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Dec. 13, 2028: #10-ranked Boston College (6-0) vs #19-ranked Providence Friars (7-2) at Dunkin’ Donuts Center in Providence, RI

3rd Assistant Coach Rob Rowland (scouting)                      

Providence is our new Non-Conference Rival.  Their 2 losses have been to ranked teams, Michigan State and Duke.  The Friars match up well with us.  Playing them on their court will be tough.  They tend to run a slow-paced offense and are scoring 69.1 ppg.  Providence’s defense has been strong, allowing their opponents just 63.6 ppg.  Duke has been the only team to score more than 70 points against the Friars, and the Blue Devils scored just 72.  The Friars are strongest inside with a bunch of very solid big guys who are great at banging the boards.  Providence has so many excellent C’s and PF’s that they have natural PF Matt Fox starting at SF.  C Greg Davis is averaging 11.0 ppg, SF Matt Fox has scored 10.1 ppg, and PF Matt Samuels has averaged 8.6 ppg.  Those 3 players have combined to haul down more than 20 rpg.  Moving Fox to SF has sent Coach Aura’s son, Omari, to the bench after he started 2 of the Friars’ first 3 games this season.  Omari shot poorly last season as a freshman and he had a tough start knocking down baskets early this season.  But his shooting percentage has greatly improved as this season has progressed and he’s scored 11 points twice in the Friars’ last 3 games.  Omari is a good rebounder for a SF and gets his share of steals.  Omari’s been an effective 6th man playing primarily SF but also filling in some at PF.  The Friars are turnover-prone and don’t hit a high percentage of their shots.  Providence has little depth at their guard positions.  Three players handle most of the minutes at PG and SG.  Our guards are stronger than theirs.  So we’ll try wearing them down and forcing turnovers.

For us Michael Millford seems to have won out for the starting SF role.  He’s been scoring well whereas Keith Kolder and Darius Hein haven’t.  Those two will still get minutes since they’re young, need the experience, and may surprise us as they develop.  Jason Caldwell sprained his hand.  He’s been cleared to play, but unless we really need him, we are likely to keep him on the bench so he’ll be ready for our upcoming preseason tourney action.

Janeka Aura

Our entire family is in Providence for this game.  I’m pulling for Omari to have a big game, but for Boston College to win.  Omari is averaging just under 20 mpg of playing time, 6.7 ppg, and 3.6 rpg.  While he’s not said so, I think Fred is nervous about playing against Omari.  Fred probably hopes things go the same way that I do, but I’m sure the Eagles will defend Omari tough.  Fred and Omari acknowledged each other during warmups but didn’t exchange any words.  It looks like all 12,400 seats at Dunkin’ Donuts Center are filled, so the crowd will make it hard for the Eagles even though there probably are a good contingent of BC fans who made the short trip to Providence for the game.

The Eagles held a small lead throughout the first 10 minutes.  But C Courtland Reese picked up his 3rd foul just 7 minutes into the game and rode the bench the rest of the half.  Providence came back to wrest the lead away from BC.  The refs were piling up fouls on the Eagles, and I could see that Fred was frustrated as he berated the refs.  The Eagles struggled to try to recapture the lead and did so very close to the end of the half.  The teams left the court with the score tied 36-36.  Omari played 8 minutes at SF and PF.  While not scoring, he grabbed 4 rebounds and had one assist and a block. 

BC again pulled ahead in the early going of the 2nd half but neither team was able to gain much an advantage throughout the half.  After trailing Providence late in the half, the Eagles scored with 19 seconds left to go ahead by 3.  Providence worked the ball around and tossed up a 3 with 2 seconds to go that fell through the hoop to send the game to overtime tied at 61-61.

The OT was close with both teams gaining a lead at various points.  With Providence ahead by 3, the Eagles hit a shot inside to cut the lead to a single point with 12 seconds to go.  Providence threw the ball away.  BC brought the ball up quickly to midcourt but a long 3 wasn’t close and Boston College lost a heart-breaker 70-69.  While the Eagles held a 22-10 advantage in turnovers, they were out-rebounded 48-37.  I’m sure Fred is displeased by the Eagles’ rebounding efforts.  Both teams shot poorly as defense predominated by the Friars.  Providence scored 6 more points at the free throw line, which ultimately made the difference in the game.

Leading the Eagles scoring were PG Leonard Meliet with 14 points, SG Corey Graham with 13, PG Rashon Thorn with 12, and PF Danny Toliver with 11.  Providence had 3 players with 10+ rebounds each, led by PF Matt Samuels who had 13 points and 11 rebounds.  Omari scored 3 points and had 5 rebounds and 2 assists in 19 minutes of play.  He played great defense, keeping our SF's from scoring much and making 3 steals and 2 blocks.

Fred wanted a more challenging non-conference rival: It looks like he found one in Providence.

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Dec. 16, 2028, Battle 4 Atlantis Tournament (Round 1): #6 seed, #10 ranked Boston College Eagles (6-1) vs #3-seed Butler Bulldogs (3-4) at the Paradise Island Resort in the Bahamas

Boston Herald

BOSTON COLLEGE BATTLES IN THE BATTLE 4 ATLANTIS

Boston College scored first and then used a devastating defense together with a solid offense to steadily pull away from Butler in the first half of the Eagles’ opening round game in the Battle 4 Atlantis tournament.  By the end of the half the Eagles led 40-23, having held Butler’s shooting to just 27% and forcing 8 turnovers. 

The Eagles continued their domination in the 2nd half even with a steady flow of substitutions.  When the buzzer sounded ending the game, Boston College advanced to the semifinal round with a 78-52 stomping of the Bulldogs.

Leading the way for BC was C Courtland Reese with 14 points and 8 rebounds.  SG Corey Graham also scored 14 points.  PG Leonard Meliet added 10 points plus had 8 assists.

Boston College’s win set up a semifinal contest with Oklahoma State which disposed of Washington 84-74.

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Dec. 17, 2028, Battle 4 Atlantis Tournament (Semifinals): #6 seed, #10 ranked Boston College Eagles (7-1) vs #2-seed, #22-ranked Oklahoma State Cowboys (7-2) at the Paradise Island Resort in the Bahamas

Boston College Chronicle

By Kinsey Ramsey

EAGLES SPREAD WINGS IN BAHAMAS

Following their easy win over Butler in the first round of the Battle 4 Atlantis Tournament, the Eagles were matched against Oklahoma State in the semifinals.  Coach Fred Aura said, “The Cowboys are a very strong team.  They’re good year after year.  The Cowboys get good scoring from their starting guards (PG Aaron Angner averages 17.7 ppg and SG Steve Havens scores 12.6 ppg).  We need to contain them and come up with strong pressure inside on offense and on the boards.”

