BU Apparently Looking For A New Assistant Hockey Coach, Apply Now

BU’s HR website now has a listing for an assistant men’s ice hockey coach, spotted by BSRS. The postion requires a candidate to, “conduct a recruitment program, organize, conduct and supervise practices and coach players at games.” It’s salary Grade 73, which pays a minimum of $39,880, a maximum of $63,500 and a midpoint of $51,670 per year. It also adds one more small piece of confirmation to what we already knew: Buddy Powers is on his way out.

First reported by the BC Hockey Blog, expanded upon by USHR, and all but from the horse’s mouth in a press release announcing the new hockey coach at St. Mark’s, Albie O’Connell and Scott Young will join David Quinn’s staff for the 2014-15 season, effectively replacing Powers and current director of hockey operations Pertti Hasanen. Though the story has been floating around for weeks, it still hasn’t been officially confirmed, which I’m guessing is a combination of the hiring process, the lack of a real need to do this quickly and the idea that maybe BU wants to give the two outgoing coaches a proper good-bye.

After this past season, some sort of coaching change was probably inevitable. There had been arguments in certain commenteriats that Powers should have left a long time ago, or never really been hired in the first place. He replaced Mike Bavis after Bavis was promoted to associate head coach when Quinn left after the 2009 National Championship. I don’t really know how to comment on that; I’m not on the coaching staff. But next year’s BU hockey bench will look drastically different than this year’s and certainly the season before’s. This will be a new look regime, formed and developed by Jack Parker, but no longer under his control. And with a roster that will be more than half-filled with players who will have spent their entire college careers under Quinn, this is now his team and his world.

On a different note, I’m sort of going to miss Powers. He had developed as this running joke in my head, taking some of those comments to the extreme. But I’m sure he’ll be in a better place.

Buddy Powers BGSU

NCAA Allows “Unlimited” Meals, Plus A Number Of Other Good Things

The NCAA Legislative Council approved five rule changes on Tuesday all related to “student-athlete well being.” The big one: ALL-YOU-CAN EAT. Schools can now supply athletes with as many meals and snacks as they desire, in theory (the specifics will probably be messier). FOOD FOOD FOOD.

All five changes from the NCAA’s bullet points:

  • Division I student-athletes can receive unlimited meals and snacks in conjunction with their athletics participation,

  • Require strength and conditioning coaches to be certified from a nationally accredited certification body,

  • Require someone certified in CPR, first aid and arterial external defibrillation to be present at all countable athletic activities,

  • Reduce the penalty for a first positive test for street drugs during championships, and

  • Require football players to rest for at least three hours between practices during the preseason. Film review and team meetings will be allowed during the recovery period.

Overall, they’re all reasonable revisions that actually seem to provide a benefit for students. Which is practically shocking when it comes to the NCAA.

Subject to final approval of the Division I Board of Directors on April 24th, the proposals will become official rules on August 1st.

Maurice Watson Picks Creighton

After about a week and a half, we have a winner in the Maurice Watson Jr. Sweepstakes. Creighton, come on down!

The former Boston University point guard, who announced his decision to transfer last Wednesday, confirmed via his Twitter account that he has committed to Creighton Sunday afternoon. He was reportedly on a visit to the university’s Omaha campus this weekend. The commitment was first reported by a variety of outlets, and I don’t really have the energy to figure out who was first, good #journalism be dammed.

He joins a team that will likely look a lot different when he’s eligible in 2015-16. Only one player on this year’s squad who played more than 12 percent of possessions was a freshman, according to KenPom. The majority were juniors and seniors, including Wooden Award-winner Doug McDermott. According to NBC Sports, the Blue Jays have two small forwards matriculating this fall, so it’s not like he’ll be alone, although that could be one way to prove yourself.

Watson’s father talked with Adam Zagoria of SNY about the decision. “It’s the Big East, so he gets to come home and play in front of his family as well as against some of the best talent in NCAA basketball on the big stage,” Watson Sr. said, also noting that Illinois and Wichita State were considered.

Both Watsons spoke with Josh Verlin of City of Basketball Love. Watson Sr. said “It just came down to who loves him?” He called Creighton assistant Patrick Sellers was the “x-factor,” as someone Watson Jr. has known since high school and has been recruiting him for a while.


First Look At The Maurice Watson Sweepstakes

It’s been one day since his intention to transfer was announced, and we have our first list of schools looking at Maurice Watson!

So, that’s a school that lost one game this year, two members of the American, one member of the Big East, KANSAS: THE-ROCK-CHALK-JAYHAWK-JAMES-NASMITH-THREE-TIME-NATIONAL-CHAMPION-HAVEN’T-LOST-A-BIG-12-REGULAR-SEASON-TITLE-SINCE-2004 KANSAS and Drexel. Dear old Drexel.

Watson himself retweeted the above list.

It’s still extremely early and things are likely to change, but we have at least have an idea of what Watson is looking at. And it isn’t a bad view.

Derek Piper/Twitter

Flames Want Hockey Player Who Is Good

Sky is blue, water is wet, organization wants to act in its rational self-interest.

