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BC basketball notebook: Men and women both grab first ACC wins

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With over 30 of his friends and family in attendance, Atlanta native Devin McGlockton knew he couldn’t disappoint.

Boston College took down Georgia Tech 95-87 Saturday, and the 6-foot-7 McGlockton put on a show. He put up 30 points leading the Eagles to their first ACC win of the season. Entering Saturday he had just five 3-pointers on the season, but he went a career-high 3-of-4 from range against the Yellow Jackets.

“Apparently everything,” McGlockton said when asked what went right for him postgame. “I had my family here, I’m back hometown, so everything was going well for me.”

But, some drama ensued postgame for McGlockton. In the dying seconds of the game, Georgia Tech was pressing Quinten Post after the Yellow Jackets’ made free throw. So, Post chucked it all the way down the court to McGlockton, who converted the rather easy layup with six seconds left on the clock to get him to 30 points total on the night.

That started tension between the two sides in the postgame handshake line due to McGlockton grabbing a bucket in what many would consider “garbage time.” The broadcast cut out right as it appeared something was about to happen, and Beacon Street Ball (who travels to literally every game) did not get a great look at it despite being close to it — however, what’s vividly shown on the broadcast is Yellow Jackets head coach Damon Stoudamire in both Earl Grant’s face and having some words for McGlockton.

Neither McGlockton nor Earl Grant were asked specifically about what was said in the handshake line postgame with there clearly being some rather angerful words exchanged. But as for the last play in general, both defended the layup that some — debatably many — would consider rather unsportsmanlike.

“We didn’t want to shoot that ball. They were pressing us. It was hard to get it in,” Grant said. “We ended up throwing it long. (McGlockton) caught it right under the rim and he shot it in. I think those guys weren’t happy with that.”

“They were still pressing. I mean, I got the ball in position,” McGlockton said. “They’re still playing defense, I got that last bucket. I mean, that’s it. That’s what happened.”

Battling back

BC was down 51-38 after the first half thanks to an ugly 20 minutes defensively — which was capped off by the Yellow Jackets’ 11-0 run that ended the half. Shots were falling for the Eagles, but they couldn’t figure it out on the defensive end.

“We were really out of character,” Grant said. “I don’t know if it’s we hadn’t played a lot of games recently. I don’t know what it was, but seemed like we just couldn’t execute our game plan. And they made nine threes and made us pay.”

Coming out of the gate, the Eagles then responded to the halftime deficit with a 9-0 run that cut Georgia Tech’s lead to just two. BC then took the lead for the first time since the first half with nine minutes to go in the contest. And with BC down 79-76 and just under four minutes of play left, it was a pair of triples from Claudell Harris Jr. and McGlockton that began an 11-0 run, and the Eagles ran away with it from there.

“We wanted to go out and do better, be more to our details, how we wanted to execute our game plan,” Grant said. “So we just tightened up some screws on everything. And then the guys showed great character. Our ball movement wasn’t as good as it needed to be in the first half. We took a few questionable shots. We could get better shots. And the second half, we just really did a great job of valuing the possession and moving the ball and playing team basketball.”

“Must-win”?

With BC dropping their first two ACC games to Wake Forest, many considered Saturday a must-win for Boston College especially given the difficult slate coming up (aside from the pair of Notre Dame games obviously) that features No. 16 Clemson and No. 8 North Carolina.

However, Grant views things differently.

“In my heart, and in my mind, I never really had must must-win in my mind. I had it in my mind that we needed to go play and play well, and try to figure it out to execute our plan,” he said.

“I felt like if we executed our plan at a high level, we could probably win,” Grant added. “But I think it was an important one. I think it was an important one because we’re on the road for a while. So it was an important one because it’s a road win. It’s an important win because it’s a conference game. You want to stay in the race as much as you can.”

Ladies beat the men to an ACC win

While many were ecstatic over BC’s win over Georgia Tech Saturday, it was the women who grabbed their first ACC win this week before the men did. They took down Miami 70-64 on Thursday, moving the Eagles to 1-1 in conference play.

