Saturday, April 30, 2016

Redskins draft Daniels

The third day of the NFL Draft was good for BC. The Washington Redskins took Steven Daniels in the 7th round. While seventh rounders are expendable and often cut, this is still very good for Daniels and BC. He gets a little more money and BC gets to boast about another draft pick. I don't know if Daniels has the coverage skills to be an star at this level, but he should be very effective.

BC's other two high profile seniors didn't get drafted but both signed free agent deals quickly. Mehdi Abdesmad is headed to Tennessee and Connor Wujciak signed with Philadelphia.

Friday, April 29, 2016

Broncos draft Simmons

Congratulations to Justin Simmons. The versatile DB is headed to the Super Bowl Champion Broncos. While not a Day 1 pick, Simmons is still high enough that BC can leverage his good news with our future recruiting. Simmons deserves so much credit for climbing up Draft boards. He had a very good season, but meeting him and seeing his tapes probably sold Denver.

Let's hope he has a great career and more BC guys join him in the NFL this weekend.

Baseball loses opener to VT

The BC Baseball team is at the point in the season where every ACC game has tons of conference implications. With a struggling Virginia Tech in town, BC needs a big weekend. Things did not star well as the Eagles lost to the Hokies on Friday. The two teams play again Saturday. That game will benefit the Wounded Warrior Project.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Tunsil yet another reminder that college sports remains dirty

The story of the NFL Draft was Laremy Tunsil. While his drug video was the bigger deal, I think admitting to taking money from Ole Miss will have a more far reaching impact on college sports. Ole Miss will probably suffer some sort of scholarship reduction and a change in coaching staffs. The whole affair is a reminder of how broken college sports are.

BC took a stand on paying players last year, but the Power 5 is moving towards official Minor League status whether we like it or not. BC might think paying players is contrary to the school's mission, but it does benefit us. Money is already changing hands. Getting it out in the open might curb some of the cheating. Right now BC is playing with one hand behind their back. If we have strict salaries and caps and what not, some of that talent will get redistributed to places like BC.

I like to think that BC is not cheating like Ole Miss, but I know enough not to ask or push the issue. If BC is doing under the table stuff like Ole Miss, then that is just one more reason to support paying players. As anyone at CSOM will tell you, this is a highly inefficient market. Making the money official and allowing players' value to drive market will fix so much and we can all stop pretending it is about the education.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

We won't know about Perry until he steps on campus

ESPN posted a glowing article on recent BC commit EJ Perry. It basically says he has all the tools to succeed at the next level. I obviously hope so, but have some hesitation on drinking the scouting report Kool-aid

All QBs are tough to project from one level to the next. You can't always tell how much the system in which they played, the depth of the league and the quality of the coaching impacted performance. There have been plenty of Massachusetts QBs who lit up the record books but weren't physically capable of playing at the next level. Even if, as the article states, Perry's offense was sophisticated for High School, in college it will be a different story. The defenses and the defenders will be much better. Your "football IQ" doesn't matter when you are running for your life in the pocket.

BC is hedging bit on Perry too. Addazio is supposedly bringing in two QBs in this class. That will give Perry some competition and Addazio a back up plan in case Perry is just another kid who dominated in high school.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Report:Brace suffered cardiac arrest

While the initial reaction to Ron Brace's death was sadness, there was also plenty of confusion. What caused such a young man die so suddenly? Throw in the lack of details and many were left to guess. Now the Globe is reporting that Brace died of a heart attack.  

There was no mention in the article if he had a previous heart condition nor his current weight. But even at his playing size, Brace was putting plenty of stress on his body and heart. Head injuries remain the focus of current and former football players. Maybe Brace's tragic death will get others to address size and weight for those no longer playing the game. 

Monday, April 25, 2016

BC land Mass QB

Addazio filled an important slot in his 2017 recruiting class with Massachusetts QB EJ Perry. Perry is the son of Andover High School's coach. Rivals considers him the 5th best prospect in the state. Nationally his rating is not as high.

Perry's commitment sparked the usual debate about the quality of Massachusetts prospects. Other schools have shown interest in him, but BC is his only Power 5 offer. I am still in the trusting Addazio mindset on local talent. The program knows Perry and if Loeffler is now on board with him, then I am sold too.