To put emphasis on Coach Aura’s words, Havens hit back-to-back 3’s in the first minute of play.  But the Eagles ran off 7 straight points to gain their first lead at 9-8.  Havens sunk another 3, but the inside duo of Courtland Reese and Danny Toliver tallied for 9 points and a 3 by SG Corey Graham gave BC a 12-11 lead at the first media break.  Havens made yet another 3, but he picked up his 2nd foul at the 11:49 mark which, to BC’s relief, earned him a trip to the bench.  With the Eagles knocking down 58% of their FG attempts, they sported a 44-30 halftime lead.  Both PG Leonard Meliet and C Courtland Reese tallied 11 points in the half.  For the Cowboys, Havens and Angner had 11 and 10 points, respectively, but Oklahoma State as a team hit just 39% of their shots.

Six minutes into the 2nd half, the Eagles had opened a 20 point lead at 65-45.  BC got careless at that point and the Cowboys sharpshooters shrunk the lead to just 8 points with 6 minutes to play.  The Eagles held on to achieve a 95-82 victory, earning them a trip to the championship game against St. Mary’s.  The Gaels reached the championship by gaining upset wins over Alabama and Maryland.

Topping the scoring for Boston College were PG Leonard Meliet with 23 points (and 8 assists), C Courtland Reese who scored 21 points and pulled down 8 boards, SG Corey Graham with 13 points, and PF Danny Toliver who added 12 points.  The Cowboys’ PG Aaron Angner poured in 19 points.

Coach Aura said, “Our defense evaporated in the 2nd half, but we out-rebounded the Cowboys 37-23.  And while we’re quick to complain when our opponents get to the line a lot more than us, we were saved tonight since we had a huge edge in that department tonight.”

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Dec. 18, 2028, Battle 4 Atlantis Tournament (Championship): #6 seed, #10 ranked Boston College Eagles (8-1) vs #5-seed, St. Mary’s Gaels (8-3) at the Paradise Island Resort in the Bahamas

Robert Burrows, Tournament Director for the Battle 4 Atlantis

Neither Boston College and St. Mary’s were expected to be playing for the championship.  Although we’ve been holding this tournament since 2011, this is the first time either of these teams has been a participant.  I think it will be a good game and a fitting way to end our tournament this year.  Of course, I’m hoping it’s a very close game the entire way. 

Boston College entered the game with C Jason Caldwell and PG Rashon Thorn able to play but dealing with nagging injuries.  St. Mary’s PG Marc Hamilton also has a minor injury.  But those three players are all reserves, so both teams’ regular starters are 100%. 

St. Mary’s C Calvin Miller came into the game averaging 16.1 ppg, 8.8 rpg, 2.4 apg, 2.1 spg, and 2.0 bpg.  He’s been a WAC 1st Team-All Conference player that past two seasons and was the WAC Defensive Player of the Year last season.  He could create foul problems for BC interior players.  Boston College may have a slight advantage the guard positions and PF.

The game got underway with St. Mary’s controlling the tip, but they couldn’t convert.  Boston College worked the ball all around the court with PG Leonard Meliet cutting down the key, taking a pass, scoring on a layup on which he was fouled.  He made the free throw.  St. Mary’s struck right back with a twisting jump shot that went cleanly through the net, then a block on BC’s next possession, and a sweet 3 to take a 5-3 lead.  But St. Mary’s Calvin Miller was charged with his 2nd foul only 1-1/2 minutes into the game.  That was disappointing to have him go to the bench so early.  With 15 minutes to go in the half, the Eagles’ excellent PG Leonard Meliet left the game with 2 fouls to even things up.  St. Mary’s was on top 13-8 at that point.  Midway through the half, St. Mary’s was outplaying Boston College and led 26-16.  But the Eagles had started an 11-0 run that got them within 2 points of the lead with 7 minutes remaining in the half.  They then tied the game at 31-31 with 4:46 to go.  St. Mary’s then took control and pulled away for a 45-38 halftime advantage. 

Boston College fought hard to recapture the lead at 48-47 with 16 minutes remaining.  The Eagles shooting then went ice-cold and the Gaels opened a 60-54 lead with 9 minutes to play.  Led by C Courtland Reese, BC came back to go ahead 65-64 with 6 minutes to go.  The Gaels tied the game at 69-69 with 3 minutes left.  With BC down by a point, PG Leonard Meliet sunk a long 3 to make it 75-73 with 47 seconds to play.  Meliet sunk 2 free throws in 17 seconds left to put the Eagles ahead by 4.  St. Mary’s hit a 3 to make it 78-77 with 7 seconds to go and intentionally fouled in the backcourt to try to get the ball back with a chance to score.  Meliet again dropped both free throws in.  The Eagles prevented the Gaels from getting off a desperation heave with the clock running out.  Boston College won the Championship of the Battle 4 Atlantis by a final score of 80-77.  Just the kind of game I’d hoped for…close all the way with a bunch of lead changes.  That should have kept the TV audience glued to their screens the entire way.  The Eagles outshot the Gaels 42% to 32% and held a 44-36 rebounding advantage but made 15 turnovers to St. Mary’s 7.

For Boston College, C Courtland Reese scored 21 and had 11 rebounds and PG Leonard Meliet also scored 21 points.  Leading the Gaels was SF William Grant who was high point man for the game with 22 points. 

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Dec. 20, 2028: #3-ranked Tennessee Volunteers (8-2) vs #10-ranked Boston College Eagles (9-1) at Silvio O. Conte Forum, Chestnut Hill, MA

1st Assistant Coach David Woodruff

Most everyone is writing us off against Tennessee.  But I think we have a chance.  Tennessee has three top-rated freshmen.  The best of those three is SG Odie Wessell, who is very likely to be in the running for the first player drafted in the coming year’s pro draft.  Wessell is averaging 27.1 ppg and has scored 30+ points in 7 of the Vols’ 10 games.  He’s going to score but our strategy is to try to keep him in check.  If we can keep him from scoring less than 30 points, we have a good chance of controlling the rest of the Tennessee team well enough to come away with an upset victory.  Wessell is 6’5”…we’ll put a taller player up against him to try to make it more difficult for him to get off open shots.  The second best Tennessee freshman is C Aaron O’Neil.  We need to contain him without our interior players getting into foul trouble while establishing dominance inside.  If we can, we’ll take our offense inside to get O’Neil into foul trouble and off the court.

