College hockey is a sport like no other, where you can get drafted and return to your school. I’m looking at Charlie McAvoy of Boston University getting his shot at the big time. McAvoy was a top pick of the Bruins in last year’s NHL draft and has made an immediate impact on the Bruins.
Boston, plagued by injuries, was forced to drain a year of the kids entry level deal. A move that was crushed by many has actually panned out. It’s truly unbelievable what this kid can do with the little pro experience he has.
This has happened before actually with another Boston product. It previously occurred with Chris Krieder of B.C. when he debuted for the New York Rangers. Krieder, like Charlie, was an immediate player for the Rangers and made a splash in the playoffs against the Ottawa Senators.
Teams who have players like this cannot always take these chances. But to me, it shows that teams in the Boston area for college hockey really know how to groom their guys. Groom them to the point where in one year, they can get up to the next level and make a big impact.
This to me why other college sports could take note of this. Maybe these players, if given the opportunity, could stick around and gain the valuable experience needed to rise to the occasion at the pro level.
To some, it’s just a regular Saturday of doing yard work and drinking beer. But to me, Saturday, beside being for the boys, is all about college football. College football during the fall is easily something I look forward to every week. Never a bad match up, and always, I mean always, a chance of someone getting upset. This week I take a closer look at the ACC, or to the yuppies out there, the Atlantic Coast Conference. Real football fans know this conference as the ACC, those fans tune into them every Saturday.
Last season, the ACC had Clemson go nearly all the way, too bad they ran into Alabama. Deshaun Watson, the Tigers QB, is back again this season and looking to wreak havoc both on the ground and threw the air. Coach Dabo Swinney is going to need a lot of guts on defense, the man is known for BYOG, he will bring it. Losing Shaq Lawson could be bigger than what we think since he was a pivotal piece to the Tigers attack. I like Clemson to be the team to beat again in the ACC.
North Carolina, yes I said it, the Tar Heels are another team to watch. The Heels nearly knocked off Clemson in the ACC title game last season. But some suspect officiating cost them late. Coach Larry Fedora had a team full of fighters last year and will probably look to capitalize on that this season. The Heels finished the year with a tough loss to Baylor, but let’s just say if that call isn’t blown against Clemson, they could have made a case for the playoff. They lost Marquise Williams, their starting QB, so their will be a competition there before the season begins. The Heels could be in or out of contention solely based of their QB play.
The cream of the crop is usually Florida State, coached by Jimbo Fisher. Jimbo and the Seminoles fell victim to Clemson last season and will look to rebound this time around. Dalvin Cook is a Heisman hopeful and was everything for them last year. This kid is a purebred running back and Fisher has something special in Cook. Fisher will probably trot out Sean Maguire to start the year, but their is a freshman hopeful in Deondre Francois. Fisher has a lot of thinking to do before his Seminoles take on Ole Miss.
The team who I think could return to dominance is Virginia Tech. Frank Beamer retired and retired in style with two huge wins to end the year. Justin Fuente is the new coach, Feunte coached Memphis the last two seasons and was impressive for the Tigers. But this is big boy ball now, the American Conference is weaker than the ACC. Feunte will need that style to transfer if not, Tech could be in trouble. This team nearly beat Ohio State too last year, hmm maybe Hokie football could be back.
For us New Englanders, we have Boston College. BC had one of the best defenses in the country last year. But their offense was about as good as my whiffle ball record against my younger brother (not good). Steve Addazio is on the hot seat, but I really can’t place a majority of the blame on him. The Eagles had a few chances last year in big games, but the offense cost them majorly. Hopefully Addazio and the new Offensive and Defensive Coordinator can bring the Eagles out of mediocrity. I like the Eagles to get at least a conference win this year.
My pick right now for the Atlantic division will be Clemson. Watson is too good to pick against. For the Coastal division, I really want to pick Virginia Tech. But I like Carolina and coach Larry Fedora, the Heels are a team on the rise and could be the 1 loss for Clemson.
Boston College sports have not been the best this past school year. But don’t tell that to the Eagles baseball team. They did the unthinkable last weekend and shocked a lot of people. Doing something no other Eagle ball club has ever done before.
B.C. traveled down to Oxford, Mississippi to play in the Oxford regional. The Ole Miss Rebels were the host school. The regional also included the Tulane Green Wave and the Utah Utes. A regional with a wide variety of ball clubs from all around the country. Many believed that B.C. could get the job done in the region, but getting by Ole Miss was said to be near impossible.
What I think helped the Eagles from a far away standpoint was the fall of the Rebels. Ole Miss lost back to back and bowed out early, which had me shocked. But with baseball, the hot teams are who to watch for. That hot team at first was Utah. Utah got a 6-5 win in extras. After that Ole Miss would drop the next to Tulane, giving up two in the ninth!
The Eagles game 1 starter, Justin Dunn struck out 11 in the outing. This kid has some nasty stuff. What makes it even more is impressive is that he only threw 1 walk. Have a day Justin Dunn! Dunn got the W, and the Eagles took down Tulane 7-2.
Game 2 would have the Eagles come from behind and score two in the 7th to take out Utah. The ace of the staff, Mike King pitched alright going 7 and two thirds and giving up 3. but the bullpen came up huge. John Witkowski and Jesse Adams pitched a combine 2 and a third innings, giving up just 1 hit. Witkowski would be given the win for his performance and Adams getting the save.
The Eagles would get Tulane one more time. B.C. jumped on them in the second scoring 3. Johnny Adams had himself a day once again. The kid from Walpole went 4 for 4 with 3 RBI’s. He’s become a favorite of mine since I hopped on the BC wagon. B.C. starter, Jacob Stevens would go 5 strong, giving up 2 earned. And just like game 2, the bullpen came in and was dominant. Over the final 4 innings, a combined 3 hits were given up by the Eagles ‘pen. Jesse Adams would punch of the final battle swinging, and the Eagles would take the region.
This is something everyone loves. The hometown club going somewhere. I’m a college baseball fanatic, and this is, to me, absolutely unreal. My good friend AJ Friday, a BC super fan, guaranteed this. Shout out to him for his burning hot take.
What is fantastic about this is now New England has a team in the Supers. I can’t say I can remember the last time that ever happened. This is the first trip to the Super Regionals for B.C., and they are riding a hot hand. Let’s see where that hot hand takes them.
The Super Regionals is down in Miami, where they will meet a familiar foe. That foe is the Miami Hurricanes. Miami dominated their regional, mirroring BC’s 3-0 finish. What makes this all the more interesting is that they didn’t face each other this season during the regular season campaign. So the Eagles have a clean slate, a new series if you will. A best of 3 against the nationally ranked 3 seed.
I got a good feeling that the Eagles are going to land in Miami and do the unthinkable. Shock the world B.C., shock the world.