No Respect for Boston College

by Jesse Spector
Saturday Mar 19, 2005
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To hear them tell it, it would seem that teams from Boston get less respect than Rodney Dangerfield.

At least the Patriots might have a point. They’ve won three of the last four Super Bowls and still have to deal with the fact that people point out their incredible run of luck in key games and the overratedness of their overrated quarterback.

But they’ve still won three of the last four, which should earn a little bit more respect than perhaps they’ve received.

Boston College, though?

If the Eagles need to pretend that they’re not being treated like the Big East’s regular season co-champions should be treated as a motivational tool, that’s fine. Just stop talking about it.

It’s not like this is Duke or North Carolina, two teams that will likely spend next season humiliating BC when it joins the ACC. Boston College has as many Sweet 16 appearances in the last 11 years as it has gambling scandals on its record. There aren’t too many schools where Bill Curley would be a legend.

As for this season, yes, Boston College started the season 20-0, but as the old cliché goes, it’s not how you start – it’s how you finish. And BC finished miserably, losing four of its last eight games going into the NCAA Tournament. Just looking at the history of the tournament and the seeding process, that’s not what top seeds do.

In college basketball, each game means more than the one before it. The last eight games are much more important than the first 20. You’re only as good as your last result.

Thursday’s 20-point demolition of Ivy League champion Penn is a fine result for BC, a good way to start the tournament. But it doesn’t matter. Neither does Saturday’s game against Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

The Eagles, to gain that much-desired respect, must beat Illinois. Really, they’ve got to get to the Final Four, but if they beat Illinois, at least people will remember them as a team that had a great start and then knocked off the No. 1 team in the country when it counted.

Of the 330 teams in Division I, only one can be the national champion. Boston College doesn’t have to be that team to be a team worthy of respect for its accomplishments. But the Eagles haven’t done enough quite yet, no matter what they think.


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