On our first possession, we worked the ball into Reese who moved to the basket and drew a foul on O’Neil—SUCCESS!  Wessel then sunk a 3—OUCH!  Our 3rd possession—Reese drove again and scored over O’Neil.  With 16:29 to go in the half, Reese drew the 2nd foul on O’Neil.  Wessel’s killing us, though.  Midway through the half, Tennessee had us down 27-13—they were hitting their shots, we were not.  The Vols guards took us to school enroute to their 49-38 halftime lead.  Wessel scored 21 and PG Reeder added 10.  3 of the 4 primary players we put on Wessel got into foul trouble. The Vols his 64% of their FGA’s.  We WERE successful though in getting their interior players into foul trouble and C Courtland Reese scored 13 points.  But short of breaking his leg, I have no idea how to stop Wessel.  He’s more of a stud than we ever imagined.

Five minutes into the 2nd half we had whittled the lead to 4 points.  But Tennessee just kept hitting their shots to keep us on our heels.  With 4 minutes left we cut the lead to 5, but then Tennessee buried us again to send us to a 92-79 defeat.  Tennessee hit 57% of their FG’s and 50% of their 3’s. 

C Courtland Reese scored 23 points and PG Leonard Meliet added 13 points.  But the Vols’ SG Odie Wessel poured in 38 points.  He went to the line 31 times where he scored 21 of his 38 points.  The guy is a foul-magnet.  He also had 7 rebounds and 8 assists.  He was nearly a one-man wrecking crew, although PG John Reeder hit 4 of 6 threes and finished with 20 points. 

After the game, Mike Braxton and Darius Hein both were bitchin’ that Coach Aura was favoring Danny Toliver and that each of them should be playing more.  Coach Aura brought each one into his office to tell them they needed to knock it off.  Both said they’d try harder.  We’ll see.

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Mary St. James, Boston College Athletic Department Publicist

ACC Pre-Conference Summary

ACC TEAM RECORDS:

Duke: 10-2, Ranked #2, NET: 10th

Notre Dame:  9-2, Ranked #7, NET: 9th

Boston College: 9-2, Ranked #12, NET: 1st

Clemson, 8-2, Unranked, NET: 39th

Syracuse: 8-2, Unranked, NET: 56th

Georgia Tech: 8-3, Unranked, NET: 18th

Miami (FL): 8-3, Unranked, NET: 33rd

Louisville: 8-3, Unranked, NET: 45th

North Carolina St.: 8-3, Unranked, NET: 92nd

Wake Forest, 6-3, Unranked, NET: 106th

North Carolina: 7-4, Unranked, NET: 63rd

Florida St.: 6-4, Unranked, NET: 14th

Pittsburgh: 6-4, Unranked, NET: 120th

Virginia: 4-5, Unranked, NET: 104th

Virginia Tech: 4-5, Unranked, NET: 332nd

Pre-season Tournament Champs from the ACC:

Louisville: Emerald Coast Classic

Notre Dame: Charleston Classic

Boston College: Battle 4 Atlantis

The ACC press consensus prediction for the conference standings this season (in the following order):

Duke, Boston College, Notre Dame, Florida State, Pittsburgh, North Carolina, North Carolina St., Clemson, Syracuse, Louisville, Georgia Tech, Miami, Virginia, Wake Forest, Virginia Tech.

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Boston College Pre-Conference Evaluation

JJ Conroy, BeanTownSports Blog

Team:

The Eagles 9-2 record included wins over 4 ranked teams (Purdue, Marquette, Arkansas, and Oklahoma State).  Their two losses were to #19 ranked Providence and #3 ranked Tennessee.  Their home record is 4-1, away record is 2-1, and record on neutral courts is 3-0.  BC has scored an average of 78.7 ppg (47th best) and allowed opponents to score an average of 67.2 ppg (54th best).  The Eagles average 38.5 rpg (Tops in Division I), 17.5 apg (162nd best), 5.4 bpg (39th best), and 6.5 spg (225th best).  They have made 43.5% of their FG’s (280th best), 30.8% of the 3’s (309th best), and 72.8% of their FT’s (161st best).

Here’s what I think (and you know I’m ALWAYS right!): The team has done pretty well and looks like they will be pretty successful in ACC play…unlikely to finish atop the standings but likely finishing in the top 3 or 4.  The Eagles really need to improve on their shooting…hit more of their FG’s, 3’s, and FT’s.  So far their shooting has been atrocious.  The reason the team is best in rebounding in Division I is that they shoot so poorly and their defense is good so their opponents have problems making baskets also…so there are lots of rebounds.  The 4 ranked teams they beat aren’t world-beaters.  When they played tougher competition (Tennessee and Providence), BC lost.  That portends difficulty within the ACC since Duke is a better team than Tennessee and Notre Dame and a couple other ACC teams are as good or better than Providence.

Player Stats:

C Courtland Reese (JR): 24.1 mpg, 15.5 ppg, 8.0 rpg, 1.5 apg

PG Leonard Meliet (SO): 33.2 mpg, 14.3 ppg, 3.1 rpg, 6.9 apg

SG Corey Graham: (FR) 28.5 mpg, 13.7 ppg, 2.9 rpg, 1.9 apg

PF Danny Toliver (SO): 21.7 mpg, 8.6 ppg, 6.3 rpg, 0.7 apg

SF Michael Millford (SR): 20.1 mpg, 7.1 ppg, 2.7 rpg, 1.5 apg

C/PF Jason Caldwell (SR): 12.4 mpg, 5.0 ppg, 3.2 rpg, 0.6 apg

PF Winston Minahan (JR): 13.3 mpg, 3.5 ppg, 3.3 rpg, 0.4 apg

PG Rashon Thorn (FR): 9.6 mpg, 2.8 ppg, 0.5 rpg, 1.3 apg

SF Keith Kolder (SO): 14.9 mpg, 2.7 ppg, 2.4 rpg, 0.9 apg

C Greg Kidd (SR): 6.3 mpg, 2.3 ppg, 2.0 rpg, 0.4 apg

PF Darius Hein (FR): 7.5 mpg, 1.7 ppg, 1.6 rpg, 0.5 apg

SG Adrian Moss (FR): 4.2 mpg, 1.4 ppg, 1.2 rpg, 0.6 apg

PF Mike Braxton (FR): 3.8 mpg, 0.7 ppg, 1.3 rpg, 0.

