Boston College basketball (11-19, 6-14) will take on Pittsburgh in the ACC tournament Tuesday at 2 p.m. ET. The Eagles, the 13th seed, showed major improvement this season compared to last in Earl Grant’s first year, with eight new players. Last year’s BC basketball team, led by Jim Christian, had just two ACC wins — just one was under Christian.
Grant commented on BC’s 82-78 overtime loss Saturday afternoon vs. Georgia Tech, the Eagles’ last game of the regular season.
“They were warriors,” said Grant. “But I thought in the first half, we were very antsy. We had some uncharacteristic turnovers. We tried to keep it simple offensively, but we didn’t find any rhythm until the last five minutes of the first half — we won that.
“Then we won the second half, but the first 15 minutes, we just had too many uncharacteristic things — throwing the ball out of bounds, not making good decisions with the ball, we guarded them well at the half court but they had points off of our turnovers,” added Grant.
BC rallied after a slow first half to send it to overtime, but the Eagles did fall in overtime. Some sloppy mistakes costed BC down the stretch, and Grant talked about the Eagles digging themselves into a hole with turnovers and sloppy plays.
“If there’s one thing that we try to do, one thing that we want to be identified for, is we don’t turn it over. We make good decisions with the ball,” Grant said.
“We gotta continue to pursue that, because today, we dug ourselves a whole by not being sharp with the ball and having turnovers and giving them runouts, giving them some rhythm, getting the crowd into it,” Grant continued. “But then we settled down and we won the last 25 minutes of the game but it’s a 40-minute game.”
A lack of bench depth for BC is the result of a heavy workload for some players, most notably freshman Jaeden Zackery. Grant was asked about using just eight players in Saturday’s game.
“They played like warriors, and that’s what we decided to play — we played eight guys,” said Grant when asked about the heavy workload from some players. “Give them credit — a lot of energy, a lot of effort. That’s just where we are. We play our best players.”
BC has traded wins this season with Pitt, as they’ll look to beat them Tuesday for the second time this year. If BC does win, they’ll face No. 5 Wake Forest.
“It’s a good conference, Grant said when asked about the ACC. “A lot of good teams. I know people are saying that the conference may be down, but it’s a lot of good players, a lot of good coaches, a lot of good teams. Every night is a battle.”
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