There haven't been many impact Massachusetts QBs in a long time. Let's hope Perry breaks that streak.

Sunday, April 24, 2016

R.I.P. Ron Brace

The nature of my location doesn't lend itself to much face-to-face interaction with active BC players. Ron Brace was one of the few I met and interviewed. If you are BC fan, you know that Brace died this weekend at the age of 29.

I have a hard time of making sense of much of life and an even worse time with death. Dying young like this is a tragedy because he had so much time ahead of him and clearly many teammates and friends that will miss him. I pray for those people.

When I interviewed Brace, it was summer 2008. We discussed Raji coming back from his redshirt year and Brace lit up talking about the potential the team had and how he and BJ would compliment each other. He had a smile describing he knew something no one else in a room full of ACC Football people knew. Of course he was right and the 2008 Defense destroyed teams all year. It was one of the most special seasons I can remember and easily the most fun season to blog about.

I don't know what football meant to Ron Brace or what he felt after his playing days were over. Hopefully he realized he was part of something special and gave thousands of people joy. There is no explanation for why something like this happens to someone so young, but there is clearly proof that Brace made an impact in his short life.

Saturday, April 23, 2016

First no hitter for BC Softball and other links

Huge congratulations to BC pitcher Jessica Dreswick. She completed the first no-hitter in the history of BC Softball.

Baseball beat Louisville again.

Idrissa Diallo will finish his career at UC Riverside. Mabye being closer to home and in a less demanding league will allow him to blossom.

Friday, April 22, 2016

Baseball beats Louisville

BC Baseball earned the school's first ever win over Louisville Friday. The win helped BC improve to 6-11 in ACC play. It was BC's 20th win overall and the team remains on pace for its most successful season yet under Gambino.

The series continues Saturday afternoon.

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Reading into the Devan Lawson decommitment

New York TE/DE Devan Lawson had this to say on Twitter.
Fortunately there are few (if any) BC fans overreacting to this news. Lawson seems like a diamond in the rough type and I trust the staff, but this is not a big loss. In fact losing him now hints at bigger issues.

Because BC cannot publicly discuss recruits, we are left to guess what happened or wait for the gossip to trickle out. Usually when a guy decommits, it means another school has entered the picture. That doesn't seem to be the case with Lawson. Since committing to BC, new teams have offered, but no Power 5s. If you believe the gossip, the staff started questioning Lawson's character and academic discipline.

Although he decommitted, I don't expect BC to swing Lawson back. That rarely happens. And although there will be exceptions, Addazio is big on moving on once a recruit starts looking flighty. I am sure we will have a new TE/DE type soon.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Don't go overboard on APR talk

Schools are sending out all sorts of press releases on their APR stats. I am sure a BC one will arrive soon. Usually BC is among the highest scorers in the rating that captures academic progress and graduation. The APR can also punish poor performing schools. Yet miraculously it is the little guys who always get penalized and the Power 5 programs all somehow skate along boasting of their success in supporting student athletes. Critics say the rating and system is fixed and borderline fraudulent. Considering Kentucky Basketball is now touting their perfect APR score, I think it is time to downplay our APR success.

I am not trying to pick on Kentucky. In fact, I admire Calipari's transparency. He's not bothering with the sham "student athletes." He's recruiting a bunch of "one and done"s and trying to win as many basketball games as he can. I doubt he is spending much time worrying about his APR. I assume there is a whole army of staffers and administrators in Lexington holding these players' hands for their one year, and the same support team is filing every exemption needed with regards to transfers and guys who leave for the Draft to not hurt Kentucky Basketball's APR.

I do think BC has genuine concern for our student's progress. As long as we are part of Big Time sports, I think we should keep that focus. It is a nice differentiator. However, let's use our own stats about graduating players and helping them succeed off the field. Because bragging about our APR is pointless.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Downes finishes Marathon and other links

In case you missed it, the Globe had a great article on Marathon Bombing survivor and BC grad Patrick Downes. It is worth your time and if you are interested, you can give to the scholarship at BC in Patrick's name.

Can Justin Simmons be a NFL Draft sleeper if he keeps getting this much attention?

