Boston College Eagles

Boston College Eagles

Infobox college athletics
name=Boston College Eagles
logo=BostonCollegeEagles.pnguniversity=Boston College
conference=Atlantic Coast Conference, Hockey East for ice hockey
division=Division I-A
director=Gene DiFillippo
city=Chestnut Hill
teams=31 varsity teams
stadium=Alumni Stadium
arena=Conte Forum
arena2=Kelley Rink
mascot=Baldwin the Eagle
fightsong=For Boston
The Boston College Eagles are the athletic teams representing Boston College. They compete in NCAA Division I as members of the Atlantic Coast Conference in all sports offered by the ACC. The men's and women's ice hockey teams compete in Hockey East. (Skiing, fencing, and sailing are also non-ACC.) Boston College is one of only 13 universities in the country offering NCAA Division I football (Football Bowl Subdivision), Division I men's and women's basketball, and Division I hockey.

The BC mascot is Baldwin the Eagle, an American bald eagle whose name is derived from the bald head of the eagle and the word "win". The school colors are maroon and gold. The fight song, "For Boston," was composed by T.J. Hurley, Class of 1885, and is America's oldest college fight song.

Principal athletic facilities include Alumni Stadium (capacity: 44,500), Conte Forum (8,606), Kelley Rink (7,884), Shea Field, the Newton Soccer Complex and the Flynn Recreation Complex. The Yawkey Athletics Center opened in the spring of 2005, and the Newton Campus Field Hockey Complex was completed that fall. BC students compete in 31 varsity sports, as well as a number of club and intramural teams. Boston College's Athletics program has been named to the College Sports Honor Roll as one of the nation's top 20 athletic programs by "U.S. News and World Report" (March 18, 2002).

Boston College athletes are among the most academically successful in the nation, according to the NCAA's Academic Progress Rate (APR). In 2006 Boston College received Public Recognition Awards with 14 of its sports in the top 10 percent of the nation academically. The Eagles tied Notre Dame for the highest total of any Division I-A university. Other schools having 10 or more sports honored included Navy (12), Stanford (11), and Duke (11). Teams honored were football, men's fencing, men's outdoor track, men's skiing, women's rowing, women's cross country, women's fencing, women's field hockey, women's indoor track, women's outdoor track, women's skiing, women's swimming, women's soccer, women's tennis, and women's volleyball. Boston College's football program was one of only five Division I-A teams that were so honored. The other four were Auburn, Navy, Stanford, and Duke.

A founding member of the Big East Conference, the Eagles joined the Atlantic Coast Conference on July 1, 2005. Up to that point, BC was the only BE member affiliated with the Catholic church that played football in the conference. All the football-playing members of the BE are now secular (usually public) institutions.

Men's basketball

Women's basketball

The Boston College woman's basketball team played its first game January 9, 1973, and lost to Eastern Nazarene 42-35. In its next game BC downed Jackson, 52-30, to win its first game in the program's history. The Eagles finished their first season 4-6 with wins over Mount Ida, Stonehill and Radcliffe. In her second season as head coach, Maureen Enos lead BC to a 9-4 record for the team's first-ever winning record.

Margo Plotzke took over in time for the 1980 season and she would finish her 14-season career on The Heights with only five losing seasons and a 177 wins.

In 1982 the women's team joined the Big East, finishing the season with a then-BC record 17 wins, but going only 3-7 in the conference. In the Big East tourney Boston College beat UConn 69-57, but bowed out after a loss to Providence, 56-38. In 1984-85 BC went 19-9 — its best season to that date — but found itself on the short end of a loss to Vilanova in the league tournament, ending its season.

Cathy Inglese arrives

In 1993 Cathy Inglese was named head coach of the basketball team and, after several years of rebuilding, turned the team into a perennial NCAA tournament team. Since the 1998-99 season, BC has been invited to the NCAA tournament six times, won the 2004 Big East title and advanced to the Sweet Sixteen twice — in 2003 and 2004.

In the 1998-99 season Inglese lead the Eagles to its first ever NCAA tournament appearance, a 22-8 overall record and the Eagles went 12-6 in the Big East. In its first-ever NCAA tourney game, BC beat Ohio State and then ran into Pat Summitt and Tennessee and lost in the second round.

