Jan 3, 2015; Durham, NC, USA; Boston College Eagles guard Olivier Hanlan (21) passes the ball against Duke Blue Devils forward Justise Winslow (12) in their game at Cameron Indoor Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark Dolejs-USA TODAY Sports
Following a bad loss is probably not the right time to do this, but let’s do it anyway. Armed with almost half a season full of knowledge, can we now revise the 2014-15 Boston College basketball predictions?
We can, and we should. 13 games into the season, we have seen some ups and downs. The ups were typically the Eagles beating up vastly inferior teams, and the downs have been in this brief part of ACC play, as well as a couple of the non-conference games.
Boston College’s season did not start with much promise — how could it, even with the coaching change — and it looks like it will not end with much, either. Their 7-6 record feels like it might as well be 7-20, and sadly, they might come closer to that than you think unless there is some magical turnaround in the players that has been awaited for years.
Part I of this revised 2014-15 Boston College basketball predictions exercise will involve the players, and part II the games themselves.
2014-15 Boston College Basketball Predictions: Players
In the offseason, we did not offer specific guesses as to how players would do, other than perhaps the implication that Olivier Hanlan would lead the team offensively. Having now watched this group play 13 games, here is one thing I feel comfortable saying and completely without reservation: do not expect much, if any, improvement out of the roster this season.
Hanlan averages 16.2 points per game, but his three-point shooting has declined from what it was in his first two seasons, and his free throw shooting is not good. Until the last couple games, it looked like he had regressed considerably. As ACC play unfolds, look for Hanlan to continue to lead the team in scoring despite being a little frustrating.
Aaron Brown, at one point, looked like he was passing Hanlan as the best player on the team, but his first two ACC games were unconvincing. I do like his effort but there is a reasonable chance he continues his backslide as the opposition remains difficult.
Patrick Heckmann is probably the most baffling Eagles basketball player I have observed in my 11 seasons watching this team. When he was a freshman showing some flashes of brilliance but making stupid mistakes in bunches, that was one thing. He is still doing it as a senior. Heckmann is what he is and there’s a slim chance he’ll improve much above where he already is.
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It’s fine to feel for Dennis Clifford with his injury issues over his time here, but he and everyone else in his senior class are what they are and do not count on much improvement over the remainder of the season. The blunt reality is that the only way to fix the Steve Donahue upperclassman core of the roster is to hand them diplomas and send them on their way. They are not salvageable as an ACC unit, despite perhaps having a few individual parts that are good enough.
Garland Owens is one of the few players who could prosper in the latter stages of the season, if he gets playing time. Will Magarity could also see such an uptick, but he is not playing much, either. Eddie Odio is another one of the Donahue players who has taken too many minutes and has inescapably regressed; look for that to continue if he gets minutes.
Next: Game Overview