BC is in the mix for Utah State basketball transfer Lew Evans. He would be a 5th year and eligible to play right away.

Some of BC's 2018 targets are getting media attention already.

Monday, April 18, 2016

What we can learn from the Petrula commitment

Aside from the Spring Game, the weekend also brought good recruiting news. New Jersey OL prospect Ben Petrula verballed on Saturday. The New Jersey media interviewed him and looked into his recruiting. It sheds a little light on how BC works.

Location is always important in recruiting. Most guys stay near their homes. That is why New Jersey remains so important. Petrula had other offers in the Big Ten and SEC but he wanted to stay in the northeast. It came down to BC and Rutgers. Fortunately we won and have put more New Jersey recruiters on staff.

Players recruiting other players is often overlooked. Petrula also mentioned the other St. Peter's players at BC. That is why we need to spend so much time recruiting kids who get what BC is about...and then we need those kids to sell that idea and perpetuate that culture.

Addazio getting in the mix also closed Petrula. Other BC coaches used to be the "closer" in the recruiting process and sell the kid when he was in the office. Addazio is getting out on the field and working with them. This gives him a chance to evaluate the player but it also gives them a chance to know him.

There are plenty of things Addazio needs to work on, but based on the Petrula courtship, recruiting doesn't seem to be one of them.

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Checking in on Men's Lacrosse

This weekend was Senior Day for the Men's Lacrosse team. Fittingly they defeated UNH and are having another strong season.

Unsaid in the facilities announcement and renewed commitment to baseball, was that Men's Lacrosse remains a club and will likely be a club for the foreseeable future. As baseball faltered and club Lacrosse thrived it seemed like a smart move would be to have the programs trade places with regards to scholarships and funding. But that's not happening. It is a BC thing, an ACC thing and a Title 9 dilemma.

Right now BC is ranked 10th among club teams and should make the club championship tournament. Let's hope they make it and win it all. Although it wouldn't be an NCAA Title, it would still be a big step forward for the team and BC Athletics.

Saturday, April 16, 2016

Wade looks good in Spring Game

This season is suppped to be about Patrick Towles. He was going to lead the team back to the postseason and help establish our passing game. Yet during Saturday's Spring Game, the QB who stood out was Darius Wade.

Technically the Maroon squad beat the White. Because it is Addazio in charge, the score ended up 6-2. QB of the future Anthony Brown looked pretty god, but also threw a pick. John Fadule also played.

I'll have more thoughts on the game in the coming week. For now, just be glad that our QB controversy has changed. Now we have too many QBs...which is a nice problem to have.

Friday, April 15, 2016

Patriots looking at Daniels and other links

The Patriots need Linebackers and Steven Daniels fits the bill. They looked at him PreDraft and this writer thinks they might be able to get him in late rounds.

This Syracuse blog ranked all the ACC Basketball jobs. I was actually surprised that they didn't put BC at the bottom. I think after Duke and North Carolina all the other jobs are somewhat interchangeable. Some have more tradition and fewer restrictions (Louisville, Syracuse), but the right coach can win and elevate any of the programs. Just look at what Larranaga did in Miami.

Here are the rosters for the Spring Game.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Spring Game's new look

At some schools the Spring Game is a big event. At BC, it has been a bit of a cluster of late. Injuries, weather and the unfortunate events of the Marathon Bombing have all created issues with the annual Jay McGillis Memorial Game. This year, Addazio has the roster he wants and the format he wants. It is going to be a true split squad scrimmage.  

What I like about the split squad and not just first team vs second team or offense vs defense, is that we get a sense of depth and systems. The sly thing about split squad is that it also keeps Wade and Towles happy and engaged. Neither will be declared the "starter" of the first team. I also like the idea of both guys getting thrown in with random teammates. We need next year's QB to be a gamer who can adapt to any situation. 

Regardless of how these tweaks to the game translate to the field, I am glad we get to see the new offense, new QBs and new defense. 

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Time for Kobe to come back to BC

Go back in time with me to the winter of 2014 when a basketball star made a surreal appearance at BC.

