The latest in our series of Q&As is with the terrific SBN blog BC Interruption. Brian and Jeff do a great job over there and it was nice to get their take on tonight's game. So head on over if you haven't checked out the site. Here are my questions and their answers.
Jeff: Ouch! It hurts just to read that. 3-7! But unfortunately, that is where BC is right now with tough games this week at Wake Forest tonight and at Florida State on Sunday. BC needs to win its three remaining home games (North Carolina, Virginia Tech, Virginia), which is very doable to finish the season above .500. If the Eagles can get one of two this week, there is still hope that an 8-8 conference record is achievable considering our manageable schedule in our last five games.
MRickman: Earlier this season, the argument was that when Rakim Sanders came back, this team would be ok. Why hasn't this been the case?
Brian: Going into the season, many thought Sanders would take on a larger role to fill the shoes of Tyrese Rice. A two-game suspension and an ankle injury quickly derailed those expectations. Rakim Sanders is clearly not playing like the player he was for the first two years of his career. He has been in a serious funk coming back from his ankle injury. It recently came out that Sanders is not only dealing with the lingering effects of his ankle injury, but also a bone spur in the heel of his same foot.
Luckily for the Eagles, Sanders is starting to show flashes of his old self. He has scored in double figures in each of the Eagles last four games. Without Sanders at full strength, it will be hard for this BC team to win many games.
MRickman: And on the subject of Reggie Jackson, what is the deal with his headband? How does he get it to stay up like that? Does he just have an enormous dome?
Jeff: The headband thing has been a common fashion statement of BC players over the last 7 years or so. I'm not certain who started it but it seems like our team starts off every season with 7 or 8 players wearing headbands and then some players have a bad game, take it off, and never go back to one. How Reggie's stays in that position where it looks like it's about to pop off I have no idea but the idea of wearing a headband is definitely a BC basketball thing.
MRickman: The Eagles showed a lot of heart at the end of the Duke game. What was the key to staying in that ball game?
Brian: Depends on who you ask. If you ask Mike Krzyzewski, he'd say that it was the play of Duke that kept the Eagles in the game. The Blue Devils shot only 15-of-26 from the charity stripe in the game. Backhanded compliment? Yes and please. I think the answer lies somewhere in the middle though. BC played Duke close for most of the first half before letting the game slip away a bit (going into the half down 10). The Eagles got a good game out of Sanders, who drove to the hoop well and took some good shots.
MRickman: Who is the X factor in this game? What lesser known player should Wake fans keep an eye on?
Jeff: The very unknown player to watch is Dallas Elmore. Elmore is a sophomore who started the season getting some extra minutes only because of Sanders' injury but recently has worked his way up to getting more time through being smart on the offensive end and playing good defense. Elmore played a season low of 3 minutes at Clemson but then recently played 29 minutes at Virginia Tech. Elmore will not look great in the box score, but if you watch the game you'll notice him helping BC at both ends of the floor.
MRickman: Why will BC win this game?
Brian: If the Eagles play good defense and are patient in setting up the offense (and don't get away from the Flex), I think they have a chance against the Deacons. However, Wake Forest's forwards create all sorts of matchup problems down low for the Eagles. Not to mention that BC will be even more shorthanded without the services of Joe Trapani.
If BC can get the Wake Forest big men into foul trouble early, they might have a chance. But I think with the Eagles playing even smaller than they normally do with Trapani in the lineup, this is a tall order.
MRickman: Why won't BC win this game?
Jeff: If BC shoots below 25% from 3 they have no chance. BC was not very competitive in their road games against Clemson and Duke this year and they shot a combined 3-26 in those games.
MRickman: Prediction time. What happens, what's your final?
Brian: I think that the game will be competitive with the Eagles again showing a lot of heart. I don't expect a repeat of last year's Eagles trip to Wake Forest (a 93-76 beatdown). However, without Trapani and having to deal with Wake Forest's height, I think the Deacons take this one.
Wake Forest 69, Boston College 65.