(It’s not that obvious of course, especially given what Gaudreau’s mother told the New York Times last week. But it’s still fairly logical.)

In other Gaudreau news, he’s a Hobey Hat Trick finalist along with St. Cloud State’s Nic Dowd and someone named Carey from the ECAC whose name and school I know, but have to look up and it’s really not worth it considering he’s not going to win the Hobey. I’m sure he’s a great person and player, and he’ll probably get a vote, but he’s not winning.

(It’s Greg Carey, a senior forward who played for St. Lawrence)

(Really bringing out the parenthesis today for some reason)

Watson, Thomas, Kennedy All To Transfer From BU

A whole bunch of not good news for Boston Univeristy men’s basketball this morning: Maurice Watson, Jr., Malik Thomas and James Kennedy will all be transferring from the university, according to a variety of sources.

Watson, reported by ESPN’s Jeff Goodman, obviously makes the largest impact. A top-100 recruit heralded as a testament to Joe Jones’ recruiting skills, he spent two years playing excellent basketball for the Terriers. Appearing in 65 games and starting all but two, he averaged 30.4 minutes and 12.3 points. He holds the BU single-game record for assists with 17 and was second in the country this year in assist rate, helping out on 49.9 percent of eligible baskets, according to KenPom.

He was named to the Patriot League First-Team this season and the America East Third- and Rookie-Teams last year. City of Basketball Love caught up with Maurice Watson, Sr. today, who confirmed the report and said that his son wants to play on a bigger stage. Watson, Sr. also told CoBL that they had looked at UConn, Marquette and Stanford, but had not talked to those programs yet. Per Watson, Jr.’s own Twitter, he will finish out the semester at BU.

Jones spoke with Tom Layman of the Boston Herald, and the main quote is here:

“I think the big thing is we love Mo,” said Jones, when reached today. “He had a tremendous impact on the program. We loved him. We just want the best for him. I think it would be great to have him stay. We would love for him to stay.

“But we also want what is best for him,” Jones said after granting Watson’s release.

Thomas, reported by CBS Sports’ Jeff Borzello, might be the most shocking, however. A redshirt junior who will be eligible immediately, he arrived in the Pat Chambers’ second year with D.J. Irving, Dom Morris and Travis Robinson (and Mat Piotrowski, who transferred after his sophomore year).Thomas spent the past three years under Jones developing into a sort of unique combo player. Intensely fun to watch a fan favorite for basically ever, Thomas appeared in 90 games over three seasons, averaging 19.4 minutes and 6.0 points. This year was slightly down for him and his 3-pointer never really clicked, but he still managed to post 21 points twice and deliver us #POINTMALIK.

Kennedy’s departure, also reported by Borzello, is a little bit of a surprise, but not entirely unprecedented.  One of two members of the transition class between Chambers and Jones (along with Zach Chionuma, who transferred to Bryant), he didn’t play this year because of injury. He appeared in 38 games over his two seasons, averaging 6.3 minutes and 1.16 rebounds. His rebound statistics are actually beautiful.

Screen Shot 2014-04-02 at 1.55.20 PM

Just beautiful.

Watson’s departure was always a possibility, and he’ll certainly be able to find himself a new place to play on a larger stage, but hope and blind faith makes this hurt a bit. All three have every absolute right to their decisions, and I hope they all find places where they can excel, entertain and enjoy themselves. To paraphrase Jones, you want what is best for them.

But overall for the program, not good. For the second time in three years, the Terriers will have no seniors on their roster and only four players who played a significant number of minutes will return, according to KenPom. Transfer sophomore forward Blaise Mbargorba and sophomore guard Eric Fanning will be eligible, but there’s obviously a major hole at point guard to be filled. And it also just doesn’t look good when three of your player’s departures come within a half-hour of one another, though I could see a reporting ripple effect.


Wednesday Bites: What If?

The New York Times has a profile on Johnny Gaudreau in today’s paper in advance of the NCAA Tournament and the Hobey Baker and everything else Gaudreau will probably win in the next few weeks (give him the damn Nobel already). It’s not too long and probably worth your time because Johnny Gaudreau is a very good hockey player and the profile has plenty of interesting details.

The one detail that’s the most relevant here comes at the beginning. Gaudreau–leaning towards BC, but as of then undecided–asks his younger brother Matt to pick colleges for him. And–you know what, just read the relevant passage:

“His brother, 15 months younger, favored the Terriers. He had been collecting B.U. apparel for years. The brothers were determined to go to college together, and Johnny Gaudreau decided to give Matthew the final say.

‘They had narrowed it down to B.U. or B.C.,’ said Jane Gaudreau, their mother. ‘John said: ‘I’ll let Matty pick. I’ll go with him.’ I know Matthew was leaning towards B.U., but he chose B.C.’

She added, ‘That’s how John ended up there, because Matthew picked it for him.’”

Whoop, that’s great. Time to play a fun hypothetical game: What if Johnny Gaudreau was one of us?

Thanks Sean Hathaway


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