The next season was even better for the Eagles as they won 26 total games, but again found themselves eliminated in the second round of the NCAA tournament when Virginia edged them out, 74-70. A season plagued by injuries marred the 2000-01 team which finished at 14-15 and on the outside looking into The Dance. In 2001-02, BC — who finished the season ranked 21st — received another invitation to the NCAA Tournament but were ousted in the first round this time when Mississippi State took care of the women's team 65-59.

weet Sixteen years

Coach Inglese lead Boston College to back-to-back appearances in the Sweet Sixteen in the 2002-03 and 2003-04 seasons. BC finished the 2003 season ranked No. 25 and entered the NCAA tourney with a 20-9 record and, as a No. 5 seed, squeaked by Old Dominion 73-72 in the first round, then won another thriller on an Amber Jacobs jumper, which blounced around the rim, and fell in with 2.5 seconds remaining — giving the Eagles an 86-85 overtime win over Vanderbilt. Boston College was then steamrolled by No. 1 UConn as Diana Taurasi and Co. bounced BC 70-49.

In 2004 the women's team exacted some postseason revenge when BC upset the University of Connecticut in the Big East Tournament, 73-70, in the semi-finals. Boston College, who defeated Syracuse and Miami en route to its March 8 win over the Huskies, downed Rutgers in the finals to capture the Big East Tournament title — becoming the first Big East team to win four games to take the tournament crown. For its tournament title, BC finished the year ranked No. 18 and headed into the NCAA's as a No. 3 seed. The Eagles downed Eastern Michigan 58-56 in the first round; BC had an easier time in the second round, routing Ohio State 63-48 to move onto its second Sweet Sixteen in as many years. The No. 7-seeded University of Minnesota scored a mild upset over the Eagles with a 76-63 win and eliminated BC from the tournament.

2004-05 season

In its final year in the Big East the Boston College women's team finished the year at 20-10 with another trip to the NCAA's. In the regular season, BC finished a respectable 10-6 in conference play, but got bounced in its only game in the league tourney, losing 41-37 to Villanova. Then BC beat the University of Houston 65-43 in the first round of the NCAA Tournament, but with a tough draw, were edged out by Duke 70-65.

2005-06 season

Boston College entered the 2005-06 season as a participant of the Preseason NIT. Following a 51-44 win over Drexel and a 62-51 victory over Richmond, BC ran into and were stuffed by former Big East rival UConn 60-46 in the semifinal round. The women rebounded with 41-point win over Vermont, topping the Catamounts 79-38. Boston College entered league play with a 12-2 record and ranked no. 19 in the country, including a stunning win against then top-10 ranked Stanford University. In BC's first-ever ACC game, the women lost a heart-breaking overtime game to Maryland 67-64. After a rough 0-4 start to ACC play, the Eagles bounced back to win seven straight games, including wins in six consecutive conference games. BC won its first-ever ACC game as a league member on January 26 when it downed Virginia 57-43. The Eagles then won at NC State on January 30, 75-66.

The winning streak came to an end when BC was confronted with two straight games against top-5 opponents. On February 16, No. 4 Maryland downed the Eagles 86-59; then the BC women fell again, losing to the No. 2 team in the country when UNC dropped Boston College on Tobacco Road, 69-62. The regular season ended on a sour note for Boston College as NC State and Florida State handed BC two more losses on February 24 and February 26 respectively, closing the regular season with four straight losses for the Eagles. The Boston College women stand at 19-11 overall (6-8 ACC) and are No. 25 in the coaches' poll as of March 7. BC senior forward Brooke Queenan was named All-ACC Second Team. Queenan led the Eagles with 14.8 points- and 8.0 rebounds-per-game for BC in the regular season.

Boston College lost its first-round game in its first-ever ACC tournament as the No. 8 seed, falling to Virginia 57-54 on March 2. BC earned an at-large bid in the NCAA field. The Eagles received a No. 8 seed beat Notre Dame 78-61 following 17 days off between games. BC advanced to the field of 32 to face No. 1 seeded Ohio State University, a team which had won twenty straight games coming in. The underdog Eagles stunned the Buckeyes 79-69 largely behind the performance of BC guard Kindyll Dorsey, who scored a school NCAA tournament record six 3-pointers and 24 points overall. BC then lost a heartbreaker to the No. 5 seeded Utah Utes in the Sweet Sixteen 57-54, missing three potential game-tying shots in the last twenty seconds.

After the season, forward Brooke Queenan was drafted by the New York Liberty of the WNBA in the second round, making her the third WNBA draft pick in BC history after Amber Jacobs and Cal Bouchard. Despite losing Queenan, All-ACC defensive teamer Aja Parham, and steady forward Lisa Macchia, BC headed into the offseason with a strong core of returning players including returning captain and point guard Sarah Marshall, senior guard Kindyll Dorsey, and senior center Kathrin Ress, as well as star incoming freshman, American Idol finalist and McDonald's All-American Ayla Brown.