SF Andy Dawson (JR): 3.0 mpg, 0.0 ppg, 0.0 rpg, 1.0 apg

SG Glen Robinson (JR): Ineligible due to transfer

Here’s what I think (and you know I’m ALWAYS right!): The Eagles’ starters have played pretty well, particularly Meliet and Reese.  Graham and Toliver have also been good, but a bit inconsistent.  Millford had to win over the starting role at SF and he’s now solidly entrenched.  He’s a decent scorer but a very weak rebounder.  The bench has not been impressive.  Minahan, Caldwell and Kidd have been OK, but have lacked consistency with Caldwell unable to perform as well as he has in previous years.  The rest of the group of reserves is just too inexperienced…occasional flashes of skills that probably mean they will do well at BC in the next year or two.  So the team has a real depth problem on the perimeter.  That could spell trouble for the Eagles, particularly if Meliet, Graham or Millford miss games due to injuries.

My prognosis for Boston College in the ACC this season: 13-7, finishing in 3rd or 4th place in the standings and an exit from the ACC tournament in the Semi-finals, a ranking in the polls somewhere near #20, and getting no further in the NCAA Tourney that the Sweet 16.  So not a bad year, but a step down from last season.  And if there is a major injury to Meliet or Graham, things will be much worse.  So Coach Aura, protect those two like your life depends on it…because it does.

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Dec. 28, 2028: #12 ranked Boston College Eagles (9-2) vs North Carolina State Wolfpack (8-3) at PNC Arena in Raleigh, NC

2nd Assistant Coach Chris Evans

This is the first of away games we have to start ACC play this season.  NC State is an up-and-coming team.  Last season they won 20 games and got to the 2nd round of the NCAA Tournament.  Their interior game is their strength with their center and both starting forwards averaging in double figures.  While I believe we’re the better team, a road game is always a crap shoot.

We couldn’t hit anything in the early stages of the first half while the Wolfpack was knocking down their shots including 6 of their first 8 three-pointers.  We fell behind by 12 points.  But late in the half we figured out where the basket was and began to chip away at the lead when Coach Aura risked fouls by tightening our defense.  We then scored 14 of the last 17 points in the half to take a 45-40 lead at the break.  PG Leon Meliet gave us the offensive shot in the arm and finished the half with 10 points.  North Carolina State’s SF Dusty Stowers gave us fits last season.  We tried hard to throttle him, but to no avail.  He scored 11 points.

We played solidly early in the 2nd half and moved out to an 11 point lead.  But midway through the half the Wolfpack roared back, when we again missed shot after shot, to tie us at 66-66 with 7 minutes remaining.  NC State took a 71-70 lead with 46 seconds remaining.  Coach Aura set up a pick and roll in a time out.  The play worked perfectly and we were ahead by a single point with 36 seconds to go.  The Wolfpack missed a 3 and then had to foul.  SG Corey Graham sunk both ends of the 1-and-1 with 10 seconds on the clock.  NC State’s PG Frank Smith knocked down a 3 as the buzzer sounded to send the game into overtime tied at 74-74. 

Both teams’ offenses clicked early in the OT, but we continued to hit big time shots while clamping down defensively when it was needed.  Good enough to pull off a stunning 92-87 victory.  Just a helluva battle the entire way.

We overcame the Wolfpacks’ 13 for 25 shooting from beyond the arc by controlling the boards 45-37 and forcing 2 more turnovers than we made.

Leading our team was PG Leonard Meliet with 30 points and 7 assists.  SG Corey Graham scored 20 points.  C Courtland Reese had a good double-double with 14 points and 13 rebounds.  SF Michael Millford dropped in 11 points while PF Danny Toliver pulled down 9 boards and reserve C Greg Kidd got 7 rebounds in 9 minutes of play.  NC State’s SG Frank Smith was on target all night and finished with 24 points.  We shut down Dusty Stowers in the 2nd half and OT, allowing him just 3 more points.

After the game concluded I overheard Coach Aura telling Malik Sides, NC State’s head coach, “That was a game neither team should have lost.  You gave us all we could handle, and at many points of the game more than we could handle.  You have to be proud of your players who are great competitors.  Good luck the rest of the season.”  In the locker room after the game Coach Aura told me, “Chris, all those 3’s by the Wolfpacks were like arrows to my heart.  If it weren’t for the last 4 minutes of the first half and the last 4 minutes of OT, when our offense clicked and our defense was stellar, we’d have started ACC season with an ‘L’.”

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Dec. 30, 2028: #12 Boston College Eagles (10-2, 1-0) vs Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (8-4, 0-1) at Hank McCamish Pavilion in Atlanta, GA

PG Leonard Meliet

After the NC State game I was completely exhausted.  If we hadn’t won, I wouldn’t have slept well, though.  Fortunately we got the “W” and I slept until nearly noon the next day.  We then flew from North Carolina to Georgia for our 2nd of 3 straight road games before we finish the trip next week in Florida.  School’s on break so we don’t have to study.  Coach Fed had us practicing hard instead. 

Georgia Tech is a strange team.  Over half their points are scored by bench players.  Over half their rebounds have been recorded by bench players as well. I think Coach Fed is going to try to sub in one reserve at a time so that we have 4 (or at least 3) starters on the court throughout the game to counteract the strength of the Yellow Jackets’ bench.

Within the first 4 minutes we trailed by 10.  Then midway through the half we were down by 16.  We rallied to get within 4, but then Georgia Tech widened the gap and when the half ended we were down by a score of 43-35.  We hit just 35% of our shots.  C Courtland Reese scored 8 and pulled down boards.  We’re going to try to tighten our defense but it’s risky since the refs were in love with their whistles in the first half.

We slowly chipped away at the Yellow Jackets lead in the 2nd half and with 12-1/2 minutes to go we took a 52-51 lead when SG Corey Graham drove, pulled up and hit a 12 foot jumper.  The refs then did a number on us and we fell behind by 7 before rallying forge ahead at 68-66 with 4-1/2 minutes to go.  The lead shifted back and forth and with a minute left the game was tied 71-71.  Georgia Tech took a one point lead on a foul shot and then hit a 3 to make it 75-71.  The gap was too large and we ended up losing 77-74.  The Yellow Jackets scored 8 more points at the free throw line than us.

I was our leading scorer with 17 points, but Courtland Reese had a double-double with 14 points and 16 rebounds.  Corey Graham tossed in 15 points.  The Yellow Jackets’ C J.B. Murphy scored 21 points.

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Jan. 4, 2029:  #13 ranked Boston College Eagles (10-3, 1-1) vs Florida State Seminoles (6-6, 0-2) at Donald L. Tucker Civic Center in Tallahassee, FL

1st Assistant Coach David Woodruff

Two of our centers have minor injuries that will limit their playing time tonight.  Courtland Reese has a strained back and Greg Kidd has a sore wrist.  Although we have confidence in Jason Caldwell at C, having Reese available only for limited duty is going to be a real negative.