Yes. The then injured Laker star just showed up one night at BC and crashed a marketing class. Of course the surprise appearance went viral and everyone wondered how and why it all came together. But what was more interesting is that Bryant came back the next day and sat in on more classes and talked to some Administrators. I was told he had real discussions about getting his MBA after his playing days (and how that could happen even though he doesn't have a bachelor's degree.)

I haven't heard of anything BC and Bryant related since, but with his pending retirement, why not ask if Bryant was sincere about his BC education. Even with his open calendar and wealth, going back to school would be a huge sacrifice for Bryant. He would seemingly have to uproot his family and dedicate some time to school work. There are probably more convenient programs in Los Angeles for Bryant's needs and interests. I doubt he is even thinking about BC right now, but I hope someone from the school reaches out. Kobe becoming a student at BC would be a great opportunity for Bryant and BC.

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Baseball wins and other links

Baseball beat Harvard in a shortened game.  Next up is the Beanpot.

Former BC football player Nat Dixon is headed to UT Chattanooga as a Basketball player. Maybe this could have been easier if Addazio and Christian worked something out so Dixon could have ditched BC Football for BC Basketball!

Wagner is also playing UMass this year too. It is an ambiston schedule for a FCS.

Monday, April 11, 2016

More Simmons news and other links

If you base things purely on media coverage, then Justin Simmons is rising up draft boards. The Lions are looking at him and in a thin class of Safeties, Simmons' experience and versatility could be an asset to many teams.

BC offered Virginia athlete Chris Pierce. He already has offers from Old Dominion and Virginia.

Baseball won their weekend series with UVA.

In case you missed it, the Globe had a great article on BC Janitor Fred Vautour and his five children. All are BC grads. I used to wait in line at Lower for Fred's chicken sandwiches back in the '90s. Even then you could tell he loved BC and took great pride in his work.

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Sebastian verbals to Addazio

Connecticut DB Brandon Sebastian verbally committed to BC this weekend. He seems like a good local athlete and nice addition to the class. His offer list is very regional but he does come with three stars from most of the major services. Like many recruits, I am sure his verbal to BC will cause other programs to scout and review him. Let's hope that big programs validate his talent, but he stays committed to BC.

With the Spring Game coming up, more recruits should follow. I also find it encouraging that Addazio seems to be recruiting well and last season's losing does not seem to impact what kids think.

Saturday, April 09, 2016

Getting to know Reid and other links

BC continued their series on the new football staffers with an article on Jim Reid. He seems energized to be back at BC.

Future Eagle Kobay White decided to play basketball in his final high school season and his team had a great year.

Some Celtics bloggers think Jared Dudley could and should return to Boston as a free agent this offseason.

Friday, April 08, 2016

NCAA bans satellite camps before BC even considers trying one

Score another win for the SEC as they somehow rallied enough support to ban satellite camps. The move was really about keeping Big Ten coaches like Harbaugh and Franklin from reaching the masses in the deep talent pools in the south.

Because the Big XII,  Pac 12 and ACC all have pockets of talent too, they were more than happy to keep Harbaugh out of Texas,  California and Florida. I don't know how BC felt but the ACC put up a united front. It is a shame too because I feel like Addazio and BC could have been great in this sort of touring camp.

As I've written before a few camps on Jesuit campuses in California, Texas and Ohio might have been perfect for BC. I don't think we would have pulled in five stars, but could have found more good fits for our roster.

I am sure Harbaugh is not done and will find another loop hole. When he does, I hope Addazio copies it instead of standing by as things are shut down.

Thursday, April 07, 2016

Hockey's run ends in Semis

Although they pressed hard until the very end, BC Hockey won't add another trophy this year. The team came out flat against Quinnipiac and it ultimately them the game. Although the first goal probably should have been waved off, there were enough mental errors in a row that it was no surprise when the puck went between Demko's legs.

You could argue that BC was the better team in the third but the hole was too big by then. Saying BC came out flat should not minimize how good Quinnipiac is and how well they played. They were aggressive,  fast and smothering. Numerous BC power plays were totally neutralized. They look like champions.

It was still a great year for the team. And puts them in the right frame of mind to go out and win it all next year.

