Today’s announcement that Jim Christian has been fired after seven seasons at the helm of the BC men’s basketball program comes as no surprise given the team’s ongoing struggles. But seeing a Boston College head coach fired during the season was surprising - and it may well be unprecedented.
We are working to confirm this information, but based on data available on Coaches Database, Sports Reference, and in BC media guides, it appears that this is the first ever mid-season firing of a coach in a Boston College revenue sport (football, men’s basketball, women’s basketball, men’s hockey).
Slight caveat: the departures of Tom O’Brien and Steve Addazio from the football team happened at the end of the regular season and before bowl games in 2006 and 2019, but that is obviously a different situation.
According to Sports Reference, every BC men’s basketball coach had previously completed their final season.
Based on available records, the last mid-season coaching change for a revenue BC sport came during the 1935 football season, when Dinny McNamara resigned due to health reasons after four games, with Harry Downes taking the reigns for the final five games of the season. Downes’ first game was a 20-6 win over Providence College. His leg of the season also featured wins over Springfield and Boston University.
It will be interesting to see if we learn more about what motivated BC to make their move now, as Pat Kraft appears to have done something unprecedented in Eagles history.