By: Greg Levinsky
Inconsistencies plague the Boston University men’s basketball team. Instead of euphoria after the Terriers 87-80 win over two-time reigning Patriot League champion, head coach Joe Jones expressed a distinct need, and somewhat of a disappointment.
“It’s more about the practices,” Jones said. “It’s more about breaking the habit of having letdowns after you play well.”
The Terriers rotational cogs consist of two juniors, three sophomores and six freshman. That could be the reason.
“I think part of it might be inexperience,” said junior forward Max Mahoney, who leads the team in both scoring (16.8 PPG) and rebounding (6.2 RPG). “It takes a lot to win games, especially in league. College basketball is so much different, you can’t just expect to walk into a gym and beat any team on any given day.”
Mahoney said they had a “great” practice leading up to Saturday’s 87-80 win over the Bison. The Terriers (8-7, 1-1 Patriot League) must carry that momentum into Wednesday’s game against Army (6-9, 1-1).
“We can’t just be like ‘oh we beat Bucknell, that’s great,'” Mahoney said. “Now we need to beat every team in our path, really.”
Throughout the season, Jones has mentioned inconsistent practices as a recurring theme in his post game press conferences. He said he didn’t express a ton of excitement after the win.
The Terriers beat CAA favorite Northeastern on the road and played tough at home against Vermont. Those were promising performances. Losses at Dartmouth, Drexel and falling at home to Bethune-Cookman were not so good.
Jones does not want to use his team’s youthfulness as an excuse. Rather, Jones expects his players to mature quickly.
However in reflection, Jones said he’s not always sure what to do.
“I just don’t know what buttons to push with this team,” Jones said. “I have no idea. I don’t. I’m just being honest. I have no idea… I just don’t know how to get them when they’re playing with that level of force every day.”
To win the Patriot League regular season title, they’ll certainly need to put together some winning streaks.
“We haven’t been able to do this consistently,” Jones said. “Let’s see if we can come back Monday, and have a great practice Monday and Tuesday.
“If we do that, I guarantee you we’ll play really well on Wednesday.”
Greg Levinsky can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @GregLevinsky