Florida State is averaging 76.8 ppg and giving up 75.7 ppg. The Seminoles are a better shooting team than us, knocking down 46.5% for FG’s and 40.7% for 3’s. But they’re poor defensively so we need to exploit that.  Their 2 ACC losses have both been on the road.  Starters: PG Michael Milsap—18.6 ppg, 6.6 apg; SG Evan Martin—12.7 ppg, 4.6 rpg; SF Chris Price—11.8 ppg; PF Brett Blizzard—10.2 ppg, 5.9 rpg; C Ross Roy—6.0 ppg, 4.6  rpg.  Bench—20.2 ppg, 10.2 rpg, 5.3 apg.

Most of the 12,100 seats at Tucker Civic Center are filled with chanting fans.  It’s going to be a war in here.  The Seminoles are 3 years away from being ranked #9 in the nation and getting to the Sweet 16, but they’re still stiff competition, particularly on their home court.  In fact, they’re presently unbeaten at home this season.  We need to prevent breakaways and slam dunks and get a substantial lead to quiet the fans and keep them from getting a lot of momentum.

Both teams hit a high percentage of their shots in the first half.  We captured the lead early in the half and held onto it the rest of the way, finishing with a 47-38 advantage at the break.  We dropped in 64% of our shots from the field.  SG Corey Graham had a great half, scoring 14 points.  Courtland Reese played but was ineffective, but Jason Caldwell had a strong half.

We missed the first 7 shots we took in the 2nd half allowing Florida State to pull ahead 48-47 after just 3 minutes of play.  Neither team could pull away until we went on a 7-0 run to take a 66-59 lead with 6 minutes to play.  We worked the shot clock to shave time of the game clock, forcing the Seminoles to foul.  We closed out play with a 77-71 victory.  So we had a successful road trip, wining 2 of our 3 games.  Now it’s back to home for our next 2 games.  We’re now tied for 4th place in the ACC, one game behind conference-leading Pittsburgh.

SG Corey Graham scored 24 points and PG Leonard Meliet added 13.  For Florida State, PG Michael Milsap scored 22 points.

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Jan. 7, 2029: Miami (FL) Hurricanes (10-6, 2-1) vs #13 ranked Boston College Eagles (11-3, 2-1) at Silvio O. Conte Forum, Chestnut Hill, MA

Kelly O’Harrell and Bri Bonham, students

Kelly: Neither one of us is really a basketball fan.  We came to the game because our boyfriends wanted to attend. 

Bri: Yeah, this is just a chance for the two of us to talk to each other and spend some time on social media. 

Kelly: But if we notice ANYthing about the game, we’ll pass it along to you.

Bri: The Eagle mascot and the cheerleaders have some good routines worked out for the introduction of our starters. 

Kelly:  The Hurricanes green and orange uniforms wanna make me barf.

Bri: You watch the uniforms.  I’ll keep my eyes on Corey Graham…yum.

Bri: We missed the first 3 minutes of the game since we were talking to friends.  But it doesn’t look like we missed much since BC is ahead 9-0.

Kelly: Yeah, looks like Miami isn’t very good at all.  BORING!  I’m going to go get a snack.

Bri: Welcome back, Kelly.  Corey (Graham) just sank 2 free throws making it 20-8.  He’s our top scorer with 6 points.

Bri: Just as soon as he gets back on the court, Corey scores 2 more points to make it 30-18. 

Kelly: Our cheerleaders are pretty darned good.  It’s more fun watching them than the game.

Bri: Finally its halftime.  We’re ahead 45-26.  Not much of a game.  We’re all going to go walk around.  Corey scored 10 points.  Would have been our high scorer, but Danny Toliver played more and scored 11.

Kelly: The guys wanted to get back to our seats in time for the 2nd half to start.  We went outside for a bit.  Colder than my uncle’s meat locker.  He’s a butcher.  Nice to be back inside to get warmed up. 

Bri: Hooray.  Corey really looked good on the breakaway layin.  So exciting.

Kelly:  Leonard Meliet just made 3 straight 3’s.  We’ve now doubled Miami’s score at 62-31.

Bri: OK, we can go home now.  BC trounced the Hurricanes 88-64.

Kelly: My boyfriend told me to tell you who on our team scored the most.  Bri’s fave Corey Graham had 14 points, 7 rebounds and 6 assists.  C Courtland Reese scored 13.  PG Leonard Meliet fouled out by scored 12 points and had 6 rebounds, 8 assists, 3 steals and 3 blocks.  PF Danny Toliver and SF Michael Millford scored 11 and 10 points, respectively.

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Mary St. James, Boston College Athletic Department Publicist

Boston College Eagles Soar!

After winning both games they played this past week, the Boston College Eagles are now 3-1 and tied for 2nd place in the Atlantic Coast Conference, a mere ½ game out of 1st place.  The Eagles’ season record is 12-3.  The Eagles success raised them to 8th in the Media Poll and 7th in the Coaches Poll.  Boston College has the 2nd best NET ranking.

In addition, SG Corey Graham was named the ACC Freshman Player of the Week.  This is the second time Graham has received that honor.  Graham led the Eagles in scoring in both games this week and totaled 38 points, 9 rebounds, 9 assists, 2 steals and a block in those games.  He is now averaging 14.9 ppg, 3.2 rpg, and 2.3 apg this season.

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Boston Herald

NCAA SHOCKER

Today the NCAA announced that they have completed an investigation into the basketball program at the University of Kansas.  The NCAA found that the Jayhawks head coach Charles Kern and 2nd assistant coach Fred Williamson have a history of providing bribes to entice players to attend school at Kansas.

The Jayhawks have been one of the premier programs in college basketball.  In the 2025-2026 season the team’s record was 29-5 and they were ranked #2 the polls and got to the 2nd round of the NCAA Tournament.  During the 2026-2027 season, Kansas’ record was 30-7, they were ranked 5th in the polls and they got to the Final 4.  Last season the Jayhawks were 33-5, they were ranked #1 in the polls and they got to the Elite 8.  This season they are presently 13-3 and 2-0 in the Big 12 and are ranked #3 in the polls.