“It was exciting,” BC head coach Joanna Bernabei-McNamee said of the win. “It was a really good team win. These ladies played so, so hard and played together and through some adversity of maybe missing some shots they wanted to make and having some turnovers that were a little bit uncharacteristic of us, they still stuck together and played a great team basketball game.”

After a tough 80-75 loss at Duke that opened the ACC slate for the ladies, they rebounded with Thursday’s win. Four of the five BC starters had over 12 points, as Andrea Daley lead the way with 17. And the one starter who had less than 12 points, Kaylah Ivey, totaled an impressive eight assists for BC with as many points.

The Eagles did turn the ball over 20 times and the bench contributed just four points total. But back to the positive side of things, they shot a very strong 40% (8-of-20) from beyond the arch — take away the bench’s three misses as well and that’s 8-for-17/47%.

“I think this game is something now we can build on because now I thought we stuck to our standards for the majority of the game defensively,” Bernabei-McNamee said.

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Eagle in the NBA! Quinten Post selected 52nd Overall by the Golden State Warriors

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QP working in the Post against Regional-Rival Harvard

For the first time ever, the NBA Draft was held over a two-day span, with the first round occurring last night at 8 PM, and the second taking place earlier this afternoon. And for Quinten Post, this meant that he had to wait an extra 20 hours for the most tumultuous event of this basketball career.

Quinten Post played three seasons under Earl Grant, who found the big man in the transfer portal prior to his inaugural season coaching the Eagles. Under Coach Grant’s tutelage, Post developed tremendously, transforming from a 2.8 point per game scorer at Mississippi State to an NBA prospect. Last season, Post averaged a 17/8/3/2 on 51% shooting from the field and 43% from behind the arc, good enough to earn the Dutchman a spot on an all-ACC team.

Throughout the 2023-24 season, everyone around the Eagles’ program knew Post would play professional basketball at some level. After all, he declared for the 2023 NBA Draft following his junior year. However, most mock drafts had Post going undrafted. But Post performed well at the NBA Combine, measuring in as the third-tallest player (behind just Zack Edey and Donovan Clingan), and impressing teams with his outside shooting.

Post was then invited to work out for Utah Jazz, Portland Trail Blazers, Los Angeles Clippers, Memphis Grizzlies, and the Oklahoma City Thunder. So, QP’s draft stock continued to rise leading up to the draft. Fast forward to Thursday afternoon, and the second round was underway. 

The second round of the NBA Draft is always unpredictable, with first-round talent falling well past their projections; teams taking chances on high-upside, yet unproven talents; and GMs looking to make moves heading into free agency. And in classic second-round fashion, Quinten Post was selected 52nd overall, with a pick originally owned by the Warriors, traded to the Trail Blazers, then to the Thunder, and then finally back to the Warriors. So, Post will be packing his bags, and heading for the Bay Area, joining Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, and Draymond Green on the Golden State Warriors. 

Post will likely sign a two-way contract, and see time with both the Golden State and Santa Cruz Warriors. This marks Boston College’s first NBA Draft pick since Jerome Robinson went 13th overall in the 2018 Draft, and first under Coach Grant. Best of luck in the league, QP!

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DiMauro: All in all, a solid year for BC sports

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If you are reading this, chances are your primary means of remaining connected to Boston College runs through athletics.

Oh, and we’ve been tortured souls, too, especially in recent years. We are idealists and fatalists, demanding yet forgiving, loyal and resilient, even if sometimes it feels as though we make the long trek up the cliff to Lovers Leap … only to get shoved.

All of which makes the sports year of 2023-24 a time to celebrate. Boston College did itself proud, no small occurrence given that in this unsteady (perverse?) time of expansion and realignment, schools like BC must always look their Sunday best, with no overt warts or love handles.

Women’s lacrosse, BC’s working definition of pride and joy, capped the sports season with the national championship Memorial Day weekend in Cary, NC. It was the program’s second natty in four years, a three-hour infomercial for the entire institution and more proof that, yes, it can be done at BC with the right coach.

