Boston College Basketball's Ceiling Under Donahue? And The Big Finish

CHAPEL HILL, NC - JANUARY 07: Coach Steve Donahue of the Boston College Eagles calls a play for his team against the North Carolina Tar Heels during play at the Dean Smith Center on January 7, 2012 in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. North Carolina won 83-60. (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)

Brian: Around the Res recently interviewed Gene DeFilippo. Discussion topics included the state of the BC basketball and football programs. When asked what DeFilippo thought the ceiling is for BC basketball in four years, here's what he had to say:

"You know, I look at it this way...George Mason made it to the Final Four, and Butler made it to the Final Four on two different occasions. If those teams can make it to the Final Four, Boston College can make it to the Final Four. And, you know, I'm not saying we're going to do it every year, but we have that ability to do that and I would not be at all surprised if down the road Steve Donahue gets one of our teams and we go to the Final Four. He's that good of a coach and he's that good of a recruiter."

Considering Boston College has never made a Final Four, isn't this setting the bar too high for the program? Or is it if Donahue ever gets BC to its first Final Four, would that be enough, or should the theoretical ceiling be winning a National Championship? In other words, if Donahue built this program into a Final Four team, would BC just be happy to be there?

What is a realistic ceiling for this program under Donahue? What are your expectations for years 3-5 under the Don?

Jeff: The expectation under Donahue should be to be competitive in the ACC annually once he has some upperclassmen on the team. The ceiling should be a final four or national championship. I am surprised that GDF did not say that the ceiling would be winning the ACC. Al Skinner almost had an ACC title in 2006 and there is no reason why an ACC title should not be a goal for a Donahue-coached team down the road.

Making a Final Four has a lot to do with matchups and many well coached teams that have been very successful have failed to make Final Fours despite winning their conference.

I don't feel that winning the ACC is a big step below making a Final Four, but it is more achievable and it is winning something. Simply making a Final Four is still not really winning anything. Yes, the guys would get to cut down the nets at their Regional, but you don't later celebrate winning the West Region of the NCAA Tournament.

Since Donahue is most famous for taking Cornell to the Sweet 16, it might be logical to say well then you need to take Boston College, an ACC school, two steps further. I'm OK with it from that perspective.

Big Finish

Brian: After dominating BC hoops on Thursday night, where would you rank N.C. State in conference this season?

Jeff: They have been trending towards a bye in the ACC Tournament.

Jeff: A total of 10 Eagles scored and played at least eight minutes last night. Is too much balance a bad thing or was that a product of being out of it from early on against N.C. State?

Brian: I think too much balance is a bad thing. Donahue wants to maximize his long-term return by giving the starters as much PT as possible.

Brian: The Boston College women's basketball team dropped to 0-5 in ACC play with a 68-59 loss to Florida State. Does coach Sylvia Crawley survive this season?

Jeff: It doesn't look like it.

Jeff: In Mel Kiper's first mock draft he has Kuechly going 15th. Does he fall on teams big boards after the NFL Combine and workouts or stay near the top?

Brian: He'll stay near the top. If he's still there after the first round, I'll be mildly surprised.

Brian: Two of the four NFL teams left standing have former Eagles on the roster. Will a BC player play in this year's Super Bowl? Who ya got this weekend?

Jeff: I like the Giants chances at this point. I think they beat Baltimore in Indianapolis.

Jeff: The men's Hockey team travels to Maine for two games this weekend with the Saturday game on NESN. Do we get to witness a victory?

Brian: Yes. Really need a four-point weekend here to keep pace with BU.

Brian: Last one. Very winnable game tomorrow as BC hosts Wake Forest. Will the Eagles get back in the W column in the ACC?

Jeff: Yes, I do believe they will get a W. Hard to imagine I'm predicting them to win their third conference game this early in the season.

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