Wednesday, April 06, 2016

Bandwagon BC Hockey time

Thursday BC Hockey takes its regular spot in the Frozen Four. Thousands of BC fans will descend on Tampa hoping to watch Jerry York win another title. Yet for most BC fans -- including me -- this is one of the few times a year that we really pay attention to BC Hockey. And every year as York does it again, I tell myself I will make more of an effort next year.

I am not a hockey hater. I played as a kid and went to the same high school as York's son. I like the sport and am very proud of BC's dominance. I used to use the lack of TV coverage and my distance from campus as an excuse for not paying more attention.  Both those excuses are hollow now as there is good TV access for most games. I think what I am guilty of is not investing emotionally because it is almost too easy. I can only pay attention to so much and the rollercoaster of Football and Basketball tends to draw me in every time.

I will be following and watching Thursday.   I don't like being a casual hockey fan but don't want to miss out on another great York run. I know I'm spoiled but I promise I'll watch more next year!

Tuesday, April 05, 2016

Report: Milon asks for transfer release

According to reports, Matt Milon is the latest basketball player to ask for his release. BC won't discuss or confirm, so we won't know when, where or why until Milon talks. With his inconsistent minutes, it shouldn't be a surprise that Milon wants to leave. His shooting should have been an asset this year and still could under the right circumstances. I don't think he is a program changer, but he would be a loss.

Monday, April 04, 2016

Lessons from Villanova

A mid-sized Catholic school with a suburban campus in a Northeast city just won a national championship. I thought that couldn't happen anymore? A team without an FBS football team just won a national championship. I thought that couldn't happen anymore? Even though an ACC team lost, this win is a good thing for BC.

Villanova has a better basketball history than BC and a stronger recruiting footprint. But the only major difference between their success and ours is commitment to winning and finding the right coaches. Nova has done a good job in transitioning the program from coach to coach and always putting an emphasis that the new coach was a more aggressive recruiter than the guy he was replacing. BC on the other hand has not had well planned transitions in the past 20 years. We lucked out that Skinner worked, but the other two transitions were not well planned nor well executed. If Christian is not the guy, we need to have the right guy lined up to take over well before we make a public move. Ironically BC courted Jay Wright two years ago. There are varied reports to how close things got, but it doesn't matter. Wright made the right decision for him and Villanova.

If you're like me and grew up Catholic in the northeast, I am sure you know plenty of Villanova fans and grads (Villanova is my grandfather's Alma mater). I am happy for them. Hopefully we will have our moment one day.

Sunday, April 03, 2016

Wade redshirt bigger deal than Hilliman

Despite playing in multiple games, Darius Wade and Jon Hilliman both received medical redshirts for last season. It is good news for everyone that they now have more playing time, however, with regards to program building, Wade is the bigger deal.

Hilliman is going to play and probably play a lot next season. Even coming off of injury, he will still be BC's best running back. The medical redshirt gives him one more season, but it doesn't impact his immediate future nor does it really change his status at BC. Maybe he will transfer as a fifth year, but more likely he will continue to play out his eligibility if he is happy.

Wade is a different story. With Towles coming in, his opportunity to start is challenged. He might have to sit for another year. If he had not received a redshirt, sitting might not make sense. It would only leave him with one more season of eligibility. No worries about immediate transfers. It would also be ideal for his health and learning the new offense. BC needs long-term stability on offense, so by having Wade develop slowly -- and happily -- BC and he can hopefully benefit in 2017 and 2018.

Saturday, April 02, 2016

BC adds California Tight End

California Tight End Patrick Brown committed to the football team this weekend. He's a three star with lower tier FBS offers, but still represents a good get. We have invested more time in California of late, so it is good to get a commitment. Brown plays for Cathedral Catholic which is a strong program in the San Diego area. Hopefully he won't be the only California product in this class.

Friday, April 01, 2016

Hoops at MSG and other links

BC Basketball announced a game with Auburn next year. The game -- part of a doubleheader at Madison Square Garden -- is sponsored by Under Armour. Both schools are with UA. Aside from keeping Under Armour happy, the game is smart scheduling. Auburn is rebuilding too and we get to play them on a neutral court. Hopefully BC fans in New York will turn out for the game.

Both of our coordinator changes (offensive | defensive) are under the spotlight.

The Colts seem interested in Justin Simmons.