The NCAA found that Ward Sykes, Jerome Cephas, Sherrell Vickers, Jarrad Brown, Marvin Hammond, and Courtney Roberts received bribes from the Kansas basketball program.  Sykes played in the 2026-2027 season and averaged 17.0 ppg, 7.0 apg and 4.3 rpg and then went to the pros.  Cephas also played just one season and averaged 19.2 ppg and 11.6 rpg during the 2027-2028 season and was the Big 12’s Player of the Year, Freshman of the Year, and 1st Team All-Conference, and nationally was named as a 1st Team All-American.  He then turned pro.  Brown and Vickers are freshmen this season and have played sparingly, but were highly rated recruits who are anticipated to be big contributors in the future.  Hammond and Roberts are very highly rated recruits this year who have signed letters of intent to Kansas.

Due to the severity of the infractions, the NCAA penalized Kansas with a 4 year prohibition on recruiting and a 4 year ban on playing in post-season tournaments.  The administration at Kansas has not yet made comment but announced they will hold a press conference on Wednesday this week.  Sykes and Cephas did not return calls and have made no public statements.

Other basketball programs presently on probation by the NCAA are: East Carolina and Seton Hall.  But there are rumors that the NCAA may soon be announcing the results of other investigations.

Jerry Resnick, who retired two years ago after a long and successful coaching career at Temple, said, “This is really disappointing.  There’s really no excuse for it and I’m truly surprised that Coach Williamson did it.  With the reputation and record of success that has long-characterized Kansas, the Jayhawks can get phenomenal recruits without having to resort to offering bribes.  I’m glad the NCAA issued a severe penalty so that others will be deterred from doing anything like this.  It definitely gives college basketball a bad name.  I had a lot of respect for Fred but that’s all out the window now.”

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Jan. 9, 2029: Wake Forest Demon Deacons (8-4, 2-1) vs #8 ranked Boston College Eagles (12-3, 3-1) at Silvio O. Conte Forum, Chestnut Hill, MA

2nd Assistant Coach Chris Evans (recruiting)

It’s been a little over a year since the NCAA came around checking our recruiting records and asking a lot of questions.  While they never said they were done investigating, we never heard anything more.  So we’ve got to assume they realized that we run a clean program, unlike what Kansas just got busted for.  I couldn’t believe it at first when I heard the Jayhawks had bribed recruits.  It just doesn’t make sense to have done that.  I guess the pressure to stay on the top just got too great.

Anyway, I think we’re ready for the Demon Deacons tonight.  They’re in the midst of a turnaround season after languishing at or near the bottom of the ACC standings the past few years.  They picked up a good crop of recruits last year.  Their defense has been tough this season and they have some sharp-shooters from beyond the arc…they’re hitting 42.5% of their 3’s this season.  They have beaten North Carolina and Syracuse in ACC play this season but they got whipped badly when playing Pittsburgh on the road.

C Courtland Reese is back to full strength after having been hampered the past couple of games.

The game’s about to start.  Let’s see how we do.

1st Half:

Both teams came out cold.  But we carve out a small early lead and then expand that to 21-11 midways through the half.  We got some great play from our reserves.  We’re up 42-29 when the half ends.  The biggest difference was that we forced Wake Forest to turn the ball over 13 times in the half. 

2nd Half:

C Courtland Reese got into serious foul trouble early in the half.  We expanded our lead to over 20 points and held onto that.  We crush the Demon Deacons 82-58.  We outshot Wake Forest 49% to 39%, edge them in rebounds 31-26, and hold a 21-9 turnover advantage.  The win moves us into a tie with Duke for 1st place in the ACC.

C Courtland Reese and SG Corey Graham both score 15 points.  We played our bench extensively and they score 33 points and grab 12 boards.

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Jan. 11, 2029: #8 ranked Boston College Eagles (13-3, 4-1) vs Syracuse Orange (9-5, 1-3) at the Carrier Dome in Syracuse, NY

Father Benedict Perry

I used to dislike having to occasionally travel with the team, but I’ve become a big fan of theirs as they’ve become more and more successful the past couple years.  I attend home games and watch the Eagles road games on TV every chance I get.  While I’m no expert at the intricacies and strategies of basketball, I enjoy the flow, the rhythm and the momentum that are major components of the game.  I invited a couple priests I know in Syracuse to attend.  One is a Syracuse fan and the other grew up in Boston so is a BC fan.

The two teams seemed even-matched during the first 10 minutes.  But then the Eagles began to draw away and then momentum shifted dramatically in their favor as they exploded to a 33-18 lead with 6 minutes left in the half.  Coach Aura adroitly rotated players in and out of the game to ensure he had fresh players who on the court were a step ahead of their exhausted opponents.  The Eagles continued their dominance until the buzzer sounded ending the half with BC holding a 50-31 advantage even though starter Danny Toliver played just 3 minutes due to foul trouble.  C Courtland Reese and PG Leonard Meliet both had scored 13 points. 

The Eagles continued their dominance early in the 2nd half, but then momentum swung to the Orange and their fans.  Syracuse began hitting their shots, and BC began missing theirs as well as incurring frequent turnovers. With 5 minutes left to play, Syracuse had trimmed the lead to 72-64.  But the Eagles held on to achieve an 82-71 victory. 

In the locker room after the game, Coach Aura praised his players on controlling the boards (36-22), outshooting Syracuse 52% to 42%, and most importantly, scoring 36 points in the paint compared to 16 by the Orange.  C Courtland Reese scored 23 points plus pulled down 9 rebounds.  PG Leonard Meliet hit for 19 points and had 7 rebounds and 6 assists.  And SG Corey Graham scored 15 points.

After the game the guys celebrated when they found out that North Carolina scored a 75-71 comeback win on the road over Duke.  Together with the Eagles win, that moved BC into 1st place in the ACC, a half game ahead of North Carolina and a full game over Duke and Virginia.

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Janeka Aura

Omari’s team, Providence is ranked #15 in the polls.  They traveled to Omaha, Nebraska to take on the #14 ranked Creighton Blue Jays.  The game was close and exciting all the way, but the Friars sustained a tough 4 point loss.  Omari played 28 minutes at SF and PF and scored 15 while hauling down 15 rebounds.  Great game for our son. 

We spoke with him after the game.  He was disappointed that they lost to Creighton.  But we congratulated him on playing hard and doing so well.  Fred was particularly impressed by how well he worked the boards.  It was one of his best games, and his efforts nearly carried Providence to an upset victory on the road.

Later he called to say the team was stranded in Nebraska due to a horrendous winter storm that has engulfed the entire Midwest.  The team is safe, but there’s no estimate as to when they’ll be able to return to Providence.  Even though the USA and the world have been talking for over 30 years about climate change (it’s no longer referred to as global warming) which exacerbated hurricanes, heat, drought, and fires in the summer and storms and cold snowy weather in the winter as well as sea level changes and flooding that have affected millions of people, governments continue to backslide of promises to modify activities in their countries that have created these situations.  We all end up paying the price for political malfeasance as we struggle to try to lessen the effects.