Ice Hockey

Men's Hockey

BC's men's ice hockey team has long been considered one of the best programs in the nation. Three BC head coaches rank among the winningest coaches in NCAA history, including Len Ceglarski and the legendary John "Snooks" Kelley, after whom BC's rink is named. With 800 wins and counting, Jerry York, BC '67, is the winningest active coach in the NCAA. Under his leadership, BC won national championships in 2001 and 2008.

Recent BC alumni who have gone on to play in the NHL include Brian Gionta, Chuck Kobasew, Patrick Eaves, Marty Reasoner, Brooks Orpik, Bill Guerin, Brian Leetch, Andrew Alberts, Mike Mottau, Scott Clemmensen, Ryan Shannon and Bobby Allen.

Boston College has won three national championships in hockey, in 1949, 2001, and 2008. The Eagles won the 2001 national championship over the University of North Dakota, 3-2, on a thrilling overtime goal by Kris Kolanos. In 2008 the Eagles defeated Notre Dame in the national championship 4-1.

BC won the postseason tournament in Hockey East in 2008, 2007, 2005, 2001, 1999, 1998, 1990, 1987, and the ECAC postseason tournament in 1978 and 1965. Boston College won the 2008 Hockey East Tournament defeating the University of Vermont 4-0 in the final after a 5-4 triple-overtime victory over the University of New Hampshire in the semifinals.

The hockey team won the Hockey East regular season crown in 2005, 2003, 2001, 1991, 1990, 1989, 1987, 1986, 1985, and the ECAC title in 1980.

BC has won the Beanpot 14 times: 2008, 2004, 2001, 1994, 1983, 1976, 1965, 1964, 1963, 1961, 1959, 1957, 1956, and 1954.

Boston College players have twice won the Hobey Baker Award, which honors college hockey's top player. David Emma won the award in 1991, and Mike Mottau won it in 2000.

Boston College played the Wisconsin Badgers for the National Championship in 2006, losing 2-1. They returned to the title game again in 2007, falling to the Michigan State Spartans 3-1.

Boston College defeated the Fighting Irish of the University of Notre Dame in the 2008 National Championship game after defeating the University of North Dakota 6-1 in the National Semifinal. It is their second National Championship in eight years.

Women's Hockey

Women's Hockey has not been historically successful at Boston College, but in four years under head coach Tom Mutch, the Eagles made tremendous progress. In 2006, they won their first Women's Beanpot, defeating powerhouse Harvard 2-0, and repeated the feat in 2007, topping Boston University 6-1.

2006-07 was a season of remarkable change for the team. In March 2007 the Eagles were selected for the NCAA women's ice hockey tournament for the first time in program history. As the #6 seed, they pulled off a stunning upset over #3 Dartmouth College, 3-2 in double overtime, qualifying for the 2007 Women's Frozen Four in Lake Placid. In Lake Placid, BC lost to Minnesota-Duluth 4-3 in another double overtime thriller, ending their season.

On April 24, 2007, Tom Mutch resigned as head coach of the women's ice hockey team in the wake of allegations that he had an inappropriate relationship with a member of the team. Katie King has been named the team's newest head coach going into the 2007-08 season.

Move to the ACC

On July 1, 2005, Boston College moved from the Big East to the Atlantic Coast Conference.

In 2003 the ACC announced plans to expand from nine teams to twelve. Miami, Syracuse, and Boston College were rumored to be the three schools under consideration, and all three met with officials from the ACC regarding membership. It was later revealed that Miami had been dissatisfied with the Big East and its leadership since a formal letter of complaint was issued by them to Big East Commissioner Mike Tranghese several years prior in 1999. Their issues went unresolved, leading to Miami's interest in the ACC - a league who had been pursuing the college football superpower since the mid-1990s, at the request of neighboring football schools Florida State, Clemson and Georgia Tech.

Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal, representing UConn (whose membership in Big East Football was then pending) led the "remaining" football schools (Virginia Tech, Rutgers, Pittsburgh, and West Virginia) in the filing of two lawsuits. One suit named the ACC, and the other named Miami and Boston College, accusing them of conspiring to weaken the Big East. Syracuse was not named as a defendant in part because they never made public comments about the ongoing situation.

