Martin Jarmond’s first year as Athletic Director included many terrific moments as he began the process of revitalizing Boston College athletics. This inspired us to add a new award in 2018 - “Best Off the Field/Court/Ice Moment of the Year.” The inaugural winner of this award is the hiring of Joanna Bernabei-McNamee as the head coach of the Boston College women’s basketball program.
The women’s basketball team needed a change after this season. They haven’t won 20+ games since 2010-2011, never had a winning season under Coach Erik Johnson, and in recently years clearly haven’t been pushed to their full potential.
Coach McNamee comes to BC from Albany, which isn’t a huge women’s basketball school, but nearly everything about her makes her seem like the perfect fit for this program. She has strong recruiting experience, and hired Yolanda Griffith, one of the best WNBA players in league history, as an assistant coach which will certainly help with recruiting. Coach McNamee has also show that she can turn a program around quickly - she won 21 games in her first season at Albany, and when coaching Pikeville she took the team from 14 wins in her first season to 23 games in her second.
Coach McNamee is also extremely well respected in her field, and former bosses and coworkers seem to have nothing but glowing praise for her. Sources suggest that she’s already getting to work to help BC improve, and that the team is already better conditioned than they were during the season last year. Fans shouldn’t expect an immediate turnaround, but this hire is a great first step to get the women’s basketball program back on track.
Runner ups for the best moment of the year were: BC’s annual Cycle for Survival event, the birth of Matt and Sarah Ryan’s twins (who are sure to be future BC football and/or basketball stars), Jairus Hamilton committing to play for Boston College men’s basketball, 3 Eagles getting drafted into the NFL, the opening of the new facilities, and Coach Addazio’s now classic quote “It’ll come together, and it’ll be beautiful.”