter, I suspected that we would get this release within the next week. It would seem I was correct, as the Boston College men’s basketball schedule for the 2011-2012 season was released today.

What will be undoubtedly a rebuilding year on the Heights begins at home with the Eagles facing hockey foe New Hampshire on November 14 (something tells me the basketball version of this contest will lack the same punch). From there, they go out to the DCU Center to face Holy Cross, and after that, they come back home for UMass. BC’s first three games of the season can be termed as the “good for New England” games that we hear so much about, and even in their weakened/freshman-heavy state, I think they will round up some wins here.

Then, it’s off to the 76 Classic in Anaheim, CA, starting on Thanksgiving day against Saint Louis; that will be a 2pm tip on ESPNU. After that, depending on how wins and losses shake out, the Eagles will face either UC Riverside or former Big East rival Villanova. Their third game of the Classic will be Washington State, Oklahoma, New Mexico, or Santa Clara. This looks to be a decent field and some nice out-of-conference wins can be had here if these freshmen impress early on in the season.

The ACC-Big Ten Challenge will return to Conte Forum again on November 30 with the Eagles hosting the Penn State Nittany Lions. BC will be looking to improve upon their 5-0 all-time record in this contest against a Penn State team that made the NCAA Tournament last season.

Entering December, the Eagles have some more hockey opponents to play on the hardwood: BU at Conte Forum and Providence on the road. The rest of December looks light, with home games against Stony Brook, Bryant, and Sacred Heart, but they finish up the 2011 portion with a game against Eagle-killers Harvard, who, despite being considered the underdog each time, have kept coming into BC and beating the crap out of them for the last three seasons.

2012 begins with a home game against Rhode Island, after which the Eagles jump right into the fire with another game at the Dean Dome against North Carolina. That is followed by home games against Clemson and Virginia Tech.

Next, it’s a little bit more tolerable of a stretch with a road game at NC State, home game against Wake Forest, road game at Virginia, and a home game against Miami.

February opens with a home game against NC State, followed by a road game at Georgia Tech. Then, the schedule gets difficult again: home against Florida State, road games at Virginia Tech and Maryland, and a home game against Duke. This looks to be the toughest stretch of the season. The month concludes with a road game at Wake, a home game against Georgia Tech, and then a road game in Miami on March 3 to wrap up the regular season. The ACC Tournament begins five days later on March 8 in Atlanta.

With the exception of the teams they may or may not play in the 76 Classic (e.g. Villanova), the non-conference schedule looks very light. Penn State is a decent opponent, and perhaps Rhode Island or Harvard won’t be bad, but otherwise, there is not much meat here at all. This is, I suppose, favorable inasmuch as this young team will get broken in against beatable opponents, but as for resume-building — well, let’s not get ahead of ourselves. BC is probably a year or two away from making noise again, but games aren’t played on paper.

The ACC schedule has its concentrations of being difficult but I could have definitely envisioned it being harder. The Eagles only draw Duke, Clemson, North Carolina, and Florida State once, while having double dates with NC State, Georgia Tech, Wake Forest, Miami, and what I expect will be a decent Virginia Tech team. Sure, the new guys will take their lumps playing in this conference, but compared to last year where they double-dipped with North Carolina, Maryland, Virginia, Virginia Tech, and Miami, this looks a little more favorable.

Look, we all know what kind of turnover the Eagles have had, and it’s among the most drastic I’ve seen from one season to the next. Expecting big things would be asking too much of this young team, but I am at least hopeful that the predictions of doom, gloom, and fewer than 10 wins will be mitigated by how doable the schedule looks, particularly in non-conference play.