Hail to Harvard Basketball as the Eagles Get Their Wings Clipped
Just days after knocking off the number one team in the nation, the Boston College Eagles went down to Harvard in Boston. Jeremy Lin scored 27 points for the Harvard Crimson in their 82-70 win over the #18th ranked Boston College Eagles.
I could say that I was very surprised by this, because afterall, BC did just beat the former #1 ranked North Carolina Tarheels on Sunday. But I’m not surprised. And it’s not because I don’t think that BC is a really good team, because they are really good. The truth is, there may be reason to believe that Harvard is even better…or at least may well be on their way to being better.
Full disclosure, I went to Columbia, so I’m naturally inclined to hate everything about Harvard athletics. Nevertheless, I’ll remain objective, especially when they clearly have some talent on this year’s squad.
If you’ll recall, Harvard’s head coach, Tommy Amaker, faced some serious questions last March when Harvard was in the mist of a possible recruiting scandal. Amaker, a former Duke coaching assistant, had brought in the best class of basketball players in the history of the Ivy League. Some recruiting firms ranked Harvard’s class in the top 25. The NYTimes actually reported that Amaker’s staff “adopted aggressive recruiting tactics that skirt or, in some cases, may even violate National Collegiate Athletic Association rules.” And according to that same NYTimes article, some of those recruits did not meet previous Academic Index minimums, indicating that Harvard had lowered its minimum to accept less qualified students. As a result, Amaker was able to bring in 3 stand out recruits.
One of those recruits, Oliver McNally, put up 19 points on BC, getting to the line 11 times. Needless to say, this Harvard team has a very formidable freshman class, and clearly my man Amaker knows how to coach them up.
Harvard junior Jeremy Lin led all scorers with 27 points and had 8 assists to go with it. That performance help put a 10-game BC win streak to a halt. This is the first time Harvard ever beat a ranked team in basketball…and I guarantee it won’t be the last.
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