In an unexpected turn, due in large measure to political pressure applied by Governor Mark Warner of Virginia, the ACC replaced Syracuse with Virginia Tech in its expansion vote. Things became even more surprising when, reached by phone at a conference in Switzerland, then-N.C. State Chancellor Marye Anne Fox cast a shocking last-minute "no" vote against Boston College. As a result, the ACC extended invitations only to Miami and Virginia Tech. Virginia Tech immediately accepted the invitation and filed court papers to get themselves out of the awkward position of suing their new conference. The remaining four plaintiffs removed Boston College from the list of defendants and asked both BC and Syracuse to join their suit. Boston College and Syracuse declined.

The Big East presidents and athletic directors met in summer 2003 to discuss replacing the departed members and establishing a process by which members would exit the conference in the future. The remaining members of the conference moved towards establishing a US$5 million exit fee and 27 month waiting period for any other schools who wished to leave in the future. At a Big East meeting in Newark on October 1, conference presidents asked BC president Rev. William P. Leahy, S.J., about rumors surrounding the Eagles' intentions. Fr. Leahy conceded that the Eagles might indeed be leaving the conference. [" [ BC's bumpy landing - Imminent ACC entry ends turbulent flight] " by Mark Blaudschun, Boston Globe, June 3, 2005.] It has been suggested that BC might have remained if the Big East had spun out its non-football schools and reconfigured as an eight- or nine-team league. The Big East considered extending invitations to Penn State and Notre Dame, however neither school showed interest in joining the conference. [" [ Big East considered adding Penn State, Notre Dame] " by Rob Biertempfel, Pittsburgh Tribune Review, February 25, 2005.] Several models for a new conference were discussed; however it was eventually decided that the football schools would explore separating from the basketball-only schools and establish an 8-team all-sports conference. It was very quickly realized that this scenario would not be feasible due to the fact that the new conference would lose its automatic NCAA basketball tournament berth and possibly its BCS bid because the football schools had not been together long enough to satisfy certain NCAA rules. It was then decided that for the time being, the conference would add additional football and basketball schools and continue in its bifurcated structure until such time as the football schools could establish their own conference. Unhappy with this decision, the administration of Boston College once again entertained overtures from the Atlantic Coast Conference.

Speculation that Chancellor Foxe, a Notre Dame trustee, cast her vote against BC so that the ACC might consider extending membership to Notre Dame was fueled by press accounts reporting that a bid to the Fighting Irish was imminent. But in October 2003, the ACC voted unanimously to invite Boston College to become their twelfth member. When BC accepted, they were returned to the lawsuit still pending against Miami by several Big East schools. In response, Boston College petitioned the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts for a declaratory judgment to avoid paying the increased Big East "exit fee" that had been voted for but not yet amended to the Big East's constitution. Boston College won both decisions, but the Big East appealed. A secret settlement reported to be worth US$5 million was reached in May 2005, and as part of the settlement the ACC agreed to play a number of football games each year against Big East teams. [" [ Big East lawsuit settlement benefits Pitt, WVU - Attractive games, money fallout from ACC suit] " by Ray Fittipaldo, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, May 5, 2005.] However, this large settlement was offset by the cumulative legal fees incurred by the Big East in pursuing the litigation. ["Legal fees in Big East lawsuit top $2 million" by Mickey Furfari, Charleston Daily Post, June 16, 2006.] Boston College joined the ACC in 2005, and was exempted from having to play football against their former conference colleagues who had been party to the lawsuit. Boston College officials have stated that the university will not schedule games against any of their former Big East Football colleagues with the exception of Syracuse. An eight-year deal to play Syracuse in football starting in 2010 has been signed, and a four-year deal to play Providence College in basketball begins in the 2006-7 school year. [ [ PC and BC still find each other attractive] , by Kevin McNamara, Providence Journal.]

Financially, the move to the ACC would appear to have been positive for the Eagles. Writing in the Charleston West Virginia Gazette, Mitch Vingle used the Big East's tax filings to examine payouts to full Big East members (schools playing both football and basketball schools) compared to payouts to ACC schools. ACC schools received an average of US$10.85 million for the tax year ending June 30, 2006, Big East full members averaged a little more than half what ACC programs took in at US$5,842,599. Additionally, Big East payments have dropped in each of the last three reporting periods. []


External links

* [ BC Athletics Home Page]
* [ BC Men's Basketball Home Page]
* [ BC Women's Basketball Home Page]
* [ BC Men's Hockey Home Page]
* [ BC Women's Hockey Home Page]

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