The official announcement was that there was no announcement. Steve Donahue is still the Boston College basketball coach. A reported by Sports Illustrated on Thursday night said that Donahue was coming back for a fifth season.
But according to sources at BC, no final decision has been made, as BC officials take the weekend to ponder their next move.
Keeping Donahue was option 1 for BC athletic director Brad Bates.
It was the easiest, if not the most popular, move Bates could make.
Whether that changes after a series of meetings with Bates, the administration and Donahue is uncertain.
And things should get better next season. Donahue, who has two years remaining on the six year contract he signed four years ago, is more likely to under schedule in non-confeence game, rather than challenge the RPI rankings to make the Eagles better.
In the case of BC a poor RPI dominated 16-15 season is much better than a strong RPI with a 12-19 record.
The starting five that he had this season will presumably be back with another year’s experience from an 8-24 season which had lots of good moments during games, but much fewer of those moments at the end of games.
The other side of that coin is that the rest of the Atlantic Coast Conference will probably get better with defending national champion Louisville making the move from the American Conference.
Don’t count on many easy nights in the 16-team super ACC next season.
The question that Bates must ask is this: What happens if next season’s team is better but has a similar record?
Another question which must be addressed was the issue of lack of interest by a BC fan base that clearly is not happy the Eagles’ program has headed since Al Skinner was fired four years ago.
Donahue’s theme throughout the long season was that BC was close to making the turn into the warmth that winning the half a dozen or so close games that BC lost this season.
Hopefully for the Eagles and Donahue, BC will get one healthy season from 7-0 center Dennis Clifford.
Maybe there will be a shake up on Donahue’s coaching staff, which will aid in recruiting. Perhaps one or two blue chip freshmen can be added to the mix.
Those are a lot of “ifs” with few definitive answers.
This BC season ended with the glass almost completely empty in terms of hope and optimism.
Now some BC insiders are saying that it will be better next season.
Donahue might get the fifth season he wanted. Will it turn things around?
Let’s see what happens.
The first step will be to make a final decision on whether Donahue does return. That should come no later than Monday.
© 2014, Mark. All rights reserved.