BOSTON (AP)– Boston College is down another man.
The basketball group that struggled to fill out a lineup as COVID-19 procedures chipped away at the lineup lost coach Jim Christian on Monday when he was fired with 3 weeks remaining in his seventh season.
The Eagles are 3-13 with just one win in 10 Atlantic Coast Conference games. Athletic director Pat Kraft said assistant Scott Spinelli will coach the team the remainder of the season.
” I understand that Jim gave everything that he had into leading our program and mentoring our student-athletes,” said Kraft, who inherited Christian from his predecessors. “Ultimately, the program is not headed in the best instructions, and though I are reluctant to make a midseason training modification in any sport, now is the right time for us to look forward.”
Christian went 78-132(26-94 ACC) in 7 years at BC, having a hard time to recruit top talent and supplementing his lineup with graduate transfers who revealed promise. But he couldn’t raise the school from the also-rans of the ACC, and the Big East before it.
The shallow roster showed ravaging this season, when the Eagles were down to four available scholarship gamers because of positive coronavirus tests and the resulting contact tracing.
” That’s the 2020, new part,” Christian said on the ACC teleconference Monday early morning, a couple of hours prior to his departure was announced. “There’s no playbook for that. It’s just a feel. It’s not easy, but the people are doing a great job getting through it.”
When a stopping point for coaches like Bob Cousy, Chuck Daly, Tom Davis and Gary Williams, Boston College more recently has struggled to find someone who could bring back the program to significance.
BC, which has never reached the NCAA Final Four, made it to the local last in 1994 under Jim O’Brien and won a first-round game in his last 2 seasons prior to he carried on to Ohio State. Al Skinner took control of in 1997 and from 2001-10 took the Eagles to the competition seven times.
However they have not been back because 2009, Skinner’s next-to-last season. Steve Donahue was worked with away from Cornell and lasted four seasons before he was replaced by Christian, another small-school coach wanting to make an effect in the Power Five.
A winner for most of the lots years he spent at Kent State, TCU and Ohio, Christian was worked with by then-BC athletic director Brad Bates. After going 7-25 in his second season– including an 0-18 record in the ACC– Christian had the Eagles above.500 two years later.
It would be his only winning season in Chestnut Hill.
Christian’s task was stated to be in jeopardy after BC went 14-17 the next year, and after a 13-19 record in 2019-20 new athletic director Martin Jarmond said he had a “heart-to-heart” with Christian about the program’s future. With the pandemic canceling the NCAA Competition and leaving this season in doubt, Jarmond said “it was not a time to introduce a great deal of change when there’s a great deal of unpredictability.”
” There’s unpredictability when we’re going to have students back on school, there’s unpredictability about graduation, there’s unpredictability about the fall,” he stated. “With so much unpredictability, I just feel it is very important to have stability in your management.”
Jarmond left in May and was replaced a month later by Kraft
The Eagles opened the season with a reputable 76-67 loss to then-No. 3 Villanova and then beat Rhode Island. They then lost nine of their next 11 video games, with 5 others postponed during a 21- day coronavirus shutdown.
They had just four scholarship gamers available for a Feb. 2 game versus No. 20 Florida State that was ultimately called off– due to the fact that of a positive test on the Seminoles. BC had simply 6 scholarship gamers versus North Carolina State and Wake Forest, and 7 for Saturday’s video game versus Syracuse– all losses. Later Monday, the group suspended guard Wynston Tabbs for violating the school’s COVID-19 protocols.
” It’s hard,” Christian stated Saturday after the 75-67 loss to Syracuse that would turn out to be his ending. “Undoubtedly, we’re not the only ones going through that. However that’s the truths.”
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