(An outsider’s view of what’s happening at Boston College, AKA The Heights)
Here’s the perplexing question of the day for a Boston College football fan (they are out there). Should BC football coach Steve Addazio receive the extension on his contract before the start of the 2018 season?
Let’s begin by saying this may be a moot point. Boston College athletic director Martin Jarmond, who is finishing his first year at The Heights, may have already done that, but as is the case in many instances at BC, chosen not to announce it.
When Jarmond replaced Brad Bates last summer, the prevailing wisdom was that he would have to make changes in football AND men’s and women’s basketball in his first year.
BC football rallied to another 7-6 season and made a bowl appearance, the men’s basketball team turned from mediocre to good in one season and finished above .500 (this after a 2-34 record in ACC play the previous two seasons), which was not only good enough to save Jim Christian’s job, but earned him a contract extension. Women’s coach Eric Johnson did not fare as well and was gone after six seasons in which the Eagles’ compiled a 68-115 record. Jarmond replaced Johnson with Albany coach Joanna Bernabei McNamee.
Which leaves Addazio sitting at The Heights with three seasons remaining on a contract which will pay him in the neighborhood of $2.6 million per season.
But when word leaked this spring that Christian had been rewarded with a contract extension, the logical question would focus on why not do the same thing with Addazio.
The assumption had been that by the end of the 2018 football season, Addazio and BC (and Jarmond) would have reached a major intersection. Either the Eagles will perform well enough this season to earn Addazio a raise and a few more years on his contract or, with no signs of tangible progress, Jarmond would fire his football coach with two years remaining on his contract and start another rebuilding process.
You can argue that “signs” of progress is open to interpretation. BC has never won more than 7 games in any of Addazio’s six seasons at BC. Each forward step has been matched with a setback, either because of injury or some other factor that Addazio has used as a part of his assessment.
There is no question that BC is making progress. A brand new indoor facility, which had long been a missing link in the overall success of BC football, should be ready to use by training camp this summer. There is talent on the roster and BC has proven it can play against the top tier competition, which is part of life in the Atlantic Coast Conference.
Maybe Jarmond has seen this and already made his move to add strength to the foundation of the program. But it hasn’t been announced and the recruiting process is ongoing, so any words that add to Addazio’s future would presumably help BC and take some of the pressure (not that pressure is bad) off or a significiant improvement this season).
There has been some chatter at The Heights that such a move has indeed been made. But when asked a direct question about Addazio’s contract, the official response was neither a confirmation nor a denial.
It might take more than skill for BC to reach 8 wins this season. After the opening games against UMass and Holy Cross there do not appear to be any “locks” on the BC schedule. Winning 7 games (not counting a bowl game) might again be the ceiling.
The health status of starting quarterback Anthony Brown remains in question, although insiders at The Heights say Brown will be ready at the start of the season.
Still, there are enough questions remaining and enough holes to fill to justify waiting until November to make a decision about Addazio.
I think a deal has been done, but until it becomes official, the sounds of silence from The Heights continue to get louder.