Acacia Walker-Weinstein – you’ll note that only the letter “W” separates her from “Einstein” – not only hung a banner, but helped BC earn a distinction few other athletic programs in the country could trumpet. How many other schools made national championship games (both televised by ESPN) in two different sports fewer than two months apart?

Think about that one: Men’s hockey, during an otherwise memorable season, fell short in the national championship game. But the Sons of Greg Brown did the school proud all season. Not a bad accomplishment to see “BC in the national finals” on the ESPN scroll in mid-April (hockey) and late May (lacrosse). It’s hard to buy that kind of advertising, particularly when and if realignment and expansion happen again.

Football won a bowl game over a ranked team at Fenway Park, returns a dynamo in Thomas Castellanos and then made the splash of a cannonball, hiring Bill O’Brien as head coach. Three other women’s sports showed promise as well: field hockey (11-7, made the ACC Tournament); softball (30-24, made the ACC Tournament) and volleyball, which continues to improve steadily under coach Jason Kennedy, finished 19-13 and made the ACC Tournament.

Otherwise, baseball gets a pass as new coach Todd Interdonato assimilates to the ACC and establishes his culture; the soccer programs (3-9-5 and 3-9-6) were lousy; and I remain concerned about men’s and women’s basketball. Put it this way: Sure feels as though better players are leaving than are entering.

Off the field, “Friends Of The Heights,” BC’s Name, Image and Likeness (NIL) collective, grew massively, keeping BC competitive in a cutthroat environment. Friends Of The Heights also homered into the upper deck, hiring veteran athletic administrator Jim Paquette as its new Chief Development Officer. Paquette will advise the Board on overall development strategies, using his 16 years as an administrator at BC that specialized in fundraising.

BC’s overall cachet also made a splash on social media when Forbes Magazine named it one of the country’s “New Ivies.”

Based on its researchForbes, the century-old national business magazine, reported that American companies are souring on hiring Ivy League graduates, instead preferring high achievers from 20 other prominent universities – “Private and Public New Ivies.”

BC joins private school “New Ivies” Carnegie Mellon, Emory, Georgetown, Johns Hopkins, Northwestern, Rice, Notre Dame, Southern California and Vanderbilt. Ah, to be judged by the company one keeps.

One school year hasn’t produced this much for BC in years. And it’s significant. The idea now is to build, not regress.

Full disclosure: There are many things I still don’t like. I’m told Father Leahy neither attended the Frozen Four nor the lacrosse Final Four. It is disrespectful to the players, coaches and alumni to have a leader who acts as if so much about what makes BC great is beneath him. And we still seem to have these spasms of tone deafness, such as patrolling the parking lots like stormtroopers the day of the spring football game.

But 2023-24 was an encouraging year for BC in many ways. Yes, we always want more. But we were getting less for a long time. Not this year. A tip of the cap to athletic director Blake James, his staff, the coaches and the kids.

We pause now to enjoy summer and await Labor Day night in Tallahassee. Here’s to 2024-25, hollering “Mr. Brightside” again with the kids from the crowded bleachers.

Mike DiMauro, a columnist in Connecticut, is a contributor to Eagles Daily and a member of BC’s Class of 1990. He may be reached at m.dimauro@theday.com or @BCgenius 

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Boston College lands commitment from transfer Roger McFarlane

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Earl Grant and his staff continue to rebuild the roster, landing their fourth commitment from the transfer portal in Roger McFarlane out of SE Louisiana. The guard comes to the Eagles with one year of eligibility and posted an impressive 14.8 points per game to go along with 8.6 rebounds a contest. Additionally, McFarlane impressed with an early season matchup with Auburn, posting 25 points and 11 rebounds. The Fort Lauderdale native recently visited Temple before ultimately choosing Chestnut Hill as his final collegiate destination.

Additionally, McFarlane now becomes the third guard BC has signed through the portal, joining UMBC’s Dion Brown and Clemson’s Josh Beadle. Rounding out the transfer class is center Chad Venning out of St. Bonaventure. Along with three incoming freshman, there is now one remaining scholarship spot left.

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