Home » Columns »Your Phil of Hoops » Currently Reading:

Boston University gets the 40-minute effort they needed

February 10, 2014 Columns, Your Phil of Hoops No Comments

BOSTON – The final box score shows Boston University beating Lafayette 88-54. Dig a little deeper and you understand how the score got to be that way. But watch Saturday’s game at Agganis Arena and you understand it better, as well as why it was so satisfying for this team, as it’s the type of effort they’ve needed.

“We had been talking about trying to put together two halves, trying to play consistently well for 40 minutes,” said head coach Joe Jones. “We’ve struggled with that at times. So tonight, it was great to see us play a complete game from start to finish.”

This was complete domination by Boston University. They shot over 56 percent from the field, including 11-25 on three-pointers, while holding Lafayette below 33 percent and 6-21, respectively. Both figures for Lafayette were the Leopards’ second-lowest figures of the season. The Terriers had 21 assists and nine turnovers, while forcing 20 Leopard turnovers. They had a 48-20 edge in points in the paint, a 23-2 edge in points off turnovers and a 36-15 bench scoring advantage.

Their leading scorer on the afternoon was Justin Alston with 17 points on 8-10 shooting. Coming into the game, he had scored 16 points in his first 11 Patriot League games. Their starting guards had 15 assists with just one turnover to lead the charge in those categories.

The Terriers also never trailed and started both halves hot from the field en route to shooting over 50 percent in each half. In other words, they didn’t just ride one hot stretch to some good numbers. This was a 40-minute effort of running good offense, getting easy baskets and taking Lafayette completely out of what they wanted to do.

Jones has been trying to get games like this from a team that’s capable of them ever since last year. Even while the Terriers won, he was on them about handling success and realizing that a full 40-minute effort is what is needed to win. It’s often tough for 18 to 22-year-old kids to understand that just because you’re winning doesn’t mean there aren’t areas for improvement. When the wins are coming, it’s easy to think there’s no work to do because the effort has been good enough.

A week earlier, this may have manifest itself in a tough fashion as they dropped a tough one at home to Lehigh in overtime. The Mountain Hawks were starting to come to life after struggling at the outset of Patriot League play, but that was still a game you figure the Terriers should win. While BU lost a lot of close games last season, they have turned that around this season as they have gone from 0-5 in one-possession games to 5-1.

Since that time, however, the Terriers seem to have locked in. They went on the road and beat Navy by double digits in a defensive struggle, then blew out Lafayette on Saturday. They have clearly bounced back from the tough loss, and Jones found a lesson for himself.

“We had won so many close games in a similar fashion, it’s hard to get that message across,” said Jones. “You’ve got to take one on the chin sometimes to really understand.”

Jones said that as he saw the team having some trouble in the second half of games, he changed some of the practices. Some things he did in the past are being put aside to have more competitive parts of practice. Just as games are competitive all the way through, his hope is to make practices the same way so they get in the habit of competing every second.

“I hope that’s helping our guys maintain their focus,” Jones added.

It certainly seemed to do that on Saturday, but the story will be told in the games to come. Four of the Terriers’ final six regular season games are on the road, and one of the two home games is against American, who lost on Saturday to even the league race. One of those road games is at Army, who is nipping at their heels as well.

Saturday’s win is big for this team in some obvious ways. The scoreboard showed it, as did the box score. It’s the kind of game this team has needed for a while regardless of the actual score. And as such, it provides a roadmap to success the rest of the season.

Comment on this Article:

Subscribe to Hoopville

Enter your email address to subscribe to Hoopville


Hoopville Archives

College Basketball Tonight

We hope you enjoyed COLLEGE BASKETBALL TONIGHT during the 2016 NCAA Tournament. COLLEGE BASKETBALL TONIGHT is a comprehensive look at the NCAA Tournament hosted by veteran college basketball broadcaster Ted Sarandis, along with co-hosts Mike Jarvis and Terry O'Connor, both former Division I coaches. It also included many great guests, including Hoopville's own Phil Kasiecki.

The show aired on AM 710 WOR in New York City on Sunday evenings starting with Selection Sunday and running through the NCAA Tournament.

Here are links to the shows:

March 13, 2016 - First hour | Second hour

March 20, 2016 - First hour | Second hour

March 27, 2016 - First hour | Second hour

April 3, 2016 - First hour | Second hour

Everybody Needs a Head Coach

Former college basketball coach Mike Jarvis has a new book out, Everybody Needs a Head Coach.

"As you read this book, I hope that Coach Jarvis' experiences inspire you to find your purpose in life."
-Patrick Ewing, NBA Hall of Fame center

"Mike Jarvis' is one of my special friends. I am so pleased that he has taken the time to write this fabulous book."
-Mike Krzyzewski, Five-time NCAA championship head coach, Duke Blue Devils

"In reading this book, I can see that Mike hasn't lost his edge or his purpose. Readers should take a look at what he has to say."
-Jim Calhoun, Three-time NCAA champion, UConn Men's basketball

Review on Hoopville coming soon!

Coaching Changes

The coaching carousel is moving. Keep track of the latest coaching changes right here on Hoopville.

Hoopville Podcasts

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – February 7, 2018

February 7, 2018 by

In our latest podcast, we talk about a big sweep in the SEC, look back on the wild Saturday, then talk about a Big Ten showdown and some undefeated teams in conference play.

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – January 31, 2018

January 31, 2018 by

In our latest podcast, we talk about a lot of what has happened in the ACC and SEC, including the Big 12/SEC Challenge, whether or not Kentucky is turning a corner, as well as the story at Michigan State.

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – January 26, 2018

January 26, 2018 by

In our latest podcast, we talk about a wild night in the Big Ten, adversity and a quiet leader in the ACC, what to make of Kentucky and look ahead to the Big 12/SEC Challenge.

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – January 18, 2018

January 18, 2018 by

In our latest podcast, we talk about big road wins for a few teams, including a couple of bluebloods that looked destined for losses, as well as an unsettled Big Ten beyond one team, an SEC where you shouldn’t pay attention to bracketologists, and the problems with a proposed earlier start to the college basketball season.

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – January 11, 2018

January 11, 2018 by

In our latest podcast, we talk about several big pieces of news away from game play, one of which puts a lot in perspective. We also talk about the lack of dominant teams and how this has shown up in the results, especially this past weekend.

Phil Kasiecki on Twitter

Recruiting Coverage

Lincoln captures Hamilton Park title

August 15, 2017 by

For the first time, a public school won the Hamilton Park Summer League, and they were led by a big effort from a junior point guard in the title game.

Notes from a day at the 2017 Boston Shootout

June 12, 2017 by

Some news and notes coming from the second and final day of action at the 2017 Boston Shootout, where the host program provided plenty of talent, but so did a program that produced a team that beat them.

Notes from a day at the 2017 Northeast Hoops Festival

April 11, 2017 by

The Northeast Hoops Festival helped bring in the new spring travel season in New England, and we have notes from some of Saturday’s action.

2016 Boston Back to School Showcase notes

September 12, 2016 by

We look back at the 2016 Boston Back to School Showcase, where a couple of Boston City League teams were among the most impressive on the day.

2016 Hoopville Spring Finale championship recap

June 28, 2016 by

We look back at the championship games of the 2016 Hoopville Spring Finale, which had a big local flavor as one might have expected.