Edited by PointGuard

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Jan. 18, 2029: Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (10-7, 2-4) vs #6 ranked Boston College Eagles (14-3, 5-1) at Silvio O. Conte Forum, Chestnut Hill, MA

Jason Braxton, Athletic Director

We lost to Yellow Jackets 77-74 a couple weeks ago.  SF Michael Millford said to me yesterday that even though that game was close and was on Georgia Tech’s court, the team wanted to exact some revenge.

Play was ragged by both teams in the first half.  Our shooting was really cold in the first portion of the game.  At the 9:42 mark we led 19-18 but we’d hit a low percentage of our shots.  Our defense then totally shut down the Yellow Jackets for the next 8 minutes.  Even though our offense was lackluster, we were able to move out to a 35-18 lead during that period of time.  Our interior starters exhausted, so Coach Aura put in reserves for the last 2-1/2 minutes of the half during which Georgia Tech outscored us 8-3 to cut the lead at the break to 38-26.  C Courtland Reese had 8 points and 11 boards in the first half.

Four minutes into the 2nd half we were up by 20 at 50-30.  At that point the offenses for both teams caught fire.  With 10 minutes left our lead was 66-42.  We then cruised to a decisive 82-60 crushing of the Yellow Jackets.

Scoring in double figures were: PG Leonard Meliet with 22, SG Corey Graham with 17, and C Courtland Reese with 11 (he also had 13 rebounds).

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Jan. 20, 2029: #6 ranked Boston College Eagles (15-3, 6-1) vs #3 ranked Duke Blue Devils (15-4, 5-2) at Cameron Indoor Stadium in Durham, NC

Coach Fred Aura

Duke’s C Brian Taylor is an All-American and one of the leading contenders for the Norton Award.  He’s averaging 17.1 ppg and 10.7 rpg this season.  It’s Duke’s defense that has been particularly awesome this year, though…holding opponents to just 58.4 ppg (2nd best in Division I) and recording 7.0 bpg (also 2nd best).  We haven’t shot well this year, but some way we have to keep them from shutting us down.  We’ve been getting good production from Meliet, Reese, and Graham…we need them to come through for us.  I’m just afraid that Taylor will get Reese into foul trouble, though.  We’re a game ahead of the Blue Devils in the ACC standings, but they are ranked well above us in the polls.  Overall, I think we match up pretty well against them, but playing on their home court is a definite disadvantage. 

It was OUR defense that dominated in the early going of the 1st half.  We carved out a small lead and held onto it until the very end of the half when Duke came back to take a 33-31 halftime advantage behind Brian Taylor’s 10 points.

Both team’s offenses gelled in the 2nd half.  The lead shifted back and forth throughout the entire 2nd half, but with 3 minutes remaining we went ahead 71-67.  Both teams scored so we remained on top by 4 with 1:30 on the clock.  SF Keith Kolder hit one of two free throws at the 1:15 mark to make it 74-69.  Duke hit 2 foul shots on their next possession.  We worked the ball around and Winston Minahan got to the ball to Courtland Reese near the free throw line.  Courtland drove down the lane, jamming home a basket and getting fouled as he scored.  He sunk the free throw to put us up by 6 with 45 seconds to go.  A cross court pass by Duke went awry to give us the ball back and forcing the Blue Devils to foul.  SG Corey Graham dropped in both shots giving us an 8 point lead with just 27 seconds left to play.  They hit a FG but we made 2 more FT’s to come away with a well-earned 81-73 victory.  It’s the 2nd straight year we’ve beaten Duke on their home court.  Duke’s home crowd tried to break us but our guys just wouldn’t give in.  Team stats were close with the exception that Duke made 6 more turnovers than us.  The win put us 1-1/2 games ahead of North Carolina and Clemson and 2 games ahead of Duke in the ACC standings.

Duke’s C Brian Taylor showed why he’s a star player by scoring 26 points and pulling down 9 boards with 1 steal and 2 blocks.  But our C Courtland Reese scored 21 and had 9 rebounds and had 3 assists and 3 blocks.  PG Leonard Meliet scored 13, SG Corey Graham put in 12 points, and PF Winston Minahan added 11 points on 5 for 5 shooting from the field and 1 for 1 at the line.

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Boston College Chronicle

By Kinsey Ramsey

WHAT’S UP WITH THE POLL VOTERS?

Boston College has a 16-3 season record. Duke’s season record is 15-5.  BC is 7-1 in the ACC and Duke is 5-3.  Boston College has the best NET ranking and Duke’s NET ranking is 13th best in the country.  The Eagles beat the Blue Devils by 8 points on Dukes OWN court. 

The Media Poll and the Coaches Poll both have Duke at #4 and Boston College at #5.  What the ___?  We’ve been duked!  We want a recount!  It seems like it’s time to get a new set of voters in the polls who objectively look at the evidence.

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Coach Fred Aura

Sam Dickens transferred to Wisconsin after a successful freshman season with us.  After sitting out last year, he became eligible for this season.  But Wisconsin signed the #1 ranked recruit last year who’s a SF and is averaging 13.1 ppg and 10.4 rpg.  That’s left little playing time for Sam.  He’s been on the court just 9.7 mpg and has averaged 3.9 ppg and 1.8 rpg in a very limited role.  He did start once and scored 13 points and had 4 rebounds and 2 steals in that game.  Unfortunately Sam injured his foot in mid-December and then broke a finger two weeks later.  It's not expected he will return for action for 2-3 more weeks.

I’m concerned that freshman Mike Braxton may transfer from us after this season.  Mike was a highly ranked recruit.  But we felt he needed development before he was ready to play much.  It’s become obvious that playing time is a major concern of his.  In fact, he feels he should be starting, but both Danny Toliver and Winston Minahan are playing much better at PF than is Mike. We’ve increased his minutes the past 4 games but he’s not done that well thus far.  He definitely has the tools to develop into a very good player.  His attitude, though, has become very negative…both toward me and his teammates.  That’s a formula for transferring.

