Boston College Vs. Virginia: Are The 'Hoos A Threat To Knock Off BC?

Jeff: The Eagles continue ACC play as the host the Virginia Cavaliers on Wednesday night at Conte Forum. Though Virginia has a terrible overall record of 10-7, are the Cavaliers a threat to knock off the Eagles at home tonight?

Let's take a closer look at Virginia's results in 2010-11:

Losses to:
- at Stanford - on the road
- vs. Washington - Huskies were ranked no. 11 at the time.
- vs. Wichita State - Shockers only have three losses on the season and two of those three were to ranked teams.
- Seattle - WTF!!!??? Redhawks are just 6-12 on the year not including that win.
- Iowa State - The Cyclones are 14-4 on the season with only 2 non-conference losses.
- North Carolina - The Heels are currently ranked #25 in RPI.
- at Duke - Game was at Cameron and Duke is 18-1.

Wins over:
- at Minnesota - Gophers were ranked no. 19 at the time.
- at Virginia Tech - Solid road ACC win to open conference play.
- LSU - Coming off a loss to Kentucky in which they scored just 44 points.
- Oregon - Sub .500 Pac-10 team.
- vs. Oklahoma - Sub .500 Big 12 team.

In a lot of ways, the Cavaliers' resume is more impressive than the Eagles'.  However, because some of their wins came against very weak opponents, they are not in the RPI Top 100 while BC is 35. Are you worried about Virginia or do you look at that 10-7 record and feel good about the Eagles chances?

Brian: I certainly not bowled over by the Cavaliers resume, but that doesn't mean I don't think they can pull off the upset tonight. Quite the opposite. Virginia has had two close-calls in their last two ACC games against Carolina and Duke, and knocked off the Hokies in its ACC opener, so UVA is certainly no pushover.

Given its propensity to shoot threes and only threes, BC is more than prone to having an off-night shooting, and are still one of the worst defensive teams in the conference. If the Eagles don't protect the ball on offense, let the Cavaliers kill them with layups and other short jumpers, or go cold from beyond the arc, Virginia is more than capable of pulling off the upset. 

It will also be interesting to see whether Reggie Jackson's left ankle is 100 percent in this game. Without a healthy Jackson, you have to think that the door is open for UVA to pull out a win at the Heights.

That being said, Donahue and the Eagles have to consider this game a must win if they have any hopes of getting back to the NCAA Tournament. A quick scan of the remaining schedule shows that there are very few games remaining where BC will be a significant favorite (BC is currently favored by 10 tonight). BC will probably be a double-digit favorite in one other game this season -- vs. Wake Forest in the regular season finale.

The schedule gets much tougher over the next seven games -- at Florida State, at Duke, North Carolina, Virginia Tech, at Clemson, Maryland, at North Carolina -- and BC has to protect home court tonight if they plan on making noise in the ACC standings and appearing in the NCAA Tournament.

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