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Jan. 25, 2029: Clemson Tigers (13-5, 5-3) vs #5 ranked Boston College Eagles (16-3, 7-1) at Silvio O. Conte Forum, Chestnut Hill, MA

Dominick Consignalli

I’m the Manager of Concessions at Conte Forum.  I never get to actually watch the Eagles play since I want to keep track of what my employees are doing at the stands and the portable food carts in the concourses.  But tonight I have headphones and am trying to listen to at least parts of the game since my daughter decided to attend Clemson and she’ll be asking me questions about the game when I talk to her tomorrow.  We got lots of colleges throughout New England so I kept telling her there was no need to go so far away from home but did she listen to me?  Hell no.

We have typical arena fare for the fans: hotdogs and sausages, subs, pizza, clam chowder, pretzels, bags of chips, popcorn candy, cotton candy, ice cream bars, apple slices, veggies with dip, beer, soda, hot cocoa, bottled water, coffee.

I tried chicken wings earlier this season...they were a hit but not with the forum’s janitorial department which didn’t like having chicken bones strewn throughout the stands after the game.  But tonight I’ve added an awesome roast beef sandwich tonight which I think will be a hit with the fans.

Fortunately the team has been winning most of its home games the past few years.  If they are losing, sales are way down.  Sales go up when the team’s whipping up on an opponent.  They’re also better if it’s raining since the fans don’t go outside during halftime.  Tonight it’s cold and snowy outside, so we’ll sell a lot more hot cocoa and coffee.

The announcers on the radio just said the Eagles are riding a 6-game win streak.  My daughter’s been telling me Clemson is good and is going to beat BC.  We’ll see.

I was able to listen to most of the first 4 minutes of the game.  The Eagles hit their first 3 shots to go up 6-0 but Clemson came back to knot the score at 8-8.  Then there was a minor equipment emergency in one of the food booths that I had to attend to.  The next time I was able to tune back into he game, the Tigers were up 25-16 and there was about 10 minutes to go in the half.  Maybe my daughter was right.  The Eagles fell behind by 11 before rallying late in the half to tie the game in the final minute.  The score was 40-40 at the half.  Top scorer for BC was PG Leonard Meliet with 12 points, but Clemson’s SG Darius Wilson knocked down 14 points.

The comeback by BC really helped stimulate food sales during the intermission.  And the roast beef sandwiches were doing great.

When I was able to get back to the game the Eagles had scored the first 10 points of the 2nd half to go up 50-40 with 17-1/2 minutes to play.  The announcers were saying that Coach Aura must have kicked his guys in their collective butts during halftime about playing better defense.  It took Clemson almost 4 minutes to get their first score the of the 2nd half.   One of my employees wanted to discuss scheduling.  The next time I caught the game, the score was 64-54 in favor of BC and there were 10-1/2 minutes to go.  The announcer was commenting about the guards on both teams were dueling it out.  Clemson edged to within 5 points but Leonard Meliet hit a couple of big 3’s.  With 4 minutes remaining, BC was ahead 82-75.  The Eagles held on to score an 91-79 triumph. 

Boston College was led by PG Leonard Meliet’s 26 points, 5 rebounds and 7 assists.  SG Corey Graham tossed in 18 points.  C Courtland Reese added 14 and PF Danny Toliver had 9 points and 10 rebounds.  Clemson’s two starting guards combined to score 32 points.

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Posting by Wayne23 in the Wolverine Studios forums:

Email from the desk of Conte Forum Manager of Operations Dwight Graham:
 

Dominick: If you EVER even THINK of serving clam chowder again I'll have you reassigned to cleaning toilets. We had to hose down the entire arena. It was worse than the damn chicken wings! Probably a good idea if you don't show your face around here for a couple of days. I'm THAT angry! THINK!
Dwight

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At home with Dominick and Stella Consignalli:

D : Stella, that SOB Dwight Graham got all over case again today.

S: Again? What's his problem THIS time, Dom?

D : Well, as you know I recently added bowls of clam chowder at our food stands. I guess some of the fans spilled a little of it. So the cleaning crew had some extra clean up.

S: That's a high profit margin item for the Forum, isn't it?

D : Hell yes it is! Graham's always wanting us to take in more money to make him look good. But every time I add a good item, he has a freakin' heart attack about something with it. Last time it was chicken wings, this time chowder. Hell, this is Boston...fans here loved both the wings and chowder and we hauled in some big bucks because of them. If the cleaning crew needs to work a bit harder on cleanup, so what? We still come out way ahead in the cash ledger. Next thing Graham will come down hard on me about the roast beef sandwich I added to the menu this last game. Maybe he's a vegan and will be all over my case about adding beef to the menu rather than trays of carrots and celery. Or maybe he'll be upset that we didn't use gluten-free rolls.

S: Too bad you have to work for such a stronzo.

D Stella, watch your language.

S: Well, you shouldn't have to take his, his...well, you know what I mean.

D : (Laughing)

S: Maybe you should get a position over at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro. And then let me go in and tell Graham he can kiss your...

D : STELLA!!!

Edited by PointGuard

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Jan. 27, 2029: Syracuse Orange (10-9, 2-7) vs #5 ranked Boston College Eagles (17-3, 8-1) at Silvio O. Conte Forum, Chestnut Hill, MA

1st Assistant Coach David Woodruff (practice)

Earlier this season we dominated Syracuse inside (+14 in rebounds, +20 in points in the paint and with C Courtland Reese scoring 23 points) and whipped them soundly.  Because of that, our team being on a 7-game win streak and Syracuse losing 7 straight before edging North Carolina State a couple days ago, we coaches have constantly been chiding the team to dig down in practice and not go into this game with overconfidence.   We thought about starting Mike Braxton at PF tonight to try to begin turning around his deteriorating relationship with both his teammates and the coaches, but with the Orange having a strong player like George Plowman at PF, that just doesn’t make sense.

SG Corey Graham was charged 2 fouls in the first minute of the game.  It took us 2-3/4 minutes to score.  Two minutes later we moved in the lead. Even though we shot poorly, we expanded our lead to 14 points before settling for a 38-28 halftime advantage.  PG Leonard Meliet led us offensively with 12 points. 

Corey Graham came onto the court with a chip on his shoulder after foul trouble limited him to a single minute of play in the first half.  He responded by scoring 5 points and handing out an assist to put us on top 45-28.  He scored 12 points in the first 7 minutes of the 2nd half.  With 12 minutes to play our lead ballooned to 59-38.  Again we controlled the game inside and our lead grew to 28.  We played our entire bench extensively and came away with a 74-55 pounding of the Orange. 

Scoring in double figures for us were: PG Leonard Meliet—22 points (he also had 12 assists for a double-double); SG Corey Graham—14 points (all in the 2nd half); and SF Darius Hein—10 points.  We got Mike Braxton in for 14 minutes…the longest he’s played this season.

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